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Chests? How do they work?

Discuss the Rules of HeroQuest as set out by Milton Bradley Game Systems and Quest Packs.

Chests? How do they work?

Postby Goblin-King » Sunday October 2nd, 2011 7:48am

This is something we discuss every time we play, and we never really seem to settle for anything, playing with random rules each time...
The rules are extremly vauge, but some seem to imply that you get the content of a chest by just doing the normal search for treasure.
That kinda reduces chests to a simple marker, telling the players that there probably are aspecific treasure in this room.

In my danish quests they ofthen use the phrase "If a player opens/asks to see the content of this chest..."
This implies that opening a chest is actually a whole seperate action. Search for treasure OR open chest.
Some maps also have traps surrounded by traps, implying you are supposed to walk up to the chest.

I see the following ways to use chests:
1.) Chests are not really important - Players just need to search for treasure like in a room without a chest. 3 chests are opened in 1 turn. No need to stand next to chest.
2.) Chests are a different kind of treasure. A player can both open a chest and search for other treasure in the same room. 3 chests take 3 turns to open. Must stand next to chest.
3.) Chests replaces the search for treasure in a room. You cant search if there are obvious treasure in the room. 3 chests take 3 turns to open. Must stand next to chest.
4.) Any combination of the above rules :-P

Personally I'm inclined to go for 2 or 3. How does other players use chests?


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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby drathe » Sunday October 2nd, 2011 3:09pm

With my current group, we are using rule #2. Search for treasure and you are searching the room, chests not included. We are considering chests entirely separate, due to the already noted fact that traps around a chest are otherwise pointless. If a hero wants to check the chest, they must stand in front of it (not at the side, same goes for disarming trapped chests). This also creates a bit of competition between the players as everyone wants the treasure themselves in most cases. It also encourages the purchase of tool kits. No one wants the trap disarming dwarf to get all the loot. In the case of three chests, it's more than likely that another hero will be there as well and open one of the other chests, meaning the loot is not hoarded by one treasure searcher.
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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby Goblin-King » Sunday October 2nd, 2011 4:42pm

How about trapped chests? Does a hero recieve the loot if he opens a trapped chest or can another player ninja loot it in the following turn? :lol:


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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby Sjeng » Monday October 3rd, 2011 6:56am

if a trapped chest contains loot, and it's opened without searching for traps, the player gets hit by the trap, but also the loot. Seems only fair to me.

I usually used rule 1, but reading this, rule 2 makes more sense to me. Good question. :)

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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby Daedalus » Monday October 3rd, 2011 6:27pm

Goblin-King wrote:This is something we discuss every time we play, and we never really seem to settle for anything, playing with random rules each time...
The rules are extremly vauge, but some seem to imply that you get the content of a chest by just doing the normal search for treasure.
That kinda reduces chests to a simple marker, telling the players that there probably are aspecific treasure in this room.

Rules to consider from p.16 of the North American Instruction Booklet under Action 3-Search For Treasure:

. . . A room may be searched by
all 4 Heroes, but each individual Hero
may only search the room once, and
may do so only on his own turn.

...Searching for treasure means you are
looking around, opening things, search-
ing for interesting objects and gold
coins, regardless of what square you are
on in the room. Do not move your
Hero figure when you search.


As Zargon, if there is a special treasure
(as described in the Quest Notes), you
must read aloud the treasure description
once the treasure has been found. The
special treasure is discovered only once
by the first Hero who searches the room
for treasure, even if other Heroes later
search that same room.


Yes, you get the contents of a chest by just doing a normal search for treasure. A Search For Treasure action may turn up a special treasure if there is a chest, another piece of furniture, or even just a monster that possesses the treasure. I guess it's even possible for a special treasure to lie in an otherwise empty room, if so noted. A chest is merely a special piece of furniture (marker) that may contain treasure, but it also may mark the location of a trap. If trapped, a Hero must be moved adjacent to the chest for a disarm attempt. Now the marker is a goal or a penalty.

Goblin-King wrote:In my danish quests they ofthen use the phrase "If a player opens/asks to see the content of this chest..."
This implies that opening a chest is actually a whole seperate action. Search for treasure OR open chest.
Some maps also have traps surrounded by traps, implying you are supposed to walk up to the chest.


Looking through the later-published North American Quest Book, such direct references to opening a chest or seeing its contents have been omitted. Seems this was done to avoid subsequent confususion about what a Search For Treasure action entails.

Movement to the chest is implied by the second paragraph posted above in blue. Searching for treasure involves looking around and opening things (ie. a chest), regardless of what square a Hero is on.

Included at the top of p. 18 under Action 5-Search For Traps:

A treasure chest or piece of furniture
may also contain a trap. If you search for
treasure without first searching for
traps, you will spring the trap.


The rules as written only call for a Hero to take damage from a trap placed on the chest square, as the Hero doesn't actually move to the chest and trigger other traps on the way. However, I agree there is a problem if a chest is totally surrounded by traps, as is found in the Barbarian Quest Pack, Quest 2. How could the Barbarian possibly get the gold safely from the chest noted in D if traps weren't first searched for? Without such a prior traps search, a search for treasure should logically require one of the surrounding spear traps to be unwittingly sprung as the Barbarian necessarily crosses it to get to the chest. Does he somehow uncosciously avoid the trap with an inspired leap? Discussed in this thread, I suggest a house rule is needed to spring a trap that wasn't searched for that is also unavoidably on the way to a chest.

Goblin-King wrote:I see the following ways to use chests:
1.) Chests are not really important - Players just need to search for treasure like in a room without a chest. 3 chests are opened in 1 turn. No need to stand next to chest.
2.) Chests are a different kind of treasure. A player can both open a chest and search for other treasure in the same room. 3 chests take 3 turns to open. Must stand next to chest.
3.) Chests replaces the search for treasure in a room. You cant search if there are obvious treasure in the room. 3 chests take 3 turns to open. Must stand next to chest.
4.) Any combination of the above rules :-P

Personally I'm inclined to go for 2 or 3. How does other players use chests?

No. 1 is pretty much what the rules call for. I use this one, with the above-noted house rule for unavoidable traps.
No. 2 makes good sense as a house rule, but I wouldn't allow a Hero to search for a treasure in the Quest notes and search the treasure deck for other treasure. That is prohibited by the first and third blue paragraphs above. I'd limit it to extra searches applying only to another chest (or other piece of furniture).
No. 3 is what I'm talking about in No. 2, so I'd prefer No. 3 over No. 2 as a house rule.
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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby cynthialee » Monday October 3rd, 2011 6:38pm

I have always considered chests to not count in a room search action.
To open a chest or search for traps on it I always reguire a Hero to be in front of the chest. Searching for traps in a room will reveal traps surrounding a chest, but not traps on the chest itself. Thus searching for traps on a chest is not automatic when searching a room and must be done as a separate action.
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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby Goblin-King » Tuesday October 4th, 2011 4:25am

It seems there are as many interpretations of the rules as there are players! :P

Another thing that struck me... What If the quest notes states that a chest is empty?
Does the first player who searches for treasure get nothing and the second player gets a treasure card?


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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby Ethica » Tuesday October 4th, 2011 5:58am

It seems as though you do have to work out your own process for this. The official rules don't cut it in my opinion.

I won't bore you with what I do, but it's pretty much the same as what's already been said above.


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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby Sjeng » Tuesday October 4th, 2011 6:36am

Goblin-King wrote:It seems there are as many interpretations of the rules as there are players! :P

Another thing that struck me... What If the quest notes states that a chest is empty?
Does the first player who searches for treasure get nothing and the second player gets a treasure card?


If you count the chest as an addition to a treasure card, then you only get the card the first time.
If not, it depends on your own rules I guess...

I think this is an item that would be a good addition to the modular rule-loretome. :2cents:

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Re: Chests? How do they work?

Postby torilen » Tuesday October 4th, 2011 8:50am

Goblin-King wrote:How about trapped chests? Does a hero recieve the loot if he opens a trapped chest or can another player ninja loot it in the following turn? :lol:


As far as another player coming in and swiping the loot - I'd have to ask why? Remember, the heroes are SUPPOSED to be all friends
working together to fight evil and chaos. If there was something one player wanted or needed more than the others, I would
assume he would get it. I've always played it that the loot has to be shared between all the players, no matter who finds it.

NOW...for a different way to play. If you have created or use a hero that is a thief/rogue type character, you can have that
player attempt to swipe and hide some gold before the others see any of it, and that hero would have a little extra over the
others. BUT...if the other heroes see him, they might not trust him as much, which would cause the whole companions fighting
together system to fall apart. Not good....not good.


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