Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by Thundercles

  1. Corbon said:

    Antistone said:


    Corbon said:


    Most issues with the combined score actually come from deliberate attempts to break the mechanic, rather than regular in game 'accidental' issues.



    You say that like it's a good thing.  "Accidental" issues tend to arise rarely and at random, and thus don't usually matter to the overall gameplay; issues that arise as a direct result of one side attempting to achieve the game's stated goal tend to arise systematically and consistently, because someone has an incentive to seek them out, making their effects much more pernicious.

    The fact that issues arise "from deliberate attempts to break the mechanic" is precisely the reason that I suspect the mechanic ought to be changed.



    Like I said, it isn't perfect. But it is a lot better than 'use just the heroes' score' proposal for example. Perhaps my point was badly articulated (even to myself) - most issues with the combined score come from massive, obvious, attempts to totally devastate the entire game structure. Yes, it isn't good that these are possible, but they are generally fairly extreme and clear.
    Just using one side's score have a number of subtler and therefore more problematic and more abuse-able issues IMO.

    I was really hoping to see this train of thought keep going, so I'm going to revive it a little.

    I did a cursory brainstorming analysis on the goals and incentives for Descent, and I realized that Antistone's right: there is a fundamental incentive problem with the advanced campaign.  I noted the following:

    • More Hero CPs lead to sole hero win condition, so good hero play leads to hero victory (good)
    • More OL CPs lead to sole hero win condition, so OL has time limit for obtaining enough CT to win that is based on how well he plays (odd)
    • More OL CPs lead to sole hero win condition, so bad hero play leads to hero victory (getting weirder)
    • Divine Favor + SoB: Heroes cannot win without the OL having CP, but the OL can control whether he gets CP or not  and the heroes can force their victory condition if the OL is relying on Lieutenants for map victory (broken given SoBs LTs)

    Essentially, the following hold true:

    1. if the time limit is tied to OL CP totals and Hero victory, heroes are incentivized to die.
    2. if the time limit is tied to Hero CP totals and Hero victory, then victory is not an incentive for the heroes to stay alive: they are in fact not connected.

    So, one of these variables is wrong: either CP totals cannot be tied to Hero Victory or CP totals cannot be the only method for hero victory.  Without testing it, possible solutions might be to establish another way for the heroes to open the OLs keep (defeating all LTs once maybe)?  Or maybe the final battle timeout results in  a win for the OL instead?

    Normally, in Vanilla descent, Conquest points are a countdown for the heroes, and keep them racing.  It's odd to me that the Advanced campaign chose to apply the Conquest time limit to the Overlord instead.  in any case, I don't think anything can be done about the SoB LTs until the trouble with the conquest economy being the most easily broken.

  2. In the case of scything blades, unless something has changed the original Well of Darkness rulebook classification, the Scything Blades are themselves Traps. They are terrain with the Trap keyword, so Trapmaster applies to them.

    In the case of trying to have all of the heroes use the same item at once, I would stay away from asking such an odd corner case.  I think it's pretty clear that you can't defy sequence logic by saying "it says you can pass items any time".  By the time you've traded an item, the resolution of the damage has already happened because if one hero suffered the damage (and then negated it), all heroes suffered the damage, since all heroes at the tavern suffer damage when there is a brawl.  It's like saying that all heroes can pass around the same potion and drink it; it fails the test of how the potion survives the "drink" resolution in order to be passed to the next hero.

  3. Focus on trade and culture, get the culture cards that let you destroy buildings and the Gunpowder tech, and go to freakin' town on their buildings.

    The point is that there are many paths to victory.  If the harbors are gone, the trading post is a good way to tech and culture up instead.  Then you can use culture events and resource abilities to hamper your enemies.

  4. ...But large monsters only suffer 1 space's worth of effect when they move into multiple spaces under the same effect.   That is in the rules.  That part was playtested.  It seems naïve to assume that explicit mention of one interaction in the rules means that the rules writers are neither reasonable nor good playtesters.

    It's especially naïve to assume that the general case for Large Monsters does not apply in this specific case when no exception has been made.

  5. Corbon, I see we're on the same page.


    As a mental note to myself and anyone else who ends up on this project,
    Work Required:

    • List of Answered Questions: I'm not sure this is super necessary, but it was important before, when people kept asking things that were either already on the FAQ or easily answered. In any case, this would need to be updated as per the latest FAQ.
      TIME ESTIMATE: lots 'o time (10 Hours or so?).  Basically, you have to pull the questions off of the list and paste them in here with their answers after looking them up in the FAQ.
    • GLoAQ Google docs version: I think Parathion may have posted more answers from Kevin?  It hasn't been updated in 6 months and I know that the GLoAQ has seen at least one update.
      TIME ESTIMATE: Like half an hour.  Just read through the GLoAQ and see if anything relevant has been posted since 3/18
    • List of questions for the FAQ: Need to remove questions that have been answered (put them in the List of Answered Questions) and add new questions that have come up since 3/18
      TIME ESTIMATE: 10 hours for removal (part of the LoAQ effort). The removal bit is super annoying because it requires checking and double-checking the FAQ (which is easier now that FFG gave it some minor semblance of order).  Adding questions is the long term goal here and cannot have a time estimate.
    • FAQ Edits: This document basically needs to be redone, since most of the items here are either no longer relevant or were totally ignored last time.  I'm really hoping that this push will be the bulk of the work, since most of the Descent dialectic is about how crappy the FAQ is (see above).
      TIME ESTIMATE: Weeks.  This is the bulk of the work and will require reading the FAQ repeatedly, as well as reviewing and editing this list repeatedly.  This is the other ongoing effort.

    It's possible that rewriting the FAQ would be easier and take less time (as well as allow us to really control what goes into it) but I somehow doubt they're going to let us do that, given other random angry people posting that FFG is somewhat against simply publishing user content nowadays.

    Last time, I think we managed to get the FAQ reposted 3 times and consumed about a week of an FFG staffer's time.  If we do this one right, we're probably going to see a similar result, but the end product should be much more satisfying.

  6. SoylentGreen said:

    Corbon said:



    The answer is, FFG make the FAQ, but the community does most of the legwork...



    Thanks for the example and the explanation - That is something I would love to help read and maybe throw ideas at - if it were something that was just simply community led with nothing that would happen with FFG - another story. :)

    I knew Remy put a lot of effort into the last one - I drifted off before I saw Thundercles helping - but I recall several discussions and him asking if things should be added to the list.

    I'll check out the links - if for any reason - to give me stuff to look at and think about on slow work days. :) I'm sometimes wrong - sometimes right in these forum discussions - but I enjoy the process of looking through the rules and finding the answers. :)

    Sounds like someone is volunteering to do craptons of editing and revising work demonio.gif.

  7. Hello all;

    Remy and I worked on the last FAQ update and it was kind of a hellish process, given the amount of work required, the craptastic nature of the forum software as an editing tool, and how easy it was to annoy those we considered our best contributors.  I've learned of a way to share it with the world at large while controlling editing rights using google docs;  here are the links to the living documents from the last effort.

    FAQ List: https://docs.google.com/View?id=dfb7n66m_4fs4rk9d7
    Edit notes for the FAQ from FFG: https://docs.google.com/View?id=dfb7n66m_8dvddggdr
    Answered FAQ List: https://docs.google.com/View?id=dfb7n66m_5gtgn43c9
    GLoAQ from the forums: https://docs.google.com/View?id=dfb7n66m_7gh9rc7ff

    This should accommodate some of the more intelligent requests we received, like highlighting edits to user-submitted questions, adding edit notes when changing the wording of questions, and allowing more people to edit the lists.  We haven't touched these since the final version of the FAQ came out, so they're all out of date and need work (which I won't have time to do this month seeing as I have to plan a wedding reception for two whole goddamn families).

    As for editing rights, go ahead and PM me with your email after you've requested editing rights via Google docs (follow the link at the bottom of the page, "Edit this page (if you have permission)") so I can add you to the list.  I'm going to err on the side of caution in terms of allowing people to edit this thing, so while anyone can read the docs and post change requests here, only a select few will be allowed to edit., mostly because too many editors leads to chaos, fear, the dark side, etc.  Again, this is only for edit access: feel free to post new questions and commentary about the current state of the list, and your humble team of editors will get on that (or tell you why you're wrong).

    Descent content output has slowed to a crawl, so this is a good opportunity to try to work through the many issues present in the FAQ, but I'm too busy to do much work on that front (and I think Remy is, too).  A few more hands should offer enough momentum to get another solid update out by the end of the year.

  8. Just to continue arguing an increasingly moot point: the transfer of control from OL to Hero player must happen as part of the resolution of the attack, or there would be some discrete moment after the attack where the OL has control.  Neither the FAQ nor the original card say that the OL has any control over the hero at any point after the attack.  We could (and, in fact, should) say that the transfer of power is simultaneous with the end of the attack, not with Rapid Fire itself.

    The way simultaneous events off the same trigger work is that they are handled in whatever order the controller chooses: this is not in question (and could sink my entire argument, now that I think about it).  However, there is a lot of precedent that shows that a stack of simultaneous events can trigger something without preempting and nullifying any subsequent events: using the Skull Shield on a damaging lingering effect, for example, or the Guard action interrupting any of the OL's "start of turn" events, or even Aura, Lava, and the Skull shield preventing damage from one of them.  In fact, if a hero triggers a stack of effects (like lingering bleed and fire tokens) and has a response that triggers off of one or any number of them, he can wait to see how they all play out before committing to responding to one of them.  If you had two bleed tokens and the Skull Shield and wanted to negate bleed damage, you could reasonably wait until both are rolled before deciding whether to use the Shield and on which token (if the first one rolls one wound and the second rolls an X, for example).

    Though one could argue that the transfer of control must happen after the attack ends (in the same way that it must happen before Rapid Fire), it's not actually true.  The OL's input ends at determining how surges and power enhancements are spent: when we're determining wounds (step 6), there is nothing to control.  Furthermore, like I said before, there's no point before the attack ending that the OL does not control, and there's no point after the attack ending that the Hero player does not control: thus, the control transfer and the attack ending are simultaneous and inexhorably linked.

    To reiterate, the attack resolves and control is transferred simultaneously, according to the way the rules and FAQ are written.  Thus, triggering Rapid fire off of the attack "ending" is legal, because the hero is in control at the moment Rapid Fire would be triggered, even if the OL says that the attack resolves before he relinquishes control, since simultaneous events don't preempt each other.  I still don't believe that the control change event even exists, but if it does, it's simultaneous to the attack ending and thus cannot preempt Rapid Fire.

  9. So, this "control passing" that seems to be the crux of this discussion, why are people viewing it as separate from the attack?  Sure, you can say that Rapid Fire requires hero control and thus, because the attack passes control back to the hero, the order of events is  A->B->C and rapid fire is no longer immediate, but the problem with that argument is that the hero receives control back from the overlord as part of the resolution of the attack. 

    At every point before the attack is over, the overlord is in (admittedly limited) control.  At every point after the attack is over, the hero is in control.  There is no in-between point where control "changes hands" like some sort of discrete interrupting event.  Furthermore Descent rules have never defined such a control change as any kind of actual game-recognized event.

    It's obvious that any number of immediate events will fire off of the same trigger and can all occur at once: Cleaving + Master Monster bounty, for example.  Thus, the only way that Rapid Fire would not be legal is if something happened after a Dark Charm attack that preempted the skill's trigger.  This "control change event" you guys have put forward (I'm assuming imported from other games where such things are important and thus defined?) doesn't actually exist as per the rules of Dark Charm or the rules of Descent. If you could point to an example where the Overlord's control extended past the point of the attack resolving, I would be convinced, but that control ends at the exact moment that the attack ends, without requiring some kind of hand-off.  Thus, at the moment the attack ends, the hero player is in control of the hero.

  10. mahkra said:


    James McMurray said:


    mahkra said:


    "In any event, I think that's really moot. The hero player does not have control of the hero's offensive abilities at the point in time that the skill's triggering condition is met."



    This seems to me to be the crux of your argument, but it doesn't seem to be based in fact. What is there in either card that says the hero doesn't get to activate his skills once the Overlord has completed his attack. There's a lot of stake being put behind the word "immediately" indicating that if anything at all happens in the microseconds between the overlord completing the attack and the hero spending fatigue, fatigue can't be spent. But to me that's the moot part, since there's absolutely nothing that indicates that the hero isn't allowed to spend fatigue just because the Overlord rolled dice instead of the player.



    It's not based on the card text; it's based on the FAQ.

    The overlord controls the hero for that attack, including the hero’s use of surges and power dice. The overlord may also play cards such as “Aim” with the attack. However, the overlord player cannot move the character, or force the hero to spend fatigue to add to the attack. The overlord may not force the character to use any orders. The hero retains control of any of her defensive options such as shields or Ghost Armor.

    Based on the bold parts above, the overlord controls the hero for the attack; the hero only controls defensive options. I don't see how Rapid Fire could be considered a defensive option, so that means the timing is important. And "immediately after the attack", the hero player does not have control; there's a point of discontinuity between the attack and the time after the attack.

    Also, do you mean spend fatigue to activate the skill, or spend fatigue to add dice to the attack, as I mentioned earlier in this thread?



    There's still enough ambiguity about this issue that just repeating the FAQ answer is not enough.  I mean, by that answer alone, the OL could make a reasonable case for being allowed to use Rapid Fire (can't spend fatigue to "add to attack" i.e. add power dice, but doesn't say anything about not being able to use skills or not being able to spend fatigue on skills/hero abilities.  Cases in point: Inner Fire skill, Laurel ability). There's never been anything defined for this issue or similar issues, and I just don't see how we can assume that Rapid Fire and similar skills are automatically off limits to one side or the other.

    I guess my basic complaint here is that both "yes" and "no" are just conjecture at this point.

  11. It's really all up to whether the second person on the Rapid Fire card refers to the Hero or the Hero Player.  "After making a ranged attack, you may..." doesn't definitively define it one way or the other (although the implication is that the reference is to the Player). The Dark Charm card is even less helpful, oscillating between "hero" and "hero player" between sentences.  However, if both cards treat the player and the hero as synonyms, then the answer is clear: Dark Charm can trigger Rapid Fire, since the hero ("you") "makes a [ranged] attack" (declared by the overlord).

    This kind of ambiguity is why we can't have nice things.

  12. Not sure if anyone else has seen them yet, but the preview heroes seem a bit off in terms of conquest values.  To review:

    Challara: 12 Wounds, 0 Armor, 3 CT, has familiar that does a WG breath attack once per area
    Brother Gherinn: 12 Wounds, 2 Armor, 3 CT, Can sacrifice 1 wound to Aim when attacking (before rolling)
    Lindel: 16 Wounds, 1 Armor, 5(!) CT, Can swap out one skill for a new random one of the same type once per area

    While CT values are still somewhat of a mystery (despite repeated attempts to reverse-engineer the formula with a spreadsheet), these values make little sense given the extant characters. Neither Gherinn nor Lindel have a precedent for their CT values, while Challara is basically just as strong/tough as Astarra only more expenise and slower (the familiar is a neat but tactically insignificant addition.  It doesn't add to her per-turn damage output or her survivability unless it's in a position to take out Skeletons and doesn't fail).

    I just don't see how Challara and Lindel are supposed to be anything more than a CT burden, while Gherinn is clearly in the top tier of CT 3 heroes in terms of survivability and damage output.  Anyone seeing something I'm missing?

  13. In certain situations, letting a monkey use a glyph robs the OL of a turn of monkeydom.  However, those situations can be avoided by just not dropping a transformation trap on a hero adjacent to a glyph.

    If we assume that non-explicit situations have to be resolved every time they come up, Monkeys can use glyphs in RtL.  If we assume that changes in the relevant rules do not cause an update to non-explicit situations (i.e. if we stick to the precedents), then Monkeys cannot use glyphs in RtL.  However, there is a precedent that we should ignore previous resolutions when rules get updated; specifically, terrain rule changes demanded a re-defining of how the crushing block trap interacts with terrain.

    Personally, I don't think there are enough treasure chests next to glyphs for it to matter, but that we might as well ask.

  14. mahkra said:


    It may well work the way you describe, Remy. I'm more disputing the reasoning in Corbon's post and your first post. The "natural usage" or "actual definition" of the words does not support the reading you both describe. At best, the sentence is ambiguous.

    As I've said before, though, I think it's more important to worry about what makes sense in-game than to pick apart words in rules that we all know are not very well-written. So if it really messes up the game balance to have a free week of training in this one case, then I'm definitely with you. I'm just not sure one reading really 'works' any better than the other in-game.


    Your argument is "that's not what opt means" (which is wrong, but whatever); additionally, you argue that you're not sure.


    Exactly what is your point here?

    Choose A or B.  Additional Options: C or D.  That is how it reads in English.  This is what opt means. Far too wordy and much worse than just listing the **** options, but whatever, it's still defined.

  15. you guys are describing only 10 different possible moves, with an additional 2 (sideways) whose legality is part of the question.  I think it would be easy to make two drawings:

    One showing all four 90-degree rotations

    One showing all four diagonals and the two long axis movements.

    A third drawing could show short axis movements and have a big x through it.  It would not be much larger than the current examples.


    Remy actually made a drawing for the Welcome Mat question, presumably using the Tilesystem utility.  I can't imagine why this case would be much harder.

  16. I feel the need to chime in.

    I was kind of a huge grammar nazi, until I started working with people in linguistics.  Turns out that English "correctness" is actually decided by consensus, just like Shnar says.  If enough people misspeak a certain phrase and then enough people misinterpret the error to not be an error at all, the phrasing simply becomes "also correct".  The originally correct phrasing may even fall out of use and therefore become archaic, even "incorrect".  This normally just applies to grammar, but, in certain cases, can come to affect word meanings as well.

    In this case, there's only one way to read the knight skill if you're using a logic-based parsing of the language, by which I mean parsing the language as it is used in mathematical definitions.  However, if you parse it as if it were colloquial language, there are at least two ways of reading the Knight skill "correctly", and the logic-based parsing way may not even be the most commonly held "correct" way for colloquial parsing.

    Essentially, there's a circular logic to how "correct" English is defined: if you can imagine saying that concept that way, then it's correct.  Antistone's use of the language is very rigid, hence his assertion that there's only one "correct" way to read it, but the reading that the second "may" is not a parallel clause to the first "may" is, in fact, "correct".

    This is because people are stupid.  This I have learned from linguistics professors and doctorate students.

    EDIT: By the way Antistone, I completely agree with you and argued for a clarification review of Knight based on the grounds that the only correct way to read the Knight skills is by making the may clauses parallel.  I agree with you deep down inside.  However, my linguistics coworkers disagree.  I cannot claim to know more languages than them.

  17. Designer just alerted me to one last update:

    Knockback now triggers after Wounds and is consistent with the "before the effects of armor" question (other effects -> after wounds) and the DR/Corrupted terrain question.

    Orc market/Prince thing now does multiples of 25

    Truthseer Kel nerfed: her ability doesn't work for the purposes of spawning.


    It'll go unannounced on the main page, but yeah, looks like someone is watching the forums, at least a little.

  • Create New...