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 SDE Arcade: house rules for Wrath, Command deck and more 
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Minion
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Joined: March 25th, 2016, 7:53 am
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Hi everyone.
(Disclaimer: I'm French, so excuse and correct any bad wording.)

Massive edit after Arcade 2.0 preview.

I've discovered SDE with Forgotten King. I've mostly played Arcade but also tested several versions of Beta.

I really enjoy Arcade but the Command deck from FK and how monsters behave are frustrating to me.
I am also not totally thrilled by some 2.0 rules like Challenge and Plot.
So I came up with my own tweaks to make Arcade more enjoyable.
I also added most of the rules from Arcade 2.0 when applicable, and tweaked the MMC.

I don't hope for an automated Consul to play like a human Consul. With so much randomness it is hard to balance and make sure that monsters won't waste their turn (common in FK) or be too much powerful.
That's why I ditched the Command deck for a new system revolving around 2 dice.
The idea is to avoid useless turns (Turbo, Lag or Spawn cards) as Monsters always move and attack. There is still a slight chance that they attack the Hero with less Wrath and I upped the probability of Unique actions. Spawn has been moved on the MMC (see below).

Most of the base rules are Arcade 2.0 except alterations described bellow:

POPULATE THE DUNGEON
Next, each spawning point spawn. The players gather all elite monsters listed on the spawning point’s card and place them within three squares and line of sight of the spawning point. Elites must be placed as close to a Hero as possible. However, elites may not be placed adjacent to other monsters. Then place all minions listed on the spawning point’s card such that they are within two squares of an Elite in their gang (this may end up placing them further from the spawning point than two spaces). Monsters may not be placed adjacent to another monster, unless it cannot be placed otherwise.
Each SP spawn before the beginning of the game like in FK, but the placement of minions is like in 2.0.

ACTIVATE MONSTERS

1. ADVANCE THE MIGHTY MONSTER CHART
No change here.

2. DETERMINE DISTURBED MONSTERS (tweaked from FK)
Only monsters that are disturbed are activated during the Consul Turn. Monsters are disturbed when they begin their turn on a disturbed tile.

A dungeon tile is disturbed when one of the following conditions are met:
1. A Hero is on the tile.
2. A Hero makes any action which targets or affects a monster or spawn point on the tile.
3. If there are no monsters on any disturbed tiles during Command phase or if there is no spawning point on any disturbed tile during Spawn phase, one tile adjacent to a disturbed tile is disturbed at the end of this Consul Turn.

Once a tile is disturbed, it remains disturbed until the end of the game.

Return of disturbed tiles but slightly different from FK. Gives a good pacing especially for first tile, since every SP spawn before beginning the game.

3. ORDER OF ACTIVATION
Monsters activate in a set order:
1. Creep
2. Boss
3. Mini-boss
4. Elite

Creeps are tied to the Explore deck and don't activate the same way as Solo or Elite monsters. See Creeps, in my thread about Exploration (totally optional but add flavor in my opinion).

Begin with the monster of the given type that is closest to the Hero with the most wrath. Then activate the next closest monster and continue outwards until all monsters of the given type have activated. Players activate all monsters of the given type before moving to the monsters of the next type.
If monsters are equal distance away, the players choose which ones to activate first.

4. ACTIVATION (here's the big changes)
One at a time, each disturbed Solo and Elite monsters performs a complete activation.
Elites from the same Elite Gang activate together: perform every step of the activation for both Elites.
Like Heroes, Solo and Gangs perform their complete activation.
Also, each Solo and Gang can target different Heroes and use or not Unique actions.


PERFORM UPKEEP
No change here.

DETERMINE MONSTER'S TARGET AND UNIQUE ACTIONS
To determine which Hero the monster will target and if it will use Unique actions this turn, players roll 1 red die and 1 blue die.
For an Elite Gang, players roll once for all Elites in the Gang.

1. Target
Monsters always target a Hero whom they can get within range and line of sight after moving.
If several Heroes meet these criteria, the red die determines the target this turn:
- any number of stars: the monster targets the Hero with the most wrath (in case of tie, the closest tied Hero)
- blank face: the monster targets the Hero with the least wrath (in case of tie, the closest tied Hero)
- potion face: the monster targets the Hero with the most wounds (in case of tie, the tied Hero with the most Wrath)

Monsters target Heroes they will be able to attack. If no Hero can be targeted, monsters move toward the Hero with the most Wrath.
After the monster has determined his target, one Hero may take a Loud Slurping support action or drink a green healing potion to make the monster change its targeted Hero. (will only work if the monster can get in range and LOS of the new target)

2. Unique actions
Monsters don't perform Unique actions every turn.
The blue die determines if the monster will use Unique actions this turn:
- any number of stars: the monster use Unique actions
- no star (blank or heart face): the monster don't use Unique actions

5. COMMAND PHASE
Monsters always move toward and attack the targeted Hero.

No more changes after that.

MIGHTY MONSTER CHART
Changes had to be made on the MMC to accomodate these rules.
Unique commands, Plot and Challenge cards are removed from the MMC.
Every turn (except turn 7) sees at least Move and Fight commands (with variants like Epic Fight and Move x2) and Boss Sighting have been added too.

Turn 1: Move – Fight
Turn 2: Move – Fight – Reinforce
Turn 3: Move – Fight – Spawn
Turn 4: Move – Fight – Boss Sighting Tile 1
Turn 5: Spawn Mini-Boss – Move – Fight
Turn 6: Star Bonus +1 STR - Move – Fight – Reinforce
Turn 7: Regroup – Spawn
Turn 8: Move – Epic Fight – Reinforce
Turn 9: Star Bonus +1 ARM – Move – Fight
Turn 10: Spawn – Move x2 – Fight – Boss Sighting Tile 1 and 2
Turn 11: Move – Epic Fight - Regroup
Turn 12: Spawn Dungeon Boss - Move x2 – Fight – Reinforce

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Last edited by Arckelian on February 2nd, 2018, 11:28 am, edited 17 times in total.



March 25th, 2016, 2:36 pm
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Minion
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As stated above, most of the rules introduced in the Beta are used, as they are really good:
- New line of sight: enemy models block LOS, except a big model's LOS is only blocked by a big model.
- Movement rule for big models
- Less basic actions: Dash instead of Run, only one way to open chests (no key, no lock-picking)
- Critical success
- Princess coins and Victory conditions
- Status tokens removed at the end of activation
- New Reward and Wrath charts
- Placement of minions
...

There was also, some time ago, a high demand for the Mini-Boss to give his specific Treasure card when defeated. I thought it was pretty thematic, but also getting quite boring with so few Mini-Boss in my collection.
I play that for each Mini-Boss destroyed, Heroes pick the Mini-Boss specific Treasure card and draw 1 card from Treasure deck. Choose one and discard the other.

I also add an old rule that give ranged heroes a use for their melee attack:
A Hero may never use a Magic or Missile attack with a range superior to 1 if he is adjacent to a monster. The Hero can move to not be adjacent to any monster, or use an attack with area effect or a melee attack if he has a Sword X Icon on its STR attribute.
Exception: Heroes must use their STR attribute even if they don't have a sword icon (like Princess Ruby) to get rid of Rabid Squirrels on their card (or in their pants).

And I play with Explore house-rules (see my sig).

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Last edited by Arckelian on February 23rd, 2017, 7:24 pm, edited 14 times in total.



March 30th, 2016, 12:26 pm
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Mini-Boss
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With the new wrath system, the new game must be provided with more tokens.

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March 30th, 2016, 1:46 pm
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Minion
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@ Nephastus
I don't really understand what you mean.
There is already enough Wrath tokens in the box to play with this house-rule.
Or you mean Heroes should gain more Wrath?

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March 30th, 2016, 2:42 pm
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Denizen
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I think Nephastus is referring to the new Beta rules for Classic mode where wrath has been integrated. More wrath tokens would be needed in the V2 box if that wrath mechanic stays.

As to your suggestions for Arcade Mode, I don't mind the altered wrath values, I agree on the wounding Mini-bosses/Bosses issue.

But I'm not sure about your ideas for how monsters target heroes. Seems like it could lead to more bookkeeping.
Remembering who had the higher wrath then? who has it now? Is it more than 2 higher than the hero who was highest previously?
Especially as Arcade has the 2 hero activation, wrath can change hands quite quickly.

I know that Arcade can get a bit predictable because you know exactly who will be targeted and can manipulate wrath to make sure it's your most buffed hero but I wonder if more cards like "Greifer", where the hero with the lowest wrath is targeted, would be a better solution.
The arcade deck could easily be tweaked to have cards that target the hero with second highest wrath or a card that says alternate attacks between the 2 heroes with the highest wrath. Might be simpler to keep track of?


March 30th, 2016, 3:09 pm
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Minion
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@ DungeonCrawler

Thank you for your feedback.

Quote:
I think Nephastus is referring to the new Beta rules for Classic mode where wrath has been integrated. More wrath tokens would be needed in the V2 box if that wrath mechanic stays.

Ok for the Beta Classic Mode. But I don't think the same Wrath system from Beta Classic will be integrated in Beta Arcade. This Beta Classic just gives a use for Wrath tokens in Classic in my opinion.

Quote:
But I'm not sure about your ideas for how monsters target heroes. Seems like it could lead to more bookkeeping.
Remembering who had the higher wrath then? who has it now? Is it more than 2 higher than the hero who was highest previously?
Especially as Arcade has the 2 hero activation, wrath can change hands quite quickly.

It doesn't feel like bookkeeping to me. If a Monster/Gang has been attacked or has attacked in the previous turn (which shouldn't be too hard to remember), he shouldn't target another Hero this turn, unless another Hero has at least 2 more Wrath tokens than its current target.
I don't know if I made it clearer (English is not my native language). There is no keeping track of the Wrath from previous turn, just look at the distribution of Wrath at this Monsters' turn.

I agree it's still possible to manipulate Wrath, but I feel that the game is less frustrating this way, because you don't feel forced to manipulate Wrath. Like your tank is not forced to drink a potion just to keep Wrath.
About the tweaked Command deck, it is a good idea for the new products and could complete this house-rule which I made to be applicable with the available material.

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March 30th, 2016, 3:55 pm
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Mini-Boss
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Cool rules. I play a lot of Arcade Mode myself. I've been working on alternative Wrath and targeting rules for monsters. Often times I find a hero getting targeted down by monster after monster and it's just overkill. I think Wrath is important, but at the same time other monsters should pick other targets. I've also struggled with the Arcade Deck too. I think it's too clunky and many of the options are just pointless (like Move x2 and Refresh). Here are a couple things I've been experimenting with.

More Wrath. Like you, I like to increase the Wrath count. I have been trying heroes x2 plus 1 as well. More Wrath is more management, and I think that's important.

Targeting rules. When you activate an Elite Monster, it will move towards the hero with the most Wrath that is in its LOS. This means it won't try to run around and chase a hero in another room. When it attacks, its signature attack and first regular attack will always target the hero with the most Wrath. Any other attacks after that it will direct at other heroes in range in order of most to least Wrath. This will allow heroes to stick together and share the attacks. This is very helpful against bosses, who might one shot a hero.

No more Command Deck. So I've been playing around with losing the Command cards and finding another way to do things. Here is my solution. At the end of each Consul activation, every spawn point will spawn all monsters from its spawn pool. This is good incentive for heroes to move forward or risk getting overwhelmed. To decide what each gang does, you roll a green die for each. Each gang acts individually, so you don't apply the same commands to all monsters. If you roll stars, the monsters are aiming for the hero with the highest Wrath. If the number of stars is less than the Wrath that hero has, they perform unique actions against them. If a Heart/Potion is rolled, treat it as a Griefer card. This means heroes with more Wrath are more likely to get hit by powerful attacks!

Anyway, it's still a work in progress. I wonder what ideas SPM has for Arcade in 2.0?


April 13th, 2016, 4:54 am
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Minion
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Hi eternaldream. Thank you for your feedback.

Quote:
Targeting rules. When you activate an Elite Monster, it will move towards the hero with the most Wrath that is in its LOS. This means it won't try to run around and chase a hero in another room. When it attacks, its signature attack and first regular attack will always target the hero with the most Wrath. Any other attacks after that it will direct at other heroes in range in order of most to least Wrath. This will allow heroes to stick together and share the attacks. This is very helpful against bosses, who might one shot a hero.

I like your idea about targeting heroes in LOS. It makes a lot of sense.

Also, your distribution of attacks seems simpler than what I do. It implies that if the monster has more attacks than heroes in range and LOS, the monster attacks more the hero with most Wrath (if 2 heroes > signature and first regular attack on hero with most Wrath > second regular attack on second hero > third regular attack on hero with most wrath again).
It is a step in the right way and more accessible than my rule.


I will test that to see if it adds up to my rules or replace them.
Quote:
Monsters who have already attacked or been attacked won't change target, unless for a Hero with at least 2 more Wrath tokens than their current target.

I don't know if I will keep the "at least 2 more Wrath tokens", maybe just change target if a hero in LOS has more Wrath.


Quote:
No more Command Deck. So I've been playing around with losing the Command cards and finding another way to do things. Here is my solution. At the end of each Consul activation, every spawn point will spawn all monsters from its spawn pool. This is good incentive for heroes to move forward or risk getting overwhelmed. To decide what each gang does, you roll a green die for each. Each gang acts individually, so you don't apply the same commands to all monsters. If you roll stars, the monsters are aiming for the hero with the highest Wrath. If the number of stars is less than the Wrath that hero has, they perform unique actions against them. If a Heart/Potion is rolled, treat it as a Griefer card. This means heroes with more Wrath are more likely to get hit by powerful attacks!

I can't totally agree with not using the Command Deck. I prefer drawing a replacement card if the card is not useful for monsters (like an Apparition two turns in a row, Move x2...).
I think your solution here is too complicated and time-costing in order to make Arcade more popular/accessible (does the spawn point get a wound from spawning each turn?).
I play the cards and adjust so monsters basically move and attack, sometimes use their unique actions (Combo card), don't respawn 2 turns in a row and sometimes heal (Recovery card).

I'd like to hear what you think about my Wrath chart in first post. I should correct that, since in Beta the Princess Coin is spent during Power-Up phase, it would not earn Wrath.

It's still WIP, but with good ideas like those, we can wait until official rules for Arcade 2.0 (and have a back-up plan if Arcade 2.0 doesn't deliver).

Bye.

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April 13th, 2016, 5:14 pm
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Minion
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Hi.

I've edited and modified the first 2 posts to make them more readable and included modifications based on feedback.

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April 21st, 2016, 8:08 pm
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Minion
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eternaldream wrote:
Cool rules. I play a lot of Arcade Mode myself. I've been working on alternative Wrath and targeting rules for monsters. Often times I find a hero getting targeted down by monster after monster and it's just overkill. I think Wrath is important, but at the same time other monsters should pick other targets. I've also struggled with the Arcade Deck too. I think it's too clunky and many of the options are just pointless (like Move x2 and Refresh). Here are a couple things I've been experimenting with.

More Wrath. Like you, I like to increase the Wrath count. I have been trying heroes x2 plus 1 as well. More Wrath is more management, and I think that's important.

Targeting rules. When you activate an Elite Monster, it will move towards the hero with the most Wrath that is in its LOS. This means it won't try to run around and chase a hero in another room. When it attacks, its signature attack and first regular attack will always target the hero with the most Wrath. Any other attacks after that it will direct at other heroes in range in order of most to least Wrath. This will allow heroes to stick together and share the attacks. This is very helpful against bosses, who might one shot a hero.

No more Command Deck. So I've been playing around with losing the Command cards and finding another way to do things. Here is my solution. At the end of each Consul activation, every spawn point will spawn all monsters from its spawn pool. This is good incentive for heroes to move forward or risk getting overwhelmed. To decide what each gang does, you roll a green die for each. Each gang acts individually, so you don't apply the same commands to all monsters. If you roll stars, the monsters are aiming for the hero with the highest Wrath. If the number of stars is less than the Wrath that hero has, they perform unique actions against them. If a Heart/Potion is rolled, treat it as a Griefer card. This means heroes with more Wrath are more likely to get hit by powerful attacks!

Anyway, it's still a work in progress. I wonder what ideas SPM has for Arcade in 2.0?


I've been playing Arcade regularly recently and am interested in trying your ideas ... Does the miniboss still spawn when the sp is down ? Because rushing a spawner only to find a midboss appear while two tiles of monsters (at least) are piling up on you is no fun (and increases the tile 1 slog effect)


April 22nd, 2016, 10:17 am
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Minion
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Chozo Tull wrote:
I've been playing Arcade regularly recently and am interested in trying your ideas ... Does the miniboss still spawn when the sp is down ? Because rushing a spawner only to find a midboss appear while two tiles of monsters (at least) are piling up on you is no fun (and increases the tile 1 slog effect)

I'd suggest two ways of spawning the Mini-Boss:

- after the Heroes destroy a Spawning Point, but never on first tile. Very much FK rules, but easier.

- the other is taken directly from Lootimeter: make 2 piles of 16 Loot cards. Everytime a monster is killed, draw a Loot card; every time a Hero suffer a wound, discard a Loot card. Begin with the first pile and when it is empty, the Mini-Boss spawns during next Power-Up. Then, when the second pile is empty, the Boss spawns. It is a timer, closer to SDE 1.0. (See this thread for more information viewtopic.php?f=4&t=4433)

I've tried both ways and both work to me, althought the first one is more "take your time", and the second is "Rush mode".

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April 22nd, 2016, 12:57 pm
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Mini-Boss
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The variant in the back of the book does that for wrath.

I believe it is - Monsters always attack, even if the cards do not state that they do. So if you get spawn, they spawn and attack. If you draw heal, they heal and attack. If you draw 2xmove, then they move twice and attack.

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May 2nd, 2016, 3:00 pm
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Minion
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odinsgrandson wrote:
The variant in the back of the book does that for wrath.

I believe it is - Monsters always attack, even if the cards do not state that they do. So if you get spawn, they spawn and attack. If you draw heal, they heal and attack. If you draw 2xmove, then they move twice and attack.


Oh I didn't see that. Thank you for pointing it.

I have also modified other things so that monsters attack a little more Hero with less Wrath.
I need to rewrite everything to share these.

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May 2nd, 2016, 3:13 pm
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Bottle Cap
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Good house rules!! I've always played so that monsters always attack the closest person in range when their command card is drawn (it just doesn't make sense that they would move 2x yet not attack if they could)
I'll try adding more wrath tokens and getting wrath for each wound inflicted like you mentioned! :)


May 2nd, 2016, 3:41 pm
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Minion
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gamegirl wrote:
Good house rules!! I've always played so that monsters always attack the closest person in range when their command card is drawn (it just doesn't make sense that they would move 2x yet not attack if they could)
I'll try adding more wrath tokens and getting wrath for each wound inflicted like you mentioned! :)

Thank you.

I will share as soon as possible what I changed in my Command deck: basically Monsters always have something to do and I added more "Actions target the Hero with less Wrath" to get more surprises.

I'm looking forward to your thoughts and feedback after you try these house rules.

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May 3rd, 2016, 7:44 am
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Minion
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I've added the modified Command deck that I'm using. It is more aggresive and prevents Monsters from wasting their turn.

I've also added in second post a list of rules that are not in FK Arcade (house-rules, Beta or even house ruled Beta) that I use in my games.

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May 4th, 2016, 12:38 pm
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Minion
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I've modified the first two posts to incorporate the changes made after Beta 1.6.

I've added a MMC for Arcade, a Command dice (roll 2 Green dice to determine what the triggered Monsters will do) in place of the Command deck and I've mixed the basic rules from FK and Beta 1.6.

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October 4th, 2016, 1:20 pm
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Minion
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Recently, I've polished and rewriten my house-rules.
I've updated the first two posts so you can read them.

I'm still really into SDE but less interested in the Beta testing.
No offense to Justin and his work, I really love most of the tweaks and cleaning he brought to the rules, but I don't like the direction Arcade has taken.

Especially, I didn't like Challenge and Plot cards, and at this point of the Beta, I'm not willing to print and cut again another 2 decks of cards to test them again.
I will gladly try the official rules when I will get the real materials in my hands, although I'm a little worried that these 2 new decks extend the length of the game.

I share these house-rules because some players might be interested and also so I can access them easily, even when I'm away from home.

I will also update my house-rules about Exploration soon.

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February 23rd, 2017, 10:35 am
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