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View Full Version : My first playtests of bobthebobish's WHQ Revised!



Musabre
16-06-2013, 19:06
Hi everyone. I've not been at all active on Warseer for some time, though lately my regular game group have dug out the old WHQ for nostalgia's sake.
Rediscovering how absurdly unbalanced it was (though utterly hilarious 95% of the time, traveling to the next city for 48 weeks due to hazard rolls? It happened...) lead me to re-evaluate the 3rd party resources we'd chosen to use oh so long ago, from places like Warhammer Quest Museum et al.

This is when I stumbled upon bobthebobish's Revised WHQ. And it's brilliantly laid out google.doc link! Which can be found here: http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?348919-WHQ-Revision

As the arbitrator of my gaming group when it comes to what rules we use etc, I simply fell in love with the scope and feel of the Revised version, and insisted we implement it. Without rambling too long of it's great features/changes, I thoroughly recommend it to anyone wanting to turn their games of WHQ into what I like to think of as 'Advanced Quest'.

With that all said, I shall get to my intended purpose for this post, which is to talk a little through my first couple of playtests and hopefully impart some kind of feedback or spark discussion. Some pictures will follow to illustrate my report.

The Adventure Begins
I shall begin with the unlucky 4 guinea pigs.
Taking the vanilla roles, we have Thronnir the barbarian, Enri Gurnnison the dwarf, Talon Fire-eye the elf archer, and Taegen Lightningson the wizard.

Using the starting adventure rules, our four heroes were sent on a simple delivery errand. Having to brave outdoor travel for 6 weeks to another city, in exchange for a handsome gold reward and treasure. This was a stunning contrast to the beginnings of most level 1 parties, as it gave the plucky heroes some generous starting funds and a few decent magic trinkets to get them going. The travel even included the coveted phoenix nest result, which netted some hefty gold for weapons and armour.

The new tavern system for hunting for quest leads, as well as the massively expanded events tables, is brilliantly thought out, fun, and always full of surprises. Not only did the party secure two strong leads for adventures, but both the dwarf and babarian were swindled by the same crafty baron for all their gold and treasure. Glad to see that guy is still getting good business...

Anyway, it was a choice between a rather hefty sounding and dangerous quest involving several objective rooms and multiple objectives to achieve, or a rather simple-sounding slash and burn through a dark elf temple.
The Adventure book is now massive and has completely re-written quests for all the objective rooms, plus randomly occurring side-quests numbering in the dozens.

Making the huge mistake of assuming simple BL1 dark elves couldn't possibly be a problem for our powered-up level 1 party, we chose the temple of pain quest to attempt first.
The adventure proceeded as you'd expect, though following the new rules for movement, traveling to dungeon sites, and the separate D20 roll for encounters being the first obvious changes.

The first interesting event to take place was during the first battle with the dark elves, a 'combat event' (An unexpected event while the party is already engaged with monsters) involved one of the dark elves turning out to be a sentry and attempting to disengage to warn it's allies deeper in the dungeon. Understandably this added a great sense of tension to the situation. The new barbarian rage rules soon fixed that however, though not before the barbarian took a few chunks out of the dwarf at the same time (watch out for friendly fire with him!).
It's also worth pointing out that the wave of magic event that flips all dice rolls for the nest battle was effecting us at this point, and when your only heal spell is finger of life... that's a 1-3 = success roll rather than 4-6, effectively nerfing it! Nasty.

The Bridge of Despair and the demise of Taegen
The first tragedy struck when the bridge of despair was doing it's thing. The party wizard was left behind on the edge of the entrance-way while the fighters tried to get over to the dark elf archers (those crossbows hitting at str5 are just too much to take, it was a bad idea coming to this place!). The importance of planning ahead and pre-empting a warrior being downed making sure to have someone adjecant to attempt to revive them before the turn is up was illustrated here. As the bridge rotated, cutting off the wizard, he took a bolt between the eyes and was doomed to die while the rest of the party were helplessly locked in combat or trapped on the bridge.

This brings me to my first issue I'd like to bring up. We were playing out each warrior phase in a set order, starting with the party leader, the barbarian, and going around clockwise in this order: dwarf, elf, finally wizard.
The issue being that, if the last player isnt able to move to be stood next to an ally, or if any player for that matter finds themselves cut off for whatever reason, and are then knocked down to 0 wounds in the ensuing monster phase, what hope in heck do they have of being revived?
I'm not sure if it is intended that warriors can only be healed if an ally just so happens to be stood next to them when they fall. It seems a tad hopeless to ever expect a warrior to survive. In this case, the wizard went down, being the only one able to remotely heal anybody from afar, he was doomed.
How does one get around this? Was it simply payment for not babysitting him the whole time? Is constant bodyguarding to be expected of wizard characters?
I've seen house rules where players are given one whole round in order to get to their fallen comrade and attempt to revive them before they are considered dead. I'd love to know what bobthebobish feels about this element of the game.

Anyhoo moving on, some pics:
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You can see the surviving members pushing on, hoping they can make do without the wizard (who, by the way, had rolled so many high level spells that he was rarely able to contribute to the fight anyway, bah!)
The guardroom involved a trap that dumped the party one dungeon level below. Featuring a small random dungeon deck, ending in the stairs back up, that rolled any monster encounters at BL2!!!, Nagarroth blackguards would have been dime a dozen down there. Thankfully, the first card to appear in this new floor WAS the stairs, so the warriors made a hasty escape. A lucky break!

Cutting to the end of this first run, the objective room was essentially a deathrap of halberds and crossbows. Without wizard support, limited provisions (bandages cant be used in combat!) and being outnumbered 4 to 1, the party was doomed. The Elf, after watching the two fighters die valiantly in battle, decided to take his found treasure (a magic sword no less) and make a break for it. The escape rules for this dungeon (another brilliantly thought out idea in WHQ revised) resulted in the only way out being via the entrance, and only if the key was found in a monster encounter. The elf had the key, he had movement 4, and he had hope.

The dark elves, however, had movement 5, and crossbows. Not even his snazzy cloak of evasion (beginning item for all lvl1 elves now) could help him dodge that firepower, and he was cut down as he tried to make a run for it.
And so ended the party of Thronnir and Friends.
The End

I hope this post hasn't been too much to plow through at once. I am very excited to continue playtesting the revised rules, and as i type this I have about 40 sheets of A4 greyboard sat on my table, ready for crafting up all the extra floorplans included in the Old World and Lustria settings.
Just to finish this off then, I'll ask that people please ask questions about anything I've said so far, or alternatively give me answers to the issues I raised. Any discussion would be great.

Thanks to bobthebobish for all the hardwork put into the revision,
and thank you for reading.

M

bobthebobish
16-06-2013, 22:32
Thanks a ton for playing the revision! It's great to see someone else being tortured by this gauntlet of monsters and traps!

As far as the helpless dieing party member goes that is something that can happen. Your spell caster (in this case the wizard) is best advised to keep a healing spell handy for those nasty situations (remember they can cast most non aggressive spells at any time). As far as bad spell rolls at the beginning that is one of the many evil things that can happen. My play test group has gone through several campaigns all the way to level 10 and it is not uncommon for at least one member of the group to die off and have to roll up a new warrior by the end. Newcomers to the revision usually end up dead by the first main adventure thus going on side quests until you are confident is a good idea.

As a helpful strategy for that nasty bridge of peril try to keep tanks on the ends of the bridge and the support characters in the middle. This way all the nasty melee monsters will be pinned at the tanks and unable to get to the support. That said dark elves are much nastier than they used to be since before they didn't pose any real challenge through most of the BL4+ tables. Of course once the spell caster falls its a miracle if the party doesn't wipe within a few turns ;)

Have fun and feel free to point out likes/dislikes/blatantly bad rules!

Musabre
17-06-2013, 07:17
Hi bobthebobish, thanks for the response!

I realise things were somewhat stacked against us from the get go this first attempt, and I was aware soon after the bridge rotated once that I'd made a huge tactical error! :(

Ill post again with the results of our second playtest that was both more promising AND full of glorious mistakes (Let's just say that my track record for getting the wizard killed in the first job so far is 2/2.)

I would ask one small question regarding the barbarian rage rule. We played it as once he starts his rage, it does not end until the battle is over, with the 4+ chance of running off on his own coming into play where appropriate. Is this the intended function rather than simply lasting one turn? It would seem somewhat unfair on him where other character's special abilities can usually be used over and over. Thanks!

M

bobthebobish
17-06-2013, 22:35
You've got the rage down basically as long as he is parked next to monsters both he and the party are ok its only after there is no one near him that you roll to end his rage on a 1, 2 or 3 or continue going berserk on a 4+. It is a once per adventure skill due to it being very powerful (at level 10 it turns him into a monster murdering machine even with just a base weapon). Once you level him to the second level you will find he branches out a bit more on skill sets (as do other warriors).

Keep that poor wizard protected he is the jack of all trades for the spell casters but doesn't really have much to keep himself safe :P

The dwarf will become a great agro management tool and tank once he levels up a bit then you should have no problems keeping the right people safe. Good luck in the depths!

Musabre
01-07-2013, 16:47
Thanks for the clarification, I'd figured I had the gist of it down.

About to take the entire finished Old World setting boards and cards etc to a big multiplayer sesh' tomorrow, so shall see how it plays out with the added chaos of a full party of 4 real people making mistakes/rivalry :P.
Should be a blast!

Looking forward to seeing the new settings you've hinted at adding.