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Peder Bergenwall
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After having the game sitting on the shelf for a month, at last it's time to give it a go tomorrow evening. I'm playing OL (I'm the one only one who knows the rules), and my wife and a friend are playing the heroes. Reading on the forums I get the sense that having only two heroes might be a bit tough on them, so I'm wondering how you guys/gals would approach this. The main objective is for us to have a good time, and being steam rolled (if I indeed get to do that) would probably discourage them from wanting to play again.

As I see it I have two options:

1. either they pick one hero each and we try a couple of quests to feel it out (with me secretly adjusting my game accordingly),
2. or they pick two heroes each and hopefully get to feel a bit powerful this first play through.

On that note, do you have any suggestions on fun/good hero combinations? Hopefully we'll start a campaign, so the heroes will be going up in exp. and money.

What do you think? I might be underestimating them of course, and run the risk of being killed of again and again.
 
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Darren Nakamura
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Do you have the Conversion Kit, or just the base game? If you have just the base game, then the teams I would recommend are:

Avric Albright the Disciple + Syndrael the Knight
or
Avric Albright the Disciple + Jain Fairwood the Wildlander

If you end up doing a four-hero game instead, then my suggestion would be:

Avric Albright the Disciple, Syndrael the Knight, Jain Fairwood the Wildlander, and Leoric of the Book the Runemaster.

Since you are just starting, I almost recommend having each control only one hero, because it can be really easy to forget all of your skills and abilities, and doubly so if they have two heroes each to keep track of. If you don't think that's a problem, then I'd definitely recommend going for four heroes instead of two.
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Peder Bergenwall
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Sorry I missed pointing it out, but yes I have the base game only.

Thanks for the suggestions, care to elaborate on (any of) them?

The friend is a PC gamer at heart (Baldur's Gate being her all time favorite), so I think she would be fine with two heroes. My wife on the other hand is not, and would probably have her hands full with the one. I don't know if having three heroes (2+1) is a way to go either.
 
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D P
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How well do you know the rules? If you don't know the rules well, 4 heroes would give you time to learn tactics as an OL as you'd have more targets to work with and more monsters to play with. Large monsters have the same number of creatures (just difference in master/minion) for 2 and 3 heroes, but 4 heroes uses both master and minion.

One thing to remember is everything scales with the number of heroes. All three are valid, 2 heroes, 3 heroes, and 4 heroes. 1+1, 1+2, and 2+2 for control all work. So they can both go 1, both go 2, or you can let your gamer friend go 2 while your wife goes just 1.

Some of the posts here I've seen say that 2 heroes is hard for the heroes, 4 heroes easier for the heroes, and 3 heroes is easiest for the heroes in terms of hero vs OL difficulty because of how the monsters scale, but in my personal experience, it all comes down to tactics and hero choice. You want them to play heroes they want to play, not just ones that will work well together to make the ultimate team. So recommend they play certain things but leave the ultimate choice up to them.

Another thing you MUST do, absolute MUST, is remind them that while it is them vs you, it's possible for you to win and continue onto the next quest where they may win. It's a continuous campaign, and either the heroes or the OL may win each individual quest, and the only true 'deciding' quest is the Finale. It's not like video games and most other x-vs-1 where when 'the heroes' lose, it's over. Also remind them that dying during a quest is not game-ending, because of the stand-up rule. They're not really dead, they're just unconscious and can get back up on a later turn and continue playing. The quest isn't over until it's over. One last thing about the win/lose thing is to make sure they know that (usually) the first encounter in a quest isn't win/lose, it just plays into the second encounter somehow, so while they may do badly at the first encounter, it doesn't mean they lose, it just means it'll be more difficult to win the second encounter.

One last thing is to remind them that one of the biggest mistakes starting players make is what most other games make you do (or encourage you to do). Kill everything before you move on, and clear every room before you finish the quest. Many of the quests don't require you to kill everything. The objective is the important thing, not kill count. An objective can easily go to the OL if the heroes are busy killing things they could have bypassed to make it to the real objective, or had an objective ready to finish but decided to go see what's in this room before leaving. The starting quest is one of those that tries to point this out. If you spend all the time attacking the goblins so they don't run through, ignoring the ettin, eventually some will get through anyway, especially if the ettin knocks the heroes down, and the heroes will end up failing the quest because of it, when all they had to do was do their best to ignore the goblins and kill the ringleader as fast as possible. Always make sure the heroes know the quest's objective and understand it before starting the quest, and since they're learning, if they seem to be forgetting the objective to go on a killing spree during the quest, remind them what the objective is for the first few quests.



Good luck with the game, I hope they enjoy it.
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Aswin Agastya
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My basic set up for 4 players game is:

Syndrael the Berserker for damage dealing and room clearing
Leoric the Runemaster for damage dealing and room clearing
Avric the Disciple for support
Tomble the Thief for support

My suggestion is to give Syndrael and Leoric to your friend since they're pretty complex, and give Avric and Tomble to your wife.

The nice thing about Campaign is you learn the skills of the heroes slowly.
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Dustin Whitmire
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I think Syndrael is the best character in the base game. Her heroic feat always gets used, and gives the heroes 2 free moves. Warrior is the best choice in my opinion, because so many quests depend on keeping an npc alive, and the Defend ability is huge.

You should have a healer (Disciple) and both Avric and Ashrian have their advantages. Ashrian has a movement of 5 and her heroic ability can make the difference in a quest, but Avric is the the quintessential healer, and more intuitive for a new player.

I don't think you can go wrong after that for a 3rd/4th slot. Leoric, Widow, Tomble, and Jane are all good heroes, and their classes are all worthwhile.
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Peder Bergenwall
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Ok, so without going into too much detail, our game last night was a blast. All of us being new to the game we had to revert to the rulebook/FAQ on several occasions, but not so much that it halted the game.

I got, to put it mildly, severely beaten on the Introduction and A Fat Goblin (their choices) by Jain Fairwood the Wildlander (the "I always play with a bow" friend) and Ashrian the Disciple (my wife). Not, from the suggestions, the most efficient or best combination, but they picked the heroes and classes they thought looked most fun/played the most to their preferences. For my part I couldn't resist using a dragon as my open group on AFG (which, as I played it, was pretty much useless), and overall didn't play especially smart or strategic (both by choice and by not paying attention). I too had a blast though, so I'm not complaining.

I would however appreciate some more suggestions for both heroes and OL going forward. What route should I as OL take in my deck, playing against these heroes? Any general tips on monster groups and placements? Suggestions for good/fun skills for Jane/Ashrian?

My "I don't like fantasy or computer games (e.g. Diablo/Baldur's Gate)" wife really liked the game, and appreciated D P's advice of seeing the game as a series of fights that can be both won or lost but still be progress-able either way. That made the encounters matter without making them life-or-death.

Thanks.
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Aswin Agastya
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Black arrow is a nifty skill for the wildlander. For the Disciple, aim for status cure, double heal, damage boost, and aim for the area of effect attack since the wildlander lacks one. Walk and gain stamina is also very helpful.
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Peder Bergenwall
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Sevej wrote:
Black arrow is a nifty skill for the wildlander. For the Disciple, aim for status cure, double heal, damage boost, and aim for the area of effect attack since the wildlander lacks one. Walk and gain stamina is also very helpful.


Without looking the skills you mentioned up, I'd say healing skills/spells would help them greatly. "Is there no way of removing our damage taken?" was a question that came up, so this is perfect. AOE attacks would probably also be fun to use for them.

Any suggestions for me as an OL?

And what do you guys use for open groups as OL, and in what situations? I realize it depends on the quest/encounter, but in general what are your impressions of the different monsters?
 
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Aswin Agastya
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At the moment *always* picking big monsters is the easiest tip I can offer, because they can plug passageways easily. Try to hoard OL cards and unleash them at the same time.

Descent seems easy to learn, but it's actually pretty deep considering that you need to juggle the available actions, especially as overlord.

For OL cards choice, well I guess you can be whatever you want, but I'll take a look at the two chosen heroes, and look for cards that use their low attributes.
 
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John DiMaggio
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As for the heroes, I'd agree that they lack an AoE ability. First strike might be able to help with this category for the wildlander, as this'll essentially give them another attack. Nimble (base skill) and fleet of foot can be crazy for mobility.

As for the overlord, I am quite partial to schemes and/or plan ahead. It gives you the ability to get the cards you want rather than just whatever you draw.

As for the tree to follow, I'd generally avoid sabeteur, as both characters have high awareness, and Ashrian will probably get the status cure ability, making immobilize from the web traps less desirable.

You could always just do boring warlord, but the disciple will be able to heal back a lot of the damage you do if you don't KO a hero. That being said, both characters have low health, 8 and 10, so it might be viable to simply try and bash one down.

Magus might be quite viable as the team has little to no AoE and this encourages you to take large groups of small monsters. This works well with Unholy Ritual. Also, Diabolic power tests spellbook when searching magic, and I believe their spellbooks are 2,3 respectively?

As far as open groups, I'd suggest taking large groups of smaller monsters (zombies, bargheists, flesh moulders, etc.) over the typical small group of big monster (i.e. shadow dragon, ettins) simply because they have no AoE attacks. Doubly so if you have unholy ritual. Exceptions to this of course if your goal is to block a hallway.
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Peder Bergenwall
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Thanks for the replies!

I think going with smaller monsters is a idea worth trying out actually, as well as going Magus (now that I've looked through the cards). We'll have our second session toworrow, this time with the addition of another hero (we'll adjust everything accordingly). Hopefully I can report back with at least an encounter or two in my belt.
 
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