I wanted to add my experience to what seems like a growing concern that the HP for Cardinal Koth's HP may be too low for the scenario.
As the Overlord, I did fairly well against the 4 heroes in the first encounter, securing the release of three zombies off the board. If not for a trap card laid down to stop the dwarven berserker it very well could have been only two!
The heroes makeup was the aforementioned Grisbam (Berzerker), Adria Runehand (Disc), and Laurel of Bloodwood (Wildlander). While on the subject Laurel may be the best wildlander in the game from what I can tell. From my very small pool of experience (6 encounters and the tutorial) she consistently puts out 4 DPS, well above her companions. If you have not bought the conversion pack I highly suggest that you do!
My force makeup for the first encounter was the "Giant" from the conversion pack and the aforementioned 4 zombies. No other models even made it to the board.
I have gone ahead and taken the liberty of adding screenshots of the final turn (The fallen hero model was our Koth standin). I unfortunately did not record the results of the dice rolls but I can tell you the results were not pretty. The encounter was over in less than 4 turns (Max).
On the first turn the heroes moved in to put some pain on the giant that I was going to be using to block the way thinking that it would take much longer for them to get to the doors. My giant survived the beginning volleys with relative ease (1 black dice laughs off attacks) and only took nominal damage.
The heroes surrounded my giant figure (a bit foolish on their part) to attempt to reach the relic to heal him in case of damage from the zombies), and they soon learned the pain of the mighty cleave. The zombie damage was done though and while I once again do not remember the specific numbers (I must keep a battle log in the future) the zombies did nearly half of the Cardinal Koth's total health!
Things did not fare well for the heroes as I used my giant's cleave attack to stun nearly everyone of them the next turn, leaving them without actions the following turn. (Upon further investigation of the supplemental FAQ we realized that the Stunned condition card only required the use of one action to remove, instead of the heroes entire turn). It mattered not as the healing rune only gave back the cardinal a pitiful 4 health.
Turns 2, 3 and 4 played out in a similar manner. The zombies ripped the cardinal to shreds, only stopping because of a miss or two and the occasional block. It was over before the heroes could even open the first door.
Should you have reached this quest and want to increase the difficulty on the Overlord because of the following testimonial (and I suggest you do) please allow me to present the following homebrew solutions that you can take into consideration. Be warned! Inclusion of ALL of the following is not recommended as it may completely upset the mission balance.
Option 1. Increase Cardinal Koth's Defense Dice Pool
- Research: I've created a spreadsheet with all the possible permutations of dice rolls for zombies and the average damage done, factoring in a BY dice pool and 1 spent surge to give +1 Damage (additional surges were properly discarded) per zombie is 2.722. The average damage blocked by Koth is 2.666. These are remarkably close with 1 zombie doing slightly more damage on average than Koth can block. I'm currently researching the best method to simulate the array of numbers but that will have to wait for another day.
- Sadly, I'm afraid that W/BL may overpower Koth. WB dice pool shows an increase to the average amount blocked to 3.416. The fact is that koth as the scenario is currently written and the fact that only zombies can damage Koth- he on average will block more than the average amount of damage dealt.
- I have a theory that a quick way to increase the staying power of Koth is to level the playing field. By adding an auto block function of 1 (all rolls against this model automatically have 1 damage blocked) we can bring Koth's average damage blocked up to 2.722. The exact same as the zombies that are attacking him.
- The +1 method could only be applied in cases where you have 2+ models attacking Koth as with each additional zombie model brought to bear on Koth you are increasing the probability that damage will be done - not necessarily the average damage dealt.
Option 2. Increase Healing Done by Shrine
- Research: One red die at present heals 2.16 health per turn. While on paper this should be sufficient to keep Koth healthy against several zombies biting his kneecaps off, in practice it simply wasn’t enough. After repeating the process to find out all of the possible combinations for 1 red dice, I sought to see what 2 red dice would do- unsurprisingly it is double the amount of 1 health dice at 4.33 - all in all a 50% increase in healing efficiency.
-I don’t believe that this answer is the best though as this may overpower the use of the shrine (although certainly taking 1 model out of commission for the duration of the encounter as they need to babysit it is quite a benefit) I think there might be a simpler solution.
- By counting the one surge icon as a “Critical Strike: Multiply the shown damage by 2” we can increase the healing of the red dice to 2.66 (12% increase in healing efficiency) which odds are would not be as overpowered as it may seem at first glance. Although once again, I have not simulated the effects of this en-mass and I will have to return in the future with probibility charts.
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In any case I appreciate your comments and look forward to your thoughts on the matter and any experiences you may have had with this particular encounter.