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Subject: The Final Battle- its the getting there that matters rss

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Tommy Jayface
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Okay, so I've played a few dozen games of AH (a few including King in Yellow) and think that the transition from normal play to final battle is a little unimaginative. I tried something a little different in a game last night.

Nyarlathotep's Doom Track had just filled, but instead of investigators being whisked away to some final showdown off the board I drew another Mythos card and declared this gate location (Black Cave) to be where the GOO had broken through into our dimension. Investigators had to navigate heavily monster-strewn streets to face their main adversary, counting down the required skill check as normal (Joe Diamond was immediately on the scene but Dexter Drake took longer arriving, meaning that he was rolling LORE-1 instead of the cushy LORE+1).

Upon reflection, I could have taken things further by drawing more Mythos cards while Dexter was on his way (making monsters move/adding more monsters). But then this could suggest Dexter could swing by the Science Building for some much needed clue tokens before heading to Black Cave.

How could investigators still have to travel while not gaining any benefits from staying on the board? Has anyone else ever added custom rules just prior to the Final Battle that I could steal from?
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Tiago Perretto
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My only house-rule regarding the Final Battle (not counting that this is for avoiding to lose, making a draw if the investigators win) is that if the GOO has any spawn monsters (or, in the case of Nyarlatothep, the Masks) on the board, the investigators must fight them before the GOO, all the while suffering the GOO attacks.

Regards,
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David Jones
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scobles wrote:
Nyarlathotep's Doom Track had just filled, but instead of investigators being whisked away to some final showdown off the board I drew another Mythos card and declared this gate location (Black Cave) to be where the GOO had broken through into our dimension.


I always got the impression that the GOO was a significantly larger monster and thus needed to open a respectively larger gate in order to come into our world. I would probably cut the investigators a break and simply say that they need to get to that neighborhood instead of that specific spot. There is also the question as to why the GOO can attack the investigator but not vice versa.

This could also be somewhat damaging to the investigators if you have a large box expansion in play. If an investigator is on a different map than the one where the GOO appears and can't afford to take the train, they might never get into battle. Do they get to ride the train for free? If not, how will they make money? If you forbid them from entering the battle at all, does the GOO get the less hit points?

I don't mean to sound negative as I think its an interesting idea. As I think you've alluded to, the idea just needs to be thought through with a clearly defined set of rules.

Quote:
Upon reflection, I could have taken things further by drawing more Mythos cards while Dexter was on his way (making monsters move/adding more monsters)


Probably people who understand the thematics of the game better than I might chime in, but my understanding is that the monsters coming through the small gates are supposed to be preparing the world for the GOOs entrance. Once the GOO breaks through, I would suspect that monster appearance would go down; their mission is complete so there is no longer a directive for them to do anything. Probably drawing mythos for monster movement should have been done, but not for adding monsters or add a single monster where the gate location on the card is instead of a gate/surge. Since we're on the subject, certain environments affect investigator movement. Are you also leaving environments in play while investigators are trying to reach the final battle? Should mythos cards be drawn to allow environments to change? Rumors?
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Byron Campbell
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I love this idea, but I don't like how much harder it makes the game for investigators.

Perhaps you draw the mythos card to determine a neighborhood, skip both encounter phases (so shops and other things can't be used), and instead of the mythos phase, add one onto the successes needed to defeat the GOO for every investigator who is not engaged in combat yet. The GOO only attacks when at least one investigator is engaged with it, and it only attacks investigators who are engaged with it. Any investigators on a board other than the one the GOO appears on are automatically moved to the appropriate train depot and delayed as soon as the GOO awakens.

Essentially, you add a bit of a challenge of investigators having to fight/evade monsters (I would argue they can no longer be taken as trophies, and instead defeated monsters are placed next to the board so the correct monster count is maintained). You also get incentive to rush because the GOO gets harder to kill the longer you wait, but it is not entirely crippling for investigators.
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Tommy Jayface
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First off, thanks for the replies. I think I was trying to 'add flavour' more than create a rule, hence why so little had been thought through. Happily I don't need to think too much when you guys are around to do the thinking for me

tiagoVIP wrote:
My only house-rule regarding the Final Battle (not counting that this is for avoiding to lose, making a draw if the investigators win) is that if the GOO has any spawn monsters (or, in the case of Nyarlatothep, the Masks) on the board, the investigators must fight them before the GOO, all the while suffering the GOO attacks.


Actually, I like this idea. It cleans up a lot of the shortcomings of mine

davypi wrote:
I always got the impression that the GOO was a significantly larger monster and thus needed to open a respectively larger gate in order to come into our world.


This also makes perfect sense. So we've got investigators needing overcome Spawn/Masks/Other Specials on their way to a general location (instead of an individual address).

davypi wrote:
There is also the question as to why the GOO can attack the investigator but not vice versa.


I like to think the GOO's attack is less an assault on the investigators and more like the environment becoming tougher to survive in. But I didn't mention that before. Because I'm an idiot.

davypi wrote:
This could also be somewhat damaging to the investigators if you have a large box expansion in play.


I only have small box expansions so don't know about the nuances of, say, moving back from Kingsport. It does sound like quite a problem, doesn't it? Maybe all the trains get abandoned in the station because of the impending End of Days and your investigator just so happens to have had previous experience as a train driver...

Drat, I think this might be a problem :/

davypi wrote:
Once the GOO breaks through, I would suspect that monster appearance would go down; their mission is complete so there is no longer a directive for them to do anything. Probably drawing mythos for monster movement should have been done, but not for adding monsters or add a single monster where the gate location on the card is instead of a gate/surge.


Or we could have monster surges every turn as the GOO summons it's minions and ends the world as we know it!!

*ahem* Seriously though, perhaps you're probably right about not adding more monsters. While I'm looking to add something to connect the main game to the final battle I don't want it to end up distracting investigators.

davypi wrote:
Since we're on the subject, certain environments affect investigator movement. Are you also leaving environments in play while investigators are trying to reach the final battle? Should mythos cards be drawn to allow environments to change? Rumors?


As I mentioned earlier (but cunningly omitted from my original post) I like to think of the GOO's attack as an environment in itself- one that gets harder to endure with each passing turn.

kittenhoarder wrote:
Perhaps you draw the mythos card to determine a neighborhood, skip both encounter phases (so shops and other things can't be used), and instead of the mythos phase, add one onto the successes needed to defeat the GOO for every investigator who is not engaged in combat yet.


Yes, I like the idea that the final battle is even harder if investigators are waiting for one slow poke to catch up. It increases the pressure on getting investigators on the scene instead of pushing the speed skill in favour of sneak to evade monsters en route.

kittenhoarder wrote:
The GOO only attacks when at least one investigator is engaged with it, and it only attacks investigators who are engaged with it. Any investigators on a board other than the one the GOO appears on are automatically moved to the appropriate train depot and delayed as soon as the GOO awakens.


Hey, this is better reasoning than I used for the travelling conundrum. The expansions sure do make the pre-final battle element trickier to implement, don't they?

So then, I would try:
- GOO awakens at a location drawn using a mythos card
- monsters present continue to move according to mythos cards, but no additional gates/surges/environments/rumours
- spawn/mask/special other monsters move toward to the GOO at the speed indicated by their border. They must be engaged or avoided to reach the GOO, but are ignored once the investigators are engaged with the GOO.
- GOO attack is the environment and gets harder to withstand with each passing turn
- Investigators can attack as soon as they arrive at GOO's location, but there is a penalty (+1 success required) for every investigator still not present
- Pray the trains are still running

Might need some more tinkering; I'll take notes on what works next time I'm about to have a final battle.

Thanks again for adding to this discussion.
Tommy
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I thought I'd add a few thoughts about how I see the situation in Arkham at the arrival of the GOO. It actually fits in thematically with the rules as published, however I thought I'd add this as it might give ideas as to a locational GOO (hence also the suggestions).


A vast, unimaginable horror from beyond space and time has arrived. This would lead me to suggest pure anarchy throughout Arkham. The moment of the final turn and the moment of the battle I see as a mad panic giving time for investigators to reach the GOO.

Locations
All locations would therefore be closed looted and/or ablaze. Encounters would not take place. One could suggest that investigators in a location with booty could be part of that looting, perhaps drawing three cards and choosing one but not paying the cost. Delay any longer than this and they would be trapped in the tumult.

Train
The train wouldn't be running (or would be running only out of Arkham in a last ditch effort to flee). Any investigators without suitable transport would therefore be stranded. However in the bedlam they would steal a car/motorcycle etc. and use that to reach the GOO.

Monsters
One could perhaps toy with the idea of each monster on the board being occupied by devouring each remaining ally. Remaining monsters being there to hamper the investigators, making it slightly easier to reach the GOO in a monster-strewn city. In the original rules I see the monsters are just all occupied with munching on the easy prey of the old, young and infirm to be much of a threat.

GOO Attacks
If the investigators don't drop what they are doing and hurry into combat then the GOO would do something annoying. The GOO gets as many attacks as there are investigators, so perhaps those attacks would be used on those who are pressent leading to multiple attacks on investigators who are there already. If nobody is there when the GOO makes its first attack it could be too late, the game might act as though all were devoured as the GOO is beyond reach, stomping its way across the world.

Just ideas for flavour.
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