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Dungeon Lords

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Joined: 10/24/2012

Dungeon Lords is a pretty amazing game on its own, but my kids can't leave anything "as is", so we've come up with these variants on the monsters you can hire:

Veteran Monsters
- When hiring a Monster, you may pay additional Evil to promote it to a Veteran. For each Evil you pay, put a Blood Counter on the Monster token. For each Blood Counter on the Monster, it may attack one additional round. You must pay this Evil again when paying Upkeep.

Elder Monsters
- If you are at maximum Evil when you hire a Monster, you may pay one Gold, one Food, and one Imp to promote the monster to an Elder. Elder Monsters do one additional point of damage on any attacks they make (this also applies to multiple attacks). As well, each type of Elder Monster has a special ability. In some cases, they impart this ability to all of your Monsters or have an "area effect" as long as they are not knocked out (even if they aren't in the current combat round). Some ideas we've come up with:

Elder Witch (Lich): As long as the Lich is face up, each Adventurer loses one symbol (i.e., Clerics heal 1 less, Magic Users have 1 less magic level, and Thieves lose one level of disarm traps). Paladins and Fighters are unaffected.

Elder Slime (Gelatinous Cube): Put one Blood Counter on the Gelatinous Cube. It may attack one additional round (as Veteran Monsters rule, above). Each round the Gelatinous Cube attacks, the first Adventurer is paralyzed and loses all abilities.

Elder Goblin (Goblin Chieftain): All Goblins and Trolls get +1 damage to each of their attacks as long as the Goblin Chieftain isn't knocked out.

More to come...


Dralius's picture
Joined: 07/26/2008
Making variants is a good way

Making variants is a good way to learn the craft of designing games. It gives you a proven platform to tinker with rather than starting from scratch and getting overwhelmed or simply not understanding all the dynamics involved.

Joined: 10/24/2012
Variants as a learning tool

Agreed, Dralius (that's one of the reasons I suggested this new forum!) It can also help with learning more about play testing. I.e., you start with a game that's been throughly play tested (presumably) and make some small modifications to the rules, and see what the impact is. It's an incremental approach to game design.

Note that in some cases, changes may make the game quicker, easier, etc. Some people might consider this "breaking" the game, but it's effectively a "house rules" approach to making a game more fun for the particular group that's playing it. As long as everyone who's playing the game at that time agrees to it, then I think it's good thing. One example is starting a game with slightly more resources or money, which should get you to the mid-game strategy more quickly. Another approach is using the "incentive" method that Puerto Rico or Twilight Imperium uses to make certain options more attractive over time. For example, in Caylus, we found that we almost never use the Gate space. So now we put a coin (denier) on that space each time no one uses it in a round.

And no, I do NOT put money on Free Parking in Monopoly. :)

- Qwib

Joined: 04/08/2012
Remember the old game, "MEMORY?"

2 to 4 player game. Where one player shuffles the cards and flips all 56 cards face down. What you see a mistake in my math of a regular 52 playing cards. Well. Those extra cards are 4 jokers. My varient to Memory. When a player has flipped up just any two jokers, that player returns all of their cards back on to table by another player. Its fun and my niece and nephews love this version of Memory.

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