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Subject: Need some advice rss

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Dennis Firth
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Sanger
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I played this game solo with four heroes when it first came out---played and lost eleven games (or was it twelve?) in a row. I finally gave up on it as pretty much unbeatable and moved onto other games. I’ve been thinking about giving it another try and have noticed there are some expansions available now. The Dragon Expansion seems a bit expensive at the moment but I was looking at the Hero Expansions. The first one looks interesting, but the second and third look like they have some duplicate heroes. Anyone have an opinion on which two would be the best to get? Thanks.
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R J
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I don't have a suggestion about which expansion, but you may try playing with fewer heroes. Also in the back of the rules they have some suggestions for making the game a bit easier or a bit harder once you are comfortable playing.
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Brent Lloyd
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Pioneer27 wrote:
Anyone have an opinion on which two would be the best to get?


I like the entire game system myself and don't really think you can go wrong buying any/all of it. Just pick something that appeals to you.

You Lost 11/12 times in a row? I admire your persistence!

I would suggest you try it with fewer heroes, the game does scale quite well, maybe try two heroes.

Peace
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David Mason
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Dragon Expansion includes the Royal Blessing. The rules recommend how many (one time) blessings you can use based upon the number of heroes in the game (less heroes=more blessings). Each blessing can be used to save your butt in one of three different ways.

Dragon expansion also includes new quest cards, some more special cards for the hero deck, and global effects. The new quests and hero cards all have potential to ease some of your pain, and certainly the global effects do as well.

I don't know that soloing with less heroes will help though I've lost a few games with four people playing and not won yet. My wife and I do pretty well with just the two of us and we've had success with three people as well.

If you want to solo with one hero, I can tell you I think the best hero for the task is the Adventurer from Hero Expansion #1. She gets four extra cards in her magic pouch, draws 2 colors at the inns instead of one, rolls an extra (non-combat) die on quests, and gets a chance of 1-3 extra hero cards per turn from "minor quests" on locations with a treasure chest. All this does a few key things for solo play: you can"gear up" in the early war and have excellent hand management, which along with the extra cards really lets you plan your end game strategy.

I finally won a single-hero solo game with her after about half a dozen games. She was able to draw 17 quests before a general threatened MC and she completed 15 of them. I used a "standard" set up: no royal blessings, mixed in applicable new quests and special hero cards (dealing extras to the box so I only have 16 in the deck), and 2 bad global effects with 3 good. Yeah, it's friggin' hard! But not impossible, and so many little things you can do to make it easier (or God forbid, harder). I'm thinking of trying it with a different hero, but also thinking I'll put the Royal Blessings on the board this time around.

As for some basic strategy when solo-soloing, this is all probably a little "duh," and applicable to the game in general, but: quest like a madman in the early war, do what you can in the middle war, and try not to draw any Darkness Spreads cards at all in the late war. Everything kind of hinges on the generals' movement, sometimes they are fast and furious, other times rather sluggish - just keep their paths clear so their advancement doesn't cause overruns. Try and wait until the last possible minute to kill your first general. Watch for Orcs. And be lucky.

***Sorry this was so focused on single-hero soloing. I JUST noticed you said you'd been using four heroes. I will say the Adventurer is an excellent addition to any party, all the things she brings to the table are just as useful in group play.
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Andy Mac
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Chiming in with support for using "Royal Blessings" (the rules for which are around here somewhere...) The rule scales the game really well so that you can give yourself a decent chance. Then, when you start winning regularly you can pull back on the blessings to ramp up the difficulty.
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Mikhail Kruzhkov
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I never tried the Dragon expansion, I don't fancy the card-sorting aspect of that addition, but I really like the heroes expansions, I have them all and I love them all! Some heroes are much better than others (for example, Shaman is one of the best and Chaos Wizard is one of the dumbest), but I still like the variety, how the game is played differently depending on a random selection of heroes.

By the way, we too lost something like 7 first games in a row, but eventually we got better and, what I think is more important, we found out that we were missing some points in the rules (and FAQ) which really make life easier for the heroes. For instance:

- When you add two minions to a location that already has three, there is only one overrun and only one tainted crystal is added,
- With a gate card you can move not only to the location pictured on the card, but also to any existing gate on the board,
- After defeating a general all heroes involved get a reward of 3 hero cards,
- You can play "Battle luck" special card to make ALL the heroes fighting a general to re-roll ALL of their failed dice.

Now the game has become much easier, we win more often than we loose, we even started to use some variants that make the game a bit more challenging, like Winds of War.
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Todd Woodward
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Personally, I would re-try the base game before trying any of the expansions. Before you do though, read some strategy articles. There are plenty here on the geek, and they have helped our games immensely.
 
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Bram Verbiest
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The dragon expansion only makes things more difficult (generals), some of the generals are like 3x worse than an original. So if you can't beat the original game you won't be able to beat the expansion either. But this said there are enough things to adapt the game to your needs, making it easier is possible with royal blessings or adding positive global effects.

Still I think you might have done something wrong or you were just unlucky, I play a lot solo and with my gf (then we have 2 heroes each), and I won more than I've lost, even with dragon expansion (didn't try all 4 new generals yet though ).
 
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David Mason
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Leto2626 wrote:
The dragon expansion only makes things more difficult (generals)


Well, everything said earlier (and later in Bram's comment, lol) is still true, there's plenty of little things to make your game easier in the Dragon Exp. The new generals do make it harder, but you don't have to play with them.

Yes that does mean some card sorting - but once you've sorted them, no big deal, unless you are going back and forth between the base game and the expansion generals, doing custom set ups, or playing scenarios - which if you're still trying to get a handle on winning, you won't be doing anyway. You'd likely be playing with just the the stuff that applies to the base game, so you sort one time and you're done until you graduate to the next level. Then you use whatever cards you need to support the scenario or set-up you want to play with.

I guess the question would be is, whether or not a smattering of new cards (hero cards, quest cards, and global effects) and a few tokens and the rules to support them is enough to support a decision to buy? If the only barrier to you really loving this game is winning, then I'd consider the purchase, because once you get a handle on the game there is plenty MORE content to customize your game in the future.

If, on the other hand, you're not so sure, why spend any money at all? There are plenty of good suggestions throughout the forums and in official FAQ/rules on how to make the game easier. Unfortunately you may not find them all in one place...

But, if it's official content you would like to make your game easier, I'll stand by my earlier suggestions as I think those things will indeed make your game easier. One final suggestion: the official Print and Play group quest, Crown of Elmore (in the Winds of War file, I believe), gives everyone in your group 2 extra hero cards for the rest of the game. 2-8 extra cards across your party is a big boost to your abilities and planning and it's not really that hard to complete.
 
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Richard Launius
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I would recommend that you use several of the rules in the Variant - Want an Easier Game Section on page 15. Also, if you want to try the Royal Blessing that is printed in the Dragon Expansion, you can get it for free in the Winds of War files here on BGG. It will be very helpful.

While I do believe the each expansion brings value to the game, I do not recommend buying one to help you win. The Hero Expansions give you a lot of new choices for Heroes that are very fun to play and the Dragon Expansion primarily makes the game tougher to win, and even though it has something for everyone to scale their game to their level of play, it is aimed at experienced players that want more variety in their games.

Good luck, and I hope the ideas shared by the many players here will prove valuable in you gaining your first win. If you have more questions, we are here to support you.

Thanks for your interest and thanks to all of you who have offered advice.

Richard
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