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miles601

Talisman Solo

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Hello,

I'm sure this question comes up all the time.  I'm trying to decide my next gaming purchase.  I am a big fan of Runebound, DungeonQuest, and Arkham Horror.  In addition to being great to play in a group, I really value how easy they are to play solo for times when I have a few hours to game but no one around (Runebound isn't inherently meant as a solo game but I was able to find a nice online guide to adapt it easily into a solo game).  I have read the Talisman rule book, spent some time looking over the game, seems like a nice purchase.  I'm sure it will be great when my regular group gathers but what if any value does it have as a solo game?

Thanks!

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In my opinion, it has a low solo potential.  Most of the fun is in the interactions between characters, especially near the end.  I love the game, but think it would suffer without the backstabbing and tabletalk.  I do love playing where we just adventure around a lot, and this part could be done fine alone (I guess), though it kind of takes away from such game parts as the Toads, the Reaper, and many others.  Still, when the game was ready to wind up, I think it'd be anticlimactic without opponents.   

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Never tried this but I would imagine you could play it solo. You can even play  chess solo gui%C3%B1o.gif. It would probably resemble a very complex solitare. With my style of play - adventuring, it wouldn't be much of a difference. But for me the best part of the game is interaction with other players, if not characters. It's hilarious when everybody is cheering Str 1 Goblin you're just fighting happy.gif

In addition - it takes some time to actually set everything up, but that would be true for any board game.

On the positive side - huge stack of Adventure cards would make for great replayability even in solo games. So, if you like to just wander around, kill monsters and gather treasure it might work (I would just modify carrying limit which is four Objects by default).

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I've been able to play Talisman 2nd ed solo for a long time. If you make it character vs character & play to type it is achieveable. The major drawback is spell casting; offensive spell casting against other characters is almost non existant (which takes away some of the fun) & the Prophetess' special ability to see other characters spells is completely negated.

Otherwise, it's worth a try IMHO.

 

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 Thank you for the honest responses.  I think I'll give the game a try knowing that its not best sited to solo play.  I'm sure it'll still be a hit with group play!

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HI MIles... as old players of Talisman back to 2E, I have to agree others that it would be tricky to play solo without some major modifications... such as culling the spell deck to remove spells only usable against other players... I mean characters... sort of.  It has been replaced by Runebound recently in my circle, but we still play it as the shorter intermission game between sessions of Runebound, trying to get into Arkham, and other games.  It is light and entertianing... and its quick than most other games, if that's critical to you as an option in the range of games you want to play.

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Nice to hear about the relative quickness of the game.  Right now the 3 games in my rotation are DungeonQuest, Runebound, and Arkham Horror and they play in that order from shortest to longest.

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I ordered some card sleeves recently, and the idea of sitting there sleeving the main game + 4 expansions diddnt sound fun, so i set up a 5 character solo game with all the expansions included, and as each card is drawn, it gets sleeved !

Only problem is, I  have it on the living room floor, the whole thing, and its taking a bit longer than I was antisipating, and I still have a hell of a lot of cards unsleeved !!!

For the solo game itself, its kind of fun, spells might as well just be displayed face upwards, you just have to empathise what each character would do and play them as if you had no idea what other character might do. Its the first time I played the Highlands, and it does appear to be a great place to go in the early parts of the game, although even with 5 players, the simple existence of the extra boards has limited the player/player interactions.

I suppose in solo play thats not so important, but it has kind of reinforced my long held belief that multi-board play reduces the player/player sitiations and in turn reduces the very things that make this a great multi-player game. 

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Sleeving the cards for the entire game with expansions was tedious but I was able to do it in an evening.

As for solo play, I actually enjoy sometimes just playing solo with one character and seeing how the cards unfold and trying to get as powerful as I can before getting to the crown of the command. I've tried soloing with as many as four characters but it gets cumbersome trying to keep track of them all and who has what spells but it can be done.

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I do recall that when I sleeved my Arkham Horror's 691 small cards in one go, took about 3 hours. Talisman has more by now, but not that much more.

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Are there more people here, who play talisman solo?

I mean with one character..

Just curious about it.

 

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JCHendee said:

I have to agree others that it would be tricky to play solo without some major modifications... such as culling the spell deck to remove spells only usable against other players... I mean characters... sort of.

Why not just draw another card if you pick one up that can only be used against characters, or requires multiple characters? You don't need to hassle so much.

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I played few times alone for 4 chars. I am owning game from ~Dec2011. Wanted to play so much, wanted to test some ways. Interesting.

I remember my youth, there was no computers and internet. I had a lot of boardgames. some of them I made even myself. Especially liked my version of monopoly :) But if to go back to question: yes, I played mostly solo. Thats is nothing wrong to play against great brains like myself :)

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gedasm said:

I played few times alone for 4 chars. I am owning game from ~Dec2011. Wanted to play so much, wanted to test some ways. Interesting.

I remember my youth, there was no computers and internet. I had a lot of boardgames. some of them I made even myself. Especially liked my version of monopoly :) But if to go back to question: yes, I played mostly solo. Thats is nothing wrong to play against great brains like myself :)

So you play solo with 4 characters? That would be too much work for me.

I am already thinking if it is possible to use only one character...happy.gif

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I used to play 2nd edition solo with one character 25 years ago. :)

Then, it was quite enjoyable and I usually discarded every spell and events that interacts with other players.

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It's a lot of setup for one person and for me, the game is all about the interaction with other players. I couldn't fathom going to the trouble to try it solo and don't think you would get much out of it.

 

If you are looking for a better solo talisman experience, perhaps you should try the digital edition.  It has most of the glamour of the board game, with no setup time and an AI (or online players) to play against.

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You could try to play against the clock (number of turns) and once that time frame has expired start rolling as if someone was on the crown of command.  Start with 50 turns.

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Bathead, Doma did not mean NOT to post in the thread, he was just pointing out when it was started.

You however, totally misread what he was saying....

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The solo subject is an interesting one though and probably still of interest to many currently.  I am one of those that sadly does not have a regular Talisman group in my current area and have found DE an absolute godsend.

 

I do miss actally handling cards and drinkin da beer with friends though and I do occasionally try a solo game, especially when a new expansion is released so i can get to grips with the mechanics.

 

For my solo games I have created a sort of AI driven by the d6 which allows me to play with all cards available.  this does give your character an advantage in that I know which spells the AI PC's have and can plan accordingly but thats fine in the circumstances.  This is how I play it:

 

SETUP and CONCEPT

 

Characters are selected as normal but I will not choose more than 3 NPC's.  (Nothing to stop you choosing more than that but it can get mentally unweildy).  Instead of being questors for the Crown they are defenders of the crown with the prime objective of stopping you from succeeding for their own purposes.

 

Variation :  The NPC's are also after the crown but will not attempt to access the inner region until they have a STR or CRA equal to 12 (or 10 + d3)

 

AI MANAGMENT

 

Movement:    NPC's will always make the obvious beneficial choice for them (as if you were playing them and would do so)  If there is no obvious choice roll d6.  Evens clockwise, Odds anticlockwise.  If they can land on you they will do so if they have the stat advantage and encounter you to take a life.  If stats are equal then refer to the D6 AI roll (1-2 move to space away from you/ 3-4 move to your space but encounter space not you / 5-6 encounter you).  If their stats are lower they will only attempt to engage you on a roll of a 6 on a d6.  If the NPC has an appropriate special ability that would benefit them then they will choose to use it on you.

 

(EXAMPLE)

 

I am the Troll on the ruins with an ogre and the NPC Minstrel on the Tavern after rolling for his movement can choose to either encounter the Troll, Ruins space (and ogre) or the woods anti clockwise from tavern. If my troll wasn't a consideration it would be an easy decision as it would not be beneficial for the minstrel to land on the ruins and fight a Str 5 Ogre with Str 2 so the Minstrel would move to the woods.  However I roll a d6 to see if the minstrel has a go at the Troll and roll a 6 meaning that the minstrel thinks he's a hard case and attempts to take on Wayne Roon.. err the troll with his STR 6.  If the Troll would have a Str 8 or more then the STR 2 minstrel would not be able to win so I would not roll to see if the minstrel would encounter the Troll.

 

If the Troll had the Maiden as a follower then all of a sudden encountering the Troll becomes beneficial and the AI would take over and the Minstrel would encounter the Troll using his special ability to take the Maiden off him.

 

COMBAT ENCOUNTERS

 

If the NPC's have the option to land on a creature that can be fought then it is considered beneficial if the NPC has a Stat 2 points higher than the creature.  If the creature has a Stat 2 points higher then the NPC will seek to avoid.  Otherwise assume the AI D6 roll for direction of movement.

 

SPELL CASTING

 

NPC's will cast their spells when obvious to do so but only against you as they are directly attempting to thwart you.  If you are using the variant that they are also questing for the crown then randomly determine a target unless an obvious choice presents itself.  basically you have to step into the shoes of the NPC and make an honest decision about when to cast the spell.  If there is no obvious advantage to cast a spell then roll a d6.  On a 5-6 they cast the spell.  For spells that can be cast anytime (like Random)  roll to see if they cast the spell on you at the beginning of your turn or at the beginning of their turn if playing the questing npc's variant and randomly determine the target.

 

(EXAMPLE)

 

NPC has Hex spell.  At the start of their turn I roll a die to see if they cast it.  I roll a 5 and cast it choosing an appropriate space as if I was the NPC against my character.  It's now my turn and before I begin i roll to see if an NPC casts their Random spell on me.  I roll a 3 and carry on with my turn safe from the Random spell at least for now.

 

Thats it in a nutshell, basically play an honest game with an NPC and randomly determine non obvious decisions.  basic AI.

 

Fun as it is it doesnt replace the fun of other peaple and the outrageous backstabbin and skillful little moves you can chain together ( Evil Husband/Wife Partnerships excepted....*cough* Elliot*cough*

 

Cheers!

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