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Laenir

RtL campaign (first edition exp) vs 2nd edition Campaign

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I wanted to hear some opinions/random ideas regarding the campaign design of both games, what do you guys think are the pros and the cons of the two and what would you change for the better, knowing that the two games are different "genres" at their core.

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Hi Laenir...I can't speak to the campaign play as I've only done a bit of that with 2nd Edition...but I've spent heaps of time with 1st Edition doing single scenario plays across all expansion (and the 1st Ed Quest Compendium book). To me they're two very different game designs that scratch different itches.

Personally, my favourite game is always going to be Descent 1st Ed. It was the first modern boardgame I ever bought (along with Quest for the Dragonlords but we can skip past that... :), so there's absolutely a nostalgia element to it that colours my thinking as it's the game that introduced me to modern boardgaming. But setting that aside, I find 1st Edition a much more narrative experience...all the flavour text to reveal each time the heroes enter a new room. To me it's so much more immersive. But, it's huge and long.

2nd Edition succeeds brilliantly at streamlining the experience and I've been able to introduce more people to Descent as a result of the 2nd Edition (including my kids who love it). It's fast, snappy, full of action and beautiful to look at (as with the original). So I think it does what it set out to do perfectly.

To me, if you want a truly immersive unfolding narrative experience I'd go for 1st Edition.

If you want quick, streamlined play with some narrative elements but an emphasis on tactics and strategy and action, I think 2nd Ed nails this.

Anyway, those are my thoughts. Others agree, disagree or see it differently?

 

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I think 1st ed base game did not capture the narrative experience. Every quest was a complete restart from scratch, despite the story that tied them all together acting like there was continuity  from one quest to the next. The Road to Legend expansion for 1st ed however did create that epic narrative experience. It also made the game epically long to finish (60 hours-ish in my opinion).

All of the things 1st ed got wrong can be summed up as "it took too much time".

Edited by Proto Persona

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Thank you for your time and for the replies. I asked because me and my gaming group are in a period of crysis.

We’ve been playing IA a lot and we own all the expansions and after 6 months of intense battles and smart tactics, we just need a break from our beloved Star Wars universe. We decided to dive into the fantasy world again. 

So I purchased Descent 2e (We played Descent 1e back at the time) and when I presented it to my group, me being enthusiastic about the pretty art style and the new game in general... They crushed me with negative reviews.

The main problems they brought up were:

Unbalanced scenarios (Rise of Urthko with him having 40 health was the moment of the outbreak)

Weak heroes in general (We all are experienced players and I was the Overlord but I’ll admit it felt too easy to crush them)

Not feeling like a true dungeon crawler like the first one

Pretending to give a small rpg feeling with features like road events and world map but failing miserably, especially if confronted with the RtL 1e expansion

 

 

While one could say some of these critiques are just the way which ffg approached the new edition with and they were also advertised as the areas where the two editions would differ the most, I wrote this wall of text just to contestualize my group’s situation and to know if any of the 2e players have found a way to give more 1e vibes to the much prettier and clearer 2e, either with house rules or complete overhauls.

 

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