Since the City expansion release I've been playing Talisman again recently and finishing a game has gotten longer and longer since we have been playing with All the expansions! So I started thinking of improvements to both make the turns a little faster, provide a bit less randomness in movement, and also to put more of "the journey" into the game.
Here's what I've added or changed for House rules which have both sped the turns up a little and also enhanced the "fantasy journey" (my term) of the game.
RULE 1 - Players must announce travel direction (i.e. their intent) prior to die roll. That is the direction they must move after the roll.
Benefit A - It removes the after roll "where can I land" decision process. No longer is it am I landing in the Crags? Oh, I'll go the other way.
Benefit B - It adds to "the journey" feel. If the player intended to go into the Highlands that's where they must move toward on that move. No more avoiding dangerous spaces if that's what was rolled that's where the player must move.
RULE 2 - Players may announce their intent to Visit a corner space (i.e. on the main board) prior to die roll. The player rolls the die as normal and with sufficient move must stop at that corner space and proceed normally. This applies to the 4 corners in the Outer region (Tavern, Village, Chapel, & City) and also to 3 spaces in the Inner region; the Warlock’s Cave, Temple, and Castle (well, almost a corner).
Benefit A - This removes the randomness for situations when trying for things like healing. For example a Good character seeking healing and having to spend multiple turns rolling to attempt to land on the Chapel.
Benefit B - "The journey" is enhanced because the player can announce they are going to the Chapel and stop there and heal if their move roll allows.
RULE 3 – Players may announce their intent to stop on a space that has a Monster in their direction of travel. The must stop on that space if sufficient move and encounter the Monster. This does not apply to dragon scales, only to monsters already manifesting on the boards.
Benefit A – Another removal of some randomness of the movement. If you want to battle some monster you announce that intent and with sufficient move may stop and do so.
Benefit B – Again “the journey” is enhanced.
Benefit C – Speeds up character development by allowing monster encounters quicker than having to roll the exact number to land on them.
RULE 4 – Adventure cards (also Dungeon and Highland deck cards) of type Place, Object, Magic Object, etc (i.e. not Monsters) do not count toward card count in the space they are on. They become part of the board. Thus if a space says to draw 1 card and only non monsters are in the space, you DO draw 1 card and order by card encounter number.
Benefit A – The adventure deck is accelerated a bit as most spaces will require drawing a card unless a monster is in the area.
Benefit B – No longer are those beneficial places guaranteed accessible (for instance, those that give strength). The fact that you must draw another card gives the possibility that a monster has appeared since a player last visited.
RULE 5 – Place cards that provide New paths of movement for that game follow the above announce intent rules. For instance, if a player wants to take a new dungeon entrance which was revealed previously, they may announce and do so.
See above benefits.
These are the 5 new house rules I’ve added to our games and we are enjoying the enhancements provided.
See what you think and feel free to use in your games.
If you have other house rules you use, I’d love to hear them.