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Opinions wanted - Descent


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I've never been much into role playing games, but have always liked board game derivitives (loved Dungeon!). So thinking of getting something like that to play with the kids. Looked at Descent by fantasy flight games and I like the setup and premise of the game. Question is, is it any good? The kids are 6-10, have all seen LOTR and similar movies and will sit still for most of the movie if I put it in to watch (they get antsy with the extended 3+ hour version of the two towers...) and seem to like the concept of fantasy/orcs/elves/etc. I think my 6 year old will have a little trouble grasping the concept, but would probably have no problems with dungeon. So, throw me some opinions on Descent and options if there are others out there you've played, liked, disliked, etc. I thought about hunting up a copy of dungeon since it's a very simple, dice roller, but at the same time, I'd like a beefier version of the same style of game.

 

Thanks!

-Z

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Whenever I have a question about a boardgame I check out BoardgameGeek.com. IIRC their recommended min. age for Descent is 12. That's recommended by users, not the manufacturer, and there's plenty of users who play those games with their kids.

 

That said, I don't own the game nor have I ever played it. But the one thing stopping me from buying it is what the guys on that site say. My son is 9 and I don't think he'd enjoy it yet.

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One thing I've heard is Descent is a long game to play, maybe a minimum of 2 hours, or maybe 4 (heck I can't recall exactly). Other then that I think it would be great to get your kids in on some fantasy board game action. In a way I wish my kids were more inclined to my hobbies but I can live with sharing Wii time with them now (epically when we get the older games off the net when I hook the system up ::): )

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Descent is significantly more difficult than Dungeon. I've played it with my 10 y.o. son, and he has enjoyed it, but he wasn't very successful.

 

The toys are great, though.

 

To address the length issue, you can pick one of the two campaign supplements. The campaign dungeon levels are each about half as long as the regular dungeon levels.

 

And I strongly recommend BGG, too.

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Thanks for the info. I'll check out boardgamegeek and see what everyone is saying. The gametime length I'm a little concerned with just cause kids get antsy a little faster than me. My oldest is the artsy type and she won't have a problem, the younger two are more apt to wander off mid-game. They all like to paint mini's(well, we'll call it painting, but some end up a wee bit unrecognizable...pink lizardmen anyone?) so if they can get a character in a game that Dad painted just for them, glowing faces should ensue. Maybe I'll go after a copy of dungeon and see how they react to that, then go from there. I'd like something a little beefier, like I said, but if nobody wants to play or has the stamina to, it's going to be a really boring game!

 

Thanks again!

-Z

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Ten to twelve year olds? No prob. Six year olds? No way. Just figuring out the dice alone would tax their abilities, and the game has a great many fiddly bits and modifiers and things, and can be pretty reading intensive.

 

I'd recommend something like HeroScape for that age group; straight up monster bashing, basic rules set that can be expanded to match their growing ability and desire to play. Descent's a far better, deeper game, but HeroScape's cheaper and simpler.

 

Where does one get a copy of Dungeon, these days?

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i have been playing in the past few weeks. Its a 1 vs 2-4 player game. It can be very difficult for the players if the DM does everything he can to kill them. Which in this game thats what is intended to do. The dungeon is preset and as the DM you are only allow to spawn monsters and use abilities based on points you get on your turn. On your turn you get points based on number of players and draw 2 cards that give you an ability, spawn monsters, or give a monster an ability. Each card had a point cost so some you might need to save up for a few turns.

 

If you want to play with your kids im sure you could easily adapt it for them. And once you learn the game, if you have the time you could even set up your own dungeons for them to go through. If you leave near reaper or are coming to reaper con id be glad to go over the game with you, i keep my copy at reaper.

 

-Sin

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Where to find Dungeon these days? - get lucky and find a local copy somewhere at a yardsale or a secondhand store, dust on the shelf copy at the flgs(actually I haven't been there in awhile and he may have one...he's got one of the "dragons don't share" in plastic that tempts me each time I go there), or spend small fortune and get one from ebay. You could probably find just about everything from the game online and make your own if so inclined.

 

I appreciate the offer Sinden. I'd love to attend Reapercon, but I'm up in VA and won't be making the trip anytime soon. I may get the game and see how it goes. I don't mind tweaking rules to keep the kids interested.

 

Any other suggestions for beginner games?

 

Thanks again, lots of good info!

-Z

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Any other suggestions for beginner games?

 

 

If you're looking specifically for fantasy-themed games with character progression, I might suggest Runebound (also from FFG). Fewer toys (some the same as in Descent) but a simpler and shorter game. And it's a game I still like to play.

 

If you're just looking for any games to play with your kids, let us know, because that opens the field significantly.

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I've seen the name (Munchkin) and saw it was a Steve Jackson game and stopped looking right there. I've got nothing against Steve Jackson games (I even have an Aunt who was an artist for him back in the 80's) but I've never found their games to my liking. I did manage to get to the FLGS this weekend and saw descent in person (that's a big friggin' box) but he did not have any copies of Dungeon, which wasn't a big surprise. He does still have "Dragons don't share", in original plastic wrap (well, most of the wrap is still there). He's also got a few Legends of the 5 rings left and a handfull of exalted as well.

 

I was able to download a copy of the dungeon manual (from bgg) and I think I have enough pictures of the gameboard that I could re-build a version of it, but if I do that it's going to be a 25mm scaled version, complete with monsters and treasures and probably a scratchbuilt multi-leveled game board comeplete with working secret doors...like I need another project :rolleyes:

 

Thanks again for the advice and suggestions. I'll go check out Munchkin and see what it's about.

-Z

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I've seen the name (Munchkin) and saw it was a Steve Jackson game and stopped looking right there. I've got nothing against Steve Jackson games (I even have an Aunt who was an artist for him back in the 80's) but I've never found their games to my liking. I did manage to get to the FLGS this weekend and saw descent in person (that's a big friggin' box) but he did not have any copies of Dungeon, which wasn't a big surprise. He does still have "Dragons don't share", in original plastic wrap (well, most of the wrap is still there). He's also got a few Legends of the 5 rings left and a handfull of exalted as well.

 

I was able to download a copy of the dungeon manual (from bgg) and I think I have enough pictures of the gameboard that I could re-build a version of it, but if I do that it's going to be a 25mm scaled version, complete with monsters and treasures and probably a scratchbuilt multi-leveled game board comeplete with working secret doors...like I need another project :rolleyes:

 

Thanks again for the advice and suggestions. I'll go check out Munchkin and see what it's about.

-Z

 

I think Munchkin would probably be a little age-inappropriate for your younger kids. There's a lot of dry humor in the cards that they wouldn't get. Some of it may be a little adult-oriented, but I think for the vast majority of it you'd just find yourself spending all of your time explaining why its funny. FREX when you start the game none of the characters have a class and the rules make a joke about everyone being classless. The biggest issue tho would probably be that one of the primary mechanics of the game is screwing over the other players. You can help other players complete their quests or prevent them from doing so, and you need to be able to understand when its in your best interest to help, hinder, or just sit back and watch. Most young kids don't have the reasoning abilities to make those decisions correctly yet. More importantly, most young kids aren't going to understand it when their brother, sister, or dad play a card that gets them killed, that its just a game and isn't personal.

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Weeelll, what I would recommend is to buy Descent but until the kids get older download a copy of the old Heroquest rules. There are a few websites where you can download all the (player book and Dungeon Master book) and there are all kinds of extras that people have made up over the years. It's easy for kids to play and expandable so it could tide you over until the kids will grasp descent which is a fun game. The reason i think Descent would be a good buy for you know is all the models and dungeon stuff can be used for the Heroquest game.

 

Here is a link:

 

http://www.heroquestdownloads.com/

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