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Miskatonic Horror first?


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#1 DarkRaven47

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 06:50 AM

I've been doing research on what order of expansions I should buy. I think I'll probably get them in chronological order but was considering getting Miskatonic Horror along with Curse of the Dark Pharaoh. Now I know that it's basically an expansion on the expansions so at first I would only be getting use of very little of it but do you think it best to start playing each expansions with it fully expanded or is it not worth it to do it that way and just get Miskatonic Horror once you have all the others?

#2 Tibs

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 08:11 AM

That's an interesting question. Normally I'd argue against it completely as your first expansion, but pairing it up with another one? That might not be so bad.

 

I'm trying to think of instances where the MH material is significantly more complex than the expansion it's adding to. I can't think of any, really. In fact, it might be a good idea always to blindly integrate the MH components to every new expansion you get. That way (if you're like me) you won't subconsciously associate the MH stuff as being any different than the regular expansion stuff. I got Revised Dark Pharaoh and MH at the same time and as a result, all the Exhibit Encounters are equally new to me. I think that's how it should be.

 

One thing I would recommend though: when using Dark Pharaoh and MH, consider leaving out the Miskatonic Mythos cards for a few plays. Added non-thematic Mythos cards kind of slows down the Mythos theme for a given expansion. Plus, MH rumors are hard.



#3 Julia

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 08:29 AM

Interesting point, Tibs. I'd suggest the other way round: MH's Mythos cards are simply brutal, and not fit to enhance in a positive way the gaming experience of a player who's expanding Arkham and learning how the different expansions impact on the game.

 

Additionally, I'd advise not to follow this route for an additional reason: if you get the expansions and play them in chronological order, then getting MH at the end of everything it's like re-discovering completely the game; if you incorporate MH immediately, the magic of rediscovering the game is lost.


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#4 jgt7771

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 04:31 PM

I would say get Miskatonic early if it's the ONLY option you have to expand your game.  Miskatonic was developed more for the "all expansions at once" players to fend off the ungodly amounts of expansion dilution by that point.  To that end, it was developed with the Arkham veteran in mind; at the very least, a player well familiar with Innsmouth, the Death Star of Arkham.  As Julia says...brutal.  Now it could be you're one of the Arkham masochists, and wish the pain to be brought, but it could also be you just don't yet know what kind of AH player you're going to be.  For the latter, Miskatonic just isn't a good idea too early in game-building.  (Plus, on an economic scale, why spend the same money wad on a big box if you can't even use more than HALF of the contents??)

 

Dark Pharaoh is a fantastic expansion; by all means, get that.  But your first big box really ought to be Dunwich if you can help it.  After that, the next 3-4 expansions are usually determined by which player camp to which you relate.  There should be at least one expansion between Dunwich and Innsmouth, and only after Innsmouth should Miskatonic be pursued.


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#5 DarkRaven47

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 07:32 PM

Thanks for the advice everyone. I'll leave MH till last; sounds like that makes the most sense. I won't mind it eventually becoming really difficult, but I'd rather wait until I'm a veteran before then. Great point Julia about rediscovering the game and also great point jgt7771 about why spend that much money for something I'll barely get use out of initially, when I could buy DH. I mentioned that I was planning on getting them in the order they were released. One reason for that is I like the idea of alternating big and small box expansions and that will do it perfectly. I was planning on playing several games with each expansion to start (several with Curse of the Dark Pharaoh, then several with DH, etc.) before combining any and once I have them all, maybe play with one big and one small box expansion simultaneously. From what I've read, playing with more than a couple expansions at once really dilutes the game. Any other advice or direction at all?



#6 Julia

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 03:51 AM

DarkRaven,

indeed, dilution in theme and in activities on boards could be a problem when several expansions are mixed in. First of all, if I were you, I'd just play one exp at the time to "taste the flavour" and see how that expansion is impacting the game. Then, generally speaking the best solution is 1 big expansion and 1 small expansion mixed in. I tend to use 2 big and 1 small, but the 2nd big is *always* Kingsport: its rift mechanic never dilutes because it's linked to the moster movement patterns on the Mythos cards.

I'd strongly suggest, once you get all big exp, to not play the so called "speed Arkham", with all board in: the game becomes ridiculously fast paced, and, if you know what you're doing, incredibly easy. Unless clearly you play with MH in, in which case speed Arkham becomes a highway to the next slaughterhouse (but hey, you can crash it even in this case :D)

Just my two cents, anyway

 

JULIA


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#7 DarkRaven47

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 09:17 AM

Ok thanks. I'm going to pick your brain once more Julia if you don't mind (or anyone else if they want to chime in). I've read a lot about what expansions go well with others, etc., but are there any expansions (other than MH) that are possible or even recommended to always play with no matter what? Or is there always at least one expansion that will clash with some other expansion?

#8 Julia

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Posted 28 March 2014 - 09:22 AM

(why picking my brain sounds so much like a mi-go trying new stuff with its brand-new brain case? :laughter: )

 

Ok, ok, more seriously: Kingsport alone is no good. It's an expansion that works magnificently with *another* board in; otherwise the same problems afflicting Arkham's board will keep on plaguing the gates (too few unstable locations to be a real threat). But after that, if you have an additional board in, you can leave KH *always* in play.

 

As for the rest... no major clash, really. They never did something like the newest expansion for Race for the Galaxy, basically resetting the game. Everything it's modular and functional, so... as long as you have time to play, and money for the expansion... hey, it's a whole universe waiting for you ;) Going in chrono order is a very good choice: you'll experience Arkham in the way all of us die-harder have experienced it :)

 

Enjoy the ride, DarkRaven. It's a glorious journey!


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#9 jgt7771

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Posted 29 March 2014 - 05:00 AM

I'm a steadfast "1-big-1-small" player.  Having a good deal of experience with Chaosium's RPG back in school, I came in from the role-playing side as opposed to the boardgaming one.  As such, the stories/encounters/lore is a priority for me and the rest of my gaming Cult.  After the expansions started piling on, the chaotic mixing of all of them diminished the stories of each of them.  The gameplay doesn't suffer too much, but the cohesiveness of the tale does.  So I keep my sessions modular and rotate each satellite town in turn: D-K-I-repeat.  Well experienced with the 1-1, I can say that any Small mixes fine with any Big, usually.

 

Dunwich perfectly complements with anything; go nuts, it will always perform.

 

Innsmouth is about the same, but there are no Gate Bursts in Innsmouth that hit the Arkham Board.  Generally not a big deal, as the statisticians will explain, but I will always add Lurker's Mythos cards to Innsmouth's, because it has Gate Bursts that don't require any other board in play but Arkham.  Beyond that, go nuts.

 

As Julia says, Kingsport is a different beast: being Gateless, it benefits better if mixed with the strongest of the Smalls, Dark Pharaoh or King in Yellow.  That usually keeps Arkham hopping more than enough.

 

But that's just me.  If you follow your excellent plan of chronological collection, you'll figure out what you like soon enough.


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