Glen Hubbard
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Illinois
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I got the expansion in my greedy little hands last night. Hooray! Anyway, I have already read through the rules, and last night I put all the adventure/highland/spell cards into sleeves. I saw many cards and thought I would post my ideas about the expansion today for those who do not yet have it to see. I am doing this from memory so please forgive if I misname some of the details.

In general: The board is beautiful, as per usual. At first glance there are many spots on it that just seem to be "draw x cards" and nothing more. After reading them further, I found several spaces with a chance to lose followers or other possessions. This is a good extension to the main board that will add variety. Only Negative: Perhaps it is my older BI board, but the Starting for Highlands does not exaclty line up with the space on the board that leads to it. They seem to be a little off, but this is workable. The Dungeon board lined up perfectly.

TRINKETS: In the highland cards there are quite a number of trinkets. Trinkets (as you might know if you already read the posted rules) are items that do not count toward your limit of 4 carried items. They are more than that though. I read most of the trinket cards and most of them give you the option to "discard and gain". Such as Discard after visiting the alchemist and gain gold, or discard before combat and gain +1 strength for the duration of your turn. Really cool. Great addition to Talisman overall. My first inclination is that I would like to see more of these for mixing in with the base adventure cards, but that might take away the specialness of the expansion. Any thoughts?

MOST of the trinket cards I saw were of the type "trade for gold at alchemist". This is going to increase the amount of gold in the game considerably. We will need the City expansion soon to spend it all...

MONSTERS: The cards have a variety of monsters from strength/craft 1 to 8, so the Highland will be just as dangerous to wander in as the other regions. (YES Here be Dragons....)

FOLLOWERS: Many of the new followers I read were "single use then discard" followers. Many could only be used in certain places. (Seems like good food for the Vampiress...)

ALTERNATE ENDINGS: this was a dissapointment for me. There are only 3. Battle Royale, The Eagle King, and Hand of Doom.

The Battle Royale kills all the players without a Talisman and teleports the rest to the crown of command where the end game fight ensues. The first on the crown chooses his opponent and does battle. then the loser chooses an opponent (can only choose the first if there is no one else) and they do battle. Continue to do this (lather, rinse, repeat) until all but one is left standing. They are declared the winner. I like this! Seems like a fitting way to end the game, and it can mess you up if you are the first to get to the crown, but not the most powerful character playing.

Eagle King seems a lot like the Ice Queen. He has 4 lives, a strength and craft of 12 and you have to kill him 4 times in a row to win. If you ever lose you are teleported away and he heals all his lives. Sorry but I feel ho-hum for this. End bosses have been too similar so far. They need to add variety to these cards so that there is a feeling of dread before you flip the card over. I want to be saying, "God I hope it's not 'fill in dreaded ending here'" at the end of the game. Maybe if they come up with a boss that is a little bit tougher than the rest...

Hand of Doom is NASTY. I say this because it is a random "Roll a die and see what happens" ending. If you roll a 1, EVERYONE DIES! No winner. I like that, very Talisman. Roll a 2 or 3 and you lose 1 life. Roll a 4 or 5 and you get to kill 1 character. Roll a 6 and everyone dies but you. (You win!) After your first turn you can stay on the crown and do the same next turn. Characters on the Crown do not encounter each other. Instead they each must roll for the Hand of Doom on their turn. I like this ending. It is random enough to suit this game.

Character: I read them through seems like a good enough bunch. No complaints. The Vampiress seems to be the standout IMHO. Again, the Alchemist is going to vastly increase the gold in the game economy.

OVERALL: A good expansion. I wish there had been more Alternate Ending cards. Whatever the next expansion is I hope they AT LEAST throw in the "Danse Macabre" and the other Alternate ending card they posted on the FFG sight. (I am a big Alt ending fan, can you tell?) I personally want a Horrible Black Void more than anything.

I think they are going to HAVE to give us a City expansion soon to spend the gold the game generates now. I would prefer an interim expansion with added highland/dungeon/adventure/spell cards and MORE ALTERNATE ENDINGS.

Mind you these are all first impressions before actually playing the expansion. Any one else care to comment?
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Mark Chaplin
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Thanks for the report. Any chance of uploading a picture of the board?



 
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Glen Hubbard
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Not immediately, no. Maybe later tonight. I forgot to add:

RELICS: there are four relics that are the reward for Defeating the Eagle King. IMHO they, are all underpowered. Since the Eagle King on the board is kind of a pushover compared ot the Dungeon Lord, (8 Str 8 Craft? Really?) perhaps they are fitting. The best one allows you to roll 2 dice while moving with a chance to teleport, one allows you to teleport then discard it. (Single use relic? Really?) and the other two, if I remember correctly, (they are quite forgetable) are weapons. One adds 1 Strength, the other adds 1 Craft. Both forbid your opponent from using armor to save a life. Blah. Nothing Special Here.
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Rauli Kettunen
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All that yet no rundown of the characters ? Beyond those already previewed by FFG that is.
 
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Brant Benoit
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The next expansion will be just what you are asking for; a small box akin to Reaper, and Frostmarch. That is, if the expansions follow the same pattern since release (small box, big box, rinse, repeat).
 
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Glen Hubbard
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LOL! Sorry for the lack of Character reviews. Like I said I was doing this from memory. I didn't want to post erroneous data, but here is what I remember:

Vampiress, Alchemist, Highlander and Alchemist have all been previewed on the FFG site.

Rogue: This is a simple character that has 2 basic powers. First: If they defeat another player in combat, instead of taking 1 gold they can take ALL their gold. Second: When the Rogue is fighting multiple monsters at once, the Rogue can roll an additional D6 to add to their attack roll.

Sprite: The Sprite starts with 2 spells and has a minimum of 2 spells. If she drops below 2 she can immediately draw another. There is something about how she moves in the forest, but I can't remember, sorry. Hope this satifies.
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Rauli Kettunen
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Yep. I got on your case too soon, found pics for Rogue (who could become my new fav char, not talking from a purely picture-basis either ) and Sprite on the FFG forums couple of minutes later blush .

Rogue rolling 2 dice in City might finally exorcise my Enchantress terror. She could be spam City and Ench for stat gains quite a bit. Though I think maybe you wrote her abilities down wrong. When the Rogue defeats another character, she can take all the Gold from the loser if she picks Gold as reward and when she fights 2+ Enemies (battle or psychic combat), she gets an extra die in combat. Way you wrote them made it sound like she had two abilities that hindered her (might've been a typo on your part).

Sprite having Str 1 is totally on board with what many expected/hoped (including me).
 
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Warren Denning
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Wait is the Eagle King a 12/12 or and 8/8?

I thought he was an 8/8.

 
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Nemomon Nemo
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bioball wrote:
Wait is the Eagle King a 12/12 or and 8/8?

I thought he was an 8/8.



8/8 on the space, and 12/12 as Ending. What I'm wondering is, if the Relic cards are exactly same with minor changes like Rage Talon and Windlord Amulet or not. Arnkell in Rules is shown to be a great Object for teleports. Sounds familiar, just like Dreadwing but the bird is a Follower. Also, the preview of it says, that it is mulitple use.
 
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Glen Hubbard
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I am at home now and have the 4 relic cards in front of me. Here are the four relics exactly as written on the cards:

Arnkell (Magic Object): Instead of moving normally you may discard Arnkell to teleport to any space in the same Region. You must ditch any followers before you move. (A rather poor relic if you ask me...)

Dreadwing (Follower): You may roll 2 dice and add them together to determine how far you move. If you role the same result on both dice for your move, you may teleport to any space in the same region instead.

Rage Talon (Magic Object)[Weapon]: Add 2 to your Strength during battle. If you defeat another character and force him to lose a life, the character cannot use Armour to prevent the loss of life.

Windlord Amulet (Magic Object)[Weapon]: Add 2 to your Craft for Psychic combat. If you defeat another character and force him to lose a life, the character cannot use Armour to prevent the loss of life.

My comments on these: Arnkell must be misprinted or it is a one use disposable Relic that causes you to lose all your followers. The Windlord Amulet also confuses me. I thought Armour did not work for Psychic Combat. The way we were playing it only works for Battle.
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Peter Appleton
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Fnord23Fnord wrote:

The Windlord Amulet also confuses me. I thought Armour did not work for Psychic Combat. The way we were playing it only works for Battle.


From memory there is some armour in one or more of the expansions that can prevent damage in psychic combat.
 
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Nemomon Nemo
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Frostmarch featured Mirror Shield:

Armour
If you are defeated in psychic
combat and just lost a life,
roll 1 die. If you roll a 5
or 6, the Shield protected
you and you did not lose
that life, though you still
lost the psychic combat.


and Helm of Warding which works same as Mirror Shield but only, if you roll a 6. Also Shield of Faith protects from losing a life after losing the psychic combat:

Armour
No evil character may
have the Shield of Faith.
If you are defeated in battle or
psychic combat and just lost
a life, roll 1 die. If you roll a 5
or 6, the Shield protected you
and you did not lose that life,
though you still lost
the attack.


so, Windlord Amulet works normally. The problem of course if, that neither of ability of Rage Talon and Windlord Amulet specifies, in what kind of battle or psychic combat we need to defeat another Character in order of forcing the Character to not using the Armour. Someone could play that two cards, that they are adding something to S/C but their second ability works regardless of the fight.

That Arnkell disappointed me. This is just the weaker version of Cloak of Feathers. The loss of Followers is a big pain of it.
 
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J P
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Thanks for the nice first impression.

As for the Arnkell, I agree its seems rather weak compared to the other items. However, teleport is not to be underestimated:
-You killed the eagle king once? You can do it again. Go to region, teleport to him, get another trophy.
-Powerful enough to knock over the prince of darkness (without your followers)? Go to dungeon, teleport, smash!
-Some poor player running around with only 1 life or a coveted item. Port to them.

In my opinion alone the knowledge, that another player an teleport at will has impact on the game. But I agree it's still weak as a reward for a boss when you could have a more powerful effect by a lucky spell draw.


As for future expansions, I would also like to see a "wrap it up" expansions that prints the alternate ending cards by FFG (dance macabre) etc... and adds trinkets and other expansion specific novelties to the other expansions.
 
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Rauli Kettunen
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Also, from the way it is worded, seems Inner Region use of Arnkell is legit, move to Plain of Peril, next turn use the Relic -> Crown of Command.
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Roy Stephens
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The Hand of Doom, you say?? Bah!! In my home, it shall henceforth be known as The Hands of Fate! Thus decrees The Master!!

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Avery frost
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I agree that if the cards are worded exactly that way they could be interpreted to mean that. However I would imagine most groups will accept that they mean for the type of combat they enhance or houserule it that way. That having been said without the new characters I am not sure if I like this expansion. I was kind of hoping for something on the power level of the dungeon with a new theme.
 
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Kevin Schnell
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How are the miniatures? Are they using the smaller scale that the latest expansion used, or are they back on par with the base game and Dungeon?
 
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Justin Pranger
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They look more on par this time around with exception with the vampiress. The problem is that they're all sorts of bendy. The sprite is standing on her tippy toes so she's prone to leaning. The Highlander looks like he's being blown back by the wind, and the rest of them have swords or spears that bend all over the place (except the Vampiress)



*Edit* Added picture
 
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Didier Didelez
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Nope they used the small scale again cry
 
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Dean G.
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Dam the Man wrote:
Also, from the way it is worded, seems Inner Region use of Arnkell is legit, move to Plain of Peril, next turn use the Relic -> Crown of Command.


Exactly,

http://community.fantasyflightgames.com/index.php?showtopic=...

So very useful in a race to the crown, as you bypass the Talisman spot (as with Cloak of Feathers from Dungeon). Not so good at all if you have to fight the Eagle King in the center after getting there, although it might give you an edge if it turns into a footrace at the end.
 
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