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Blue Peg, Pink Peg» Forums » General

Subject: Talk to me about Too Many Bones rss

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Robb Rouse

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Should I get? Who owns it? Who plays its? Good Bad?
 
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Jason Brown
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It’s fun, but a HUGE pain in the ass to get played. Every character has their own unique dice that play differently than every other character. When you have a battle going on, you’ll have to keep track of a different set of rules for every stack of chips on the board.

I Kickstarted the original and there’s no denying the value and table presence... it will blow you away. After a few consecutive 45-minute teaches at MeetUps though, it became just too much of a bear to bring out. I played the campaign solo, but didn’t have the heart to learn more Gearloc dice combos for another run and sold it.

On the bright side, I made a profit on the sale.
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Robb Rouse

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MAJBrown22 wrote:
It’s fun, but a HUGE pain in the ass to get played. Every character has their own unique dice that play differently than every other character. When you have a battle going on, you’ll have to keep track of a different set of rules for every stack of chips on the board.

I Kickstarted the original and there’s no denying the value and table presence... it will blow you away. After a few consecutive 45-minute teaches at MeetUps though, it became just too much of a bear to bring out. I played the campaign solo, but didn’t have the heart to learn more Gearloc dice combos for another run and sold it.

On the bright side, I made a profit on the sale.


that is a sad tale
 
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Jason Brown
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rookenoble wrote:
MAJBrown22 wrote:
It’s fun, but a HUGE pain in the ass to get played. Every character has their own unique dice that play differently than every other character. When you have a battle going on, you’ll have to keep track of a different set of rules for every stack of chips on the board.

I Kickstarted the original and there’s no denying the value and table presence... it will blow you away. After a few consecutive 45-minute teaches at MeetUps though, it became just too much of a bear to bring out. I played the campaign solo, but didn’t have the heart to learn more Gearloc dice combos for another run and sold it.

On the bright side, I made a profit on the sale.


that is a sad tale

Indeed. It should be noted that it runs counter to most opinions I’ve seen though. It rewards multiple plays, but I’m a ‘new hotness’ guy and don’t like games that require a time investment to enjoy.
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David Werner
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I quite enjoy Too Many Bones. It's a consistent hit with my gaming group and gets a lot of replay. I've also taught it to more than a few newcomers and everyone always seems to dig it. I get a lot of people saying they can't wait to play it again.

It bears mentioning that my main gaming group, and myself, are also video gamers as well as tabletop gamers and many of them enjoy video game RPGs and tactical battle games, itches which TMB firmly scratches. If you are a person who enjoys "specing" a character, you'll get a lot of fun out of TMB as you experiment with different builds each play.

So there's my recommendation. Below is a dissertation regarding my thoughts on teaching the game.

MAJBrown22 wrote:
It’s fun, but a HUGE pain in the ass to get played. Every character has their own unique dice that play differently than every other character. When you have a battle going on, you’ll have to keep track of a different set of rules for every stack of chips on the board.


Quote:
After a few consecutive 45-minute teaches at MeetUps though, it became just too much of a bear to bring out.


Regarding the above, I must respectively disagree.

Now, there is some truth to it. The player characters are highly asymmetric and each have 16 unique skills and a set of "backup plan" abilities to be learned. The character reference sheets, though solidly written and designed, aren't the most intuitive and require a bit of interpretation.

However, TMB is way less of a pain in the ass to get to the table than many other asymmetric games. This is because unlike games like Vast or Root, TMB does have a basic "skeleton" which is pretty uniform and simple. Every player character's basics are the same; they all move around on the battle mat the same way, they all attack and defend the same way, and they all use their Dexterity stat to determine how far they can move and how many actions they can take on their turn. The complexity comes with the skills.

When I teach TMB, I teach only the basic rules about resolving encounters, and about how to move the characters around the battle mat and take actions. Then, I give all the other players their character reference sheets and give them a VERY basic, high-level rundown of what their character is designed to do, without explaining every single thing to them. I teach them how to read the key on the back which shows them what all their dice symbols mean, and after that, I just run the game and take questions as they come up.

I've had a lot of success with this method. I haven't timed my pre-game explanation for TMB lately but I would be shocked if it ran over 10 minutes. And you can get away with using this method for TMB because there is some symmetry for basic movement and attack/defend actions between characters, and because it's a cooperative game. No one is at a distinct disadvantage out the gate if they don't know their character, front and back, from the very beginning. You'll also not have more than one or two skills for the first fight so explaining everything is entirely unnecessary.
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Kevin Berent
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rookenoble wrote:
Should I get? Who owns it? Who plays its? Good Bad?


You should totally get it, and then give it to me if you don't like it. whistle
 
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James Delides
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WookieeLove wrote:
I quite enjoy Too Many Bones. It's a consistent hit However, TMB is way less of a pain in the ass to get to the table than many other asymmetric games. This is because unlike games like Vast or Root, TMB does have a basic "skeleton" which is pretty uniform and simple. Every player character's basics are the same; they all move around on the battle mat the same way, they all attack and defend the same way, and they all use their Dexterity stat to determine how far they can move and how many actions they can take on their turn. The complexity comes with the skills.


Well said.

Some characters start with more unlocked than others, but for a fair bit of the game you'll likely only be managing about ~3-6 of those potential 16 special dice for your character. They also have a few recommended builds detailed on the character mats that guide you towards a competent spread of points for your first few levels.

There's some further complexity in the wide variety of enemies and their associated special abilities, but they tend to be clumped together by creature type. You'll only face a subset of them per adventure and won't have to continually run back to the reference sheet once you've seen a particular ability a couple of times. For example, facing a troll tyrant brings the associated troll/orc enemies along, and they have damage mitigation abilities. You can customise your build towards being able to deal with their tough hides.
 
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Willie Williams
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I heard about TMB and thought the price was insane. Then I heard more people rave about it and thought about it again. When the latest kickstarter came out I said would look into this deeper.

My poor wife has sat and watched countless play through videos with me until I pulled the trigger and backed the game.

I am hooked on how the game operates, the unique aspects of the fantasy theme and setting, and how amazing the components look.
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