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IronRavenstorm

I'm on the fence

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I'm not sure if this game is going to be worth my investment.  I read everything about the game that FFG has put out, but I feel sacred to buy it.  I just don't want to buy a dud game.  So, for those who end up buying it could you please let me know what you think?  Thanks

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 It's been a hit with my group after 2 plays, though our first play I messed up and set up the facility wrong (8 cards per floor instead of the listed 6, which made things quite difficult). It has kind of shares elements with DungeonQuest, where you're trying to get in and get as many Data File tokens as you can and get out before the Proximity meter reaches 99, which can happen very fast.

It is a bit on the random side, and a lot of things can happen that you won't be able to do anything about, like if you get wounded and there isn't any room where can heal, or two rooms in a row where entering causes you to be delayed. That's kind of a pain. And I think it might be nice if there were more item cards, because there seems to be a very low number.

That aside, I'm very satisfied. I think it's worth the $35. 

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SnowcatAssassin is in my group, so I can relate to the experiences. I really liked how this turned out and it was a refreshing take on what Dungeon Quest does similar, though certainly not the same. There's a lot of risk and consideration as you play this game. As you gain those lovely data files, nobody knows, not even yourself, the value of those tokens until the end. So, you're left wondering as you play whether you should stop and try to get out, or move on and risk even greater reward, despite a tracker in the game ticking up, which threatens to end the game should it reach its max value.

There's other things you can do to lay traps for other players, manipulate locations, NPC's that you find which can cause bad things to happen of various circumstances. It's a fun little game and definitely see myself playing it more.

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I guess the thought I've had is what does it bring to the table that Dungeonquest does not? If you've played Dungeonquest, why would you prefer one over the other? If I do buy this, the greatest prospect is my investment in a game that will hopefully grow with more card expansions like Rune Age is finally and thankfully doing now.

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 A good pace I think. The proximity meter keeps things moving fast and is constantly making you think about your strategy. Do I push and try to get more Data File tokens in the hope there's a fast way out of here, or do I just try to escape with what I can get in the hope that I scored enough. Near as I can tell, you don't know what you scored with the DF tokens until the end of the came (the wording of the rules to me seems that you don't reveal their score until the very end of the game). So it's an interesting gamble. And it can be played start to finish in 45 minutes.

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Page # 10 in the rulebook under the heading, 'Open and Hidden Information' states, " A players collected DF tokens are also kept hidden from other player, but he may look at his own collected DF tokens at any time".

So you know what you have but not what the other players have.

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Tromdial said:

I guess the thought I've had is what does it bring to the table that Dungeonquest does not? If you've played Dungeonquest, why would you prefer one over the other? If I do buy this, the greatest prospect is my investment in a game that will hopefully grow with more card expansions like Rune Age is finally and thankfully doing now.

Happy birthday Tromdial!

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I'll admit, I haven't played Rune Age, so I can't make a comparison there, but I definitely do enjoy the game. It plays fast, pretty easy set up, and the bulk of the rules are pretty easy to learn/teach (I had my friends up to date on how to play the game in about the 5 minutes it took to unbox the thing from the store). The proximity/alarm system definitely keeps you on your toes; alot of those cards just suddenly raise the alarm level by quite a bit, and there isn't much the players can do to lower that value (and thus, the end of the game is fast approaching). The big problem I see is its generally really hard to get to the second floor before the timer runs out. Obviously that could just be a personal strategy issue, but in three games, the furthest we ever got was to the second room on the upper level.

 

It would be interesting to see if there are any expansion plans in mind for the game, it certainly could be made quite interesting with more rooms/items.

Also of note, all items are unique. Some do roughly the same thing, but they all have different artwork. Same goes for rooms, no repeats. I will say the actual amount of sources of item cards is quite limited; it would be nice if there was some guaranteed way to get an item card.

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Worth the investment for us. We got it this weekend and had a blast with it. $35 bucks is reasonable. We could of easily spent more just going to a movie or getting something to eat somewhere. 

I love the universe it is set in and the game has a good pace. Easy to learn and easy to show others how to play. There are ways to slow down your opponents and that proximity meter will keep you thinking, should I get out now or get one more download! The rule book gives some additional rule variations ideas that you can use to keep the game fresh. I am encouraged to think up some cool house rules that might be fun as well. Like building the facility in different ways to throw people off.

On our first couple games we found that by the time your fairly deep into the facility it is really hard to get out unless you have an item or you get lucky and have a room card that has an interface allowing you to escape. It is fun to see who can actually get out. The hidden room is a neat idea. Hope they expand on this in the future. This will be one of our favorites for awhile.

Lastly, we were enamored by the high quality components and artwork. All the item cards and room cards look great. Everything is top quality.

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 Buddy of mine and I went to the FFGEC and played a couple rounds in a couple hours, including time to teach ourselves the game. We both really liked it, but I had a couple of issues.

1) Building is too big / counter goes too fast. In both games, we never saw most of the second floor due to trying to escape "in time." I'd like to see stats on how many games get to see the whole building.

2) no good way to gain new items. You get four to start, and once those are gone, we never found a way to get more. Granted, we only played two games, but…

All in all, I think it's going to get more than few more plays, and since we found out that interfacing with a room does not *necessarily* remove the interface token, there's going to be more to think about there. Also- I really liked not knowing what was on my DF chits until endgame. I think I may houserule that into permanency. 

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The big thing for seeing the entire building is a combination of getting lucky on the proximity rolls, somehow keeping the alarm tracker down (a few items reduce it), the use of movement enhancing items, and realizing that breaking tech locks/lab workers is a bit of a waste on the first floor, and you might be better served saving that for the upper floors.

There are multiple ways of escaping without going all the way back to the front enterence too, so its a matter on getting lucky with those rooms (both floors both have a room that is a straight up "exit the building from here," the blackmail file allows for a direct exit (at the cost of DF tokens), and if you get really lucky, the halo conference room -> secret room -> research admin room will allow for a quick move from second to first floor). The big thing is this is all a matter of what rooms appear.

As far as items, I'll agree, there are too few sources, but I don't think the intent is to allow players to cycle through those cards (i.e. they'll generally only be seen once per game, maybe twice since a few cards pull from the discard deck). Most of the time its from a room that allows you to draw two items and discard the interface token.

Honestly, I'm not sure what constantly removes the interface token outside of the interface option itself (not all of them pull the token off). I think some of the NPCs do that though, particularly the one from the showroom.

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 From what I can tell, as was pointed out while we were playing, is that if the interface function doesn't specifically say "Remove this room's interface token", that interface token stays, which means that the room's interface function is repeatable.

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Julia said:

Tromdial said:

 

I guess the thought I've had is what does it bring to the table that Dungeonquest does not? If you've played Dungeonquest, why would you prefer one over the other? If I do buy this, the greatest prospect is my investment in a game that will hopefully grow with more card expansions like Rune Age is finally and thankfully doing now.

 

 

Happy birthday Tromdial!

rofl. It was not my bday that day. I saw that myself and checked my profile's bday and it is still 11/19, so I have no idea why the bday icon came up.

Thanks anyhow gran_risa.gif

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TheMadjai said:

 

 Also- I really liked not knowing what was on my DF chits until endgame. I think I may houserule that into permanency. 

 

Indeed, it seems very thematic and kinda realistic. On a nostalgic bent, I've been playing Shadowrun on the Sega Genesis and the price of data you steal from decking runs is entirely down to the databroker- ie, pretty random. There's no guarantee that those confidential files or corporate details you've "liberated" are meaningful to anyone or just a load of dreck.

Such is the life of a data thief!

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I sat in front of the confirmation for a while in last minute debate with myself.

But, I pressed confirm soon after.  Reading what other people have said about the game gave me that final nudge I guess.


And I couldn't wait for Tom Vasel gran_risa.gif

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Tromdial said:

rofl. It was not my bday that day. I saw that myself and checked my profile's bday and it is still 11/19, so I have no idea why the bday icon came up.

Thanks anyhow gran_risa.gif

That's interesting. The very same thing happened with Jgt's non-birthday on the Arham forum ::laughter::

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Thanks for your opinions about the game, but it sounds too great.  Did anyone have any problems with rules or anything?  I think that I might get the game, but I still want to know the bad with the good.

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IronRavenstorm said:

 

Thanks for your opinions about the game, but it sounds too great.  Did anyone have any problems with rules or anything?  I think that I might get the game, but I still want to know the bad with the good.

 

 

 

The Good:

 

  • Plays quickly, and supports up to six. Great opener before a larger time investment (or supports multiple plays in one night). 
  • Rules are *really* simple. So long as you're the starting player, all you really need to explain beforehand are the first two phases (choose an card in secret, place it on the table and then revel that card in turn order). Room set-up, and the last two phases (NPC and the timer) can be explained in play. If your group has ever played a simultaneous role selection game before (like Race for the Galaxy) even this will be a snap. 
  • Decent amount of variety (stemming from both the randomly distributed rooms and items).
  • Can get tense towards the end if people allow for that (the timer really gets moving; you wouldn't believe how fast it gets to 99, especially with Officer Nelson, the NPC who raises the alarm levels every round, in play). 
  • It's one of a rare breed of games that allows players to "piggy back" off the anticipated actions of the other players. Many games offer direct conflict potential (and this does as well, through room interface actions and item cards), but it feels so much better to get a boon from guessing what your buddy is about to do (a boon which, incidentally, might hurt him -- e.g. your buddy breaks a tech lock and you steal the DFs out from under her nose, a play that might have wasted your turn if you had guessed her actions wrong). 
  • The theme, if that's your thing. Cyberpunk isn't a genre seen too often, these days. 

The Bad:

  • The DF token set-up (though they only need to be in a pile by the side of the table, they also need to be face down, which is the only fiddly part of the set-up). 

Humm.. That's the only objective "bad" I can think off. The rest of these complaints will be highly subjective (just a warning).

 

The Bad, according to me:

  • Not enough room tiles or item cards: With 32 room cards and 37 items, it's definitely adequate. However, since every player gets 4 items at the start, you can already guess that the novelty factor of seeing new items will go away quickly. After your third full table game, you'll have seen them all. On the plus side, this is FFG and expansions seem to make them happy, provided it strikes them as financially feasible. Also, it's arguable whether more items would either A) work (how many permutations of those item effects can you have?) or B) be worth diluting the items already present (no cards show up twice, to my knowledge). As to room tiles, 32 sounds like a lot until you realize they are broken into three groupings -- one of which contains only three cards. I'm a "more the merrier" kinda guy, and I'll be happy if an expansion every appears on the horizon.
  • Some cards and card effects are ambiguous. Errata will correct for this, but that'll be a few months away I imagine (see my Remote Drone thread).
  •  This game could have been deeper. It's screaming for variable player powers, but -- as it stands -- there is nothing that really differentiates the operatives from each other. Most here were probably hoping it would have been a meatier affair. As it stands, the game can be called shallow, but its a shallowness with interesting player interactions.
  • Only 5 NPCs in the box? (see first point).
  • Wounding is a necessary mechanic, but I'm not 100% sure it's implemented well. 
  • Doesn't play well with only 2 players playing 1 characters a piece. It can be played, but it felt like multiplayer solitare in my one attempt at it. Still fun, but I can see why this is one that gets better with a larger table ('course, this criticism depends on how much player on player friction you want at the table). 

 

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My gaming group and I played this game for the first time this weekend.  It's ******* AWESOME!

The thing that really makes this game work is the way it randomly determines how much progress the cops make in closing in on the facility.  It adds a real sense of tension, making everyone wonder if they can get out with the goods before getting arrested.  I felt like I was participating in the movie "Family Business."  We all ended up getting arrested too - I was 1 space way from escaping when the 2 people before my turn rolled 6's to determine how fast the cops moved!

The game play is very easy to understand.  After taking a turn or 2 you will know everything you need to know.  It is also a relatively fast game, playing in under an hour - so it is a great game to pull out if you are waiting for that 1 person who is always late to your D&D game.

 

Eric

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