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Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Monday September 21st, 2020 8:56am
by Azure
We are Monday morning, and as I am searching for something to do, I'm telling myself: ''Why not tell YeOldeInn about my last Friday night game ?''

Friday night, on Sept 18th, I joined my group as usual, for a vanilla (classic) HeroQuest game, following all the proper instructions in the Quest Book. I played the Wizard. Our game master has some serious experience and from time to time will add some spiciness to a quest if he figures out that a quest could be too easy. For the quest ''Race Against Time'', he really wanted to make it more challenging and actually risky. It's worth mentioning that he had played it before with another group, and definitely did not want us to cakewalk the entire thing like the previous group of heroes. So the original quest book told that we basically had some time limit, before all heroes perished. The vanilla guidelines were blurry and vague, leaving too much to interpretation.

He made it clear with the new guidelines. Here they are, for those who want to try this exciting version of the quest ''Race Against Time'':

For Players :
:skeleton: The dungeon will collapse on the 13th turn. The Heroes have 12 full turns to actually find the exit of the dungeon, otherwise they all die.
:skeleton: At least ONE HERO must find the staircase and make it to the stairs, in order to stop the insta-death timer (Mandatory)
:skeleton: Once the first hero reaches the stairs, all the other heroes must also reach the stairs - - but no Death Collapse Timer.
:skeleton: Rooms start crumbling and collapsing on the 5th turn.

For the Dungeon Master
:skeleton: Starting at the 5th turn, rooms will start collapsing in a specific order, following the exact same order that the characters explored, starting with the 3 rooms that surround the initial starting room.

My Wizard separated from the group quite early on. They were busy fighting a group of monsters. I kept moving in order to discover anything that would lead me to the stairs. I ended in a corridor, alone. I decided to cast Swift Wind, so on my next turn I would move twice as fast. The allies kept fighting, it was getting risky for them. They got injured and their attacks were successfully blocked. On next turn, I rolled 8 - that gave me a 16 actually. As I turned in a corner (center corridor on the left-hand side of the board) I saw an Orc, which I gladly killed using Ball of Flame.

Funny moment ;
At some point, the Elf was surrounded by a Chaos Warrior and a Fimir. He thought he was gonna die. So I started to laugh out loud, impersonating the Elf. I said ''Well, I guess I'm gonna die anyway, so I'm better off dying while getting stuck in rock'' (related to his use of Pass Through Rock to save his life and join me at the other end).

Once the Chaos Warrior and Fimir were defeated, the allies started to follow me slowly. Back to the Wizard, I opened the door that the Orc was protecting, revealing 4 Goblins. I had just enough movement to reach the next door, but I would have to deflect 3 consecutive attacks from the Goblins. I used the spell Courage ; I needed all the extra chances to defeat them and open the next door. I ended my turn protecting the next door and being surrounded by 3 Goblins. The allies tried to uncover secret doors all along the way, but did not find any.

I attacked the first Goblin and killed it. Using my movement, I opened the door, and finally revealed the Staircase. I decided to funnel my enemies using the door frame for the next turn. I killed the 2nd Goblin, then I moved onto the Staircase, leaving the dungeon safe and sound and stopping the countdown. The Elf made it, he killed the remaining 2 Goblins by himself then proceeded to the stairs. Paladin and Barbarian made it to the Goblin room as well shortly after, but they were surprised by a very large group of Orcs (10 of them) under the command of Zargon. After a savage battle, they cleared the way just enough to reach the stairs. We succeeded. I basically had 1-2 more turns before it all collapsed, to actually find the stairs.

That was a really exciting game.

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Monday September 21st, 2020 9:12am
by ajjohnsen
That does sound pretty sweet! My group has been delayed playing this year a lot because of "The C word" and kids being born and all that, but were close to getting to quest 9. This is an excellent idea to spice it up since I think I remember it being fairly easy

Please keep on sharing experiences like this because it definitely helps the rest of us too!

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Monday September 21st, 2020 9:21am
by Azure
Excellent !! I'll do !!

Please make sure you take a look at all my other posts, and all my other stuff too.

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Monday September 21st, 2020 6:38pm
by washi
Nice. I'm almost on Quest 9 with my group and I was thinking what to do to make this quest really a RACE against time. You helped a lot.

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Monday September 21st, 2020 6:55pm
by Azure
Thanks !! I enjoy helping !

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Tuesday September 22nd, 2020 8:52am
by washi
I was thnking... Is there some explanation for why dungeon stops to fall apart when one hero arrive the stairs?
If not, I'm considering put some sort of Device on Stairs room, revealing that all was just a trap and it stops because the hero that arrive on stairs room disactivate it. Maybe a Orc will be controlling the Device and must be defeated first... I'm thinking yet.

What do you think, Azure?

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Tuesday September 22nd, 2020 9:33am
by Azure
Yeah that is a great idea (the gears device with a secret lever)

- to answer your question ;

The first goal is to get a character to the stairs in order to stop the death collapse. You have 12 turns to reach it.
Then you have the rooms who progressively collapse every turn, starting either on turn 5, or turn 6.
The new goal, is for all the characters to exit the dungeon before the rooms collapse - - the crumbling reaching the staircase.

So, basically speaking ; One character reaching the exit stairs will give you more time, like, an approximate 5 turns to get the entire party out.
You can add a handful of monsters to fight on the way to the exit. I hope that helps you :)

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Thursday September 24th, 2020 5:23pm
by ChaosL00
I'm the DM of the game Azure referenced.
The quest was Vanilla as outlined in the quest book.
With the following exceptions:
After your guide "disappears" He starts running to the exit to get out himself.
Hence when Zargon has sent his agent to trap the heroes.
The rules are in twelve turns if any one of the heroes fail to exit the dungeon. The agent will seal/block off the exit and stairs disappear.
If the remainder of party fails to leave the dungeon at turn 12 Zargon setup a ambush to ensure the demise of the party by sending in a horde of orcs. After 12 turns have elapsed orcs will come down the stairs each additional turn in a wave of 6 orcs at a time. Filling each open space between the stairs. Additionally the activity above starts to collapse the unstable dungeon. Starting turn 6 the dungeon collapses a room or 4 spaces of hallway each turn.Starting near the heroes start point. I randomly chose one of the Monster's rooms attached to the heroes start point.

Actually my group were test for this but I did determine straight shot on roll of 6 movement should get all out in 8 turns.

Concerning the Artifact in that dungeon. I moved the block of the last hallway back to include the last room and created a pressure plate one way secret door.(the heroes won't find the pressure plate if they don't check for secret doors in the hallway) So it theoretically was possible to obtain the artifact(with-in time frame) and possible to do the room set without getting trapped by the collapsing dungeon.

Originally, I had thought to fill each room with orcs from the stairs each turn but settled on that being too difficult with the increased difficulty already imposed.

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Thursday September 24th, 2020 10:46pm
by Orc26
The last time we played this on Zargon's turn he kept putting green monsters on the board in one of the "starting" monster rooms. I think he was rolling a number of combat dice to determine what ones got put out, but it seemed pretty random to me. It made the adventure really tense because there was no turns to regather by the next door or to cast healing spells without it eating an attack...

Re: Quest no 9 - Race Against Time

PostPosted: Monday September 28th, 2020 11:08pm
by washi
I'll play this tomorrow with my group and I'll try to implement what you guys posted.
I'm thinking yet if I tell them that they have 12 turns or keep it in secret (so I can change the number if needed). Probably I'll tell because I believe it is better for players experience but I don't know yet if will be really 12 turns or 15. 12 seems to be really hard.

Probably I'll use the "rooms collapse" and "secret door" ideas and give them 15 turns. If they get lucky and go through the right path quickly I add some monsters to slow them down.