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We run out of a box at a gaming store, so other people might be using it at any time. Also, different groups are at different tiers.
So we use option #2, but we purge cards on the fly. In other words, if we ever encounter a card that we shouldn't be able to encounter, we immediately draw another card of that type from the box (until we get a valid card).
I like option #2 also because it makes the game much more challenging. When I started AD3 we were no longer encountering zombies or rats, we were encountering dragons and things that can rip your head off. So yeah, much prefer to forget about the cards we've encountered a billion times before and start seeing new cards.
What I want to see is for the cards in the class decks to be more useful. Then we could have 4 characters again.
Class decks have a very limited capacity but yet I often find cards that aren't good for ANY character in the class deck! For example, putting Perception based cards into a class deck where none of the characters have Perception as a skill.
Or cards that you wouldn't even want to upgrade to. Like Cook or things that just aren't suitable for the class. Upgrades aren't upgrades if you don't want them.
Depends on party size and composition. Characters that "do everything" are annoying, but moreso in the RPG than in the card game.
Solo I'd say that Merisiel or Lini are the best. Merisiel because she can evade anything she doesn't like. Lini because she can basically do everything decently well and can heal her mistakes.
Solo with Lini I've basically waited 6 turns just to setup the perfect hand in order to beat a villain that didn't allow allies to be used. Not many characters can do that.
I find that the best groups keep their hands open and the worst groups keep their hands closed. Just an observation. I'd say the close handed groups were LESS team orientated by far.
If you have a know-it-all guy, it's just better to address that. I play open and yes, it has been annoying at times, but sometimes they have a point and sometimes you just brush it off and sometimes you teach them something too.
There's counters to everything:
1) If there's a boon you like, speak up. Or say something if you want to look at it. Sometimes it's pointless as the character has a 0% chance of getting it anyway.
2) You want to flip it to your position to track that it was your turn. Sometimes people forget to flip and it's easier to go back if this is done.
3) I don't know, I've always had drinks at my table and have never spilled anything, so I guess it depends.
In general, the more kind and flexible you are, the better. This applies to everything in life.
Characters: Agna and CD Kyra.
We completed adventure 3 and have the following feedback.
1) I really liked the story text. Good job! The names were initially a little confusing but it was great writing. More on this later.
2) "Things" are starting to get "real" in AD3. By that I mean that although we were successful, we were *barely* successful (ended with 10 blessings many times with only 2 players!). And we had some close calls with health. I think this AD will challenge a lot of players (including my 4 player group).
3) Although AD2 was punishing to large groups, I still noticed various mechanics that punished big groups in AD 3. Big groups are already punishing enough?
4) The Shadow Demon servitor demon was a complete non-factor in this adventure. There were so few abyssal locations, his main power of cold damage was ignored, so he was basically a combat 20 creature. While that's tough, we found the Blood Demons in the previous AD much more challenging.
5) I really like the cohorts and the story that went with them. Mechanically they were useful as well.
6) I used my Paizo t-shirt reroll for the first time in 25 scenarios and I needed to use it in each and every scenario. The increased difficulty combined with "high stakes" made it necessary. My partner didn't have rerolls, but I was exploring a lot more than she was.
7) Nice custom art (I assume) on the cards.
8) In general we had a lot of fun with this adventure.
Now for a review of the scenario. We finished with 12 blessings but weren't close to dying.
Grimslakes.... ugh. The Grimslake CON check is worse than the combat check! These things were fairly deadly and made me glad I picked Mythic Guardian instead of Marshall (used by D20 when we were out of blessings). I made all the Grimslake checks (thankfully!). I also liked the villain.
Andrew L Klein wrote:
Including them in the CD is the only way to guarantee everyone has an iconic.
Several of the players I play with have the class deck but play alternate versions of the iconics on a print out. Often the CD version isn't needed or desired.
Removing pregens might not work for other reasons, but for me it's more desirable.
I hope all the characters in this show die. Is that bad? I wonder if that was intended. Dislike them all.
Also don't like that all the characters that have seen zombies don't tell anyone else. Seriously WTF. Or that you couldn't figure out how to kill them after looking at 2 different clips on social media. Duh.
Also don't understand what took the Mom so long at school. OK she loaded some food for the little annoying kid. First of all, why, second how long could that have taken? And why the hell wouldn't she go out of buy an axe after killing the principal?
Having said that, I'm enjoying the stupidity of it all, but I wish the characters were a little smarter. The scariest movies are when the characters do what you would have done... and are still screwed.
Flenta actually died in this scenario when she tried it solo. The player was trying to impress a new player (to show him how to play the game) and died in the process. lol. Combination of pushing too hard and solo being a completely different playstyle, especially without support.
New player said "Wow, this game is tough!". Probably didn't help that we failed 1-1A right after.
Player didn't want to play Flenta anymore and made a new Valeros. Felt that Valeros would be more straightforward and easy to play.
Oh, I felt the cohort SOSIEL VAENIC was more of a liability than a help, especially in Tarlin's small hand. If I were playing more optimally, I would have used him for 1-2 turns and then banished him to cure quickly. Either that or just given him to a character that explorers a lot, like Seoni, and then she could just use him once she was down 4 cards. That probably would have been better.
Three player game: Harsk, Valeros, Tarlin.
This game was a lot easier than the previous games. I'd hate to say it, but not having Ezren helped a lot. Having said that, I think 3 players is easier than 4 in general. Of course, upgrades also helped.
Unlike 1-1B, I felt the cohorts were more helpful.
I think we remembered the scenario rule about barriers about 90% of the time. It was a factor in the temptations!
1-1B: Barely success
Four player game with all new characters: CD Valeros, CD Harsk, CD Ezren, Tarlin.
Usually I find this scenario deceptively deadly (losing explorations and burying allies), but with decks with relatively few allies, it was OK. The locations were friendly.
Failed one closing. We were a little better with blessings this time around, my Tarlin decks got some armor upgrades so I was able to cycle to more important cards.
Finished with only a few turns left. What a relief to increase the hand size and get our 1st power upgrade.
1-1A: Fail and success
Four player game with all new characters: CD Valeros, CD Harsk, CD Ezren, Tarlin.
The reduction in damage on the 1st explore was very important numerous times and was needed. We stayed away from the herald since we were too slow at exploring (and lacked blessings too).
We failed badly on our first attempt, ran out of time with a lot of locations left. Our explorations were just too slow. Ezren was down in cards, needed the herald 2 times, and would have died if he encountered a carrion golem. Very vulnerable. Even my Tarlin was down in cards but a puny hand size of 4 was protective.
I know Ezren gets good later, but at this level of play he's really awful. He explores slowly, is vulnerable, misses easy recharges, and most importantly never has blessings to offer for important checks.
I was playing Tarlin and the shift in hand size from 7 (Agna) to 4 was startling, lol. At this level Tarlin is awful at recharging Cures (I used 3 and needed them all) and needs an ally or a blessing for the recharge. Hand gets clogged up with armor (which isn't welcome with a hand size of 4) and extra weapons. I was more than happy to discard extra weapons, but when your Cures are trapped in the discard pile, it's a problem.
Harsk is an MVP in these early scenarios. The player unfortunately grabbed every boon he could find, clogged up his hand, so no blessings were ever available for important checks...
Valeros was OK although the reveal an ally was a pain and often he didn't have an ally in his hand. After this failed scenario I suggested he use S&S Valeros.
Please note that we ran into some of the worst barriers: Bilious Bottle, Demonic Horde, trees of death. Unlucky there, lucky with Carrion Golems.
Because of the lack of blessings (and needing blessings for some of the tougher monsters), we failed to close each and every time we encountered henchmen (at least 2 times), so that was the real problem.
We tried again and finished with only a few turns left. Yay!
I've always wanted to try Flenta, but having to go through the unused spells until you get a non-numbered one every time you cast a spell seems very tedious. Any Flenta players devise ways to make that less burdensome?
I just give the entire spell stack to the Flenta player and let him fish his new spell out. Our player pulls cards from the top and puts used cards on the bottom.
We have an Amaryllis that finished AD2, so she is viable, but has trouble like I've mentioned with Seoni. Sorcs need to cycle their deck quickly so they can get their combat spells again. If they clog their hands with useless boons, they're done.
Wrath has a lot of combat, Siwar would have a tough time, especially without armor. Also her ability to defeat barriers would be useless most of the time since many Wrath barriers don't have a defeat condition, or the defeat condition is combat. Would definitely be a challenge.
I have a friend that likes Seoni and I consider the Wrath version the best version for Wrath, so that's what he's been playing. It's been OK, but he's been playing with cards that can keep you out of trouble(caltrops, cape). We've played through AD1.
He sometimes gets in trouble running out of spells if he can't cycle his deck fast enough, and needs low monster population locations to thrive.
Knowledge and perception are perfect skills for Wrath. It's also nice that she starts with a decent number of spells (so that she doesn't discard as much).
I'm not really a fan of the Elemental Master role when playing in OP, but maybe I'm missing something. Corruptor is very decent.
Seoni is doing OK, but as you know, arcane spellcasters have a much harder time in Wrath compared to martials.
I had the opposite experience. Again, this was played with CD Kyra and Agna.
Like Keith said, between the banner and the Knights, that gives an average value of 8, so when Agna does a perception she's already averaging 11 before her D8 or any other modifiers (like Dog or blessings, which we didn't bother to use at times).
The locations were fairly forgiving as well.
So yeah, there was no pressure or danger at all this game, it was far too easy (with 2 players), and we finished the game with 18 blessings in the deck.
We were glad to move onto deck 3 where the challenge isn't tied proportionately to the group size.
Well, everyone could still encounter it, and there could still be Combat damage or other consequences for failing. But the Victory condition to beat the army could be based on a certain number of players rather than all of them.
This. Everyone does a check but it only requires 4-5 checks out of 6 to succeed. This would give more leeway for groups of 5/6 without burning their blessings.
And somehow the armies need to be more dangerous for groups of 1-2 characters. Maybe 2 checks each.
The first time I played this we almost ran out of time since we were playing without support (Agna, Valeros, Amaryllis) and we were playing a little too freely with the Herald and our blessing deck. But we made it.
The second time I played with it was with 2 characters, Agna and Kyra. Both times we played this scenario we mostly stacked to get the benefit of the Banner of Valor. Got lucky, wasn't punished for it.
Scenario was easy, we didn't need the Herald with Kyra of course, but we did fail 3 checks against demons (losing 3 blessings) but we still finished with over 15 blessings left in the deck.
Again, the armies (and the game in general) are really easy with 2-3 characters.
Just an informal poll to see if anyone thought they wouldn't like a character, tried it... and actually liked it.
Or vice versa, thought they would like a character then didn't.
I thought I wasn't going to like any wizards but surprisingly... I like Radillo. I like how she can cycle through her spells and allies and how you need to be intelligent
I thought I would like Lem, but surprisingly... I don't. Will try some more, but I'm fairly certain.
Oh, we got Arboreals and Demonic Hordes more than a few times, we just destroyed them. Nothing like beating a Blood Demon to death with your bare hands. We failed the Hordes one time but it wasn't bad, Kyra just healed herself up the following turn. I also failed Arboreal one time (by 1), but the barrier is defeated based solely on the character that encounters it.
All in all, you have so many turns in a 2 character game and decent support, there are no worries.
Zeroth, can I ask why you picked the power to scout the bottom of the location deck? I don't believe you can both look at the top and bottom card of the location deck in the same turn, if you can let me know.
Agna is so fast at exploring, I often don't even get to scout.
Yeah, I'm always surprised people make different choices than myself. My (end game) Agna deck is different, but then again the campaign dictates choices.
Maybe, but it was ridiculous, almost like we were playing Runelords. I'll try it again with different characters this week!
I think it had a lot more to do with the fact that we could pick almost any check we wanted with the armies.
It also had a lot to do with the fact that we only needed to pass 2 checks to defeat the armies, less chance of something going wrong. I'm sure you're familiar enough with stats to agree.
Funny enough, I completed most of AD2 without getting (or needing) a single cure from Kyra.
Before entering the Molten pool, we always had at least 1 armor, so it would be very tough to lose my hand size of 7. Stat gems seemed to take care of any barriers.
We played somewhat conservatively, not using all of our blessings on a turn if we were going to explore, especially since they can be used to evade banes, like the TK Trap you ran into.
With the free scouting and free evasions and free explores (Nurah), this was easy.
I was surprised, but the dynamic of playing with 2 players is too easy in Wrath. It's only really designed for 3-4 players. 5-6 players is "challenging".
AD 2 is not challenging at all with 2 characters. Although the Demon Patrol was impossible for Kyra one time (no stat gem in her hand), the penalty of failure (more mobs) didn't cause us any problems.
Molten Pool is always terrifying and we made sure we had armor and as many explores as possible before venturing into it.
We didn't even stack on our banner (which we normally do for big games), which was good because some banes had tough "at this location" powers.
Between blessings for evades and free scouting, it was easy to see the patrols coming and my character killed the patrols. Discarding to close was only a nuisance.
Kyra didn't cure me for most of AD2 and focused mostly on herself.
We took the Abyssal Rift being emptied of cards and on the temporary closed side to be closed.
With 2 players, we found this to be really easy and had more than 1/2 the blessing deck available. Characters were Kyra and Agna.
In general, we completed AD 2 with 2 players and it felt too easy. We were never in danger at any point. I wish I had played a new tier 1 character, it was that easy.
It's gotten to the point where we feel we need 5+ players to make it challenging. It will probably be too challenging, but at least we won't stomp all over the scenario.
I almost forgot, we didn't use a single surge during the entire AD, not even the villains, we just forgot.
Also, I remembered the knights, but always after the roll. They weren't needed.
Armor is your friend.
Unless handled very well by a mature and competent GM and players, evil campaigns always end like this. There is no light hearted pvp unless it's a one session game.
My character would have fried him too, he tried to kill me. The player was obviously not prepared for this type of campaign, which is the GMs issue, not yours. You resurrected him, which is nice (or perhaps manipulative :) ) for an evil guy.
I'm just not sure your group is ready for evil campaigns. The angry player is certainly not.
John Davis 2 wrote:
Sure, a well-equipped Alain should be able to defeat most villains, but you're not always exploring with Alain.
With the Glory Hound role, Alain can fight any challenging combat. With the Lancer role, he can explore more than any character. Either way, a lot of combats are going to him.
It's not like we're hearing stories of Seoni killing everything and making things too easy. It's always Alain.
It's definitely tough solo, but it should at least be possible with a stat gem (or equivalent).
Solo, with a character like Lini, anything is possible. I could spend 7 turns just cycling and healing through my deck until I get *exactly* the cards I need. Of course we don't have Lini yet in OP. Healing characters are much easier solo imo.
So depending on your character choice, it might be impossible, but it's possible for a number of characters. Will try it with Radillo soon.
Lancer definitely makes Alain better at combat, but I'm going to go with... Glory Hound.
1) Alain doesn't fail many combats. See other threads for stats.
I could be wrong, but I don't believe Alain needs to discard or recharge his lance very often.