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Made in gb
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Happy Little Trees






Beneath, Between and Behind

Over the last year or so, I have picked up the Dungeon Saga core set and expansions. The kids and I enjoyed playing Heroquest and were looking for something similar. Dungeon Saga seems to tick that box. A couple of questions though - I am assuming the quests are meant to be played through in order - ie. we start on the core set and then onto each expansion in turn? Also, each expansion comes with extra heroes - can we start with those heroes or can they only be played in the expansion they appear in? For example, the Paladin that comes in the last expansion, can I use him instead of one of the core heroes right at the start of the series?

Cheers!

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Battlefield Tourist






Nuremberg

As far as I know, each expansion is "stand alone" in terms of the progression. They released a rudimentary RPG style system in the Adventurer's companion, but I think it is not extremely well thought out. The basic game is intended to be run independently of any expansions.

As to using heroes, I think that is fine as long as you make sure you don't leave one of the specialities out. Like, you might need someone who can open locks, or someone who can cast spells for certain missions. But replacing the barbarian for the paladin for example would probably be fine.

Have fun! I had a lot of fun playing it, but I couldn't convince my wife to keep playing it with me, sadly. Time to have kids I suppose!

   
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Beneath, Between and Behind

Ok, so it isn’t like, say, Advanced Heroquest where your characters can ‘level up’, gain skills and buy equipment in between quests then?

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 filbert wrote:
Ok, so it isn’t like, say, Advanced Heroquest where your characters can ‘level up’, gain skills and buy equipment in between quests then?


hmm, without owning it, but wasnt this "leveling up" only part of the "Adventurer's Companion" addon?

https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/195004/dungeon-saga-adventurers-companion
   
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 Schmendrick wrote:
 filbert wrote:
Ok, so it isn’t like, say, Advanced Heroquest where your characters can ‘level up’, gain skills and buy equipment in between quests then?


hmm, without owning it, but wasnt this "leveling up" only part of the "Adventurer's Companion" addon?

https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/195004/dungeon-saga-adventurers-companion


Well if I am reading Da Boss correctly, that is what appears to be the case.

The reason I ask is that in the HeroQuest expansions and in the Advanced Heroquest material that was published in White Dwarf magazines of old, it was assumed you had already played through the core set quests with your characters. This was so your characters had accrued the necessary skills and equipment to take on the harder expansion quests. But from what Da Boss is saying, the expansions to Dungeon Saga stand alone and there is no character progression so you can tackle them in whatever order one chooses, narrative continuity aside.

I plan to run them more or less in order anyway but I suspect my kids may want to choose different heroes other than the ones you get in the core set, hence my question about if they can easily be substituted.

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Filbert I will double check this evening for you. I have all the stuff in a cupboard atm!

   
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Combat Jumping Tiger Soldier




North Wales

I own all of the DS expansions and whilst I still have to get to play them (two year olds don't really seem to grasp the dice mechanic of the game...), I've read all of the paperwork and I've come to the conclusion that there are a few ways to play it.

1) Each expansion with the included characters for it. The expansions seem to be balanced around them and whilst you don't do any RPG style progression with them, the adventures played in order do have them developing new stats, abilities and gear but they're totally dictated by the adventure being played.

2) Roll your own using the Adventurers Companion. Set the level of your characters according to the recommendation for each adventure. This runs the risk of not having some necessary utility - didn't bring a mage with Break Ward? You're probably going to be SOL.

3) Roll your own, start at the first scenario of a given campaign at level one and let the XP system level you up. This has the same risks as the above plan, but with the added risk of falling behind the curve and being outclassed by the opposition.

4) Roll your own and use the random dungeon system. This takes a lot more effort from the Overlord player and you don't get the cool storyline.

Basically, the game was designed to be played as written. Demand from KS backers drove the demand for the Adventurers Companion which isn't balanced and resulted in most of the complaints about the game.
   
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 Chillreaper wrote:
I own all of the DS expansions and whilst I still have to get to play them (two year olds don't really seem to grasp the dice mechanic of the game...), I've read all of the paperwork and I've come to the conclusion that there are a few ways to play it.

1) Each expansion with the included characters for it. The expansions seem to be balanced around them and whilst you don't do any RPG style progression with them, the adventures played in order do have them developing new stats, abilities and gear but they're totally dictated by the adventure being played.

2) Roll your own using the Adventurers Companion. Set the level of your characters according to the recommendation for each adventure. This runs the risk of not having some necessary utility - didn't bring a mage with Break Ward? You're probably going to be SOL.

3) Roll your own, start at the first scenario of a given campaign at level one and let the XP system level you up. This has the same risks as the above plan, but with the added risk of falling behind the curve and being outclassed by the opposition.

4) Roll your own and use the random dungeon system. This takes a lot more effort from the Overlord player and you don't get the cool storyline.

Basically, the game was designed to be played as written. Demand from KS backers drove the demand for the Adventurers Companion which isn't balanced and resulted in most of the complaints about the game.


OK, that's a bit more clear cut - thanks for the info! Is the Adventurer's Companion worth getting then, in your opinion, give what you have written above about it being unbalanced and a bit of a sop to fans? It's the only expansion I don't have now but if it does have some utility, it may still be worth getting. I might let the kids use option 2 and fudge the abilities, if and when needed.

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It definitely has some utility and I'd say that it's worth a purchase, with some caveats...

Disclaimer: Whilst I went all in on the Kickstarter, from day one, have read everything on BGG and the Mantic forums and read reviews left right and centre; my actual gameplay consists of playing the first two intro scenarios with my wife, very shortly before the arrival of offspring #1. I have not had the opportunity to play it since then...

Character creation takes up the bulk of it and certain elements can seem to be poorly worded. Some race and class combinations can be skewed to either extreme of power; apparently the Salamander Barbarian is a mincing machine. It's going to be the only way to use non-standard characters in games, though. If you want to use Ibrahim the Paladin in Dwarf King's Quest, what do you do in say scenario 4? Use the version from the Tyrant of Halpi scenario 4? Who knows if it will be a bit of a mess?

As I said earlier, if the adventure has magically warded doors then you either absolutely positively definitely have to have a way to open them, or decide that they're just normal doors.

It has a levelling up system, where the characters gain XP and can use them to level up between scenarios and take time out in the tavern, temple or whatever to gain bonuses or equipment.

It also has rules for random dungeon design and different enemies, traps etc.


The problem with the Adventurer's Companion was that I don't think that it was part of the original design brief. Ronnie talked about producing a book with the working title "The Book of Depravity" that was going to be a Dungeon Saga meets D&D thing, apparently this was news to the game designer which is why it's a bit messy. Much (non) hilarity and drama ensued.

TL;DR

I think that it's worth buying, but it's a bit rough. As long as you're not the kind of person who thinks that DS should be a well balanced tournament game and just want to explore some monster infested dungeons, then you could do far worse.
   
 
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