Jump to content



Photo

Stalemate Issue


  • Please log in to reply
12 replies to this topic

#1 Tromdial

Tromdial

    Member

  • Members
  • 580 posts

Posted 23 September 2012 - 12:25 AM

 Tonight I played for the first time with my cousin and taught him Descent 2e. I have played a little of my game and he chose a team that I had never seen before: 4 all strong stat and heal characters but no real offense (all blue and yellow dice). The First Blood session ended up being 5 or more rounds long, and I barely won. Usually done in two or three. I then wanted to check out a quest I've never played before and chose Death on the Wing. Worst mistake ever.

So having first set up the map then read the contents (I was googly-eyed mostly over the shiny relic I could win), I realized there was only 1 boulder I could lay down no matter how many heroes were playing. I decided to run with it anyways, win or lose (thought I'd definitely lose), and then I pushed all my spiders and bhargests against the heroes. I kept downing half of his group, dragging it out til I got about six boulders down. In the meantime, I decided knowing I'd lose I'd draw cards like crazy and crush with my deck in my hand when he finally chose to escape. He then used a special feat for a 1e conversion character that grabs from her unused class skills and swaps with another chosen skill card from the class. He grabs a card that makes me randomly discards a card every round for 2 fatigue. Eventually he figures out to gank my spiders cause they don't come back, and then as the game ended up with 20 KOs on his guys and like several rounds later we realized the game had stalemated to me trying to keep my Overlord deck in my hand and him removing boulders and threatening to discard my cards randomly till he is satisfied to move on…

That's just it: there is no anti-stalemate mechanic to the first scenario of Death on the Wing. Unlike First Blood where I need to rush guys out the door versus players killing my guy, or Cardinal's Plight of the same effect, or Ballroom-Vampirella mumbo-jumbo stage, all have a "race" that the Overlord player is committed to. Death on the Wing has a one-sided race instead that players decide when they want to leave. Naturally the Overlord will want to keep his advantage after decimating his opponent, but it's literally impossible if poorly done (note way to do it: ettins and giants, as stated in other posts of this forum). However, the aspect of "down-and-stay-down" of 1e with Conquest tokens looks dramatically useful after tonight's botch of a play. Competing players will need one side to have an edge in time or KOs. Hero figures getting back up time after time feels like an impossible fight of the Return of the Living Dead! I also question if there are other moments where heroes lock down the Overlord in the first encounter to then guarantee their victory the next one, or vice versa in Overlord's favor.

Has anyone else found stalemate sessions where the game could theoretically play out for days in a silly fashion because of the absence of a time-deck or conquest tokens amiss?



#2 Dam

Dam

    Member

  • Members
  • 7,290 posts

Posted 23 September 2012 - 05:49 AM

Fat Goblin, Encounter 1 has been talked about. Namely, one goblin sits on the Exit with the crop, so if he dies, another goblin spawns at the tile and can pick up the crop. I think the idea was that the OL just keeps him there until he has most of the OL cards in hand, then ends the encounter. If a hero grabs the crop after killing the goblin, he should be taken down before he can get to the Farm, could even be blocked by a 2x2 monster in the Canyon.


"A dirty mind is its own reward."


#3 Tromdial

Tromdial

    Member

  • Members
  • 580 posts

Posted 23 September 2012 - 07:12 PM

 Yeah, the more I consider it I have a big issue with either side stalling out the game for their own gains. I have a big issue with heroes being squashed 30 or more times and getting back up and just brushing the dirt off their shoulder when they'd been dead-to-rights long ago. I believe I may house rule a variant of returning 2nd edition to using Conquest tokens, but not sure yet how to perfectly implement it. I feel the game after last night definitely needs it.



#4 Terah

Terah

    Member

  • Members
  • 39 posts

Posted 23 September 2012 - 10:19 PM

Here's a house-rule to stop heroes coming back infinitely.

When recovering from being knocked out a hero loses one less damage for each prior knock out during the same encounter. If this means a hero loses no damage then they remain knocked out.

As compensation for the above penalty heroes lose 1 more damage when coming back from being knocked out. So on the first recovery they lose +1 damage, the second they lose the normal damage, the third they lose -1 damage and so on.



#5 Triu

Triu

    Member

  • Members
  • 204 posts

Posted 24 September 2012 - 04:28 AM

Terah said:

Here's a house-rule to stop heroes coming back infinitely.

When recovering from being knocked out a hero loses one less damage for each prior knock out during the same encounter. If this means a hero loses no damage then they remain knocked out.

As compensation for the above penalty heroes lose 1 more damage when coming back from being knocked out. So on the first recovery they lose +1 damage, the second they lose the normal damage, the third they lose -1 damage and so on.

Not too bad; a bit of bookkeeping to keep track of KO's.  It only addresses the hero side of the issue, however.  Overlord stalling tactics in the first encounter, or situations where the OL has an endless reinforcement stream are not addressed.  It is also a pain for the hero … who generally doesn't have other figures, like the OL does, to play with.  Maybe it should only apply to Revive (which leaves the hero with 2 actions) and not to Stand Up.  Or maybe you always get at least 1 HP, but are Stunned (losing 1 action) when your adjusted roll is zero or less.



#6 Tromdial

Tromdial

    Member

  • Members
  • 580 posts

Posted 25 September 2012 - 09:10 PM

I was thinking today that maybe the answer to the dilemma would be to return Conquest tokens back to the game.

Conquest Variant

I have considered Conquest points is equal to 3 for each hero, plus 5 additional Conquest (2=11, 3=14, and 4=17) at the beginning of a quest. If there is a second encounter and the heroes reach it, they are rewarded an additional 5 Conquest.

Conquest is only reset when beginning a new quest. When a hero would stand up, one of these tokens is lost. Should there be no more tokens left, the hero stays down until either all heroes are down, the quest is resolved, or a first encounter trigger would manage to transport the heroes to the next quest (ala, some of the five Conquest would be reduced to immediately revive heroes for the second encounter). If all the heroes are down and unable to stand-up because of no more Conquest tokens able to be spent, the Overlord wins the quest. Additionally, when the hero round ends and the Overlord turn begins, one Conquest token is also lost; thus, the heroes are on a timer. It is not the loss of the last Conquest token that ends the quest for the heroes, but simply the absence of Conquest tokens removes their infinite revive ability. This house rule mechanic eliminates the "Return of the Living Dead" flaw of the heroes as well hero players deadlocking a game for hours upon hours (i.e. randomly discarding Overlord cards over a series of turns until his or her hand is desirable enough for the players to continue).

I have shared this variant with my friend who plays the game the most but he is disenchanted with the idea, already believing the Overlord is too powerful. I disagree because the variant only penalizes a party that is defeated dozens upon dozens of times, or one that is looking to clinch a win by stalling the Overlord with an hours upon hours lock-down tactic. All the quests I have seen were wrapped up in 8 rounds or less thus far, ignoring Death on the Wing, and most PKs only resaulted in half-a-dozen defeats before the end of a quest.

Giving the Overlord a "Threat" timer is out of the question because it returns to heroes deadlocking the game and even worse, bleeding out the Overlord who can't force the hero players to move on with the quest. Timing the heroes gives them incentive and urgency to continue. I could only consider an additional XP here or there, or extra gold for the heroes as compensation for a more Overlord-favorable variant; however, does this variant really seem too advantageous for the Overlord? We have not even managed to begin any quest that comes after First Blood and one more chosen by either side, so I wonder the validity of my friend's argument when I have heard as much as I have on the forums of heroes and overlords both having their share of landslide victories, as well landslides suddenly met by defeat only at the very end. I would like to continue and finish at least one campaign but it seems like it is constantly reset before a campaign even begins. I theorize that even if the Overlord does crack out some initial wins, the XP players will gain and the skill cards they can team together can pack a wallop against me if done right.

I always play Overlord, and always seem to win, half the time by luck, and the other half by good stratagem. My friend says he will regrettably run Overlord just so I can get a taste at how hard it is to play heroes and maybe retract my variant. If we do, I am going to be putting tokens off to the side and see how a conquest variant works unofficially this weekend.

Regardless, what do you players think of all this?



#7 Terah

Terah

    Member

  • Members
  • 39 posts

Posted 26 September 2012 - 06:44 AM

Tromdial,

This CT variant gives the OL even more reason to stalemate in the quests that he can (eg. Fat Goblin I). I'd suggest putting timers on both sides, but that seems pointless.



#8 Tromdial

Tromdial

    Member

  • Members
  • 580 posts

Posted 26 September 2012 - 05:38 PM

 Yeah, that would be pointless to put timers on both sides. To emphasize, this Fat Goblin encounter 1 completely blocks the heroes from advancing, or just slows them down a little bit?

Honestly, this whole stalemate issue is becoming a headache: with both sides having so many quests apparently where stalemating is good and having a game that locks down so easily, I'm starting to lose my fun factor with this game.

Can anyone suggest any variants that could eliminate stalemate problems in Descent 2e?



#9 Terah

Terah

    Member

  • Members
  • 39 posts

Posted 26 September 2012 - 09:48 PM

Tromdial said:

Yeah, that would be pointless to put timers on both sides. To emphasize, this Fat Goblin encounter 1 completely blocks the heroes from advancing, or just slows them down a little bit?

With 4 heroes it can slow the heroes down a few turns and if the OL really pushes it it risks the heroes reclaiming a crop. With 2 heroes it could probably go on forever, especially without a Disciple.



#10 Triu

Triu

    Member

  • Members
  • 204 posts

Posted 27 September 2012 - 01:42 AM

Tromdial said:

Can anyone suggest any variants that could eliminate stalemate problems in Descent 2e?

http://boardgamegeek...surrender-rules



#11 Tromdial

Tromdial

    Member

  • Members
  • 580 posts

Posted 27 September 2012 - 06:11 AM

 That's not half bad, Triu. I like that one alright. I'd like to see more, if they exist but I will tell my friend about that one.



#12 Wrapped

Wrapped

    Member

  • Members
  • 45 posts

Posted 26 October 2012 - 02:24 AM

 Hmmm.. In the fat goblin i don't really get it.

 

One goblin sits on the crop.

Hero 1 kills the goblin and then starts moving towards the field.

Hero 2 uses 1 action to pick up the crop and his second to move adjacent to Hero 1.

 

The OL gets to reinforce 1 goblin. If that goblin manages to kill the player with the crop he still don't have enough action to start nesting it again and the players can pick it up next round and keep running. It will take a few turns but it's no stalemate, right?



#13 Dam

Dam

    Member

  • Members
  • 7,290 posts

Posted 26 October 2012 - 03:23 AM

OL also gets his open group reinforced. It that monster has Stun or better (for OL), Immobilize (Merriods FTW!), they'll get stuck and then pummeled while Immobilized. Into an up-down-up-down whirlpool (knocked out, revive/stand up, KO, so on).


"A dirty mind is its own reward."





© 2013 Fantasy Flight Publishing, Inc. Fantasy Flight Games and the FFG logo are ® of Fantasy Flight Publishing, Inc.  All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Contact | User Support | Rules Questions | Help | RSS