November 29, 2015 at 11:59 pm #11044
We’ve been having a fabulous time with base game Mansions of Madness and some of the Print and Play expansions (Yellow Sign, House of Fears, The Laboratory)… curiously, the scenario that fell flat was the fully co-op scenario from Call of the Wild, A Matter of Trust.
Many people regard the non-linear Call of the Wild missions as being an improvement on the base game, but we found A Matter of Trust rather disappointing, so we might stick to the base and PnP scenarios for awhile.
My gaming group and I just love Lovecraft, and this game has the most authentically Lovecraftian experience I’ve encountered in board games. Yes, it’s fiddly, clunky, and some stories just dont work (that all sounds uncannily like Lovecrafts ouvere, actually) but man, THE ATMOSPHERE.
Somewhere in the spaces between Arkham Horror (with its massive handfuls of combat dice, character empathy and expansive setting) and Mansions of Madness (with its focussed narrative and mystery solving) lies the perfect game.
Any other fans? Favourite scenarios?
J.November 30, 2015 at 8:34 am #11051
I’m a big fan of this game and some games we’ve had in the past have been really memorable; when it works it can build up a story like no other. I always find it tricky to get to the table as I have to re-familiarise myself with all its fiddly mechanisms, and it is completely reliant on the quality of the scenarios (I must try and do some research and put them in some kind of ‘best-to-worst’ order some day), but when it all comes together …
I think I’ll get it out again for tomorrow’s game night. I’ll let you know how it goes. I can never remember which scenario is which though – what’s your fav?November 30, 2015 at 9:41 am #11054
You’re right, it’s odd that some of the mechanisms are really smooth and refined (around the combat decks, for example) while others are clunky as heck.
From the base game, Fall of House Lynch with the Shoggoth objective is the best one for new players.
The Inner Sanctum scenario with the Keeper trying to spawn a Cthonian is pretty fabulous, thematic and exciting. I’d house rule that the Keeper isn’t allowed to move the Cthonian out of the chapel, or at most one space per ‘Command Minion’ action… otherwise it can just run away from the investigators to win in four turns.
Blood Ties is amazing, but as you discovered in an old session report, you have to avoid choosing the Zombie/crypt/altar objective (I think it’s 1B) otherwise it’s a Keeper auto-win.
The other two scenarios in the base game can be disappointing more often than not.
From Forbidden Alchemy, Yellow Matter 1A and 1C are incredible. The Yellow Sign and The Laboratory have been our favourite Print and Play scenarios, and can’t really comment on Call of the Wild.
Good luck!November 30, 2015 at 12:05 pm #11055
Ahh yes, Fall of House Lynch is the one we had a fantastic time playing, it came right down to the wire and a fluked 1 in 10 chance to win. 🙂
I’ll give one of the Yellow Matter ones a go!December 1, 2015 at 12:56 pm #11061
My wife still talks about her choice of not killing of an axe-wielding maniac which resulted in the House being sucked into the ground the next turn.December 1, 2015 at 1:45 pm #11063
A matter of trust is one of my favorites for Mansions of Madness. Mostly because it is the only time I am not the keeper (or what ever it’s called). Last time I played I took the boat out to the middle of the lake thinking I would be able to avoid all the monsters. I completely forgot about the event that has something sink the boat forcing me onto shore where I promptly was attacked by a gang of monsters. My initial selfishness followed by my unplanned sacrifice allowed everyone but me to win.December 1, 2015 at 5:06 pm #11066
Decided to go with ‘A Cry for Help’ from Call of the Wild. Playing tonight!December 1, 2015 at 6:31 pm #11068
I’ve been rather frightened of learning the rules for Allies and
NPC’s, I should really just do it.December 1, 2015 at 9:00 pm #11069
I own all the big boxes for Mansions and have painted the monsters, but held off of on the Investigator figures as they were more fiddly.
Since I got into Hordes and Warmachine I have been painting a lot and might go back and tackle this…. plus A Touch of Evil which I’m going to for a swashbuckling RPG campaign.
I find that ink and armour washes can hide a lot of sins in painting and make things look ‘dirty’, which works for Circle Orboros Tharn who are savages. Should work for Cthulhu monsters, so I will at least try that.
Only played Mansions a few times and always as Keeper. Sadly only one player who was running 2-3 characters. It does work with two, but I suspect it would be better with more.
Been meaning to try out the fan made solo rules, but I have low expectations, which is a pity as horror works as solo game in the likes of Arkham Horror, Eldritch Horror and Elder Sign.December 2, 2015 at 10:24 am #11076
MatineeIdyll129 – my summary has those rules included, they’re not hard.
We played ‘A Cry For Help’ last night and I really enjoyed it as the Keeper, but I think the players didn’t enjoy it quite as much. They felt under the gun the whole time, despite the fact they pulled off a lucky win right at the end. It was still a good game night through, and there were some fantastically cinematic moments. I think it’s a brilliant game, but then again I’m always the Keeper so maybe it’s not as fun being an investigator and not knowing exactly what’s going on!
I do think what’s missing is a good summary of each scenario for both Keeper and Investigators, clearly setting out some of the goals and strategies for each game. You can sometimes get situations like “surprise! You can’t do that until event #3” which are discouraging for players. And sometimes a scenario only actually makes sense when you’ve played it through.December 3, 2015 at 9:24 am #11084
Oh, it does too! I’d forgotten.
‘A Cry for Help’ does sound like a really fascinating scenario, must give it a shot. How many investigators did you have?
Love the idea of the scenario break downs with Investigaors and Keeper strategies, if I knew them well enough I’d make a start.
In terms of scenarios only making sense once you’ve played them through, that is terribly like many of Lovecraft’s stories, really… ‘Rats in the Walls’, ‘The Dunwich Horror’ and ‘Call of Cthulhu’immediately come to mind.December 3, 2015 at 9:36 am #11086
It might not be necessary for the base game scenarios, but certainly a guide would be handy for the more complex ones.
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