Monday, May 02, 2016

The Game Will Not Be Denied

We made a grave error by thinking we could get away with letting that whole endeavor thing pass from last lantern year. No problem. We just skip getting endeavor this year and draw another event and see where that goes.

Us: "Hey, it's all good, The net result is the same and it would be a pain to go back and undo all the rolls we did."
KD:M: "Pain? I'll show you pain."

We started the settlement phase and immediately drew.... plague. Plague is what wiped a prior settlement. We are terrified of plague. It's especially bad when you have a limited number of survivors to choose from, since it can only infect survivors with at least 1 hunt XP. Each of the four you choose has a 20% chance to die from contracting the plague.

We lost all four. One of them was a savior.

Also, plague comes back next lantern year. That means we have to choose four more survivors to roll on the plague table. More potential tragedy.

For the hunt, we decided to add Spidicules to the campaign, the first expansion we've added. For a new campaign he could replace the Screaming Antelope, so we thought that would work well.

Yeah, right. Remember the pain thing?

Warning: some Spidicules spoilers here...
Right away, the "Young Rivals" story event to introduce the big spidery ball ended up losing us an experienced survivor. We were really down to a limited number of survivors who had been on a hunt at this point.

We set out with two new survivors, the red savior and the experienced archer Link. Getting Link to bow mastery is part of our settlement strategy to allow more survivors to get bow specialist points. Right away the hunt started oddly. We faced a muggy heat wave and had to roll for heat exhaustion. We all laughed because last time we faced a snap of freakish cold that damaged the unarmored. What did we get later in that hunt? The cold snap again. Survivor Al was especially beat down by the cold.

What went especially well was the hunt event that resulted in our getting the rare gear Spidicules sword. We couldn't use it this time but we'll have that one ready for next time.

Facing Spidicules was scary but not terrible. In fact, we walked out of that encounter with more survivors than walked in thanks to the nest at the center of the table, from which we freed two captives. He flings lots of little spiderlings around, and they are a decent enough threat but easy to kill. We must have drawn another easy AI deck or immediately buried any difficult cards because nobody suffered any maiming. At the end of the showdown, the spider (another spider maybe?) grabbed survivor Al and carried him off. We'll find out what happened to him if we fight the spider again or as a settlement event on lantern year 11.

We took our loot and headed back. One thing we didn't really notice before is how great armor sets are. If you have all the same type of armor in all five slots you get some pretty good (and fairly distinct) buffs. Things like being able to switch hits to other locations or getting spent survival back 50% of the time. We only noticed it when adding the Spider Silk armor card to the set.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

I'm Still Writing Lantern Year 5 On All My Checks

Lantern Year 6 is almost over. Sometimes it gets a little sketchy as to when one lantern year stops and another one starts, since part of the settlement phase happens in one lantern year and the rest in another lantern year. In this case, the settlement event (haunted) from lantern year 5 carried on to bite us in lantern year 6.

So, to recap....

We fought an antelope in year 5, and returned.
We drew "haunted" and lost all our endeavor for the settlement phase.
We incremented the lantern year, and fought a Kingsman (as a result of "armored strangers")

...but then we cheated.
We forgot we had lost our endeavor, and so we endeavored. We got two new survivors as a result of intimacy rolls, but nothing else in augury or scavenging. I'll get back to that after describing the hunt.

Deciding to hunt another antelope, we crafted a couple new weapons (including the counter weighted ax I've been wanting) and departed. Since Daphne died last battle I was now controlling Sharon.

Nobody likes Sharon. It all started as an in-joke with my daughter but we decided Sharon was the girl in the office (or settlement, I guess) that nobody likes or pretends to.

But Sharon got the counter-weighted ax and almost zero armor and we departed. The first thing that happened was a freakish cold snap that froze the less armored of us (I guess not everyone is smart enough to dress in layers, Sharon.)  That ended up being a big problem for Sharon when the antelope grabbed her in its gut-mouth and chewed on her. She lost an arm. Fortuitously though she managed to grab a strange toothed heart out of the beast's innards and it proceeded to barf her out. Yay! Oh, wait. Lost arm means no more counter-weighted ax. Boo. So we killed it without further maiming, and returned victorious (quit your whining, Sharon. We all have problems.)

We called it a night, only later realizing that we had spent non-existent endeavor. The idea of rewinding the settlement was daunting enough (more from inconvenience than result) that we decided to lose the endeavor from this settlement phase instead. Yeah, I know. We have been really hardcore about doing things exactly by the book, but fixing that just seemed.... onerous. None of us feel terribly guilty about it. The group is expected over here to play again in 8 minutes, so I suppose it's time to publish this.

RULES LESSON: We've been playing something wrong. During the hunt/encounter phase, resource cards do not return to the deck. That limits the number of some things you can get from a monster (makes sense, since "Lion Testes" is an option) and makes it more likely that you will get one of the rarer cards if you draw enough. Okay! We will start doing that correctly.