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Overlord feels a bit stacked in 4 player games


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#1 Nephalite

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 11:42 PM

Just concluded the first 3 real quest in the questbook with my 4 friends me playing as the overlord. Looking back at all the encounters I feel the overlord has a huge advantage over the players, especially when it came to protecting a piece on the board. In the quest "Castle Daerion"  I was able to kill the lord piece in 2/3 turns with just the Ettins in the 4 player game with the heroes just killing the orges I used on the stairs. The mission after that "The Cardinal's Plight" I was able to kill the Cardinal in about 4 turns.

I just feel bad I am mopping the floor with my 4 friends because it really does feel at sometimes in the 4 player game the objects that need protecting do not recieve any buff for the overlord recieves in the form of monster group sizes. Is there something I am missing or are those quest geared towards the overlord?



#2 Steve-O

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 01:22 AM

I believe that Castle Daerion is widely considered the toughest quest for the heroes.  I'm not exactly sure where Cardinal's Plight falls on that list.

Is this the first time your friends have played Descent?  The heroes do have a steeper learning curve than the OL does, so if they're new to it, they will improve over time.


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#3 Rico

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 01:55 AM

Cardinal's Plight for new players is a great wake-up call. New heroes tend to try and kill everything, which is an epic fail in that scenario.



#4 Dam

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 03:04 AM

Plight isn't far below Daerion in terms of difficulty for the heroes. When playing OL, if I'm in the driving seat, I'll pick both of them gladly for Act I, all but guaranteed wins, Plight even gifting the awesome Staff of Shadows to reroll more Xs.


"A dirty mind is its own reward."


#5 AcidMouse

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 08:38 AM

Had the exact same situation happen to my group of friends while we were playing. I was the overlord. Its the first game of Descent any of us have ever played, so we are all getting familar with the rules still. None of us know which quests are which so we just picked. We've played first blood, fat goblin, castle daerion and the cardinals plight. During the first act I eased up on the players multiple times just to keep things interesting and competitive. I was choosing the lesser monsters of the respected groups and I was not playing to my full potential for both Castle Daerion and The Cardinal Koth quest and I still wiped the floor with the players. I threw the end of the Cardinal Koth quest because as the overlord i've snowballed from the other quests and I didnt want the later game to end up not being any fun for the players because the OL's deck is just to powerful.



#6 Rico

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 09:54 AM

Your group should revisit these quest after some time is spent getting a better feel for the game. Many things get overlooked or simply forgotten in the beginning. I remember the first time our group played I made the mistake of using the lieutenant against the Cardinal and feeling all über until the next day we were recounting the game and realized only the zombies could deal damage to him. Little things like this, through oversight or lack of attention to details, can make a scenario seem unbalanced. I love the flexibility of D2e to allow pretty much anything to be created, but the downside is that details can get lost since each encounter is so unique in terms of special rules. Later run throughs have been much closer and the heroes have even won this encounter on epic.



#7 SolennelBern

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 10:11 AM

Damn I don't understand our currwent campaign…We're at the Interlude and we the Heroes (2 Heroes per player) won all quests except Castle Daerion which we could have won if we didn't made an error on our last turn.

All those quests were won easily…

The Overlord is a bit overwhelmed by this but still have fun playing…but I understand how he feels not having the slightest chances to win every quests.  It's our first campaign so being new to the game is probably why it's going like this.  Next campaign i'll be the Overlord since I want to try this role at least once.  Maybe it'll go differently…maybe not.  But for now the Heroes are having the most easy time.

What is wrong?



#8 Rico

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 12:29 PM

Could be anything. Some things that tend to lopsided play is the misuse of Fatigue, abuse of the Rest action, the lack of cards being played by the OL, surge abuse, misinterpreting hero skills and general rules. Without specifics or a general focus in an area of concern it is difficult to determine where trouble may be, if any, in your group. My experience has been that the game is pretty well balanced, so chances are something in your play is off. Any idea where?


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#9 Nephalite

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 02:25 PM

The biggest complaints I recieve from the heroes is the multibased figures can block pathways but at the same time when moving are considered 1 base creatures. Another is line of sight but found a LOS calculator that is helping out. Question though you know how you can move around corners or cut corners for movement do reach attack allow the same thing or is LOS needed and same thing with Knockback is it placement any square 3 away from the original space of origin no LOS needed to the new square as well?



#10 Rico

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 04:22 PM

LoS is very generous in D2e.  Reach does need LoS and non-obsticle tiles/non-blocking objects to hit. As for Throw, there is no LoS indicated so feel free to put that Hero in as awkward a space as possible. On a side note, I have been messing with custom monsters for a campaign and have created a Teleport action that allows placement within 5 spaces regardless of LoS.  It's pretty sweet.

 

As for the complaint of Large monster movement, tell your heroes you would gladly give up the shrink mechanism for two attacks per turn.  That should shut them up pretty fast.



#11 Dam

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 08:55 PM

SolennelBern said:

Damn I don't understand our currwent campaign…We're at the Interlude and we the Heroes (2 Heroes per player) won all quests except Castle Daerion which we could have won if we didn't made an error on our last turn.

All those quests were won easily…

The Overlord is a bit overwhelmed by this but still have fun playing…but I understand how he feels not having the slightest chances to win every quests.  It's our first campaign so being new to the game is probably why it's going like this.  Next campaign i'll be the Overlord since I want to try this role at least once.  Maybe it'll go differently…maybe not.  But for now the Heroes are having the most easy time.

What is wrong?

Overlord doesn't sound up to the task, especially if the heroes were close to winning Castle Daerion. We played it just now in the PBF over on BGG and OL basically won E2 and the quest on turn 1. Only one hero got to do something on turn 1, militiamen formed a line in front of the heroes, right in front of the militiamen were monsters, so heroes couldn't move through (Thief with Tumble could).


"A dirty mind is its own reward."


#12 Steve-O

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 02:59 AM

SolennelBern said:

The Overlord is a bit overwhelmed by this but still have fun playing…but I understand how he feels not having the slightest chances to win every quests.  It's our first campaign so being new to the game is probably why it's going like this.  Next campaign i'll be the Overlord since I want to try this role at least once.  Maybe it'll go differently…maybe not.  But for now the Heroes are having the most easy time.

What is wrong?

Simply put, I don't think your OL player is playing to win.  Either he's letting the heroes win on purpose to please the group, or he's sub-consciously throwing the game out of some deep-set belief that "the heroes are supposed to win."

As long as everyone is still having fun, it's not a big deal.  Your group may be in for a shock the first time the OL's seat is claimed by someone who plays for keeps, though.



#13 pbenner

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 09:31 AM

When playing Campaign Mode, I replace the "win condition" with a "Success condition" since the only winner is whoever wins the last encounter.  

In regards to experience as to who wins or loses, I would add this.  I am a very competitive person, and in my last group, I was playing with my Step-Dad as one of the hero players.  He too is a very competitive person.  

 

We've played up to the interlude at this point, and we are tied for wins, as I won the interlude.  

 

I don't think the game is imbalanced towards one side or the other with (4) heroes, infact, I would say this is the most balanced level of play.  In my experience I would say as follows:

 

(2) Heros favor the Overlord

(3) Heros favor the Heros

(4) Heros favor the better player(s)

 

Best,

 

Paul


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#14 Dornfinger

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 08:11 PM

Nephalite said:

…In the quest "Castle Daerion"  I was able to kill the lord piece in 2/3 turns with just the Ettins in the 4 player game with the heroes just killing the orges I used on the stairs…

We also faced Ogres in Castle Daerion (4 Heroes), but we managed to kill the white Ogre one-hit with the undead servant, so that Jaine could breakthrough with her heroic feat and shoot down the red Ettin with two shots from her crossbow.

It came down to the dice - the Overlord rolled the crappiest defense we've ever seen. So of all the maps Castle Daerion was the first real one (except First Blood) we won vs. the Overlord.



#15 Dornfinger

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 08:11 PM



(2) Heros favor the Overlord


(3) Heros favor the Heros


(4) Heros favor the better player(s)



In my group we more felt that 3 heroes is most balanced, while 4 heroes favor the heroes.


 


sry for double posting! :-)



#16 Zarovich

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Posted 29 July 2013 - 09:11 AM

I interpret the rules different than everybody else, it seems.  The wording on the militiamen rules read as follow.

"Militiamen block movement and line of site.  Treat them as hero figures with the following exceptions.  They cannot...."

 

It is because of the highlighted text that I believe the first line is intended to block movement only for the OL;  Hero figures may move through other hero figures on their movement.  In this way, the OL cannot block the heros on their first turn, so they have a better chance of defending Palamon.

 

Let me know what you think.



#17 Kunzite

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Posted 29 July 2013 - 12:40 PM

As the OL, I lost First Blood, and fat goblin and won Cardinal's Plight and Masquerade Ball. The last one was the only run-a-way game I had. After the Interlude (which I also won) I threw a match for my heroes to give them some hope. It cost me the game, but I am so much better of a loser. It all worked out and in the end, we all had fun.

 

We are now play LoR after playing a heck of a lot of Epic Quests. The heroes have had allot of time to learn what they like and how to work together. It's a four on one set up. I honestly believe it will be more down to the wire (even after the first quest, it was close! They won by a single turn!) and enjoyable for everyone.

 

New players: Don't give up! Change up the OL and heroes till everyone gets a grove for what they like best (or keep rotating, as some like to do) even if that means holding off a campaign for some Epic Quests. Don't judge the game till Act II. Those that do badly act I sometimes come out in act II. Our Grisban was horrible in act I and act II was something to be feared! As the OL I could only drop him twice.

 

Talk things over with heroes and OL. Talking about what happened and thoughts going on in your head will help everyone flesh out what went wrong and what went right. That goes for heroes WITH their OL.

 

Most of all, laugh it out. I draw stupid comics of them VS me that really just jokes about funny visualizations that happen. It has become something they look forward to seeing every week. Can't draw, then joke with one another. Talk in funny voices and roleplay a little. The lighter the game, aka not taking it so seriously in the long run, will keep everyone happy. At least that has become our secret formula.


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"Bide your time and hold out hope."

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#18 Silverhelm

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Posted 29 July 2013 - 01:06 PM

LoS is very generous in D2e.  Reach does need LoS and non-obsticle tiles/non-blocking objects to hit. As for Throw, there is no LoS indicated so feel free to put that Hero in as awkward a space as possible. On a side note, I have been messing with custom monsters for a campaign and have created a Teleport action that allows placement within 5 spaces regardless of LoS.  It's pretty sweet.

 

As for the complaint of Large monster movement, tell your heroes you would gladly give up the shrink mechanism for two attacks per turn.  That should shut them up pretty fast.


Lol I like that comment!

#19 Silverhelm

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Posted 29 July 2013 - 02:11 PM

Just concluded the first 3 real quest in the questbook with my 4 friends me playing as the overlord. Looking back at all the encounters I feel the overlord has a huge advantage over the players, especially when it came to protecting a piece on the board. In the quest "Castle Daerion" I was able to kill the lord piece in 2/3 turns with just the Ettins in the 4 player game with the heroes just killing the orges I used on the stairs. The mission after that "The Cardinal's Plight" I was able to kill the Cardinal in about 4 turns.

I just feel bad I am mopping the floor with my 4 friends because it really does feel at sometimes in the 4 player game the objects that need protecting do not recieve any buff for the overlord recieves in the form of monster group sizes. Is there something I am missing or are those quest geared towards the overlord?

Heroes relie heavily on money to improve what they do best (killing!). Monsters get in the way they will kill it. Heroes only need to kill if something gets in the way of there goal either quest or coins. Sometimes it's wise for hero players to throw a quest for gold, say First Blood for example. Loosing this quest really isn't a big deal coins should be what heros are after here. OL doesn't gain much other then exp. and no Relic so it's safe for them to persue this. This can be done on a lot if quests mainly encounter 1. Encounter 2 they will try much much harder to win quest.

Little strategy a hero can use is the scout player this player can really be helpful and the heroes won't need to throw any quests. This guys purpose is to take OL coins meanwhile other 3 focus on quest. 3 balanced heroes with healing, tanking are good joice. Have a really good OL pick two healers and a tank( keep tank alive). Or two tanks and one healer, healer becomes a decoy and tanks are real threat. If scout drawls chest card and or secret room this is good because he should make enough money without further going after other search coins in his current encounter(Scout successful). Now he will play a supporting role with other 3.

Heroes are good at doing what they want to do. If they want your coins they will, if they want to kill your monsters they will. But what they aren't garenteed to do is win a quest.

Another strategy for heroes they can do. Lets say zombies are beating the crap out of the NPC and the odds quickly are favoring OL. Then best thing to do is all heroes switch to taking as many coins as they can before quest ends! They will get there revenge! As Steve-o has said they will get better and better as they play.

Edited by Silverhelm, 31 July 2013 - 12:51 PM.


#20 SouLx

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Posted 30 July 2013 - 01:09 AM

I interpret the rules different than everybody else, it seems.  The wording on the militiamen rules read as follow.

"Militiamen block movement and line of site.  Treat them as hero figures with the following exceptions.  They cannot...."

 

It is because of the highlighted text that I believe the first line is intended to block movement only for the OL;  Hero figures may move through other hero figures on their movement.  In this way, the OL cannot block the heros on their first turn, so they have a better chance of defending Palamon.

 

Let me know what you think.

 

The thing is the line; "...block movement and line of sight." doesn't have an exception. It isn't just specific to monster figures, and affect heroes as well, hindering both. 
The line; "Treat them as hero figures with the following exceptions." is just to clarify what can and cannot affect them. (Such as Overlord cards, monster abilities, and hero abilities or skills.)

 

To clarify, I will use similar wording found on page 18 in the Rules of Play Booklet (Familiars Treated as Figures)

"These familiars block line of sight and movement, but are considered friendly figures for hero movement."

They have an exception. The Militiamen would also have to have an exception.


Edited by SouLx, 30 July 2013 - 01:10 AM.





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