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Ebonrook

All Expansions. Too Much To Keep Track Of?

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 So I don't even have all of the expansions yet myself, just Pharaoh to Black Goat. Yet I found earlier on when I was playing today that I was some times forgetting silly things. Like the Rifts in Kingsport, or to put clues on Ongoing Mythos cards, or keeping check on my Upkeep rolls (Curses or Bank Loans).

Do you guys find that sometimes you forget things? What do you do when you do? Does it really spoil the game or do you just carry on? I won't lie, I did get very upset with myself for messing up steps…

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Ebonrook said:

 

I won't lie, I did get very upset with myself for messing up steps…

 

 

 

Pppphhhht, I wouldn't worry about it!

I'm pretty well versed too, and even WITHOUT any expansion boards, here are some of my group's fairly regular errors:

- Forget to apply Environment modifiers
- Forget to roll for curse, blessing, or bank loan, and forget to roll or take money for retainer
- Forget that I even HAVE a curse/blessing
- Fail to move some monsters when they should move
- Forget to refresh items

- Forget to pass the First Player marker for several turns
- Lose track of which pile of clue tokens is mine and which one belongs to the player next to me
- Lose track of which pile of clue tokens is mine and which one is the supply
- Forget to apply the Ancient One's worshipper ability or even main ability
- Accidentally not add doom token when gate opens
- Miscount how many monsters should appear from monster surge
- Fail to count monsters in the sky when determining a monster surge
- Miscount the monster limit, outskirts limit and gate limit
- Miss out an investigator's encounter
- Lose track of the turn order entirely, and basically do two turns in a row without a Mythos phase in the middle
- Take 'seal' from the supply when using Elder Sign, instead of removing doom token
- Use investigator special ability from investigator that was used in previous game not in this game
- Move someone else's investigator instead of your own, then not notice the error until several encounters have been done wrong
- Knock items or trophies off the table and forget they existed until several days later

And of course anything like the Rift tracks or Rumor tokens or the Dunwich Horror's movement ability has NO chance of being remembered. I cannot stress this enough: ME AND MY FRIENDS ARE IDIOTS.

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thecorinthian said:

Ebonrook said:

 

I won't lie, I did get very upset with myself for messing up steps…

 

 

 

Pppphhhht, I wouldn't worry about it!

I'm pretty well versed too, and even WITHOUT any expansion boards, here are some of my group's fairly regular errors:

- Forget to apply Environment modifiers
- Forget to roll for curse, blessing, or bank loan, and forget to roll or take money for retainer
- Forget that I even HAVE a curse/blessing
- Fail to move some monsters when they should move
- Forget to refresh items

- Forget to pass the First Player marker for several turns
- Lose track of which pile of clue tokens is mine and which one belongs to the player next to me
- Lose track of which pile of clue tokens is mine and which one is the supply
- Forget to apply the Ancient One's worshipper ability or even main ability
- Accidentally not add doom token when gate opens
- Miscount how many monsters should appear from monster surge
- Fail to count monsters in the sky when determining a monster surge
- Miscount the monster limit, outskirts limit and gate limit
- Miss out an investigator's encounter
- Lose track of the turn order entirely, and basically do two turns in a row without a Mythos phase in the middle
- Take 'seal' from the supply when using Elder Sign, instead of removing doom token
- Use investigator special ability from investigator that was used in previous game not in this game
- Move someone else's investigator instead of your own, then not notice the error until several encounters have been done wrong
- Knock items or trophies off the table and forget they existed until several days later

And of course anything like the Rift tracks or Rumor tokens or the Dunwich Horror's movement ability has NO chance of being remembered. I cannot stress this enough: ME AND MY FRIENDS ARE IDIOTS.

Well you have cheered me a little to know I'm not the only person doing this. My wife tried to tell me that it's only a game and it should be fun, to which I agree, but it's not her I'm worried about looking daft to, it's incase I ever want to play at the local game store and mess up big time. Especially considering one of the staff there is my friend who knows I play the game regularly and enjoy the who Lovecraft Mythos. I wouldn't want to look dumb to them. Dunno why, really, I just worry about this nonsense. 

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I played with all the big box expansions for the first time today and I must say it went surprisingly smooth.

But as the rest of you I do forget things from time to time. If it is easy to correct (like forgetting to put doom tokens on the track) I adjust it right away (I usually count how many doom tokens there should be about three times per game and then fix it).
If I for example forget some modifiers for a skill check or monster fight but remember it right after, I just add the missing dice or remake the check or fight entirely depending on error and outcome.
If I forgett something and remember it later it depends on how easy it is to correct. In the case of  "I should have one additional/less clue token" I just add/remove it. But if it is something that would have affected the gameplay for a while, I don't replay several turns, I just let it be the way it is.

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thecorinthian said:

- Knock items or trophies off the table and forget they existed until several days later

How about the skill sliders? I swear I knock mine out of place EVERY SINGLE TURN and sometimes several times each turn. Usually I manage to remember where they were though.

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Tbla said:

How about the skill sliders? I swear I knock mine out of place EVERY SINGLE TURN and sometimes several times each turn. Usually I manage to remember where they were though.

::laughter:: Sometimes I suffer from sever seals bursts due to bad dice rolling (read: I roll the dice, they accidentally hit one or more Elder Sign already on the board, and the roll scatters the seals in curious places of the board)

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I think mostly I remember everything, but then again if I forgot something I may not even be aware of it.

What I do is make a note on paper of things I think I am likely to forget and refer to this quite regularly.

This is usually things related to the GOO or herald that might not be normal in a game.

Also I sometimes put a marker on the mythos (or other) stack to remind me to do something that I may forget at a particular stage in the game. E.g a doom token on the gate stack etc.

 

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Julia said:

::laughter:: Sometimes I suffer from sever seals bursts due to bad dice rolling (read: I roll the dice, they accidentally hit one or more Elder Sign already on the board, and the roll scatters the seals in curious places of the board)

sorpresa.gifsorpresa.gifsorpresa.gif

Arkham Horror: Lost Your Marbles?

Dump all Doom Tokens/Elder Signs on board (flip as necessary without changing position too much).  Place the Terror Track Token near the Doom Track of your choice.  Flick a Clue Token (beginners may use the First Player Token) at any Elder Sign, attempting to bump the Elder Sign into an unstable Location.  Elder Sign must be completely within the circular picture of the Location (Special Text Box does not count) to count as a Seal.  After all players have flicked, flip a Mythos card, looking only at the Gate Opening.  If a Gate Burst where a Seal already exists, you must toss that Elder Sign back onto the board randomly.  If Gate Opening is normal, but has no Seal, move the Terror Track Token one space on the Doom Track.  Six seals win.  Last space on the Doom Track reached loses.

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jgt7771 said:

Dump all Doom Tokens/Elder Signs on board (flip as necessary without changing position too much).  Place the Terror Track Token near the Doom Track of your choice.  Flick a Clue Token (beginners may use the First Player Token) at any Elder Sign, attempting to bump the Elder Sign into an unstable Location.  Elder Sign must be completely within the circular picture of the Location (Special Text Box does not count) to count as a Seal.  After all players have flicked, flip a Mythos card, looking only at the Gate Opening.  If a Gate Burst where a Seal already exists, you must toss that Elder Sign back onto the board randomly.  If Gate Opening is normal, but has no Seal, move the Terror Track Token one space on the Doom Track.  Six seals win.  Last space on the Doom Track reached loses.

partido_risa.gifpartido_risa.gifpartido_risa.gif

That's brilliant! Much more fun than normal Arkham!

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I love playing with all the expansions, but even I must admit that it can be very, very difficult to keep track of everything.  Generally, I try my best and attempt to rectify any mistakes as I notice them.  This latter part sometimes works (when the mistake is simple and easily fixed), but it can be…maddening, as recorded here:

http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_foros_discusion.asp?efid=5&efcid=1&efidt=531230

If your main concern is being seen slipping up, I wouldn't let it worry you.  If your friend at the game store knows the least thing about Arkham, he knows it's extremely complex and difficult to manage (to an absurd degree with all the expansions at once), so I doubt he'll give you a hard time for screwing up.

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First off I'd recommend using one expansion at a time- it's better for theme and there's less stuff to keep track of. The most I ever use at one time is two: Innsmouth, and Lurker at the Threshold (to give me a fighting chance against Innsmouth)

 

But I still have to make a "No do-overs" rule: if I get it wrong, if I forget one of a hundred modifiers, too bad. Unless it's an egregious error like defeating all the monsters in "The Great Experiment" in one round because I forgot about Shub's primary ability (they each get an extra toughness)- that requires a do-over. But not for forgetting a Sneak or Fight modifier. But when something great happens, a really cool "chapter" in the "story" whether good or bad- that stays even if I got it wrong.

 

I can't stand the Mythos cards that affect two skills: like Speed-1 and Sneak+1. So I house-ruled it to mean "No Effect", then I removed all such cards from the Base Game deck- which could actually make the game tougher cause there's more chance of drawing Expansion Mythos cards.

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I would advise against using *all* expansions. Not because it is too difficult to keep track of (though it is a nightmare), but because of dilution. If you literally use all expansions, the game is a race to prepare for the final battle. Sealing won't help much because there are too many gate locations, and you'll lose a lot of time travelling all over the place.

Kingsport requires constant attention because of the rifts, four or five rounds into the game you would do well to assign one investigator there on a permanent basis. Dunwich and Innsmouth could be there, but no gate opening and nothing happening if you're unlucky.

Next are the small expansions. Every one of them is centred around a theme. If you have too many different mythos and equipment cards, that theme gets lost. King in Yellow or Dark Pharaoh add a distinctive atmosphere to the game which won't come up of you only find one or two cards over the course of the entire game.

Recently we tried Kingsport, Dunwich and the appropriate cards from Miskatonic. That was fun, but we were rather busy with four investigators. We did not manage to seal (rare with our group) and got a rift open just before the final battle which we won despite my heavily armed investigator dying first round because of lack of clues.

I recommend one or at most two board expansions plus one card expansion. That way, each game is sufficiently individual in terms of theme and content. We even use investigators only when their expansions are in play (we separate everything after each game and store expansions separately), and it makes a nice change when they come up again after the expansion has been sleeping on my shelf a while.

For keeping track: we have a lot of training (close to a hundred games over several years now) and it helps. Another trick is to assign specific tasks to different players. Last game one of us read mythos cards and placed doom tokens, one placed gates, another placed and moved monsters, and so on. Use every mythos phase after the gate and monster have been placed to check: number of open gates, number of monsters (does it have to go into the outskirts, outskirts full?). Is there a rumour? What is its effect? Check your investigator special powers regularly (they are easily forgotten), check for environments each turn. There is a lot to keep track of, but if you divide the labour it makes for a great game because no two sessions are the same.

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Bluepirate,

     While I love the "all-in" games, your advice on assigning roles (Doom Track Watcher, Mythos Card Reader, etc.) proves quite helpful in reducing, if not eliminating one's chances of forgetting the myriad things on or around the board.

The Professor

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Professor - to each his own :-).

It really is just a practical matter. You need a large table anyhow, and all the mythos cards are at one end, all the location and item cards at the other - makes sense to have different players handle them for all.

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I moved from the all expansions camp over to the one expansion at a time for a less diluated experience a while ago but I still use the gimicks that work with everything (madness/injury, relationship cards, personal stories etc.). 

Playing the game solo (I often do these days) it adds plenty for me to keep track off with 4 investigators in play so I do know your pain.

I use the markers that game with the game put dont do anything as memory aids as well as a diffrent colored six sided dice.

 

Without another player to help you remember what you are doing, its very easy to go make a cup of coffee and then screw things up when you return (not remembering the exact phase or what action you where doing). 

I use the six sided dice to tell me what phase it is and I refuse to flip it over to a new number until I am sure I got everything done (I check mythos cards in play every single turn among other things).  I also use the markers to track who´s turn it is (or what they are doing) as well as putting one on whatever I fear I will forget (the doom card, or a particular mythos card, monster with special ability etc.). 

 

In a multiplayer game, the same system is not needed all that much but it can help.  Expecially tossing a memory aid on things that are likely to slip by otherwise (Mythos cards or other things that cause out of sequence effects).  After a very short while you will be done asking yourself "why did I put that there" enough times that you can not forget.

The dice oddly, has helped me cement what rules are important at what points, I seem to remember that "Dice showing 2 is important to mythos card in play" much better then "I need to remember that if I make a sneak check I have a +1 modifier", normally I will have forgotten all about it when I try to sneak away from a monster (after fighting another one).  It feels a little silly too try to explain, its a visual thing, most likely I will look at the glance at the dice a couple of times out of habit (and that will keep it fresh even if the movement phase is a long one with alot of unrelated activity). 

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 I appreciate the advice but I'm unlikely to go through and reorganise all of the decks and monsters out now. Plus I kind of like the madness and frantic nature of the game with all of the expansions in. Lovecraftian fiction is not about winning, in fact one of the constant themes is that the protagonist has absolutely no effect on the outcome and is doomed to begin with. So if anything an all expansion game is more Lovecraftian. I remember when I first got the game and had no expansions, the wife and I never lost a game, even with only two investigators. Some times it was close but we never lost. Then slowly as I bought the expansions it got harder and harder until we rarely won. Which I think funnily enough is more fun! 

Just saying ;)

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Everything is so hard to keep track of. We fail at it a lot, too.

We use the printed "mat" that you can get from this guy at Headless Hollow (page 15) to keep track of what cards are out as Environment and some headline cards (the ones that stick around for a while). Rumor cards go on the actual board next to the location they're affecting instead of on th emat.

The only other thing we've done is to give special investigators like Mandy who get the reroll a special card. On one side it says "re-roll!" and on the other side it says "Re-roll used". That way we can keep track of if it's been used or not. That's all I've got for "in-game" organization. :) Otherwise, you just have to have some real rule mongers among you. It helps if everyone reads all the ancient one cards and if you leave the environment etc where other people can read them at any time.

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 Just saying I don't think I would have problem with this, Yes I would forget stuff….. But the content SWEET GREAT OLD ONES THE MEATY CRUNCHY CONTENT. I love games with infinite replay value, board game or video game. So get as amny as you possibly can in my opinion.

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It's already been said but assigning people to remember certain things helps a lot. I am currently playing all the way up through innsmouth and while I am pretty good at keeping track of it due to the sheer amount of arkham I play (roughly 5-6 times a week), I'm not perfect and as an example, I completely forgot to dish out noden's blessings for an entire game once and felt like a moron.

As for dilution, nothing can really be done for the mythos deck by the time you get to the second board expansion, but I actually create a gate deck for each board, meaning if the card includes a location from that expansion board, I put it in a deck by that board. This leaves me with three normal sized gate decks and a large one for greater arkham. It's not a perfect solution, in the original other worlds you still get "Other" a lot, and you miss out on yuggoth, abyss, and ryleh encounters from the expansion decks on occasion, but I find people statistically get more named gate cards playing this way and I think it's a decent compromise.

Oh yeah - and I find that seal victory playing with multiple expansions is not impossible, just impossible with certain ancient ones.

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