I'm curious as to how you use Talisman expansions.
When introducing new people to Talisman, we start by playing at least one session using the base game only. If players want to try new expansions, we introduce only one at a time. We typically start with The Reaper and continue in order of release. We never add more than one expansion per session.
This way, the initial game is not too complicated and is easy to manage for new players. Also, and I think this is very important, the idea that they have only "scratched the surface" gives them more incentive to keep playing future games and see what future expansions have in store.
We do this for each group, and keep track of which expansions have been payed by which groups. At the end of each session, unless we will be playing with the same group soon, we separate all components back into their expansion boxes.
Characters: We draw characters using single random draw. (You drew it, you play it!) We draw from all characters from all expansions introduced so far.
Endings: Before each game, the group votes on whether to play the standard or alternate endings. If we have not played with The Dragon yet, the standard ending is Crown of Command. If we have, then the standard ending is the full game of The Dragon.
If the group votes to play an alternate ending, then we vote again on revealed or hidden. Regardless, we combine all relevant endings from all expansions used so far, then draw one randomly.
Exceptions: When we play our first game of The Frostmarch, which introduces alternate endings, we don't consider the standard ending at all. When we play our first game of The Nether Realm, we only draw from those endings because endings comprise the entire expansion.
The Dragon: For our first game of The Dragon, we play the standard Dragon ending. Once introduced, we mix in the characters and endings for use in all future games. However, we will only use the board, dragon tokens, and dragon cards if we use an ending that calls for them (i.e. the full Dragon game, the Domain of Dragons ending or Dragon Slayers). Otherwise, we leave those components in the box, as they are only needed with those endings. When we play the full Dragon game, we vote to use either the Dragon Realm or Dragon Tower.
Dealing with dilution: We understand that characters, endings, and Adventure Cards added later will see less action as the piles get larger and larger, but we don't try to change it, as long as we add expansions gradually, one-by-one. For example, when we introduce The Reaper, we still draw from among all 18 characters (14 base + 4 Reaper), not trying to give preference for the most recent ones.
Expansion components: Once something is introduced, we keep it for all future games with that group. For example, once we introduce The Blood Moon, the Time Card and Werewolf become a permanent part of the game.
Edited by Artaterxes, 29 May 2014 - 08:18 PM.