Just finished AP#2 which means I got to crack open the Hook Mtn. Massacre deck. Regarding the Giant Badger:
Bury this card to move. You automatically succeed at any check required to move. You may not play this ally during an encounter.
Discard this card to explore your location.
With the bolded text, I am guessing that this only applies for that particular power? Although you can't explore while already in the middle of an encounter so I guess it wouldn't be inconsistent with the second.
I guess I'm just confirming that it doesn't get in the way of using it for Lini's powers, mostly because revealing or discarding a card to activate a power isn't the same as playing that card (playing a card means activating one of its own powers, I believe)
That's a bit of a ramble, isn't it? But does it seem as though I have the right idea?
You are correct. Lin's "reveal for a d4" power doesn't count as playing the ally, and this text only applies to the "bury & move" power.
The text it to prevent Lem from having the Giant Badger and, during Valeros' encounter, burying it to move to Valeros' location and help him with his 1d4 assistance, or other such things.