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Slightly new player looking for critique

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#1 Kellus



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Posted 25 August 2014 - 04:28 AM

Ok so I picked up descent about a year ago but never really got to experience the game fully until recently. (this is just the base game with the 1st edition conversion kit).


A lack of friends that want to play forced me to play 2 player, myself controlling all the heroes. (I have been the overlord aswell but never done full campaigns). And quite frankly I prefer this, no argueing between players over strategy/items and seems more balanced, but I might be wrong.


Anyway on to the point. So me and my nephew are experienced board game players, and both are strategists but nature so no problem there.


Base campaign, (forget the name). Won first blood; chose cardinals plight as second quest as I wanted that relic (with have good synergy with my healer).


1st part of the quest went good. The farrow guy got 3 zombies and I got all the treasure tokens; so far so good.


Second part, the cardinal got scragged to death by the 4 zombies (1 is the master one ofc) before I even got to the first room to get the "chance" to get the key, and yes ofc I was healing the cardinal every turn, and succeeded every turn.


Ok so obviously something went wrong and could be a number of factors and I want you more experienced players to point out what it is.


1. Should have chosen an easier quest to build up a bit (fat goblin maybe)

2. Character composition (will list later)

3. Took too long in part 1 and should have ignored the treasure -> less zombies.

4. OL played better/monsters.

5. I don't understand fully how to play descent right. IE; playing too defensive and not wanting to sacrifice characters to achieve a goal.

6. And this is the big one, just out done on dice rolls.


To elaborate on 6. a bit more. I was healing the cardinal about 2 per turn (average) and defensive rolling about 2 shields per turn (below average) and I used some heroic abilities early on and rolled the dreaded blue x thus hampering me a bit.


So which one(s) is it guys? Please help me out here so I can better understand/strategize in the future.



Mordrog - Knight (feels though this was a wrong choice)

Elder Mok - Spiritspeaker (this also)

Widow Tarha - Runemaster

Tobin Farslayer - Wildlander


Apologies for wall of text,






#2 any2cards



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Posted 25 August 2014 - 05:36 AM

A couple of general things.  First, make sure you have the latest FAQ and are playing by the appropriate rules for all of the encounters/quests.  There have been some significant changes to some of them for balance.  As an example, you chose Cardinal's Plight, and it has this errata in the FAQ:


Page 9, “The Cardinal’s Plight,” Special Rules: “When a hero ends his
turn adjacent to Cardinal Koth,” should be changed to “When a hero first
opens the door to the Library,”


You can never have too much gold.  I almost always try to get all of the gold (search tokens) even if it means having a hero knocked down and/or losing an encounter, as in the long run, items from the shop can often mean more than whatever item you may or may not win as part of the overall objective of the quest.


As you astutely noted, matching your hero's (their abilities and heroic feats) to the correct classes for maximum synergy can make a huge difference when it comes to the effectiveness of the overall group.


Of course, it doesn't matter what you do if the dice go on a prolonged nap ...  :P

#3 Kellus



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Posted 26 August 2014 - 05:37 PM

Ah ok, just unlucky I guess. Shame really wanted that staff.


I feel like starting over again but we agreed that we would give it the full run of the campaign before we decided to change.


Cheers for the reply though mate.

#4 any2cards



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Posted 27 August 2014 - 05:08 AM

If you feel that your group is unhappy, or a bad mix, or the decisions that were made in the early quests will negatively impact finishing, you may want to consider starting over.


I say this as someone who has experience with doing just this.  While it is nice to finish something you start, it is just as, or perhaps more, important to have fun doing so.


You don't want to force everyone to finish the campaign if no one is having fun.

#5 DAMaz



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Posted 28 August 2014 - 05:50 PM

My biggest tip for the heroes is: Don't play too defensive.


Your heroes supposed to be heroic, put themselves on the line and succeed in very dire situations. They are supposed to stand against all odds and never give up or die... and that's why... they can't die. They can only be knocked out and as long as not everyone is knocked out you just lose 1 action and fatigue.


I even played without a healer (knight, runemaster, thief) and even then, taking damage or even getting someone knocked out was always a good trade for taking treasures or completing objectives.

#6 Kellus



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Posted 31 August 2014 - 12:47 PM

@any2cards: Nah its not that we aren't having fun at all, on the contrary. It was more of a "am I doing anything wrong?"

And subsequently I found out that I wasn't as we played castle daerion next quest and I romped it. So I was unlucky with the rolls and the OL played well.


@DAMaz: Yea man, the next quest I was more offensive and it worked to my favour very well. Its an old habit I guess from heroquest and such like games where if you die that's it campaign over. Where as in Descent, the heroes life isn't as valuable.


Thanks for the replies guys.

#7 Kilazar



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Posted 02 September 2014 - 11:54 AM

Keep in mind the Cardinals plight is (in my experience) extremely balanced towards the OL if he gets 2+ zombies up and holds good cards from encounter 1.


Just like I feel Death on the Wing is extremely balanced to the heroes and have always lost on turn 1 in encounter 2, before I even get a chance to move Belthir. Mind you, my heroes know when to choose this one, so they come in loaded up on gear and xp. They chump one monster group down enough to get a hole, then send their meat masher in to finish up the LT.


I absolutely loathe this quest and honestly wish they would quick forcing me to setup the second encounter if they win the first. And they feel the same way about Cardinals plight. Once I get the 3rd zombie up they want to just skip ahead to another quest.

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