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Please add option for "Blessings only useable at current location"

Variant feedback Option blessings

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14 replies to this topic

#1
Gamerfergy

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Hi,

In the board game version of the game, some found the basic game too easy, especially with multiple characters. One easy variant that some people (including me) use is to add a restriction to the use of Blessings where a character can only use a Blessing to add to die rolls "at their location.".This variant makes it more beneficial for party members to stick together and makes the game more challenging and interactive between the characters (the characters really need each other more for protection and support).

It is very fun and challenging to play this way. I play the game online this way and it is relatively easy to do. Can you add an option that would allow players to play with this restriction? It would add a very fun and challenging option for people to play the game without being tempted to use that Blessing at another character's location to add to your character's check!!!!

It would be great to hear if the developers would consider adding this option.

Best, Fergy

#2
Deth Braedon

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I almost never have characters at the same location unless they have powers (like Lem) that *require* someone at your location to benefit.

Mirisiel is noticeably weaker if required to be wth others.
Lirianne has a power that cannot benefit characters at her location.

I can go on with other examples. The game allows bunching up or splitting up and gives some incentive for some to do one or some to do the other and gives no major imperative towards either method of play. I think it it clear why that is so.

If you want a tougher game with the app, play at the legendary level.
If you want a tougher game wth the physical copy, reduce the number of blessings in the blessings deck (the number one suggestion for increasing difficulty).
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#3
Bampop

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Or just don't play blessings from a character at another location.
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#4
Hastur

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I don't mind alternate rules as long as they're associated with higher difficulty settings.  I don't like toggles in the general sense.  The game should be the game that Paizo made.  When the devs start accomodating the 'bragging rights' crowd (and I know how much some of them hate the accuracy of that phrase), then they leave themselves open to harsh criticism from other players.  Frankly, I don't think I'd have a hard time finishing with this particular remedy, but I do resent the fact that it solves a problem the vast majority of us mortal users don't have.  Blessings work just fine the way they're made.

 

Do I hate the extra love Acid Arrow gets?  No.  Do I hate the nerfbat taken to the candle card?  No.  It's all good.  However, I think the basic game should be as it is written in the rules.  Everything else should be a simple matter of the difficulty slider bar.



#5
Gamerfergy

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Thanks all for the comments. If anyone wants to try this option, it is easy to implement on the app. I've played with this variant with all three levels of difficulty in the app and found it to be very fun and interesting.

I've tried several variants in the board game over the past year or two and I've found this one to be the most straight forward, interesting, and fun. It does tweak how characters are used and, I think, in a good way. It gives a slightly more classic dungeon crawl feel in that your Druid or other non combat heavy characters are better protected by a fighter or other characters who are at the same location and can add blessings at that location. The major issue some players have found is that, in 4-6 character games, the most important cards to have are blessings.....some of the strengths and weaknesses of characters wash out because all you have to do is throw a bunch of blessings, sometimes no matter what the check is.

Of course, if you don't like this idea, just ignore my post. I'm not saying change the game, but more game "options" would be great! For example, the toggle option for perma death is great, I'd be all for more toggle options for other ways to play that folks have found fun.

#6
Cainhu

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If at a 6 player game you can throw a bunch of blessings on any check then you either very lucky or playing something wrong. At 6 players most blessings and allies get used on exploration or critical checks.

 

Generally speaking, I'm against to include every random house rule into the game, especilly if it nerfes a complete card type, which very reason to exist is to help with checks outsde of a character's speciality.



#7
Hannibal_PJV

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I personally like most the "move only to the closest location", that is already in the app. It is very thematic even it is not in the official tabletop rules.

#8
Jehren

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I personally like most the "move only to the closest location", that is already in the app. It is very thematic even it is not in the official tabletop rules.

And can be incredibly frustrating at key moments, which is great in small doses.  Definitely a fun addition.



#9
Borissimo

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While "just don't play blessings then" and "if you want a challenge, just play legendary" are technically valid responses to the OP, I suspect the OP was already aware of these ingenious possibilities. OP, I feel ya. Here's my attempt to be a little more constructive (while, I'm afraid, delivering some bad news). :)

 

Your suggestion isn't likely to appear in Pathfinder Adventures. This isn't because it's a bad suggestion, but because of a couple of non-obvious reasons.

 

The first is that the developers seem to shy away from anything that would create more options in the interface. You'll notice that the app has almost no options whatsoever other than Permadeath. In the closed beta, when the testers were offering suggestions, any suggestion that would have required an option to appear somewhere in the menu was rejected, no matter how good it was. We can speculate as to why this is a design goal, and I'd guess there are two main causes:

 

1) Development of anything, no matter how simple it appears, takes time, and this game is already way behind schedule.

 

2) The game can be overwhelmingly difficult for new players, and a firing squad of options (even if each option is perfectly reasonable) would add to what for some is already too much cognitive load.

 

The other factor is that, as others have so sagely noted, this variant can be self-implemented. Were the designers to bend on their "no toggles" philosophy and start implementing options, an option that doesn't strictly require enforcement by the app itself would likely be on the bottom of the priority list (or fail to make the priority list at all).


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#10
Gamerfergy

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Borissimo, yes, yes, thank you very much for your thoughtful response! As you mentioned, I'm very aware of the possibilities you mentioned (and others) having played the board game standard version and "home brew" variants for close to 100 hours. Your feedback about how the developers will likely respond is very well taken and, you're right, the app still has some bugs with some basic mechanics of the game (i.e. cast spell on another player's turn and the app bugs and switches the current turn to the spellcaster, etc) so introducing other elements is probably not in the cards just now.

My post then can be taken as an option of another way to play the game. For those interested, please feel free to try out this option and post your experience here! To use this option, treat Blessings cards as if they read "Discard this card to add 1 die to a check [at your location]" and "Discard this card to add 2 dice to a (blank) check [at your location], " etc.

For those who aren't aware, Boardgamegeek has many reviews of the game where reviewers were disappointed that the game mechanics actually ENCOURAGES party members to split up. Why do they say that? Basically, in a 4-6 character game, you need to fan out your characters to close locations as fast as possible (because the blessings deck will run out otherwise). On top of that, there are nasty cards which effect all characters at a location (I.e pit trap). So splitting up makes sense, and, no worries because your characters can use Blessings no matter where they are. What's the bottom line? The game ends up being less fun---you don't need each character's specific abilities and strengths because you can very often use a bunch of blessings to save the day.

Let me give another example of how the current rules are less interesting, challenging (and most important---fun!) than the option that restricts the use of blessings. You have a four character party with four blessings total in their current hands. You want to explore a location with several barriers. Hmmmm? You should probably send a character (or characters) to explore who have the best chance to defeat the most common barriers (like someone with high dexterity or thieves tools). However, when playing with unrestricted blessings in 4-6 character games, this doesn't really matter. You can send a character with halfway decent dexterity and if they hit a trap, you can use your other characters' blessings to save the day. This same scenario plays out over and over for different checks in the game. Because of this, certain card types don't even really matter (I'm looking at you----armor). In this situations, you can throw so many blessings for combat in a multi-character game that you'll never really need armor (basically you are going to win your combat rolls). Anyway, don't take my word for it, look up the reviews on Boardgamegeek and elsewhere and you'll see this criticism by a lot of people (many of whom came to this conclusion after logging 100 hours or more of play).

For those of you who think the gameplay for 4-6 character games (in particular) could be improved, I think the restricted blessing rule above really helps! Anyway, if you find the standard rules or the restricted blessing option above to be more fun and challenging---either way, awesome, enjoy your game!

#11
wakasm

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Just curious - have you tried this variant in later adventure paths, like Skulls and Shackles or Wrath of the Righteous? 

 

I played with a group in the real world who originally read the rules wrong and thought blessings could only be used in the same location... and they had a hard time but enjoyed the challenge.  They often replayed the same scenarios over and over.  However, that was for Rise of the Runelords only.  Once i corrected the rules for them, they had a much easier time with the game to say the least.  


Edited by wakasm, 20 July 2016 - 07:31 PM.

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#12
Hannibal_PJV

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In wrath it would be fatal :-)
But Rice of the Rune lords was so easy that it allowed a lot of house rules to make it harder and more thematic at the same time.

#13
Bajie

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In wrath it would be fatal :-)
But Rice of the Rune lords was so easy that it allowed a lot of house rules to make it harder and more thematic at the same time.

Any chance you're asian too, hannibal? ^^

Edited by Bajie, 21 July 2016 - 03:18 AM.


#14
Hannibal_PJV

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Noup... Scandinavian... But that is allmost the same thing :)

#15
Edannan

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I think at some point a series of optional 'house rules' would be a great addition to the game. Unfortunately, until they complete the entire Adventure Path, that 'at some point' is far in the future, and would eat up valuable development and testing resources that could be spent in getting the first AP out. To be honest, having played at least a little bit of Skull and Shackles, I think the problem isn't with the mechanics of Blessings, it's the general difficulty (Or lack thereof) of this Adventure Path. I agree that Armor is at best an afterthought, because of the all-or-nothing nature of combat. If there were more creatures that did damage when defeated (Especially COMBAT damage), then armor would have a larger place in the game. As it is, I typically only use armor that doubles as another type of card (Blackcloth, Serpent, and so on).







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