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AMBusam

'Curse of the Dark Pharaoh' not playing nicely with its bretheren.

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Hello all,

     I'm one of those guys who likes to have all the bells and whistles. In board games, that usually translates to having and using all expansions. In Arkham Horror, this has caused some problems. There's a significant amount of extra time required to resolve the Mythos Phase, and there are a number of 'minor' rules that come up every once and a while that I end up having to flip through a bunch of rulebooks to reference. However, the more games I play the less these things seem to bother me. I suppose it's just a 'natural' course of events. Getting used to 'unpleasantness', dontcha know.

But, there is one thing that has never sat well with me and that I don't have an elegant solution for. "The Curse of the Dark Pharaoh" doesn't mesh well with the others. I believe that this is due to the inclusion of the exhibit card type. In that expansion there are a number of cards that require players to have exhibit items in order to avoid a horrible effect. Unfortunately, there is no reliable way to get exhibit items. One has to hope that one draws a card that will allow him to gain some. Since all the cards from all the expansions are mixed together the chances of drawing 'Pharoah' cards are pretty diluted. One might wind up getting an exhibit item but never having to use it for a special purpose. Or one might get a rumor that requires exhibit items and never attain any. Chances of both getting an exhibit item and having it be useful via another card are slim to none.

That second situation is a real kick to the head. There is just nothing that any player can do about it whatsoever except hope you get a lucky draw in the next few turns. I could choose to make unique items and exhibit items interchangable, but there are cards that already have distinctions between the two categories. I could just opt to negate any card that has that effect, but, like I said, I'd rather find a way to use everything.

So, after that rambling, my questions to you are:

1. Have you encountered this situation?

2. Do you have any helpful suggestions as to how to alleviate this problem without omitting cards?

Thanks in advance,

AMBusam

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A common suggestion is, rather than shuffle all cards in the Mythos deck, to draw from a different expansion's deck every turn. This also makes Dunwich a little more livelier...

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AMBusam said:

I'm one of those guys who likes to have all the bells and whistles. In board games, that usually translates to having and using all expansions. In Arkham Horror, this has caused some problems. There's a significant amount of extra time required to resolve the Mythos Phase, and there are a number of 'minor' rules that come up every once and a while that I end up having to flip through a bunch of rulebooks to reference. However, the more games I play the less these things seem to bother me. I suppose it's just a 'natural' course of events. Getting used to 'unpleasantness', dontcha know.

Weird, I run AH+DH+DP+KiY+BG and haven't needed to dig out the rulebooks since I can't recall. I suppose with time you'll be needing them less and less. Or do what do, take them with you as bathroom reading partido_risa.gif.

AMBusam said:

But, there is one thing that has never sat well with me and that I don't have an elegant solution for. "The Curse of the Dark Pharaoh" doesn't mesh well with the others. I believe that this is due to the inclusion of the exhibit card type. In that expansion there are a number of cards that require players to have exhibit items in order to avoid a horrible effect. Unfortunately, there is no reliable way to get exhibit items. One has to hope that one draws a card that will allow him to gain some. Since all the cards from all the expansions are mixed together the chances of drawing 'Pharoah' cards are pretty diluted. One might wind up getting an exhibit item but never having to use it for a special purpose. Or one might get a rumor that requires exhibit items and never attain any. Chances of both getting an exhibit item and having it be useful via another card are slim to none.

Only one that I can really think of that requires an Exhibit item is "Cursed Relics" Mythos card. And for that, I'll happily discard Unique Items to pass (missions are great, ditto for some tomes). Then again, I'm a guy who loves "Clothing Drive" gran_risa.gif ! On average, with the combo I'm running I usually get a chance to draw 1 Exhibit item per game, sometimes 2-3. Even drawing so few Exhibit items, chances of getting Parchment of Elder Sign is actually better than they are while shopping at Curiostitie Shoppe (1 in 7 for Exhibit deck, 1 in 8 for Unique deck; and that's while drawing 3 from the UI at a time). Unless I have Dark Pharaoh herald in play, I usually grab an EI just for the hell of it.

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I generally have only one expansion in play at a time, as i like to have a theme running in my game.

But out of all of the Mini-Expansions I would have to rate Curse of the Pharoah the lowest, even though it was awesome when it came out.

I love the King in Yellow, extra uniques, Act Deck, awesome common items(bank deposit key, fantastic idea) , Herald, good fun :)

But I want to pose a question, Have you seen the Yellow Sign?

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The best fix I can think of is to give players a choice of either drawing a unique item or an exhibit when an encounter asks for drawing a unique item card. It's what I accidentally did when I started playing with the expansion (until I reread the CotDP rules).

It's also the approach taken in the Summer League scenario 9 which mixes all expansions (except for the latest DGotW).

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 In general I find it best to play with only one expansion at a time OR play with all expansions at once... and then just not worry if the cards play nasty. 

I have also played with the rule that you can attempt to "steal" an exhibit item from the historical society making a -2 sneak check.

Judd

 

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Thanks for the suggestions. I think I'll check out the summer scenarios and try their solution... it seems to make the least impact on overall gameplay while avoiding the kick-in-the-head.  

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We use the Exhibited Items deck the same way as Jhaelen does: allow investigators the choice of either drawing a unique item or an exhibit when an encounter asks for drawing a unique item card.  It's the least obtrusive approach to this dilemma and allows investigators (mine, in particular) to avoid stinky Exhibit Items.  Incidentally, I believe there is more than one CoDP Mythos card that checks investigators for Exhibit Items.  Not going to look now, because I want to be fresh for another day of living hell at work tomorrow.  I hate Mondays after a nice four-day weekend. 

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Actually at my place we decided to play big expansions together (arkham and dunwich) and sometimes add one small exapnsion with the temporary rules (temporary exhibit or temporary theater show) so the chances of getting the cards from those are bigger.

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Blehg.  Drawing exhibit items instead of uniques in normal encounters is broken.  Well...  I think it can lead to massive unbalancing of the game anyways— don't make those elder scrolls so easily accessible!  How about when you can draw a unique item you may roll a die and on a success draw an exhibit item instead.  That should keep it more appropriately dilluted, while still allowing you to draw *some* exhibit items.

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Or you could just make it a mandatory draw on a roll of one.  That actually might be more interesting, I think...  It'd still keep the exhibit items rare, but it wouldn't make them nearly unobtainable in case of cards like cursed relics.

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What's with the "Exhibit items for all" mentality? Exhibit sets up permanent status in Arkham and suddenly every tom, **** and harry has an exhibit item to offer? "Cursed Relics" is pretty much the only card that really needs EI (and even then I'm all for the "tough" interpretation of the card, but that's been covered on the old forums) and even for that, I'll happily dole out Unique Items.

 

*mumbles to himself: what a bunch of sissified w.... lengua.gif

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Tibs said:

Dam said:

 

"Cursed Relics" is pretty much the only card that really needs EI.

 

 

Don't forget everyone's favorite environment card, Clothing Drive!

Thing is, I truly like Clothing Drive, it's funny when you think about it and it actually makes the game harder, which I'm all for. Like I said on the old forums, if you're worried about CD, use Tsathoggua. For me, CD is way high on the cool-environment list (bottom of that list is "No One Can Help You Now").

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Tibs said:

Dam said:

 

"Cursed Relics" is pretty much the only card that really needs EI.

 

 

Don't forget everyone's favorite environment card, Clothing Drive!

Heh...  You know, the mummies do have +1 evadibility, it's actually pretty fun trying to dash through the streets while dodging them :'D

 

Also, re: exhibit sissification

::Shrug:: I don't think it would be *too* unfair to allow people to draw exhibit items on a roll of one instead of a unique item (when instructed to draw unique items outside of shopping scenarios).  That would make the exhibit deck slightly more used (and frankly, I'm annoyed how little it's seen these days with all expansions mixed together, so I'm considering adding this as a house rule) but still fairly rare and hence, not guaranteed salvation even against something like clothing drive or cursed relics.

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I have never played with all of the expantions at once because those that I play with do not want to because they think it will take to long.  Could anyone inform me as to how long a game like this lasts?  Our usual is about 3 to four hours with four to eight players with one board expantion.

 

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sertaff said:

I have never played with all of the expantions at once because those that I play with do not want to because they think it will take to long.  Could anyone inform me as to how long a game like this lasts?  Our usual is about 3 to four hours with four to eight players with one board expantion.

I'm not sure if it's possible to generalize the effect of mixing expansions on the time a game takes. I've had one game using four expansions that was over very fast because of an unlucky combination of mythos and encounter cards. After the first turn four gates were open and I didn't manage to close them fast enough to avoid awakening the AO because of too many open gates. Then I've had a game with just the basic set that seemed to drag on forever.

Using the King in Yellow herald can speed up gameplay if you opt to place the yellow signs on the doom track. But you'll not always want to do this. I think, if you're happy to let the game end with final combat, you can accelerate the game easier when using more expansions.

 

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sertaff said:

I have never played with all of the expantions at once because those that I play with do not want to because they think it will take to long.  Could anyone inform me as to how long a game like this lasts?  Our usual is about 3 to four hours with four to eight players with one board expantion.

 

As long as you keep up on maintaining the effects of all the boards (rifts, dunwich horror), it does not take much longer than the base game at all. A lot of the expansions serve to make the AO awaken faster, which would make the game shorter.

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