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#1 Lee418

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Posted 17 April 2014 - 05:11 AM

Does anyone have any suggestions about the best way(s) to introduce new players to Arkham Horror?

 

I have a friend who is keen on giving AH a try, but I'm unsure how to handle the first game. My natural inclination is to micro-manage the whole thing while showing them how things work. But I suspect that would spoil the 'n00b experience' thing. But it's either that or let them blunder around the board waiting for the AO to wake up. :wacko:

 

Any tips?    


Edited by Lee418, 17 April 2014 - 05:12 AM.


#2 Tibs

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Posted 17 April 2014 - 06:06 AM

You manage the machinery. Say in detail what you're doing when you're doing it "The first thing you do on a Mythos card is open a gate. Also, whenever a gate opens, two things happen: a monster appears, and a doom token is added." Later: "Now, there is already a gate open at this location, so instead of a new gate and doom token, we instead have a monster surge," etc.

 

You manage the machinery, and your friend manages the decisions. Blundering is good, because blundering is learning.

 

Play against Nyarlathotep or Ithaqua or Yig. Their games are shortest, which offsets time it takes to learn to play; and they're the easiest AOs to beat both normally and in final combat.

 

As per my Introductory and Expansion Scenarios, you should offer your new player a choice of character, but only from a limited pool whose special abilities are relatively simple for a new player to learn and remember, and who start with few spells and non-critical rule-bending abilities:

  • "Ashcan" Pete
  • Bob Jenkins
  • Carolyn Fern
  • Darrell Simmons
  • Jenny Barnes
  • Joe Diamond
  • Mandy Thompson
  • Michael McGlen
  • Monterey Jack

These relatively benign expansion investigators can be added to the pool:

  • Charlie Kane
  • Leo Anderson
  • Patrice Hathaway
  • Rita Young
  • Roland Banks
  • "Skids" O'Toole
  • Zoey Samaras

Edited by Tibs, 17 April 2014 - 06:10 AM.

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#3 Lee418

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Posted 17 April 2014 - 10:28 AM

Thanks Tibs. :)  Lots of common sense in your reply. Actually I was thinking along similar lines and intend to use only the core AH game and nothing more. Keeping things simple is usually the best policy.

 

 

You manage the machinery, and your friend manages the decisions. Blundering is good, because blundering is learning.

 

This is actually the point I've been thinking about the most. Things like overall game strategy and forward planning require a degree of familiarity with how the game works. How do you keep the co-op element alive if one player is basically flying blind while the other player has a clear understanding of the situation. I guess the experienced player must reign themselves back in order to avoid dictating the strategy until the other player has got a few more games under their belt and is able to make more informed decisions.



#4 Tibs

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Posted 17 April 2014 - 04:54 PM

Don't spoon-feed strategy to your friend, but don't deny genuine advice if asked. Remind your player that the goal of the game is to get five clues and seal. Using clues for non-sealing things must be done with extreme consideration. Though, again, often just learning is best. Using any of those three AOs offers some forgiveness in the event the AO awakens.

 

Another rule I like I read all the encounters for my players, and stop at the end of a clause that had a skill check or decision in it. Makes things more unknown and mysterious, and I love it.


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