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eldersilverdragon

More than 4 heros per quest?

17 posts in this topic

So I picked the Descent 2nd edition main game up a couple weeks ago and so far I have only played a couple times with my brothers and things went well and we had a lot of fun. I was talking with a group of people who I play D&D with and they were interested in playing, but the problem is that there is 6 and sometimes 7 of us in this group. My question for you all is this:

 

Is it feasible to play the game with 5 or 6 heros, even if it is not one of the included quests has anyone done this with their group and did it work out or were the heros just way to overpowered? 

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The game is not designed to support that many heroes: monster groups are insufficiently large, map sizes are too small, heroes will have too many options and abilities to synergize with, etc. etc.

 

If you have that many players, you are best off playing a different game, sorry.

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Indeed, considering how often this question came up in D1E, I was a bit surprised they didn't bump the game to 6 players (5 heroes) in D2E. It seems like this game is perpetually unable to seat one person at everyone's table. (Sometimes 2, as in your case.)

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enabling more than 4 heroes would be difficult i think. the board would need to be bigger, which would change alot of the balance of the game. The way the overlord deck works would need to be revamped, including the ability of the cards.

 

To keep balance with a smaller group of players would also be even more difficult than it is currently, so i can sort of see why ffg would stick to 5 players.

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What if i purchased a second box so i had twice as many pieces? This way i would have more monsters and i could just go the custom quest route and compensate for the extra hero(s). And i would also have the extra board pieces to make the larger maps. Just a thought. It would get rather expensive though to do this with each expansion. Meh i may just save it for when one of the people in the group doesnt show so we will have something to do.
Subt1e likes this

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A big problem comes when it comes down to hallways (being 2 spaces wide). Its bad enough as it is when its a 4 hero game and the overlord is using blocking tactics. I hate to think it would be like in a 5 or 6 hero game.

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And i would also have the extra board pieces to make the larger maps. Just a thought. It would get rather expensive though to do this with each expansion.

 

Even if you played two sepatate games in the same time, you'd have to buy this twice.

You can always play two games consecutively, but the other half (maybe 2 people in your case) would have to watch or do something else. But it could be a good chance for competition, two groups playing agains the same overlord. They could compare which hero group is better in their campaign.

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What if i purchased a second box so i had twice as many pieces? This way i would have more monsters and i could just go the custom quest route and compensate for the extra hero(s).


If you're going to go the custom quest route, you can probably make homebrew quests suited to 5+ heroes with just one copy of the game.

It's true that the quests that come with the game have smallish maps, but they don't all use all the tiles. You can make custom maps that use more of the tiles at once and are therefore bigger.

It's true that more monsters would be needed to face more heroes, but you can add larger numbers of fixed/open groups to your custom quest to allow more enemy forces on the board at once.

The limitations preventing more than 4 heroes are mostly in that the quests FFG wrote were not designed to support more than four. It's not that the number of components in the box limit you, just the number of components that are used at once in any given (official) quest are limited. Unfortunately, writing new quests is also probably the hardest and most time consuming single thing to do when trying to add to this game yourself. Especially if your regular gaming group is also the only set of people you have to play-test with.


I also read an interesting variant idea (haven't tried it yet myself) about when playing with 5 heroes, make tan monsters use Master stats and red monsters use Minion stats. Could cause problems with Undying/Split and figure limitations, but other than that I think it sounds like an interesting way to beef up the monster groups individually.

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I just found a good solution for 6 players. If you have a lieutenant pack, the last player can play with overlord as the lieutenant. So the grey figure is his and it brings new feeling to overlord game. He is not alone against the heroes.

Steve-O likes this

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Could you just increase the monsters health based on how many additional players there are? I haven't played this one yet but we played the first edition and amped up the monsters health a bit and that had good balance. I would love to be able to play with 5-6 heroes, but I' m not sure how that will work with the second edition....

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In group we usually have two people share the overlord role, it works really well for several reasons, the overlord gets that team feeling and have someone to discuss strats with, like the heroes do.

Also, since we always play on the same day each week we can still play if only one of the overlords can make it that week

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I'm genuinely concerned about the time the game would take with more than 4 heroes involved. To me Descent is appealing as a game as the quests/encounters are not designed to take your whole session's time. Think that you probably need to run this as a campaign and you want this campaign to progress. Our personal ratio is 2 encounters per session with 4 players and 2.5/3 encounters with 3 players. We play with Rumor quests and I "hope" to be done with the Shadow Rune campaign with minimal time investment so we can start with the SoN one. The two playgroups started at the same time and I can see half through the campaign that the game progresses way too slow with the 4 heroes group, and it's not because the 3-heroes group doesn't spend time deciding about things.

 

Games are better when they keep flowing imho, only a handful of very long games are able to maintain the tension at an enjoyable level but they are still a heavy investment. I'm concerned that Descent would get pretty slow due to the sheer amount of decisions taken by 5+ heroes. The amount of possible communication channels increases exponentially the more you add players to the game. As a OL, not being directly involved in the decision making of my heroes, I find it already boring-ish at times when it takes 10+ minutes for them to deliberate on any situation. But that's one man's opinion. One thing you should probably never try doing though is splitting the OL's job in two, it will make the game very slow and boring for the two of you. I really do not recommend that. 

Edited by Indalecio

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I don't think this game can work with more than 4 heroes, even if you wedge in some extra monsters or something.

 

However I VERY much agree that 2 players can play the overlord, I've done this with a friend who came over for one session. He basically just played along with me and it was incredibly fun. It's actually really nice because, as was mentioned above me, the 2 players can discuss strategy and that really gives you a more calm and precise approach. On top of that, it taught the 6th player the game without having to start a new campaign or run through a demo; he had figured it out by the end of that quest. It also gives the game a feel of team vs team which can be cool if you are well-acquainted with your gaming group.

 

2 as overlord and 4 as heroes is I think the furthest you could go without drawing out the turn length to long or heavily editing the rules.

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If anyone's played Space Hulk, you can use that game as a good example of how you might expand this game to accomodate 5-6 heroes. If I were designing a scenario to be used with that many people, I would do something like this: Split the heroes into two groups of three, or two and three, or whatever. Each group has its own starting location, and outside of the starting location is an adventure/monsters that are tuned to 2/3 people. Each group has an objective to complete in its area, and once it does, it can move on to a central area (one or more of the very large tiles) which has challenges that are more in line with 5-6 players. Afterwards, there can be a single final objective or exit, or there can be two again (which gives the heroes a change to rearrange their teams.)

 

You can scale things up in one of two ways. If you've got the models or don't mind proxying, you could simply continue the normal progression - so that shadow dragons would have two masters with 5 players, two masters and a minion with 6. Or, you could max monster groups out at the 4-player levels, but allow more monster groups than normal. This would be harder to balance without playtesting, I think, because there's no set idea of how many monsters at a time is an appropriate challenge... plus, more monsters get in each other's way, even in the biggest rooms, so there's diminishing returns.

 

I have no idea if you could build a board like this, even with all the expansions, but it would be really cool to make an "octopus" 8-player board, where every hero had his own path to start out, but after facing a minor challenge the path would merge with another hero's, then the groups of 2 would merge, and finally all eight heroes would be fighting for the exit.

 

Possibly against eight lieutenants :-)

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