Closing the Dunes if top card of hourglass isn't a blessing


Rules Questions and Gameplay Discussion


The Dunes location from Crimson Throne says the following:

TO CLOSE OR TO GUARD
Acquire the top blessing of the hourglass.

What happens if the top card of the hourglass isn't a blessing?

Is it: (a) closing/guarding the Dunes automatically fails, (b) you keep flipping hourglass cards until you find a a blessing, then put the other cards back, or (c) something else?

This happened to us yesterday in scenario 4A, which has proxies in the blessings deck.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Either it is a card you can acquire (typically a boon), and then you have a chance to close. Either it isn't a card you can acquire and then you cannot close the Dunes during this turn - or you need to find a way to get a boon on top of the hourglass (I just love the candle to mess with the hourglass!!!).


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I slightly disagree with Frencois. If there is a boon in the hourglass, you may not close or guard with that boon unless it is a blessing, because you are not acquiring it at all (the power states blessing). They way I understand this closing requirements, you have to find the top blessing, not check if the top card is a blessing.
So my understanding is:
1) you flip over the top card in the hourglass; if it is a blessing, try to acquire it, else - put it aside and repeat flipping cards over
2) once you acquire the blessing, return all cards flipped over in the order they were originally (there was some discussion a while back that if the card does not instruct you to shuffle, you will not shuffle; similarly with ordering cards - unless it is written on some power, return them in original order
3) if you fail to acquire the blessing, then it seems it is banished (returned to the vault) - rulebook, p. 10, Resolve the Encounter.
4) if you fail to find any blessing in the hourglass, you cannot close or guard - pretty bad situation, I think

The only part of the rulebook that comes close to my understanding of 2 (and which I could find) is:

Rulebook, p. 13 wrote:

If a power tells you to examine something until you find a particular card type, begin with the top card and stop when you find a card of the specified type. If you don’t find a card of that type, ignore any directions related to that card.

Examine the cards in the order you find them, and put them back in
the same order unless instructed otherwise.

You are not technically examining (I think), so any Trigger cards that somehow got into the hourglass should not trigger (pun intended).


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Jenceslav wrote:


3) if you fail to acquire the blessing, then it seems it is banished (returned to the vault) - rulebook, p. 10, Resolve the Encounter.

I agree on the rest of the points, but I'm not sure about this one. After all, nothing tells you to *encounter* the top blessing (in contrast with a "summon and acquire new blessing" instruction, where the Summoned Cards rule explicitly tells you to encounter the summoned card). RAW, nothing seems to tell you what to do with when attempting to acquire outside of an encounter, so it can be judgement-called either way.

(I do agree intent is probably "encounter and acquire" though; and it can't say "summon" because summoned cards come from the box)

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

I agree with Longshot, if you fail to acquire the blessing, it would stay on top based on the current wording.


On the spot, we decided that if the top card of the hourglass is a non-blessing you would find the first blessing and put the other cards back. Seems like our guess was correct.

cartmanbeck wrote:
I agree with Longshot, if you fail to acquire the blessing, it would stay on top based on the current wording.

Dang. We initially lost the scenario (timed out), because we were banishing the blessings if they weren't acquired. We don't have anyone with the divine skill in the party (Hakon is our healer), so we repeatedly failed to acquire the "closing" blessings. Over and over and over...

The fact that checks to acquire blessings are now increased by # made the Dunes closing pretty rough. The Dunes was empty of cards; we just couldn't close it.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
wkover wrote:
The fact that checks to acquire blessings are now increased by # made the Dunes closing pretty rough. The Dunes was empty of cards; we just couldn't close it.

Don't get me started on the lick of sense it makes that now friggin' CLERICS struggle to acquire Blessings and it's almost impossible for anyone else... >:(


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Ooops indeed I went too fast. It has to be a blessing. For the rest I stick yo my point: you do not SEARCH for a blessing (else the power would tell you to SEARCH for it).
And yes if you fail to acquire it, it stays on top of the hourglass.


Apologies for bringing this thread up nearly a month since the last post, but I happened to be reading through it and noticed some people mentioning "failing" to acquire the top blessing.

There's no check, right? The Dunes says to just acquire the top blessing, so it just goes straight into your hand. How is anyone failing to acquire it?

edit: Okay, I see. Some people feel there should be an "Encounter and" before the acquire.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Acquire = make the check to acquire
Draw = take it into your hand without making a check

You're not doing an encounter. You can't evade it or use other encounter powers. You're just making a check to acquire against the card. If you fail the check, it's not banished (because it's not an encounter)


skizzerz wrote:

Acquire = make the check to acquire

Draw = take it into your hand without making a check

You're not doing an encounter. You can't evade it or use other encounter powers. You're just making a check to acquire against the card. If you fail the check, it's not banished (because it's not an encounter)

Can you quote exactly where the rules say "acquire = make the check to acquire"? I did a search in the pdf rules and found nothing that stated that.

The only thing even close is the phrase "encounter and acquire", which of course means to make the check because that's what you do when you encounter something. Simplying acquiring something means to put it in your hand though. Hence "check to ACQUIRE"... check to put it into your hand.

I'm not trying to be contrary here for the sake of being contrary. I legitimately would like some official evidence that states this is the way it's meant to be played, not just the gut reaction of other players. The other gamers I play with (and I also for that matter) won't be satisfied with a simple, well this guy on the forums says so...

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber
Rulebook, P14 wrote:

Summon and Acquire/Summon and Defeat:

The To Close or To Guard section on some locations requires you to do this.
Summon and encounter the card; if you do not acquire or defeat it, the location is not closed.

While that is speaking specifically about checks to close or to guard, it does spell out that "summon and acquire" means you have to encounter the card.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Rulebook, P9 wrote:


If a card’s check says “None” or “See Below,” the card’s powers will tell you what to do. If the check is listed as “None” and the power does not state the requirements to acquire or defeat, the card cannot be acquired or defeated.

So to acquire a card,

A) That card needs a check to acquire that isn't "none" or {"see below"+ a below that doesn't state the requirements to acquire}
B) and you must succeed at the check (see relevant rule).

Only exceptions are clearly explained in the rules, like for example:

Rulebook, P9 wrote:
If a power allows you to automatically defeat or acquire a card, you may use it instead of attempting the check. Doing so counts as succeeding at all checks and requirements to defeat or acquire the card. You may not use such a power against any card that does not have a check to acquire or defeat, or against any card that has a check you’re not allowed to succeed at.

Note that if acquire didn't mean succeeding at the check to acquire (as you propose), the first sentence of the above quote would be meaningless. It spells "a power that allows you to automatically acquire a card" not "a power that allows you to automatically succeed at a/all check to acquire a card". Hence "acquiring" isn't automatic and always request a check (unless a specific power tells you otherwise).

As explained above "draw" is used instead when the rules don't want you to roll a die.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Where would be the challenge to close/guard if it was just to simply gain the card?
There would only be indirect "costs":
-A player would lose a turn later in the Scenario because there is one less card in the hourglass.
-If you were on the last turn and there are no cards left in the hourglass (which is still something you need to be aware of in general anyway).

So yeah, if they want you to gain it, it will say Draw :)


I think "acquire" does mean that you put the card in your hand, but when the requirement to close a location tells you to acquire a card, it is implied that you need to succeed at acquiring the card by the usual methods (for example succeeding at the check).

In this sense I think it's similar to a requirement to close a location that says "succeed at a Strength 6 check". It doesn't mean that you succeeded at a check just because the "to close or guard" says so. It means that you have to succeed by the normal means in order to be able to close the location. In the same way, when it says you need to acquire a boon it order to close a location, you still need to make the necessary checks to acquire the boon, and if you succeed you close, otherwise you don't.

EDIT for clarity:
I think the process would be like this: "How do I close the location? Oh, I need to acquire this card. And how do I acquire the card? It says right here, succeed at a XXX check. Ok, so then if I succeed at the check I have acquired the card and therefore closed the location"


So based on the last 4 responses, it seems nobody really knows how to handle this but is handling it the way they want to...

JohnF wrote:

While that is speaking specifically about checks to close or to guard, it does spell out that "summon and acquire" means you have to encounter the card.

It doesn't say "summon and acquire". Just "acquire".

Frencois wrote:
Only exceptions are clearly explained in the rules.

Rulebooks aren't the only source of exceptions. Cards make exceptions to the rules all the time.

Frencois wrote:
Note that if acquire didn't mean succeeding at the check to acquire (as you propose), the first sentence of the above quote would be meaningless. It spells "a power that allows you to automatically acquire a card" not "a power that allows you to automatically succeed at a/all check to acquire a card".

Why would it be meaningless? It's referencing POWERS that let you automatically acquire, not location card effects. The word "acquire" by itself means to put into your hand. Hence "check to acquire".

Tomael92 wrote:
it is implied

This is the best answer out of the past four, but unfortunately I am playing with a RAW group. They're not much into RAI. And I can't really blame them. This game goes through leaps and bounds to make sure everything is well defined in the rulebook with an extensive FAQ to cover mistakes and other ambiguous situations. But nowhere is "acquire a card" by itself given specific instructions, but "summon and acquire" is.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

It has to mean "attempt to acquire".

If they wanted to just let you close for free and get a blessing as a bonus, it would be "You may close this location automatically" and then "When closed: Draw the top blessing of the hourglass." Or, since technically that isn't exactly the same (since it doesn't include guarding), I guess the To Close or Guard could say: "Draw the top blessing of the hourglass." That would make it clear that you just take the blessing without attempting to acquire it.

"Acquire" means (when it is an instruction) "attempt to acquire". "Summon" only tells you where to get that card (from the vault), just like Dunes does (top ... of the hourglass).

In contrast, the game uses the "draw" instruction instead of "acquire" instruction when it wants you to gain a card for free.

Examples:
Salvator Scream: Discard to draw the top card of the hourglass. If it is not a blessing, shuffle it into the hourglass.
Blood Pig Bout: If defeated, draw the top card of your location; if it is a bane, banish it.
Charm Person: On your turn, banish to draw a new ally that lists Diplomacy in its check to acquire.


Dulcee wrote:
So based on the last 4 responses, it seems nobody really knows how to handle this but is handling it the way they want to...

The definition of "acquire" in the Core glossary is: Gain a boon and add it to your hand. This actually does make it sound like you get the card automatically, but I'm certain that's not the intention.

I'd have been happier with "successfully acquire" on Dunes and similar cards to prevent misunderstandings, but unfortunately I don't have final editing rights. :)


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Just for the fun of it.
If a location closing condition is « Summon and defeat the danger » is anyone here translating that by you automatically defeat it?
I guess no.
So why (since acquiring and defeating have totally similar wording, checks....) would it be different for acquiring?
Just asking....


Frencois wrote:

Just for the fun of it.

If a location closing condition is « Summon and defeat the danger » is anyone here translating that by you automatically defeat it?
I guess no.
So why (since acquiring and defeating have totally similar wording, checks....) would it be different for acquiring?
Just asking....

Well that's an easy one. "Summon and defeat" is specifically defined in the rules:

Quote:

Summon and Acquire/Summon and Defeat: The To Close or To Guard

section on some locations requires you to do this. Summon and encounter
the card; if you do not acquire or defeat it, the location is not closed.

If the location says "SUMMON and acquire", then there wouldn't be a problem since that's also defined. But it just says "acquire".

Also, those in the boat that this makes the location too easy, there have been locations in the past that said to close the location automatically.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Add one word to the "To Close or Guard" requirement for that location and that should clear it up :)
"Successfully acquire the top blessing of the hourglass."

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Adventure Card Game / Rules Questions and Gameplay Discussion / Closing the Dunes if top card of hourglass isn't a blessing All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.
Recent threads in Rules Questions and Gameplay Discussion