Aaron Chasteen
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My friend was talking about D&D and all the excitement that goes with it. Is there a way I can get the same experience, but without the multiple campaigns and more than 3 hour playtime.
 
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Jerry Martin
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Dungeons & Dragons: Castle Ravenloft Board Game
Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of Ashardalon Board Game
Dungeons & Dragons: The Legend of Drizzt Board Game
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Tim M-L
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So, do I understand correctly that you do not want something that spreads over multiple sessions?

Playing one off scenarios using an RPG that runs quicker is an option. Dungeon World, Dungeonslayers, and Tales of Blades and Heroes are good options for that.

for boardgames
Dungeoneer is a very good game.
Song of Blades and Heroes is excellent for general fantasy games using miniatures.

There are other, older games but those are my in print favorites.
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Kristopher
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Quote:
My friend was talking about D&D and all the excitement that goes with it. Is there a way I can get the same experience, but without the multiple campaigns and more than 3 hour playtime.


You can get that with D&D. Especially the new 4th edition rules. just DON'T play a multi-session campaign and have your friend run you thru some simple adventure/dungeon crawl/combat. He should be able to whip up something on the fly. (No need to play for 3 hrs.)
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J Holmes
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Runebound is nice for a 1 off quest with levelling and the like.

Descent 2.0 is great, ongoing campaign with some interesting choices along the way.

Bah misread the initial requirements.


Runebound takes a tickle longer than 3 hrs.
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Mike Fox
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Syvanis wrote:


These for sure. You should also take a look at . . .

Claustrophobia--a dungeon crawl that takes 1-1.5 hours. Beautiful tiles and painted miniatures. It's 2-player, player vs. player.

Gears of War: The Board Game--Even though this isn't fantasy, a lot folks who love dungeon crawls think this one plays really well and really fun. Basically it's a dungeon crawl with a military theme instead of a fantasy one.

Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition)--I've only played the 1st edition, which takes 3-6 hours, but the second edition (to which I've linked) supposedly is more streamlined and plays in 2 hours or less. It's a terrific game, definitely has that fantasy RPG feel.

Hope these suggestions prove helpful. Best of luck!
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MGS
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I like many of the suggestions so far. I would like to add Mice and Mystics. I think it has a lot of qualities that you see in RPGs and fits what you are looking for. There is a strong story element. The duration is reasonable. it can be played as a one shot or campaign. The characters are customizable and level up. It is nice that the game is the GM and you can play with your friend. You do have a fixed number of mice per chapter and you may need to control multiple mice what could break the immersion for some.
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Laura Creighton
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It depends on what the experience you are trying to capture is, but

Mage Knight
Descent (not sure about editions here, I may have linked to the wrong one)
Claustrophobia -- has scenarios, but check it out anyway
and Arkham Horror

Claustrophobia for the 'never ending tide of monsters to kill' experience. Arkham Horror for the 'teamwork and storytelling' experience.
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Christopher Scatliff
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All the excitement that goes with it? Nobody here has yet given you the actual answer to that, which is: no.
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Nicola Gambetti
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Defenders of the Realm: it's even illustrated by Larry Elmore.
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Terry Gwazdosky
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It's not a board game, but Thunderstone Advance: Towers of Ruin and it's expansions scratch that RPG itch for me.
 
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Johan Haglert
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I haven't played D&D, but beyond Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) (personally I bought Dungeon twister but I suppose it doesn't fit, I don't know how well Earth reborn to) what about Dungeon Command: Tyranny of Goblins or whatever sets of it (why can't I link to the whole group?), worst case scenario you have a bunch of miniatures for actual D&D (and floor tiles if those can be used and also it integrates with the D&D boardgames if you decide to get any of those.)

Imho Dungeon command got a much better value and production than Dungeon twister. Price isn't far from the expansions for dungeon twister but you get better quality tiles, plastic miniatures, a well designed box, bunch of cards with good artwork.

I've only played Dungeon command and Claustrophobia once but I didn't enjoyed that game of Claustrophobia much. My experience with Dungeon command was better even though I don't remember it all that much. What I would had wanted was to build my own army though, which in reality would require you to get multiple boxes (of the same set) to be able to spawn what you want rather than have a taste of everything. But if you do you could try out plenty of strategies with varying armies and I suppose even trade units with each others to get the armies you wanted and what not.

I haven't played dungeon twister yet. I suppose it may be weaker than dungeon command actually but I don't want to buy multiple boxes with the same content. And I had looked at it so long.
 
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Kristopher
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lacreighton wrote:
It depends on what the experience you are trying to capture is


Yes, I was about to rephrase my response and ask the same thing: What is it that you are trying to gain? Personally, I don't think the new 4th ed D&D rules work (miniatures, tiles, battle mats, etc.) I think they detract from what I feel is the old school pen & paper RPG experience. (And frankly I haven't experienced that in a while - even WITH my once a week game session, and Pathfinder rules.)

I haven't played the D&D board games, but depending on what it is you are trying to get from it, it may not translate. Two too different genres.
 
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Robert Beachler
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Smoo wrote:
All the excitement that goes with it? Nobody here has yet given you the actual answer to that, which is: no.


This is only the answer if you subscribe to the though that it's exciting to begin with. I'd find a dungeon crawl board game more fun than D&D RPG.
 
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Tuomas Korppi
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achasteen wrote:
My friend was talking about D&D and all the excitement that goes with it. Is there a way I can get the same experience, but without the multiple campaigns and more than 3 hour playtime.


No, you cannot get the RPG experience in a board game. Tabletop RPG's are about storytelling, and since there is a human gamemaster resolving the actions, you have very vast choice of possible actions. Boardgames are about winning, and the actions are resolved by exact rules, which gives the game a mathematical flavour. Also the freedom of action is absent, since you can choose your moves only from the set of allowed moves.

On the other hand, a quite satisfactory RPG adventure can be played in three hours. The RPG format does not necessate long campaigns.
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Jared Voshall
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Short answer is no, there is no way to recreate the experience of an RPG in a Boardgame format. In particular, the parts that you find least desirable in the format (the 3+ hour playtime and the ongoing campaign nature of them) are part of the definition of them (as, being first and foremost a storytelling medium, the play time on an RPG is theoretically unlimited).
That said, there are games that come close to that ideal. Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition), Mice and Mystics, and Earth Reborn all capture a very similar feel to being in an ongoing RP campaign - by providing an ongoing campaign to participate in.
If you aren't interested in the full RP experience, then what aspects of it are you interested in?

The collaborative storytelling parts of it can be handled by games such as Once Upon a Time: The Storytelling Card Game or Stupiduel (currently out of print).

The tactical combat side can be covered by any skirmish-level miniatures game (as D&D was originally birthed from such a system), though I would say that Warmachine/Hordes best captures the feel of a modern 'classic' fantasy style game. Though any of the D&D board games or 'RPG Light' games (including those listed above) can fit the bill.

Or you can get the RP experience without the multi-session campaigns by building up a character or set of characters that you like, and just running through one-shot adventures with your friends every now and again. But there is a certain satisfaction in taking a character that you created and seeing them grow and evolve through months and years (in some cases) of play, and you simply cannot capture that in a single boardgame (if nothing else, there are very, very few boardgames that allow you to make your own characters).
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Geert Dijstelbloem
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Old school HeroQuest perhaps?
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Smurf-o-Deth
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Fiasco? It's not a boardgame, but it does play in two hours or so, and doesn't require anyone to GM. Admittedly, it has nothing to do inherently with the DnD kill-loot-repeat style of roleplay, but it will let you develop a character and tell a story in a relatively short period of time.
 
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