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Talisman + Which expansion at start? (not the reaper :-( )


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#1 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 03:24 PM

Hello there people :) 

 

I'm new to the board games so I decided to buy Talisman (because of the theme and competitive feeling).

 

There is only one problem. I want to buy my first expansion with the base game (I heard that basic end game phase is kind of boring - so that's why) but Reaper is unavailable in any store (or internet stores) in my country. I need to wait until september for new delivery.

 

As you can guess I am in dead end. Which expansion then should I buy? Sacred Pool? Frostmarch or Blood Moon?

 

Also which big expansion is good as first? Dragons looks amazing but I heared that Highlands are best for start?

 

Can you help me please? :)



#2 Granville

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 03:38 PM

My first vote is Blood Moon. Without the reaper figure and the lack of side boards from other expansions the Werewolf isn't so annoying. (In some cases he can help you.) "Day" can make the game a little noob friendly. Also the themes of the Blood Moon cards makes it kind of fun on it's own and turns the game into a bit of gothic horror.

 

My second vote is Frostmarch; it's probably the easiest to introduce, but nothing in it really changes the mechanics or the gameplay too much, so for a starter expansion it has the lest amount of rules.

 

-Stay away from Dragon until you've managed to get a group of players who has a good concept of the game, it's the only expansion with complicated rules that can be deadly if you don't understand them.

 

The Firelands is an amazing expansion, but it has a lot of new game mechanics and I feel it as designed to be played ith more than one expansion. Some of the cards in that game can throw off even seasoned vets and alter the game in ways where you may have to make house rules or consult the internet for rulings.

 

Highlands gives you a corner board and a more noob-friendly deck. It's also a good one to start off with for that reason.


Edited by Granville, 22 May 2014 - 03:39 PM.

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#3 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 03:43 PM

@UP so would you go with Highlands from the start or Blood Moon?  

Fireland is still not released in Poland though (in my native language) :< and english version would not fit to base game in polish :P  

I heard that Frostmarch is kind of unballanced? IDK really, I just saw info like that. 



#4 Rigmaster

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 03:56 PM

I would say Sacred pool and highlands. Sacred pool introduced some nice endings and highlands is the friendliest and most eiasily accessed corner. Haven't tried Blood moon, though.
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#5 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 03:59 PM

Well I need to wait for few more opinions :D



#6 0beron

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 05:20 PM

If you're looking for 'easy', go for The Highland, it will be rewarding, with less challenge or danger.

 

For a small expansion, Blood Moon adds the most intrigue and new or novel ideas, but Frostmarch is easy though still challenging.

 

Dungeon is for when you really want challenges and can face greater dangers.

 

I've not flayed Firelands enough to decide how much I like it, though I do so far.


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#7 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 05:23 PM

So proper expansions in order Blood Moon > Highlands > Sacred Pool > Dungeons > Frostmarch/Reaper (when he comes out) > Dragons :P

Can I go in this direction?



#8 Granville

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 05:29 PM

The Blood Moon and The Highlands comparison.

 

The Highlands, a little more expensive but you get more for your money.

 

The board gets bigger; you get a section that adds on to the side, when you are in that section you use a separate deck, with weaker monsters, etc. At the end of the board is a build in boss with hiw own deck of special treasures you get for defeating him. It's very easy to introduce to new players. Simply attach it to the board and tell the players: This is a good place to go when you start the game. If you like Talisman and you plan to continue to buy expansions, this is a good place to start.

 

The Blood Moon adds a werewolf that runs round the table and mauls your opponents, but it can also inflict them with lycanthropy, making them more powerful at night. Then you have a new mechanic, the day and night cycle. To put it in the cliff notes version, the game starts at Day where all monsters are -1 Strength. When n event card is pulled, the game becomes Night and monsters are now +1 While a personal favoriate I put it in the medium range of getting adjusted too, but it's by no means difficult to learn on the first game. However, the thing I really like about this expansion is the card pool that is mixed in with the adventure deck. After becoming familiar with it after one or two games you will see that the events that come from that deck can change game play dramatically, as if the board is taking on a natural building of seasons. You have events that last quite a while and change how the games works for a few turns. It's really a nice twice, but once in a while it does screw you or your opponent over. It is, however, really fun to roll a 1 and sent that werewolf after another player :) Base game + Blood Moon gives you a feeling like you've stepped into a horror novel :)


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#9 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 05:34 PM

Wow that is really well detailed comparison :) Thanks. I am going to play with 3 more people (so 4 in total). Should it have any impact on my decision?



#10 Granville

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 05:49 PM

Three or more people you are good with just about any expansion. That's kind of the happy number for games.

 

The only expansion I would stay away from for first time games are The City(Boring without other expansion) The Dungeon. (Dangerous to unexperienced players) And The Dragon (Complicated, slows down game. It has it's place though in 4-5 hour beer and pretzel nights ;) )

 

If I went with you to the game store as you experienced Talisman pal, and you were choosing between Highlands, Bloodmoon or Frost March, I would ask you how big your gaming table is. If it's big, go with Highlands :)


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#11 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 05:53 PM

Well at home I got big table which can handle all expansions BUT I will play at country house where table is kind of small. Well there is still floor :D

 

 

Ok I go to bed :) good night and thanks again :)


Edited by QuakeIIIArena, 22 May 2014 - 05:59 PM.


#12 Uvatha

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Posted 22 May 2014 - 06:29 PM

I would say its a Boromir wisdom moment you know from LOTR "One simply does not walk into mordor"!

 

Well one does not simply buy one set of Talisman.. There all to good :).

So pick one from a hat or (some other random system) because your always going to get different opinions on the subject.

 

Or go with your gut but seriously "buy them all" :).



#13 Rigmaster

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 12:12 AM

If you want more input in this question you could check out the post on "How to combine your expansions", which is quite interesting. Personally I've gone from "use everything" to "use base game + cards and spells from 1 smallbox expansion+ 2-3 corners + all other parts from the smallboxes (quest cards, quest rewards, stables. the reaper mini etc). Others will tell you to "use everything no matter what", but I like to feel the theme from each expansion and I think that's best done with using cards from only on of theme.



#14 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 01:44 AM

I will buy all expansions but not just yet (money would not let me) :) 

 

So as final thought for better end game phase (4 players) as a first addition should I pick "Blood Moon", "Highlands" or "Sacred Pool"? 

@Rigmaster I will do the same about them. I don't think putting all in is such a good idea as well. 



#15 The_Warlock

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 02:02 AM

I will buy all expansions but not just yet (money would not let me) :)

 

So as final thought for better end game phase (4 players) as a first addition should I pick "Blood Moon", "Highlands" or "Sacred Pool"? 

@Rigmaster I will do the same about them. I don't think putting all in is such a good idea as well. 

 

Considering the Alternative Endings provided with those expansions, I'd say that the Highland gives you the best 3 ones: a boss ending (Eagle King), a random roll ending which is much shorter and funnier than the standard one (Hand of Doom) and a final combat between all characters that have a Talisman (Battle Royale).

 

On the contrary, Sacred Pool gives you a tough Craft-only boss (Demon Lord), a warlock-quest oriented ending (Sacred Pool) and an oddly balanced roll ending (Judgement Day); Blood Moon gives another boss-type ending with two possible outcomes (Blood Moon Werewolf), a cooperative variant (Lightbearers) and a love/hate instant-loss ending (Horrible Black Void).

 

Unfortunately, every expansion has an ending which is a bit flawed: Battle Royale has a couple of unclear passages when played (start of turn effects, Toads, characters being teleported out of the Crown, etc...), Judgement Day often results in a standard Crown ending because nobody wants to risk and Lightbearers simply doesn't seem to work. Battle Royale is the one that's more enjoyable and easier to house-rule if you encounter some problems while playing.


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#16 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 02:27 AM

Sooo... Blood Moon go the worst ending (two of them) which can destroy the fun? So Highlands and Sacred Pool at start.



#17 The_Warlock

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 03:51 AM

Sooo... Blood Moon go the worst ending (two of them) which can destroy the fun? So Highlands and Sacred Pool at start.

 

Considering only the Endings, the Blood Moon isn't the best expansion. Of course it has many other good features, but even though many persons like it a lot (myself included), I won't say it's good as first expansion. It has even more Adventure Cards than the base game, so it adds a strong presence with its theme, and features mechanics which work well against deck dilution. NPC figure, Lycanthropy, Lunar Events and Day/NIght mechanics are all good additions to the game, but I would say they add well to an advanced game.

 

On the other hand, I don't think the Dungeon is an expansion that requires to be posponed too much. Every Talisman player that followed 4th Edition since the beginning has met the Dungeon first. The cards and gameplay are straigthforward and not very different from the base game. Highland adds Trinkets, which are Objects that do not count towards carrying capacity, so no big changes as well, but the overall feeling of the place is a bit bland IMHO, even though there are nice cards here and there that spice everything up. Dungeon can be monotone because it's a continuous drawing of Enemies, but after so many years I still like it a lot and it's my favourite big box expansion (among the first 4, of course, the Woodland is still to come).

 

The Highland will be ok as a first expansion, but if compared to the Dungeon it has

- 3 Alternative Endings (Dungeon has none)

- 6 Characters (Dungeon has 5)

- 4 Relic Cards (Dungeon has 10 Treasure cards, but they are less accessible than the Relic Cards)

- 10 Spell Cards (Dungeon has 20, most of them are essential ones)

 

The differences between Highland and Dungeon cards are not that relevant, even though the Highland deck is slightly bigger.

 

Highland is ok if you look for the Endings and a Region that you can explore from the start of the game, while Dungeon is better if you want more Spells and a challenging environment for the second half of the game, with a new way to reach the Crown of Command (still you will play with the standard ending).


Edited by The_Warlock, 23 May 2014 - 03:55 AM.

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#18 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 04:34 AM

Ok so I will pick Highlands first because each one of us in our group is total newbie in games like this :) Then I will see which I should buy next.  

BTW. Price difference bettwen big and small expansions is like 10$ in Poland so not that much to "regret" this choice later.


Edited by QuakeIIIArena, 23 May 2014 - 04:40 AM.


#19 talismanisland

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Posted 23 May 2014 - 11:25 AM

...go with your gut but seriously "buy them all" :).

 

Yay! Another reason to use my little image! :)

 

buy_all.jpg


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#20 QuakeIIIArena

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Posted 25 May 2014 - 03:25 PM

Well... um. I decided that if I am going too buy Talisman then with Frostmarch, Highlands, Dungeons and Sacred Pool included or just Zombicide with Toxic City Mall... still not decided what to do :X






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