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Just can't find a balance to this game


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#41 Kunzite

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Posted 14 September 2013 - 05:25 AM

I believe that one of the FFG Sez responses has said that they are looking into a change for large monster movement where the monster isn't placed until it's done with all of its movement (so attacks, other actions, etc, would happen from the "shrunken" space instead of expanding first). That may be a decent house-rule.

 

That's a house rule of mine. At least the way we play is is that one side of the large beast's body is the starting point and we count from there. When the counting stops, or are interrupted, if able, that beast's head goes into that space and expands back from point of origin. The only time a monster could expand into a space further then that was if the beast could not fit into a space otherwise. This gives the OL something else to think about when plotting moves and keeps slow beasts slow and smaller, faster beasts, fast.


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#42 griton

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Posted 16 September 2013 - 12:49 PM

That's a house rule of mine. At least the way we play is is that one side of the large beast's body is the starting point and we count from there. When the counting stops, or are interrupted, if able, that beast's head goes into that space and expands back from point of origin. The only time a monster could expand into a space further then that was if the beast could not fit into a space otherwise. This gives the OL something else to think about when plotting moves and keeps slow beasts slow and smaller, faster beasts, fast.

 

Be aware that the game was designed with monsters getting at least that extra move (large monsters all have very low speed values to accommodate for that). The above "house ruling" that FFG was considering isn't to reduce large monsters' movements for most of the time, but to help eliminate some of the confusion that happens when a monster can interrupt its movement (even if it's just after declaring the move action, but not having moved any spaces, which is currently legal), expand, perform an action, then re-shrink, finish moving, and re-expand gaining even MORE movement than before.

 

Example (as I understand things): A Hero is 3 spaces away from a dragon. OL wants the dragon to attack and move away.

 

Example w/ current rules: Dragon declares a move action, shrinks to a space 3 spaces from the hero, interrupts the move action by declaring an attack against the hero, expands in the other direction (essentially pivoting for no movement, doesn't count as entering a space next to the hero, so doesn't trigger certain hero abilities), so it is now adjacent to the hero, makes the attack, re-shrinks to its original position, moves away from the hero, and re-expands away from the hero, now placing it 6 spaces away from the hero.

 

Example w/ possible change: Dragon declares a move action, shrinks to a space 3 spaces from the hero, doesn't have the option to expand upon interrupting, moves 2 spaces to be adjacent (possibly triggering hero abilities), makes the attack, finishes moving one space back toward where it came, expands, and is now only 2 spaces away from the hero.

 

Another option is that you still allow/require expansion, but when you declare the action, it must be able to be performed from your current space (before expanding) instead of just being possible when you expand

Using our example: Dragon declares a move action, shrinks to a space 3 spaces away from the hero, moves 2 spaces to be adjacent (possibly triggering hero abilities), makes the attack, shrinks to the space farthest from the hero, finishes moving 1 space, expands away from the hero, and is now 4 spaces away from the hero. 

 

(These figures become slightly less extreme with 1x2 or 2x2 monsters)

 

Actually, re-reading my examples and the FAQ, it may be the last example that they use (forcing large monsters to be able to re-expand, but that they must be able to declare the action FROM THE SPACE THEY ENTERED before interrupting movement) And may be how I house-rule things if I do.



#43 griton

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Posted 16 September 2013 - 12:51 PM

Also note that if you house-rule large creatures to not get the bonus movement from expanding, that you should probably increase their movement rates by 1 to account for it. (This is technically a nerf only to 2x3 monsters)



#44 Robin

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Posted 16 September 2013 - 02:14 PM

 

 

Actually, re-reading my examples and the FAQ, it may be the last example that they use (forcing large monsters to be able to re-expand, but that they must be able to declare the action FROM THE SPACE THEY ENTERED before interrupting movement) And may be how I house-rule things if I do.

 

You are right.

FAQ 1.2 (4/17/2013), p. 1:

Rulebook, page 16, “Large Monsters”: Add, “When interrupting a large monster’s movement to perform an action, the overlord must be able to declare the action that the large monster will perform before placing the monster’s figure on the map.”

 


Edited by Robin, 16 September 2013 - 02:15 PM.

An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered.
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#45 Kunzite

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Posted 16 September 2013 - 06:49 PM

Griton:

 

I understand your thinking. I have gotten around just fine with my ruling so far. It's become strategy I have had to play with. ^.~ Something the OL has to think about, and I'm ok with that.


"Bide your time and hold out hope."

~Count of Monte Cristo

 

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#46 griton

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Posted 17 September 2013 - 09:13 AM

You are right.

FAQ 1.2 (4/17/2013), p. 1:

Rulebook, page 16, “Large Monsters”: Add, “When interrupting a large monster’s movement to perform an action, the overlord must be able to declare the action that the large monster will perform before placing the monster’s figure on the map.”

 

 

Hrmm.... I guess I hadn't interpreted it that way and saw an FFG Sez response that was contradictory to that. Granted, the FFG Sez response may have been posted before that Errata, and I just read it later.

 

Does anyone remember where the "Dragon pivots for no movement, attacks hero, then runs the other way" question originated?



#47 Kunzite

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Posted 17 September 2013 - 11:44 AM

Does anyone remember where the "Dragon pivots for no movement, attacks hero, then runs the other way" question originated?

 

Wow... no I haven't. That just sounds dirty... My heroes would be all up in arms!


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#48 Robin

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Posted 17 September 2013 - 12:28 PM

The FFE Sez answers ave less weight than officially published FAQ/errata.
I opened that thread, so the different answers to players' questions be regrouped (along the practice on the main ASL forum).

Edited by Robin, 17 September 2013 - 12:29 PM.

An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered.
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#49 xodarap

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 05:31 AM

The way a lot of the rules work bother me too.  Things that I've mentioned before, like Oath of Honor.  "I'm going to use Oath of Honor to move up to my teammate and help him, but there's no space near him so I teleport the length of a room to stand behind the monster."  "I got webbed and I'm covered in webs now but that's not going to affect me until I finish walking.  Then I won't be able to walk anymore."  "I'm going to move this enemy with my ability, but there are two more enemies behind him, so he gets flung 7 squares away from where he was."

 

Yes, I had a bad day, but it was only two rolls on the very first two turns of encounter one.  I missed those rolls and then I was punished for the next 20 turns.  The party could just take all the time they needed, because I couldn't reinforce the second map and my zombie couldn't hurt Koth for more than two damage, and the party had uncontested control of the altar.  That's not fun.  That's sitting around for hours doing nothing and knowing it's hopeless.  I'd have maybe one or two dragons around at times, but they don't matter.  They can't attack Koth.  They can't block a teleporting party.  If they do any damage, would, the party loses one action next turn.  The only thing that matters in that encounter is the zombies, and two misrolls ended that chance for me and I became a spectator.

 

And this isn't the first time we've had experiences like this either.  We had an OL defeated before he got a turn before.  We've had a party held to their starting weapons up until Act II.  We just can't seem to get a campaign that will flow and be fun for everyone, and we've played it a lot now.

 Wow.  Thanks a lot for your post.  First, because I have been wondering about getting the conversion kit even though I gave away my 1st edition stuff and substituting the miniatures.  Thanks to this thread I think that would be a mistake.  Also, because I have had the exact opposite experience that you have.  My roomate and I each started a quest line alternating roles as the heroes and overlord and he feels the game is perfectly balanced while I hold up the quest sheet to remind him that we have both been getting our butts handed to us as Heroes since the introduction.  I chalk it up to having picked a Ranger and a Priest (Hey I wanted to play the elves and sure I thought about the fighter but due to my inexperience did not quite se' habla the importantance of having at least one red die in your teams pool.)  but whatever the reason it hasn't kept me from having a LOT of fun trying to beat an only seemingly unbeatable foe.  Not to mention it has created a hilarious story about one elf who just wants to be left alone and an annoying priest who keeps bugging her about destiny this and helping the poor folk that and so she keeps giving her best and on some quests they come really close and on others they couldn't BUY a good defense or damage roll.  An' all this fun without looking up an single errata or faq.  The reason your post (like many on here) has been so helpful is because it proves (at least to me) that it really is my inexperience and that for everyone (like me) that would like to see the Heroes get a little love there are some that feel the overlord is the victim here.  One thing that may really help from what I have read here is doing what we did in Descent 1st edition (and will probably start doing here as well after this questline) is to randomly select your Heroes or even better do it Relic style which is radomly selecting two, then pick one, then repeat that process.  It just sounds like the combination of Heroic abilities you've described is what is making the issue and random selection would (especially since you have the conversion kit) greatly reduce the chances of always having to deal with those combos.  Anywho thanks for the post and I hope you don't give up on the game because (at least for me) win or lose it's always a kind of fun I just don't get from my other games.  Descent is......unique.  Anything can and usually will happen (especially if it gets between my elven odd couple and anything remotely resembling an artifact.) I think that's what I love about it actually.   


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#50 Kunzite

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 06:00 AM

Xodarap:

 

Just a side note, sir. ^.~ The OL has a HUGE advantage over a two hero game. There is little combo-ing going on that the OL has to deal with and just enough beasts to deal with it. Opposite is true for a three player game. But I Love your approach to the game.


"Bide your time and hold out hope."

~Count of Monte Cristo

 

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#51 griton

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 09:04 AM

One thing that may really help from what I have read here is doing what we did in Descent 1st edition (and will probably start doing here as well after this questline) is to randomly select your Heroes or even better do it Relic style which is radomly selecting two, then pick one, then repeat that process.  It just sounds like the combination of Heroic abilities you've described is what is making the issue and random selection would (especially since you have the conversion kit) greatly reduce the chances of always having to deal with those combos.

 

For anyone concerned that the OL is too powerful, you can also have this apply to the OL as well. In fact, I would recommend that if the Hero players are forced to choose from a random subset of heroes (and possibly classes after you pick up some expansions), then the OL should have to choose from a random subset of his available open groups in the same fashion that the hero players did, treating each open group as a hero player. (Simultaneously vs. one then the next; a set number (e.g. 2 or 3) vs. a proportional number (e.g. half, evenly divided); etc.)

 

Also note that if you're going to go this route, then I WOULD advise picking up the conversion kit for the variety since ridiculous combinations are much less likely to show up.


Edited by griton, 26 September 2013 - 09:09 AM.

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#52 Deek

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 10:46 AM

It's interesting how opinions range re: who has the upperhand, Overlord versus heroes. Variables like player skill, player numbers, CK or no, they all have a huge impact on perceived balance. In my game, we're currently playing 1v1 with no Conversion Kit, but my opponent is controlling four heroes instead of two, giving him total control over equipment, combos, movement, and general shenanigans. Even so, he has lost all three Act 1 quests and managed to win the interlude largely because I failed to recall the win conditions and handed him victory in the final turns. He insists he's fighting an uphill battle, that the quests are designed for him to fail. We're both veteran gamers of similar skill, this is our first campaign (neither of us have any prior experience with Descent).

I honestly can't argue with the results, but I also feel that I'm earning my wins. I also believe that his power level is fast outstripping my ability to cope, and that maybe he has yet to realize the full potential of his troublesome do-gooders.

Time will tell, I suppose.

Edited by Deek, 26 September 2013 - 10:48 AM.


#53 xodarap

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 05:39 PM

Xodarap:

 

Just a side note, sir. ^.~ The OL has a HUGE advantage over a two hero game. There is little combo-ing going on that the OL has to deal with and just enough beasts to deal with it. Opposite is true for a three player game. But I Love your approach to the game.

Ah!  So there WAS somethin' to that an I'm not nuts.Thank You Kunzite!  Common sense would say to start over with the 3 or 4 player game but my roomie just scored some sweet shop stuff (finally!) and his combo of Tomble and Tara looks to be on the rise so I think I'll finish this questline and then would you use 3 or 4 heroes for the best balance?  It's not SUPER important but it would be nice.  The important thing is that unlike my 1.0 stuff 2.0 will actually hit the table repeatedly and like the first Descent it's always fun but it no longer eats my dining room.   Thank you for the kind words as well!  My approach to this game is the same as my approach to all others:  I always win because the win for me is being fortunate enough to get to play a fun game!  


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#54 xodarap

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 05:52 PM

 

One thing that may really help from what I have read here is doing what we did in Descent 1st edition (and will probably start doing here as well after this questline) is to randomly select your Heroes or even better do it Relic style which is radomly selecting two, then pick one, then repeat that process.  It just sounds like the combination of Heroic abilities you've described is what is making the issue and random selection would (especially since you have the conversion kit) greatly reduce the chances of always having to deal with those combos.

 

For anyone concerned that the OL is too powerful, you can also have this apply to the OL as well. In fact, I would recommend that if the Hero players are forced to choose from a random subset of heroes (and possibly classes after you pick up some expansions), then the OL should have to choose from a random subset of his available open groups in the same fashion that the hero players did, treating each open group as a hero player. (Simultaneously vs. one then the next; a set number (e.g. 2 or 3) vs. a proportional number (e.g. half, evenly divided); etc.)

 

Also note that if you're going to go this route, then I WOULD advise picking up the conversion kit for the variety since ridiculous combinations are much less likely to show up.

 

 

Oh my god I can't believe I never thought about that!  I'm so happy to nerf the overlord (even though I play one as much as I play the Heroes.) that it never even occured to me!  It also never occurred to me to randomize class selection as well. (Even though for our first play through we picked everything.)  You're right of course, that's only fair.  Do you think it would be balanced to allow heroes to pick their classes and therefore the overlord could still build their deck?  That could be difficult to randomize if not....  That way the Heroes randomly pick their characters and the overlord randomly picks the open groups but the Heroes and overlord still get to pick the path and therefore the strategy with the cards.  Sounds fair.  About picking up the conversion kit, I have looked into it since I have a lot of the Hero miniatures still with my RuneBound game so it would be do able but I've kind of prioritized getting the 2.0 expansions first (I have Lair of the Wyrm and love it!) as well as the Leiutenant packs and then I may do just that.  So the craziest accidental combos come from the 2.0 stuff in your opinion then?  (I honestly don't know, we've been fortunate enough to not have to deal anything nearly as crazy as some of what I've read in this topic.)


"Hastur. Hastur. Hastur. Suck it, my girlfriend is Science!"
-Will Wheaton-

#55 Kunzite

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 07:23 PM

Ah!  So there WAS somethin' to that an I'm not nuts.Thank You Kunzite!  Common sense would say to start over with the 3 or 4 player game but my roomie just scored some sweet shop stuff (finally!) and his combo of Tomble and Tara looks to be on the rise so I think I'll finish this questline and then would you use 3 or 4 heroes for the best balance?  It's not SUPER important but it would be nice.  The important thing is that unlike my 1.0 stuff 2.0 will actually hit the table repeatedly and like the first Descent it's always fun but it no longer eats my dining room.   Thank you for the kind words as well!  My approach to this game is the same as my approach to all others:  I always win because the win for me is being fortunate enough to get to play a fun game!  

 

We find the best balance in 4 players, but that is allot for one person to hold down them selves. So is three, but if this is something you would like to try, go for it! You get your best hero combos with four heroes and the OL gets the most monsters. I really feel FFG planed the game with four heroes in mind most of the time.

 

And that is the way games should be played!

 

 

So the craziest accidental combos come from the 2.0 stuff in your opinion then?  (I honestly don't know, we've been fortunate enough to not have to deal anything nearly as crazy as some of what I've read in this topic.)

 

Hehe. Well for heroes, there was a character that would regain a fatigue while the character standing next to him regained two fatigue every time a hero next to him regained any number of fatigue. There is also the prayer of peace and cripple combo.

 

For OL. Unholy ritual + Bloodlust for "all my cards in my hand! Woot!" next to Blood Rage + Reinforce. VERY powerful. I kill my own guys, bloodlust to get my blood rages back and then reinforce. I have successfully locked out my heroes with this. Even I find it a bit too dirty.


"Bide your time and hold out hope."

~Count of Monte Cristo

 

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#56 Cursain

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 07:40 PM

For OL. Unholy ritual + Bloodlust for "all my cards in my hand! Woot!" next to Blood Rage + Reinforce. VERY powerful. I kill my own guys, bloodlust to get my blood rages back and then reinforce. I have successfully locked out my heroes with this. Even I find it a bit too dirty.

 

 

Kunzite, do you use the errata version of Unholy Ritual and Bloodlust in your games?



#57 Kunzite

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Posted 26 September 2013 - 08:34 PM

 

For OL. Unholy ritual + Bloodlust for "all my cards in my hand! Woot!" next to Blood Rage + Reinforce. VERY powerful. I kill my own guys, bloodlust to get my blood rages back and then reinforce. I have successfully locked out my heroes with this. Even I find it a bit too dirty.

 

 

Kunzite, do you use the errata version of Unholy Ritual and Bloodlust in your games?

 

 

Not yet... Most likely going to implicate something after this campaign. Early campaign it's not an issue. Late campaign it's stupid.


"Bide your time and hold out hope."

~Count of Monte Cristo

 

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#58 rfisha

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 05:39 AM

I am not sure if it's an offical rule, but we have made a house rule that monsters must face a hero.  You cannot for example move 2 Barghasts to block a 3 by 3 corridor (facing the walls) and other monsters to that effect.  With quite a lot of 'race' or 'get to the exit first' type of quests we felt it was cheating and created imbalance.  Would like to know the official rule though.



#59 rfisha

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 05:48 AM

I am new to the game, but we have found the game to be unbalanced in favor of the OL (playing 2 heroes).  Playing the heroes I gave up winning quests and went for treasure and came back with a vengeance in ACT II eventually getting hold of powerful items and narrowly losing the Finale.

 

Thanks for everyone's input into this thread, there are some really awesome ideas here, and I think I am going to start with four heroes from now on!

 

As it take a long time to play a campaign, you have really fast tracked some of the trial-and-error we would have to have done.  



#60 Kunzite

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 06:06 AM

I am new to the game, but we have found the game to be unbalanced in favor of the OL (playing 2 heroes).  Playing the heroes I gave up winning quests and went for treasure and came back with a vengeance in ACT II eventually getting hold of powerful items and narrowly losing the Finale.

 

You are not imagining things. With only two heroes, it seems to be heavily favoring the OL. There is very limited on what the heroes can do when there are only two of you. Even though the OL's monsters are now very limited, he doesn't have to divide his attention so much. There aren't so many heroes to knock down either. 

 

The most balance I have found as the OL is a four hero game. If you are playing with three people, two people can play two heroes each. We have a four player game where one person takes on two heroes. Works well enough.


"Bide your time and hold out hope."

~Count of Monte Cristo

 

NotesFromTheOverlord.tumblr.com





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