General Impression

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Rikolus
General Impression

As a 40 year gamer, I've seen a ton of titles. Was happy to support Transylvania on K/S.
Very pleased with most aspects of the game. Certainly the components and artworks are very well-done.
The one-time special abilitys on the Adventurer cards are ridiculous to read. Most of my fellow-players are 50+ and even with glasses on cannot read the unnecessarily fine print set against a silly medium grey background. But one can refer to the rules.
Some odd decisions.... everyone agrees the Explorer Special Ability is fairly useless, especially sad given his figure looks to be inspired by Indiana Jones, so deserves a better than average skill, not worse!
Perhaps the biggest flaw is that the game really bogs down with 5 or 6 players. We have played 3,4 and 5, and will not play with over 4 again. Turns can move too slow.
Part of this is because of the many additions to movement that can made. I'm sure the designers had to walk a fine balance between adding cool adjustments to the cards and character strengths (esp as the game progresses), and overwhelming them with too many adjustments and changes. And in some cases, we have had players able to get to 11 moves, meaning several EVENT cards and Discoverys in one turn, meaning 5 minutes or more (perhaps much more if some analysis done) for one player to resolve his turn.
Only 5 games under the belt, but seems there is a lot of incentive to change into a Monster. Our first three games ended with easy monster victorys. All players agreed that the 4 card Hand Limit and the 4 card Table Limit made it tough for Adventurers. Next game we are going to expand to base 5 cards as a House Rule and see if there is a little less exasperation.
This is a game everyone WANTS to like.... but the verdict in our group is still out. Wish they would have spent just a little longer in development "tightening" the gameplay, tossing the confusing storylines (there are several that leave us scratching our heads wondering how to resolve), and helping out the Adventurers accumulate just a few more items.

Loren - WIBAI GAMES
Loren - WIBAI GAMES's picture
Suggestions for faster game play

Hello Rikolus!  

Thanks very much for your comment.  One suggestion we have for faster game play is to remove 4 board tiles from the game (tiles without secret passages).  This lets Adventurers explore the board faster, thus repopolating all the tokens faster.  It also tightens up the board allowing Monsters to catch their prey.  

We have found that the game can play at very good pace with 4 experienced players, and yes, adding 5 and 6 players can slow things down, especially with new players.  We created the game to allow 6 players because we always are disappointed with games that have a 4 player maximum as we often have 5 or 6 people in our group.

One disconnect that people have with TCT is that they sometimes want to win the game a certain way (usually with Knowledge Cards) when the goal is to win the game at any cost.  Winning with Knowledge Cards is actually the hardest way to win.  In well over 100 play-tests we found that Adventurers and Monsters won the game about 50/50 but only 25% of the Adventurer wins came from Knowledge Cards.  We created the game for maximum carnage (player death).  An Adventurer with the right 4 cards can easily slay a Monster.

TCT is a game that easily allows for house rules and that may be a good thing for your group.

It sounds like you may have a few questions which we would be very happy to answer. 

Thanks so much for supporting our Kickstarter.  Please let us know what we can do to help you get more enjoyment out of the game.

Scott the Hunter
Scott the Hunter's picture
Early Monster Gets the Adventurer

Hi Rikolus,

I've only managed to get in three games so far with 4 - 5 people each time. The final score has been 2 adventurer wins and 1 monster win. The monster does, on average, seem to have the upper hand if he comes out early. I've noticed that it helps if everyone scatters and goes a different direction at the beginning of the game. Not only does it reveal all the tiles faster, but it buys the adventurers some time when people start changing and have to cover half the board to catch anyone. If everyone is close together when monsters start changing, it becomes an all-you-can-eat buffet.

The adventurer ability to discard any Transformation cards they wish of an in-play monster type and draw replacement Discovery cards can be huge. Of course, this is a game with a huge luck factor. You may discard a pair of Transformation cards of active monster types and draw a Bible and a Silver Sword. Or you could draw a The Raven and a Sapphire Ring.

Eventually an adventurer can get enough dice to stand a good chance of overpowering any monster in the game (even the werewolf after he rolls a full moon result) if he/she can avoid getting killed by the monsters long enough.

I hope the adventurers are able to rally and sometimes win in your future games!

Loren - WIBAI GAMES
Loren - WIBAI GAMES's picture
How to win as an Adventurer

First, love the Avatar Scott!

The best way to win as a Monster is by collecting cards with Attack abilities over Knowledge Cards (some are both).  You really do need to get a bit lucky to get 5 Knowledge Cards.  Sometimes there is a choice of cards to keep.  Do I keep the Wolfbane or the Shotgun?  I keep the shotgun every time.  I have been able to one-shot kill the Werewolf who was rolling 12 dice and had full health one game.  In my past 2 games I have won by killing the Werewolf in one (who was already ready injured) and in the previous game I chopped my way past the Vampire, snuck by the Werewolf using a secret passage, and decaped the Zombie for the win.   Now that's fun!

Tina
"The best way to win as a

"The best way to win as a Monster is by collecting cards with Attack abilities over Knowledge Cards (some are both)."

Wait, the rules say you can't collect Discovery cards as a Monster, and that you also don't have to draw Event cards. Or am I missing something?

Jamie-WIBAI GAMES
Monster *Slayer*

He means: the best way to win as a Monster *Slayer*. There are two ways to win as an Adventurer -by getting Knowledge cards and by slaying a Monster. Tina, you are absolutely right. You cannot get discovery cards that add to your attack (or cards at all) as a Monster. Loren-gheez, Honey, proofread these things before you post them!

Tina
Heh, thanks for the quick

Heh, thanks for the quick reply.

I have a suggestion for the rules for future editions: It might be a good idea to state more explicitly on the "Guide to Being a Monster" page that the Werewolf and Zombie may not use Secret Passages. We had the following scenario happen in a game last night (two of us had played before, but only one or two games, and we had four completely new people, so we had to refer to the rules a lot):

An Adventurer transformed into the Werewolf and immediately used a Secret Passage to get to the nearest Adventurer, then attacked and killed him. That Adventurer had two Vampire Bites, which meant he had to become the Vampire when he died. So then we reviewed the rules, saw the Vampire's special ability, and concluded that the Werewolf should not have been able to use the Secret Passage to get to the Adventurer. We decided to give the murdered Adventurer the choice as to whether to rewind the Werewolf's turn, or to have him continue as the Vampire; he chose the former, which meant he did not transform, as the Werewolf was not able to reach him in that turn. The now-not-murdered Adventurer's turn was next, and he hightailed it back to the Church tile to give himself some protection from the Werewolf; it turned out he had the requisite 5 Knowledge cards, so he won the game.

So anyway, we only realized our mistake because we had to look at the Vampire's rules -- if the Werewolf had not killed someone with Vampire Bites, we wouldn't have known until it was too late. So a note on the general monster page about that would be really helpful.

Loren - WIBAI GAMES
Loren - WIBAI GAMES's picture
Hello Tina,
Hello Tina,
 
Thanks very much for the comment.
We really do appreciate it.
 
Writing rule books is always a very tricky thing, especially when we personally know the game backwards and forwards but yet at the same time have played with many different rules.
This was our first game and our first rule book.
 
We are learning from this experience as we work on our 2nd game and are writing that rule book much sooner (we already have a draft).
 
Thanks again for playing our game and taking the time to comment,
Loren & Jamie
Dropbear
Adventurers vs Monsters

My impression is that TCT is structured to try and have at least one Monster come out during a game. Without at least the threat of a monster the entire traitor mechanic doesn't really get to see the light of day removing a lot of the uncertainty that makes the game fun. That said individual games have a lot of variability due to the large Discovery and Event deck sizes and dice rolls.

For example in the first game I had with the kickstarter version there was no monsters at all which was almost disappointing in a 4 player game with people who who had played the PnP and were used to monsters. So one person won with 5 knowledge cards and two people had 4 knowledge cards.

In the second game someone played aggressively to try and become a monster and we ended with two monsters (zombie and vampire). However the person with the scientist had been quietly getting attack cards (didn't examine the really good ones until monsters came out) and boosting their attack trait (+2 trait tokens) and killed the vampire to win the game - 2 bibles, 1 stake and a silver sword examined for +17 attack dice (perfect playing of amazingly lucky cards). [edit: It has been pointed out that the limit on any roll is technically 12 dice but we let it go ahead because it was cool.]

All up I would say there is no one way to win the game and you have to build a strategy around the cards you are dealt. While the monsters do have an advantage that is intentional to create tension. I believe my friends and I benefited from playing the PnP so we got our heads around knowing what cards to discard. For example if you are just getting bad cards - it can happen in a luck driven game - you can always run back and forth across an Event until you die and re-spawn as a Monster so long as you have at least one transformation card. Or if you are getting attack cards try to build up your damage and get ready to kill a monster.

Hopefully with a few more games some of the other game styles within the variability will come out for you and your friends.

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