[Gloomhaven] A small, quick party game

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  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    We just did a scenario which involved surviving for a certain amount of time, and it was a letdown. We should have been more aggressive pursuing treasure, maybe, because we just used immobilization to run and hide in a corner.

    What is this I don't even.
  • FryFry Registered User regular
    One way to purge curses (and blesses, for that matter) is to use a bunch of multitarget attacks. Especially if you can get advantage (or disadvantage) on those attacks. I've stopped buying blessings for my Scoundrel, because I just burn through them so quickly that I don't feel like I get any value (also, the Scoundrel's modifier deck is so good that blesses don't add much)

  • gavindelgavindel The reason all your software is brokenRegistered User regular
    So the suggestions for dealing with shields are...mechanics that ignore shields? :bzz: Clearly the best way to interact with the mechanic is to ignore it. That's how you know its such an engaging problem as opposed to a lazy form of virtual health for monsters.

    Same token, you lose the attacks one way or another. Multi-attacks help with the amount of turns lost, sure, but multi-target nonburn cards are rare for many classes.

    Angels, innovations, and the hubris of tiny things:
    Seraphim
  • finnithfinnith TorontoRegistered User regular
    While I agree that the designers have utilized shields as a way of artificially upping the difficulty, I think there are at least interesting trade-offs in how you approach shields. Pierce is only available on certain cards which are substandard in compared to equivalent cards, so you're really only going to take them if you really need to. Your alternative then is cards that cause raw damage, so stuff like wounds, retaliate, or certain plagueherald combos.

    Point is that it forces you to rethink your standard card combos, which to me makes for interesting gameplay.

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  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    gavindel wrote: »
    So the suggestions for dealing with shields are...mechanics that ignore shields? :bzz: Clearly the best way to interact with the mechanic is to ignore it. That's how you know its such an engaging problem as opposed to a lazy form of virtual health for monsters.

    Or... or... shields could be why those mechanics exist at all. Without enemy shields, pierce is meaningless. Doing damage via traps* and wounds and not wasting your time trying to hit for 4+ damage per strike is just sound strategy if you have access to those abilities.

    If every obstacle could be overcome by whacking it with a default attack-2 this game would be boring.

    *Unfortunately the most egregious shield pests tend to fly...

    ElvenshaeAuralynx
  • gavindelgavindel The reason all your software is brokenRegistered User regular
    The mechanic works as a way to force resource expenditure, but so would simply adding more health.

    I'd be more inclined to call pierce worthwhile if it scaled worth anything. For example, if a pierce enchantment was 2 pierce for 30g, that would give it that edge over simply taking a +1 for 20 more gold that works all the time with no drawbacks. Maybe dump pierce on one card so you can nail the ghosts and such.

    I think the Sun solo item is a better example of shields. Shield 3 on reaction at the cost of a Light element. That presents a choice: take less damage or save the Light for a smite? (Now this cost probably breaks down at higher levels when Light generation becomes trivial.)

    Compare this to the Sun's trademark shield card: permanent shield 1 (or 2 with enchantment) at -1 movement. That card is fantastic for door busting and has saved my party several times as I laughed off 5 or 6 sources of damage for a round. The tradeoff? I have to spend literally the rest of my time figuring out how to actually reach the next fight at the same time as my party.

    Is this a tactical choice in the sense that I have to choose what to do? Yes.

    Is it a good choice? No. Its boring. Its not doing cool things or contributing to the party's effectiveness or altering the course of play. Its always doing long rests and hoarding my Movement 4 cards so that I can use boots of speed to get five movement so I can keep up.

    To draw on the Forest Imps again, they have a card that is Shield 5 for a round. That is enough shield that your attacks - which you had to choose prior to the effect revealing - are more or less useless. You can spin that as forcing you to attack other targets that round. Great...what happens when they're the only targets left in the room?

    Well, you waste your most precious resource. An entire round smothered so that...what? The imps can fly around too high to reach or something? That's the pattern with shields. They're stalling.

    Angels, innovations, and the hubris of tiny things:
    Seraphim
  • CerberusCerberus Registered User regular
    gavindel wrote: »
    Compare this to the Sun's trademark shield card: permanent shield 1 (or 2 with enchantment) at -1 movement. That card is fantastic for door busting and has saved my party several times as I laughed off 5 or 6 sources of damage for a round. The tradeoff? I have to spend literally the rest of my time figuring out how to actually reach the next fight at the same time as my party.

    Is this a tactical choice in the sense that I have to choose what to do? Yes.

    Is it a good choice? No. Its boring. Its not doing cool things or contributing to the party's effectiveness or altering the course of play. Its always doing long rests and hoarding my Movement 4 cards so that I can use boots of speed to get five movement so I can keep up.

    You say it isn't contributing to the parties effectiveness or altering the course of play, but it's doing exactly that. You've chosen to play it early to get the benefit, but it comes with a downside, the playing of that card was a tactical choice.

    If you played it later, you'd be less impacted by the movement issues, but obviously damage is more of an issue. You may not enjoy that the card has a downside as its limiting what you can do, but you are making choices that are impacting the game.

    Maybe it wasn't the right choice for door busting, maybe it was your only one, but maybe the party needs different equipment for this.

  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    gavindel wrote: »
    The mechanic works as a way to force resource expenditure, but so would simply adding more health.

    I'd be more inclined to call pierce worthwhile if it scaled worth anything. For example, if a pierce enchantment was 2 pierce for 30g, that would give it that edge over simply taking a +1 for 20 more gold that works all the time with no drawbacks. Maybe dump pierce on one card so you can nail the ghosts and such.

    From a mechanical point of view I agree that Attack +N is better than Pierce N in most situations and a wash for any Shield value N or greater.

    But I do not agree that Shields and extra health are in any way equivalent. Shield typically represent a monster that is hard to hit, whether that be because they are incredibly tough (stone golems, earth demons), basically incorporeal (spirits, wind/fire demons), of unusual anatomy (skeletons, oozes), or otherwise protected by magical/physical armor (imps, shamans, guards). Getting past these defenses takes either precision (pierce) or brute force.

    Whereas additional health just represents something that can absorb punishment before falling. Zombies are mindless bloated corpses but still just bodies in the end. Skeletons, OTOH, are a smaller-profile target consisting mostly of empty space always. If you blindly swing hard enough you'll probably hit them and not pass through, or you can just aim for the skull. And just because you managed it once doesn't automatically mean you can do so every time, which extra health would represent.

    Now... it could be argued that "evasiveness" is better represented thematically by disadvantage (night demons, black imps). I'd much rather play the version we got than the version where a lot more things inflict disadvantage on us. You think curses suck NOW...


  • FryFry Registered User regular
    I think if everything had Shield, that would be annoying, but with the current frequency, it's a nice mixup. My favorite attacks as a Scoundrel are my Attack 2/Target 2 and Attack 2/Target 3, and it vexes me when enemies with Shield 2 show up, because those attacks are nerfed pretty hard in that circumstance. However, I have other good attacks I can use against those enemies, I have other party members that have Pierce on their cards, and one player who is somehow always able to line up a good AOE with his Piercing Bow. Everyone cheers extra hard when someone flips a 2x against an enemy with Shield.

    There are still plenty of enemy types I haven't seen at all, but in my experience so far, usually when an enemy action puts up a big shield, that enemy isn't doing much else that round, which is always an appreciated respite. And I get to feel extra awesome when I outspeed that enemy (since the extra shield doesn't become active until that enemy's initiative).

    VyolynceElvenshae
  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Broadly, not always, but broadly most shield heavy enemy locations have more damage traps.

    So you're usually presented with an encounter that your party can counter by: A. swapping skills to penetration attacks; B. swapping skills to board manipulation or C. buying penetration items.

    It seems honestly like a good way to add the illusion of more diversity of gameplay, by making you consider trade-offs based on the party composition.

    What is this I don't even.
  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    LRR's first session is up on YT. I'm not inlining it since it weighs in at a svelte four and a half hours.

    As a result I haven't actually watched it yet, but I have to assume a bunch of that run time is learning the game, creating initial characters, and maybe running the first scenario twice since we all know it's intentionally back-breaking? Maybe I'll find the time this weekend...

    jdarksun
  • BogartBogart Streetwise Hercules Fighting The Rising Odds Registered User, Moderator mod
    Scenario 18. Failure.

    Fuck oozes.

    VyolynceFryGnizmoDarkewolfeMadpoet
  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Bogart wrote: »
    Scenario 18. Failure.

    Fuck oozes.

    Legit, ooze strategy
    every ooze game we just let them all spawn till they're out of tokens and we run from them.

    What is this I don't even.
    jdarksunVyolynceArdol
  • finnithfinnith TorontoRegistered User regular
    I think in that scenario we accidentally considered the trees as enemies, which kinda made Bolt's Flurry of Axes even more broken than it currently is.

    Also what do you guys think is a more interesting next class to play. Bolt or Three Spears? I was thinking of going with an item refresh-based build for Three Spears to be a quasi tank/dmg dealer.

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  • FryFry Registered User regular
    Darkewolfe wrote: »
    Bogart wrote: »
    Scenario 18. Failure.

    Fuck oozes.

    Legit, ooze strategy
    every ooze game we just let them all spawn till they're out of tokens and we run from them.
    We've had one ooze game so far, and it was a "kill 'em all." With some oozes in the first room. So I'm not sure that would have really worked out for us.

    Although, on the other hand, maybe we could have rushed through to the last room, opened it, dealt with the non-ooze shit in there, then worked our way back to the first room to deal with the herd of (hopefully) weakened oozes. I suppose that might have been easier than what we ended up doing, which was dealing with a full ten oozes in the final room. :thinking:

  • BogartBogart Streetwise Hercules Fighting The Rising Odds Registered User, Moderator mod
    Waiting them out seems like a not great plan, as they heal half as often as they damage themselves, which means likely four+ goes through their combat cards (until you hit a refresh each time) before even the standard ones are dead. With three rooms in scenario 18, each of which have at least two oozes, most characters (certainly the ones I'm running), will simply exhaust before that happens.

    I think I may have illegally spawned a couple of oozes in water, which would cut down on their number the next time I played it, but still.

  • FryFry Registered User regular
    It probably also depends how big the party is. One or two characters, it's hard to get to component limit, and staring down that many enemies is daunting. Four characters, you're probably only a turn or two away from component limit, but that's not much worse than a normal room of enemies, so eh.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    I dunno. It's not generally been a deliberate strategy, but it's happened every single time we've faced them.

    What is this I don't even.
  • BogartBogart Streetwise Hercules Fighting The Rising Odds Registered User, Moderator mod
    The last room has three, one of which is an elite, which can lose health and still spawn a full strength standard one. It seems to take a long time to tick down their health. Only played it once, though.

    Having giant vipers that poison you with every attack doesn't help, as it makes healing very iffy and makes it more likely that you have to discard a card to avoid losing health because you can't heal up enough to take the hit that turn.

  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    edited February 19
    Ran scenario 51 tonight with the full party and kind of ROFLstomped it. Our now-retired Bolt had a lot to do with that but with that much HP we all got our shots in this time.

    Not really sure where we go from here, if anywhere. (EDIT: other than Frosthaven, anyway.)

    Vyolynce on
    Elvenshae
  • CerberusCerberus Registered User regular
    We recently did 51 and Bolt was absolutely critical in it. I was Saw and the two combo'd really well.

  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    LRR's Second session is up and they've cut it down to a mere 2.5 hours. I watched the first one and outside of a couple of glaring errors (Cori was wildly incorrect about how the Brute's shield-gaining passive worked, to her detriment) the team ultimately did fine. They're rocking Brute, Spellweaver, Mindthief, and Tinkerer so they're a fragile bunch.

  • FryFry Registered User regular
    jdarksun wrote: »
    Brute without Scoundrel?! Scandalous.

    Do those characters interact in any meaningful way? Those two were in my group's initial party and have yet to retire, and I haven't noticed any significant synergy.

  • OrcaOrca Registered User regular
    Fry wrote: »
    jdarksun wrote: »
    Brute without Scoundrel?! Scandalous.

    Do those characters interact in any meaningful way? Those two were in my group's initial party and have yet to retire, and I haven't noticed any significant synergy.

    Many of Scoundrel's cards deal more damage/have additional effects if your target is next to an ally. You basically get backstab bonuses. Plus with someone else on the front lines that can take hits, you can do the run in and hit, hit again and run away tactic to avoid taking damage. And the Brute can tank the damage.

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    Vyolyncejdarksun
  • FryFry Registered User regular
    I find it exceedingly hard to set up those attacks, because the Brute almost always goes later in the round. And then doesn't want to rush in and stand next to something that's not dead (understandable).

  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    Fry wrote: »
    I find it exceedingly hard to set up those attacks, because the Brute almost always goes later in the round. And then doesn't want to rush in and stand next to something that's not dead (understandable).
    The Brute is built to exploit getting hit though...

  • AuralynxAuralynx Darkness is a perspective Watching the ego workRegistered User regular
    edited February 22
    We actually got Gloomhaven out Monday after an extended hiatus of over a year and picked up with missions 94 and 95. No special highlights, but we finally got to see the Saw character in action and our Animal Face guy retired at level 8 with one less perk than my formerly very-intimidating Scary Face. We've now got everything but Bolts and Circles open, and I'm kicking myself that I made another Cragheart instead of waiting 'til the 3-Spears box finally opened.

    Spoilers for 3 Spears:
    Holy cow, Quartermaster is crazy. Probably not overwhelmingly good off the bat, but that's just a really nice set of abilities. The high-end scroll stuff looks hugely entertaining with the right stack of consumables. I'd worry that we wouldn't have enough game left to go to get the full effect, but the class looks like a lot of fun.

    Spoilers for Mission 95 / Saw / Cthulhu / Animal Face:
    So we looked at this and went "Whoa, that seems vile," but it wasn't actually that bad with the team we'd lucked into with a guest player rolling up a Sawbones. It's a neat change from the early game being on a team where literally everyone has healing! Sawbones' status-immunity global let me power through the trap hallway with Cragheart and wreck most of the Deep Terrors by slamming them into things / Backup Ammunition shenanigans, whereas Plagueherald's flying and Loot 2 made the room full of water less-than-problematic. Our ratling Beast Tyrant was able to provide just enough long-range support that the bear handled slowing the demons down admirably - with a lot of help from the Earth Demons just insisting on healing themselves. The miniature-swap from Beast Tyrant let us pull the boss out and drop the hammer afterwards.

    Over two missions Sawbones seemed very prone to running out of cards, but you really can't argue the bang for your buck on him. I thought he'd be mediocre but have been pretty clearly proven wrong.

    E: Quote is not spoiler!

    Auralynx on
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  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    Auralynx wrote: »
    We actually got Gloomhaven out Monday after an extended hiatus of over a year and picked up with missions 94 and 95. No special highlights, but we finally got to see the Saw character in action and our Animal Face guy retired at level 8 with one less perk than my formerly very-intimidating Scary Face. We've now got everything but Bolts and Circles open, and I'm kicking myself that I made another Cragheart instead of waiting 'til the 3-Spears box finally opened.

    Spoilers for 3 Spears:
    Holy cow, Quartermaster is crazy. Probably not overwhelmingly good off the bat, but that's just a really nice set of abilities. The high-end scroll stuff looks hugely entertaining with the right stack of consumables. I'd worry that we wouldn't have enough game left to go to get the full effect, but the class looks like a lot of fun.

    Spoilers for Mission 95 / Saw / Cthulhu / Animal Face:
    So we looked at this and went "Whoa, that seems vile," but it wasn't actually that bad with the team we'd lucked into with a guest player rolling up a Sawbones. It's a neat change from the early game being on a team where literally everyone has healing! Sawbones' status-immunity global let me power through the trap hallway with Cragheart and wreck most of the Deep Terrors by slamming them into things / Backup Ammunition shenanigans, whereas Plagueherald's flying and Loot 2 made the room full of water less-than-problematic. Our ratling Beast Tyrant was able to provide just enough long-range support that the bear handled slowing the demons down admirably - with a lot of help from the Earth Demons just insisting on healing themselves. The miniature-swap from Beast Tyrant let us pull the boss out and drop the hammer afterwards.

    Over two missions Sawbones seemed very prone to running out of cards, but you really can't argue the bang for your buck on him. I thought he'd be mediocre but have been pretty clearly proven wrong.

    E: Quote is not spoiler!

    Yeah flying and loot 2 make that room hilarious. That's exactly how we cleared that half of the scenario.

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