The importance of Winning/Losing Quests is directly proportional to the skill level of the Overlord. Letting Master Overlords have extra XP/relics can be as bad, or worse than, not having enough gold.
I respectfully disagree with you and Kunzite on this particular point. You may have a different experience of the game and I respect that, but as far as my playgroups are concerned, OL rewards have never been at the centre of discussion as a critical object to either allow or deny for securing a win in a quest or even in the long term. OL relics have very marginal use, and heroes can often control them quite easily whenever the OL gets the chance to field them. Extra XP for the OL changes nothing as the OL cannot control his draws anyway. You can buy all the OL cards in the world and still lose terribly. The only way you can remedy that is giving up on encounter 1 and gather your whole deck in your hand upon starting encounter 2, which is arguably a cheaty way to put the odds in your favor. If that is what is required then it tells as much about balance in this game in general. In comparison, heroes can buy one good bow off the item shop deck and win every single encounter thanks to it thereafter. Extra XP means you can buy a card earlier than expected but I don't think it affects anything in the grand scheme of things. On the other hand, hero rewards, or whether getting them or giving up on them (for grabbing money instead) is the great question and the only one that has any real relevance.
Talking about skill level of the OL is just an easy way to say that if you can't manage your heroes and be in control in a campaign then it's probably because you lack experience. The only part of that I would agree with is that if your OL does not have the balls nor the wits to put up a decent challenge then he/she's pretty much screwed, raw luck aside. Apart from that, this game is random enough to make a OL with any skill level lose, and I will claim that equally skilled heroes will be in better position for defeating an overlord and his minions given the arsenal of possibilities they have access to thorough the campaign.
In the best of the worlds I would wish that the game wasn't that hard on the Overlord so we could allow more players to play this role. I'm happy being the Overlord because I'm a total masochist in that game and get huge satisfaction destroying my opposition with a swipe or complex sequence of awesome plays that stupefy my audience. Yeah, it's a big show and even if they mock the actor most of the times they sometimes stop and look at you like you're Jesus fraking Christ. I love that. But right now nobody else would remotely like to replace me on a future campaign. Not a question of how clever my players are, just the fact that the Overlord is clearly not a role for everyone. I don't like the elitist part of that design, that's all. So speaking about the skill level of the OL only seems to emphasize on that accessibility issue.
Extra gold for the heroes is always better than any OL reward. I am adamant on that point. The sheer power of the items in the shop decks is the primary source of upgrade for the heroes, with class cards as a distant second. With good gear you can go all the way in a campaign. I will go even further and say that any weapon in the shop deck is better than any of the OL relics you can get (Staff of Dominion being an exception maybe). This is where you would typically disagree because what's actually printed on the card may prove me wrong for some of the better OL relics, but my point is that it doesn't matter what's printed on the card. It can say that you automatically defeat a hero on a surge or anything you like. You simply cannot use relics the way heroes use gear, you don't have access to them a huge % of the time, and when you do your Lieutenant can be managed by the heroes just as easily anyway. No need to have experienced hero players to do that as long as they have a rough idea of what the OL is toying with in terms of monsters and abilities.
I'm not saying you won't get a good mileage out of a relic on occasion, but I don't think that situation is very common to say the least.
Edited by Indalecio, 04 June 2014 - 08:37 AM.