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BenEggler

Fighting Heralds

53 posts in this topic

As much as I absolutely love, love, love Arkham Horror, the only thing I feel that is truly missing from the game is the ability to fight Heralds other than The Dunwich Horror. The Dunwich Horror wasn't originally a Herald when it came out, but I know that was changed with Miskatonic.

 

Heralds obviously impact the gameplay significantly and make the game much harder for the investigators. How cool would it be to have a token for each Herald that is placed at a specific location on the board at the beginning of the game? The investigators could make an attempt to kill the Herald in order to eliminate those particular negative effects and get an awesome reward for doing so, such as receiving an item of their choosing or maybe removing a doom token from the doom track.

 

Are there any fan made rules or mechanics out there that introduce this idea and allow for Heralds to be fought as a sort of mini-boss fight like Dunwich?

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Ben, please, don't hate me for what I'm about to say, but really, you don't fight the Dunwich Horror Herald either. The Dunwich Horror was conceived before the "Herald era" (no DH Herald in the DH box!), with the King in Yellow Herald being the first in line. The DH Herald arrived a while later, in digital form to be downloaded from this site and later on it had a paper incarnation with MH. You can have games with the DH boards in and no Herald and you have the DH arriving in Sentinel Hill, and you can have games with the DH Herald and no DH in play. So, the starting hypothesis is wrong.

 

This said, yes, I'd love to have some bigger nastier tougher monster to eviscerate and treat like an XXXL Mi-Go :)

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Well, correct me if I'm wrong, but when you use the DH Herald sheet it says that you must use the DH board along with it. So, that makes it quite possible that you actually will fight the Dunwich Horror at some point in your game. Because you can use the DH herald sheet and actually fight the DH on the board, this makes the DH and the Dark Pharaoh the only heralds you can actually fight in the game.

 

Regardless, I think it would be an amazing mechanic to have ALL the Heralds actually be present on the board,when using them for your game, as in the DH Herald requiring you to use the DH board. Perhaps there could be other ways for the other Heralds to come out on the board. For example, when drawing Act I, maybe The King in Yellow appears on the board somewhere and causes extra havoc to make way for Acts II & III. Then perhaps killing The King in Yellow eliminates the play all together and KiY Mythos cards and effects are ignored for the rest of the game.

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Probably would force a change to some investigators and their PS since some sort of help to counter the effects of a Herald but sure Ben I wouldn't mind being able to somehow remove the threat permanently. It should be expensive though.

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Probably would force a change to some investigators and their PS since some sort of help to counter the effects of a Herald but sure Ben I wouldn't mind being able to somehow remove the threat permanently. It should be expensive though.

 

And that's why I made my first post. If you defeat the Dunwich Horror while playing with the Herald, you do not discard the Herald from play.  Same for the Dark Pharaoh. One thing is the monster, another the Herald, whose effect remains in play regardless of the number of times the monster appears on the board.

 

So, when you're actually fighting the DH, you're fighting against a monster. A tough one, but still a monster.

 

Sorry for being pedantic, but first of all it should be clarified what exactly is the objective to pursue: creating some tougher / nastier monsters that appear on the board under special conditions (something like: "when the DOR hits 4, place Dagon on Devil Reef; he doesn't move, but when Crescent monsters move on black, if Dagon is still on the board, after the normal movement for all monsters is solved, place three monsters at DR and a monster in every other aquatic location of the board") that can give you some sort of reward if defeated (for Dagon: "reset the DOR track") OR are we talking of special conditions to met to remove the Herald sheet from the game (which I cannot say enough, could be an interesting option but has never been done before for any Herald)?

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I'd be in favor of either/or actually. Your Father Dagon idea is actually pretty cool either way. But if anyone is thinking about an actual physical confrontation with Dagon and/or Hydra with the idea of permanently eliminating the DOR track for that game if you win then the severest penalty for losing the battle would have to be employed. IDK instant wake up of  an even stronger AO or even instant game defeat. Can't say I'd like this idea anyway. Also pedantic--sorry :P  :lol:  

 

But your first thought Julia with Dagon I think could work well-I like it.

Edited by jackman51

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Yes, I absolutely agree, if you want to try your fate, you should also be ready to lose badly. So, for Dagon: if you are defeated in combat, the AO instantly wakes up, with a number of extra doom tokens equal to the number of DOR tokens on the DOR track at the moment of the awakening (badly worded, I'm in a hurry, but you should get the idea)

 

Actually, you gave me the final idea for a project I had been working on since 2011 (Esoteric Order of Dagon Institution). Thanks buddy!

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I like that Dagon idea a lot, Julia. That's the kind of thing I'm talking about! That would add so much flare to the Heralds.

 

In a way, Heralds are something between Monsters and the AoO. As investigators, we get to fight monsters AND the AoO. It only makes sense that we should be able to fight something that is between them.

 

Maybe there would be some Heralds that you cannot permanently kill, such as the Dunwich Horror, since it deals with the DH Track. And if Dagon and Mother Hydra dealt with the DOR track, then maybe they couldn't be permanently killed, either.

 

Although, I REALLY, REALLY like the idea of permanently killing a Herald, with it being an incredibly tough, relentless battle with horrible consequences if you lose. That just sounds so much fun and you would be helping out the investigators SO much if you were able to kill him/her.

 

With Lurker at the Threshold, maybe if you kill him, you no longer have to draw Reckoning cards for the rest of the game. And if you fail your combat check against him, anyone with power is devoured. Or perhaps you must draw and play 3-5 Reckoning cards immediately. Just a simple idea, but that could be awesome.

 

Killing the King in Yellow could also eliminate all active Blight cards from play and maybe lower the Terror Level by one or even reset it to zero. But maybe losing the fight would mean you have to draw 1-2 Blight cards and put them in play.

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For the Lurker, I would almost say increase the Terror Level by the number of failures in your combat roll. Essentially, it would be punishing you for over-prepping and having a lot of power, since you are essentially biting the hand that feeds and I don't think the Lurker would appreciate being attacked when it's trying to 'help'.

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For the Lurker, I would almost say increase the Terror Level by the number of failures in your combat roll. Essentially, it would be punishing you for over-prepping and having a lot of power, since you are essentially biting the hand that feeds and I don't think the Lurker would appreciate being attacked when it's trying to 'help'.

 

That sounds like a good, absolutely terrifying idea!

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I think this is a great idea. I could even see it implemented in a new expansion :) Unique ways to confront each herald (perform a warding ritual to repel Ghroth, physically battle Dagon and Hydra, battle the King in your mind), multiple outcomes for each fight (destroy the herald, weaken him, make it stronger etc), some kind of Plot cards for each of them...lots of potential.

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I think this is a great idea. I could even see it implemented in a new expansion :) Unique ways to confront each herald (perform a warding ritual to repel Ghroth, physically battle Dagon and Hydra, battle the King in your mind), multiple outcomes for each fight (destroy the herald, weaken him, make it stronger etc), some kind of Plot cards for each of them...lots of potential.

I'm glad you like my idea! :)

 

Maybe as an Arkham family and community we should come up with some rulings/stats/tokens to use for each Herald! I think that would be an awesome, collaborative project. Maybe FFG will see and get inspired to get off their butts and make another amazing addition to this fantastic game. =P

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Just some random thoughts...A Herald, as Julia has pointed out, is not a monster but rather a particular set of conditions that on the whole are intended to empower and/or quicken the Ancient One. As such, Fight is only one possible line of attack. Investigators should be able to use Lore, Will, Speed etc, based on the particular condition being attacked, depending on what it is. And, rather than call for Skill tests, the best designs imho are those which force you to exchange one resource for another or to make tactical decisions which result in some kind of trade off between a negative and positive.

An idea that occurs to me is to have missions and tasks added to the Heralds, things the team can do as a group (unlike normals tasks and missions which belong to one character), which can undo or mitigate the effect of Heralds.  Some of these missions and tasks could even relate to a player who has Join the Winning Team, enabling them to make things worse for the team as they go about gathering the allies by completing tasks and missions on the Herald. Tasks and missions could be randomly determined and hidden from everyone but the turncoat. This obviously turns AH into a competitive game, which is not for everyone, but the potential is there and the idea does not have to be applied to JTWT.

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I like this idea a lot, Dj. After all, if you look carefully at the game's structure, we have similar recurring things: Rumors, Tasks and Missions, Personal Stories are quite similar in concept, even if they could result in many and different things. Adding a set of Plot Cards specific for each Herald than can be completed as more complex Personal Stories could be a great idea. Additionally, these Plots could be structured so that actually they enforce the team work!

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I think the Plot cards sounds like the best idea so far that doesn't involve outright fighting. Now, that doesn't mean there couldn't be monster tokens--Nyarl is a perfect example of having a Herald AND Monster Token, after all. But perhaps that could be just one more of the conditions or Plots? Like a Spawn Monster that works like, say 'The Color out of the Space'. It lingers and lurks until it's destroyed and the group can then proceed to the next Plot card.

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DJ, I disagree. Yes, Heralds, looking at them on a purely surface level basis, are essentially rules and conditions to help wake the Ancient One up. However, looking at them from the Mythos and Story angle, they are actual beings that exist in Arkham that are impending the progress of the investigators. These creatures and beings are roaming Arkham and causing these terrible things to happen. Because of this, it would make perfect sense for there to be tokens and potential combats to stop these beings so that the horrors they are creating are put to a stop.

 

I like the idea of plot cards and eliminating a Herald from a game doesn't necessarily have to be a FIGHT or COMBAT check. Tulzscha, for example, could be destroyed through some sort of chant or spell that the investigators must make at a specific location. Perhaps Tulzscha has stats/powers to impair this check from the investigators, but it wouldn't be a combat check.

 

All the other Heralds, however, seem like malevolent beings that are somewhere in Arkham and could potentially be fought. Just like The Dunwich Horror, it is a creature that sits still and can be sought after to defeat, while causing problems when it is drawn to move.

 

There could be other Heralds that sit still, as well. Such as Tulzscha and maybe Ghroth. Maybe Father Dagon and Mother Hydra can ONLY move through Aquatic locations, making their combat location make sense. The Black Goat of the Woods could stay in the Woods (makes sense =P).

 

I like this discussion! DJ, your idea of having group based tasks/missions is also really good. That is something that I think would be perfect for Tulzscha, Ghroth, and probably The King in Yellow.

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The idea of group-based missions falls into line with my other thread about disjointed 'Investigations'. At the moment, Investigators have no reason to do anything with each other but swap items. With something like this, i would feel cohesive like they HAVE to acknowledge each other as more than packmules.

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The idea of group-based missions falls into line with my other thread about disjointed 'Investigations'. At the moment, Investigators have no reason to do anything with each other but swap items. With something like this, i would feel cohesive like they HAVE to acknowledge each other as more than packmules.

 

I can understand thinking that investigators really don't work together and only act as means to help each other get new items and money, but I really do think that there is a LOT of cooperative work going into playing the game. A lot of decisions to be made, advice to be given, etc. Patrice is a great example of an investigator that can help others to the point of being essential to the game. I think the cooperative elements between players makes up for the fact that there isn't a ton of interaction between investigators. Although, group-based missions sound like an extraordinary idea that could really benefit the game to some extent.

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Though I instinctively like the idea of a plot based and conditional fulfilling of a task or tasks to defeat a Herald the problem is that it's going to have to be carefully woven into the game such that it's actually time functional versus "simply" trying to win the game the standard seal or close gates method. If you actually spent more resources in clues and turns then it would have taken you to win regardless of the Herald's effects it likely would  have to be called a waste. You don't want neutralizing the Herald to win you the game--just make it possibly much easier to do so. But I'm fearful this would have just been easier to do under the old rules--that is of course unless you want to make even more changes to game flow or victory conditions.

 

I like Julia's  Dagon add monsters to certain areas of Innsmouth and Dagon at the Devil Reef guarded by some allies that keep coming if you don't defeat them all with one investigator for example. Game mechanics need not be changed, you get the thrill of fighting the Herald ( and of course he's not dead--just driven away for a time ) , and still face the possibility of crushing defeat at the hands of a more thoroughly enraged and powerful AO. Further I can see this as needing to be done in harmony with other game goals.

 

I'm not saying the other methods won't work but probably will require a fair amount of play

testing to see if they really get done much. Course we're certainly not lacking in volunteers for that.

Edited by jackman51
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I don't see what the 'time' issue would be. There are lots of ways to measure time in the game.

 

For instance, let's say we are playing with the Lurker at the Gate.

 

Plot 1: There has been an increase in people suddenly coming in wealth and power within the town under mysterious circumstances. If Investigators discard, as a group, X number of Clue tokens, then they all gain X Reward and place Plot #2 in Play. If the Doom Track reaches 3 before this happens X Penalty occurs and place Plot #2 in play.

 

If, by the time all the Plot cards have been cycled through, there are more Completions then Failures, or if no Failures, or whatever has occurred, then the Players have defeated the Herald. Or, the Herald actually enters into Arkham to see why none of it's plots are working and to fight or face the Investigators.

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BenEggler, you misunderstood me a little. I was thinking much less in terms of surface level things like the rules of the game and was considering them from the Mythos angle, not the game angle, and in a purist sense, the beings of the stories of Lovecraft are not just giant Godzillas, they are much more interesting and complex than that. A Hound is far more than just a dog like creature with a long tongue and covered in blue pus capable of tracking you across aeons of time, as cool as that is, its something else, perhaps the collapse of a waveform as the perceptual bridge between curved time and linear time breaks down. For us, the world looks full of straight lines that are actually curves when you look close, but for the Hound the universe iis all curved looking but everything where they exist is actually made of straight lines. So its more than just a bloodthirsty dog, its a mind blasting immutable fact of a reality we cannot comprehend, and thats just a Hound, Cthulhu is even more impregnable to our understanding. In this light, the horror in the idea of Dagon wading down a street is ludicrous child's play, a more pulpy presentation of the Mythos that suits AH very well but is not really how I view things when I play the game. My point was that the game mechanics for heralds actually reflect this reality, a more purist view of the Mythos and not the pulp view that is more in line with the rest of AH.

it saddens me a little that the creatures and entities Lovecraft imagined so spectacularly as an alternative to the traditional supernatural antagonists - vampires, werewolves, ghosts - have become as familiar and recognizable when with a little imagination they can be so much more than that and should be.

Also, I don't see the heralds as being in Arkham at all and see very little evidence for that in the game itself. Ghroth is *singing*  in outer space, The King is more present as the effects of a performance, the Dark Pharaoh explicitly informs us of a curse and buries the actual Pharaoh in the cup, the Black Goat talks about praise and chanting to the abundance of the Black Goat and describes effects which cause more monsters to arrive, and as Julia said the Dunwich Horror herald does not disappear even when its monster token bites it.

Edited by dj2.0
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