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Partizan2

Lurker at the Threshold house rules

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 I just finished a game with the Lurker herald, and I agree with most people here that this thing really is more of a guardian than a herald. I like the idea of the herald and the idea of the pacts, but in our games it just isn't dangerous. No one had any pacts until the end of the game, when clues become scarce. Then they trash their stamina/sanity, gain the power and seal.

So what house rules for this herald is everyone using? From what I read, I'm going to try these:

1. Elder signs don't prevent a reckoning card from being drawn. Draw one as if a gate had opened. (Maybe even 2 on an elder sign) 

2. Draw two corruption cards if you use power. (Someone mentioned this in a past post).

3. I have no idea if this would work, but maybe the idea that in a game with the Lurker, no clues start on the board and no clues appear during the Mythos. That might force people to draw pacts to get the power and then play with the consequences.

thoughts? 

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I haven't played enough with the Lurker yet to have a real opinion on how fix it (even if I totally agree he is more a Guardian than a Herald). I had an idea this idea buzzing through my mind: every player must keep x power tokens, where x is the number of pacts he has. I have tor ework it, and check whether this fixes the problem a little or not. Anyway, if you check the Fan creation section, there is a very good (prototype) version of a Herald (the All-in-one One-in-all, which remainds me of a notorious refrain in a Dead Can Dance song, but that's another story) made by Veet to be used in conjunction with the normal Herald. I don't know if you're intereseted in fan creations - in case apologies for my inadequate answer - but in case you do, it's a nice fix

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Partizan said:

 

 I just finished a game with the Lurker herald, and I agree with most people here that this thing really is more of a guardian than a herald. I like the idea of the herald and the idea of the pacts, but in our games it just isn't dangerous. No one had any pacts until the end of the game, when clues become scarce. Then they trash their stamina/sanity, gain the power and seal.

So what house rules for this herald is everyone using? From what I read, I'm going to try these:

1. Elder signs don't prevent a reckoning card from being drawn. Draw one as if a gate had opened. (Maybe even 2 on an elder sign) 

2. Draw two corruption cards if you use power. (Someone mentioned this in a past post).

3. I have no idea if this would work, but maybe the idea that in a game with the Lurker, no clues start on the board and no clues appear during the Mythos. That might force people to draw pacts to get the power and then play with the consequences.

thoughts? 

 

 

The problem with rule #1 is players can just horde their pact use for a quick simultaneous 4 seal victory and not even have to worry about this.  They can just seal two low or medium frequency gates early, and the likelihood of this happening is very low.  A partial solution to this?  Have monster surges cause double reckonings instead :'D

I like rule #2 (I don't remember if I suggested it earlier, or if I just said I liked it or what, but I definitely like it).

Rule #3 would be perfect incentive for early and frequent pact use.  The only problem is you still have the ability to use a pact the turn you want power for clues.  So the trick is to make it so that power can not be spent if any of an investigator's pacts are exhausted.  This forces players to hazaard high power holdings for at least one wave of reckonings.

Why not go make that into a Herald?

 

---

And as Julia said, Veet made a lovely little monster in the Fan Creations thread.

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Avi_dreader said:

Rule #3 would be perfect incentive for early and frequent pact use.  The only problem is you still have the ability to use a pact the turn you want power for clues.  So the trick is to make it so that power can not be spent if any of an investigator's pacts are exhausted.  This forces players to hazaard high power holdings for at least one wave of reckonings.

That's brilliant, Avi!

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I can't speak from having Lurker, but I have played a few games with it.  They were suitably crazy. 

My friends say the way they play now is that you cannot spend your power the turn you gain it.  Essentially, you have to risk a Reckoning if you want to accumulate a lot of power to seal a gate or whatever.  This at least can punish greedy accumulation, rather than just safely spending all of it the turn you get it.

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Since we have an appropriate thread, I guess it's time for me to post my most recent changes.

First off, after many games with the Lurker, I have come to conclude that the two main flaws are

  • Not enough reckonings get drawn (in short, lots of gain and not enough pain)
  • Spending power on the turn you gain it is just plain wrong.

I've tried lots of things (there's an earlier post of mine while back) and I think I'm finally happy with the following

  1. Except for the first gate of the game, draw a reckoning card for every gate that is shown on the mythos card. If the gate is blocked (elder sign or Kate), draw a second reckoning for that gate as well. 
  2. You cannot use power tokens to block a sanity and/or stamina loss from a dark reckoning.
  3. If an investigator exhausts a pact to gain power, immediately draw and resolve a reckoning card.
  4. When you gain a power token from a pact's ability (via exhausting or otherwise), the power token goes on that same pact.  The first time you gain a pact, all power you may already have goes on the pact just gained. If you gain power from a game effect and already have one or more pacts, you must place it on a pact you have.
  5. When you spend power, it follows the instructions for the pact it is on. 
  6. You cannot spend power if the pact it is on is exhausted.
  7. At start of battle, all blood and soul pacts are discarded. Any power on them is added to the Ancient One and must be removed during final combat (one success removes one power token).

Some thoughts on where they came from

  • #1 is solely designed to get more reckonings drawn.
  • #2 was added in order to make many of the reckonings more meaningful: otherwise, having a couple of pacts and power rendered them harmless since you could block the loss.
  • #3 was the most recent addition: the whole point here is to get reckoning cards to be drawn. The inspiration was the existing rule for drawing a reckoning card when you use the Lurker to pass a spell check. So why not have it happen when you intentionally gain power as well?
  • #5  keeps a single power token from being overpowered when you have multiple pacts. 
  • #4 and #6 together cover most cases where power was being used the turn it was gained and allows for an easy way to see what power an investigator can use when.
  • #7 seemed like a no brainer: why be allowed to use power against the AO?

As of my last game using these rule, the Lurker truly feels like a herald.  One where you can make a deal, but beware the consequences. For what it's worth, it also the first game where I lost to Lurker!

Last thought: I've made this into a herald; if there is interest I can post it somewhere.

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Julia said:

Avi_dreader said:

 

Rule #3 would be perfect incentive for early and frequent pact use.  The only problem is you still have the ability to use a pact the turn you want power for clues.  So the trick is to make it so that power can not be spent if any of an investigator's pacts are exhausted.  This forces players to hazaard high power holdings for at least one wave of reckonings.

 

 

That's brilliant, Avi!

I'm not sure if I came up with the no use while exhausted rule or someone else did, and since I can't remember who came up with the idea, I can't properly take credit for it without digging through the archives ;') and I'm too brilliant to not be lazy enough for that.

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ricedwlit said:


  1. Except for the first gate of the game, draw a reckoning card for every gate that is shown on the mythos card. If the gate is blocked (elder sign or Kate), draw a second reckoning for that gate as well. 
  2. You cannot use power tokens to block a sanity and/or stamina loss from a dark reckoning.
  3. If an investigator exhausts a pact to gain power, immediately draw and resolve a reckoning card.
  4. When you gain a power token from a pact's ability (via exhausting or otherwise), the power token goes on that same pact.  The first time you gain a pact, all power you may already have goes on the pact just gained. If you gain power from a game effect and already have one or more pacts, you must place it on a pact you have.
  5. When you spend power, it follows the instructions for the pact it is on. 
  6. You cannot spend power if the pact it is on is exhausted.
  7. At start of battle, all blood and soul pacts are discarded. Any power on them is added to the Ancient One and must be removed during final combat (one success removes one power token).

...

As of my last game using these rule, the Lurker truly feels like a herald.  One where you can make a deal, but beware the consequences. For what it's worth, it also the first game where I lost to Lurker!

Last thought: I've made this into a herald; if there is interest I can post it somewhere.

Yeah, definitely post it in the heralds section.

2 might be essential for keeping the pacts threatening (but not if make it so power can't be used when your pacts are exhausted, i.e. sometimes you can sacrifice them, sometimes you can't, and if you want to ensure being able to use them as a shield then you'd need to have them two or three turns in advance prior to spending for sealing...  and well...  with reckonings...  heh heh heh...)

3 is very strong.  I like it.  But it should be clear that the reckoning is resolved after the power is drawn (I presume it is, but the question is how immediate is immediate).

5 ruins the ability to spend pacts for cash, I don't particularly like it (since it effectively removes an aspect of the game).  Really I'm kind of uneasy about the 4/5/6 bit...  I'd find it agreeable if you combined my earlier suggestion about forbidding the spending of power if you have an exhausted pact with a clause saying that bound ally can spend power on other pacts as money (better to keep the clues tied to the other pacts).  I realize this is a bit more in the investigator's advantage, but I really don't like removing game parts, only adding them :') I like the idea of separating the power as clues to the two pacts though, and you'll see that with the combined method, you'd only be able to use your soul pact power or your blood pact power as clues in any given turn.  Adding to the threat of the reckonings of course :'D

7 final battle, not battle

 

 

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Avi_dreader said:


2 might be essential for keeping the pacts threatening (but not if make it so power can't be used when your pacts are exhausted, i.e. sometimes you can sacrifice them, sometimes you can't, and if you want to ensure being able to use them as a shield then you'd need to have them two or three turns in advance prior to spending for sealing... and well... with reckonings... heh heh heh...)

3 is very strong. I like it. But it should be clear that the reckoning is resolved after the power is drawn

5 ruins the ability to spend pacts for cash, I don't particularly like it (since it effectively removes an aspect of the game).

7 final battle, not battle


The point for 2 is just for blocking loss of sanity/stamina from reckonings, regardless of whether or not the pact is exhausted. After all, the Lurker granted you the power, you'd think he'd be able to make sure it wouldn't block his reckoning?

 


Yes, the reckoning comes after you get the power. To be honest, this one hasn't been "field tested" yet in that last game Patrice was involved, so people weren't taking out pacts in order to use power for clues.  However, they still lost happy.gif

Regarding the comment on #5: I knew I would forget something. Namely

  • You may exhaust a bound ally pact to move any number of power tokens from another pact (exhausted or not) to the bound ally pact.  You do not draw a reckoning card when you exhaust a bound ally pact.

Regarding 7: good catch.

Based on other feedback (if any) I'll see about getting the herald posted to the heralds section.

 

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ricedwlit said:

 

Avi_dreader said:


2 might be essential for keeping the pacts threatening (but not if make it so power can't be used when your pacts are exhausted, i.e. sometimes you can sacrifice them, sometimes you can't, and if you want to ensure being able to use them as a shield then you'd need to have them two or three turns in advance prior to spending for sealing... and well... with reckonings... heh heh heh...)

3 is very strong. I like it. But it should be clear that the reckoning is resolved after the power is drawn

5 ruins the ability to spend pacts for cash, I don't particularly like it (since it effectively removes an aspect of the game).

7 final battle, not battle


The point for 2 is just for blocking loss of sanity/stamina from reckonings, regardless of whether or not the pact is exhausted. After all, the Lurker granted you the power, you'd think he'd be able to make sure it wouldn't block his reckoning?

 


Yes, the reckoning comes after you get the power. To be honest, this one hasn't been "field tested" yet in that last game Patrice was involved, so people weren't taking out pacts in order to use power for clues.  However, they still lost happy.gif

Regarding the comment on #5: I knew I would forget something. Namely

  • You may exhaust a bound ally pact to move any number of power tokens from another pact (exhausted or not) to the bound ally pact.  You do not draw a reckoning card when you exhaust a bound ally pact.

Regarding 7: good catch.

Based on other feedback (if any) I'll see about getting the herald posted to the heralds section.

 

 

 

Hrm...  I'm not sure if I'm thrilled with the idea of being able to take away power from blood and soul to bound (I liked the idea of the power kind of being stuck where it was), but it's better than it was before ;'D

::Laughter:: a general rule, if you don't just playtest in your head, never playtest *anything* with Patrice (or any other game crushing monster that calls itself an investigator).

I think the Lurker is a whimsical being.  Sometimes he will let you block his reckonings, sometimes he won't ;') depends on which side of the bed his first tentacle got out of that morning.

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Avi_dreader said:

::Laughter:: a general rule, if you don't just playtest in your head, never playtest *anything* with Patrice (or any other game crushing monster that calls itself an investigator).

Agreed!  On the whole though it worked out well for once probably because I was apply a house rule to Patrice: like Mandy she can only use her ability once per turn; moreover when she shares clue, it's a package deal where she gifts a number of clues all at once and they must be used by the other investigator (e.g. for sealing a gate, adding die roll to skill check, etc) - they cannot be banked.

 

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ricedwlit said:

Avi_dreader said:

 

::Laughter:: a general rule, if you don't just playtest in your head, never playtest *anything* with Patrice (or any other game crushing monster that calls itself an investigator).

 

 

Agreed!  On the whole though it worked out well for once probably because I was apply a house rule to Patrice: like Mandy she can only use her ability once per turn; moreover when she shares clue, it's a package deal where she gifts a number of clues all at once and they must be used by the other investigator (e.g. for sealing a gate, adding die roll to skill check, etc) - they cannot be banked.

 

Heh...  Considering that I almost entirely use Patrice's clues for sealing gifts (and haven't yet lost a game with her in it), that's still completely overpowered.

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Avi_dreader said:

Heh...  Considering that I almost entirely use Patrice's clues for sealing gifts (and haven't yet lost a game with her in it), that's still completely overpowered.

If a gate and a rift get married, do they have baby gifts?

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Avi_dreader said:

 

 

Heh...  Considering that I almost entirely use Patrice's clues for sealing gifts (and haven't yet lost a game with her in it), that's still completely overpowered.

Yeah, she's still too much a star.  But one has to start somewhere.  Next up will likely be restricting here to sharing clues when in same neighborhood (or even Location which would make gifting to close gates a real hurdle).

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 I only let her share clues for the purpose of making skill checks.  If you want to spend clues to seal a gate, you can't use clues that you get from Patrice.

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avec said:

Avi_dreader said:

 

Heh...  Considering that I almost entirely use Patrice's clues for sealing gifts (and haven't yet lost a game with her in it), that's still completely overpowered.

 

 

If a gate and a rift get married, do they have baby gifts?

 

It's not pretty...rifts grab on to a gate's face Alien-style, and then there's a gift burst

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avec said:

Avi_dreader said:

 

Heh...  Considering that I almost entirely use Patrice's clues for sealing gifts (and haven't yet lost a game with her in it), that's still completely overpowered.

 

 

If a gate and a rift get married, do they have baby gifts?

I believe they're called grifts ;')  

...

?

Okay sorry, I really ought to be put down for that one.

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flamethrower49 said:

It's still better than what happens when Kate Winthrop is on a location with an Elder Sign token that has a gate burst.  Or, Kate-Burst!

I believe Kate-Bursting is what Kate does to Gate Bursts :')

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Avi_dreader said:

 

Heh...  Considering that I almost entirely use Patrice's clues for sealing gifts (and haven't yet lost a game with her in it), that's still completely overpowered.

I've lost a game with Patrice in it once. But it was due to a bunch of monster surges in innsmouth filled the DOR track by turn 4. One or two more turns and she would have been instrumental in preventing that.

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Veet said:

Avi_dreader said:

 

 

Heh...  Considering that I almost entirely use Patrice's clues for sealing gifts (and haven't yet lost a game with her in it), that's still completely overpowered.

 

 

I've lost a game with Patrice in it once. But it was due to a bunch of monster surges in innsmouth filled the DOR track by turn 4. One or two more turns and she would have been instrumental in preventing that.

Yeah...  I can see how that might be a problem.  Let me guess, the surges were in Devil's Reef?

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 Okay, talk of Kate Bursts, Daisy-Dukes, and Gifts aside: the herald based on my suggestions has been posted to the herald thread.

Pretty much all the things are as noted earlier, with one change: I dropped the extra drawing of a Reckoning when a gate is blocked and just stated "Draw and resolve a Reckoning card whenever a gate opens, is shown on a Mythos card, or is blocked from opening.".  Strictly speaking, if a gate is blocked from opening during a mythos phase you could interpret this to mean "draw two reckonings cards for that single gate".  I'll leave it up to it up to personal preference.

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Avi_dreader said:

 

Yeah...  I can see how that might be a problem.  Let me guess, the surges were in Devil's Reef?

One in Devils Reef another in Marsh Refinery. The Marsh Refinery one spit out a couple fast monsters.

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Oh, another useful variation against the Lurker... Require eight seals for a victory (this negates a bit of the clue token advantage and makes the herald much more obviously detrimental, especially when coupled with the no expenditures when pacts are exhausted house rule and the no prevention of reckoning damage with pacts rule). I think just that and it would actually be balanced, and will feel like a herald (at last).

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