I believe that according to the rules, entryway squares to other Regions are blocked if a Dragon King's scale is put there, until the scale is claimed. I'm talking about the Sentinel and the Portal of Power. They're only traversable if you're descending, or going past them in the same Region.
I'll have to check the rulebook again, but I distinctly remember this mentioned.
You're right, it is clearly mentioned in the Dragon Rulebook, page 10:
If the Sentinel has a dragon scale that matches the Dragon
King, characters may not use the space to cross to the Middle
Region, but they may freely cross from the Middle Region to
the Outer Region.
If the Portal of Power has a dragon scale that matches the
Dragon King, characters may not use the space to cross to the
Inner Region, but they may freely cross from the Inner Region
to the Middle Region.
I admit I completely forgot these rules in the last two games that I've played with the Dragon Expansion.
Not that it would have mattered, as Characters mostly reach the Crown of Command from Outer Region via Great Portal or Dragonspire.
Back On Topic, I've been playing with Transference and Path of Destiny for about 100 Talisman games and I don't think they make anything cheaper or predictable. There are few cards in the decks that allow you to pick a Spell of your choice, so you can't count on Transference all the time. Getting to the Crown via Treasure Chamber or the above mentioned Great Portal and Dragonspire is a LOT easier and anticlimactic.
The only Spell that seriously troubles me is Misfortune. Two copies of it in the deck and combined with the Reaper it means certain death. That's too harsh, because there's really nothing you can do to avoid it (except staying away from the Reaper all the time, but this is nearly impossible). If I play with Misfortune I never use Reaper and go for the Werewolf or no board hunter instead.
I recall one game where a player stole Misfortune with Mind Steal from another player. Many turns later, that player rolls for the Reaper and says "Good, I move it on myself!". I told him not to do it, but he stubbornly got on because he was so confident with Twist of Fate in hand. He forgot that somebody stole Misfortune from his own hand and was killed outright. That's the only case I remember Misfortune being funny.