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Problems with this Quest as written

Discuss the Quest Eyes of Chaos, published in White Dwarf Magazine #145.

Problems with this Quest as written

Postby Zenithfleet » Thursday October 29th, 2020 1:15pm

OK, so I got sick of trying to decipher the 'homebrew' look of this White Dwarf adventure and decided to make myself some HeroScribe maps for Eyes of Chaos.

Is it just me, or is this adventure a bit... nonsensical?

In the first Quest, there are three tombs. (Though it's easy enough to substitute the card coffins from Return of the Witch Lord.)

In the second Quest, there are no fewer than five treasure chests. (Granted, two of them don't do anything and can be left out.)

The author also doesn't seem to understand how searching for treasure works. He keeps saying things like 'the treasure chest in this room allows the Heroes to draw treasure cards' instead of providing a gold value, as if he's playing Warhammer Quest from the future (or possibly Advanced Heroquest?).

Most alarmingly, it looks as if the falling block trap on the bottom right of the map will make the Quest impossible to complete.* The players can't get into the central room without the Brass Key (unless Genie works?) and have to go past the falling block to find it. But then they won't be able to get back to the door and so can't fight the Sorcerer. Meanwhile, anyone stuck on the near side of the block won't be able to reach the stairs.

Not that any actual reward is specified anywhere for this Quest, so I suppose the Heroes could just skedaddle... "Sorry Pierre, he who lives to fight another day and all that!"

I think adding a secret door on the south side of the eastern corridor (a few squares before the pit trap) should work. It will make it easy to get to the stairway without investigating the rest of the board, but they could just go around the long way past the falling block for the same result.

*I'm not entirely sure what he intended with the block traps, though, because they lack arrows (as do the ones in Durrag-Dol from #134). They might be intended more like the Spirit Blade quest ones that just bonk you on the helmet. But some of them sure look like those nasty ones in Ogre Horde that are meant to trap you forever.

The whole Quest is a bit bonkers, really. The Eyes themselves seem like a Saturday morning cartoon gimmick (ooh, glowing skulls!) that never goes anywhere interesting. And the sheer number of Ogres looks terrifying.

It would have been nice to mention in the intro that you need to own Return of the Witch Lord as well as Ogre Horde (because zombies).

I do like the condensed-Troll-vapour-in-a-chest, though. Not your standard treasure chest trap. But can't the heroes just run straight past him down the stairs? Hmm... maybe if he's a Citadel miniature and has a large base, he can appear on the stairs and block everyone's path...
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Re: Problems with this Quest as written

Postby Oftkilted » Thursday October 29th, 2020 1:26pm

“Back in WHFB” The trolls were on 40mm square bases and blocked 4 squares.
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Re: Problems with this Quest as written

Postby Daedalus » Monday February 22nd, 2021 10:39pm

Zenithfleet wrote:. . . Is it just me, or is this adventure a bit... nonsensical?

In the first Quest, there are three tombs. (Though it's easy enough to substitute the card coffins from Return of the Witch Lord.)

In the second Quest, there are no fewer than five treasure chests. (Granted, two of them don't do anything and can be left out.)

Carl Sargent was a professional fantasy game contributor in his time, but this is a clear example of someone brought in who doesn't understand the game well. I like your solutions.

Zenithfleet wrote:The author also doesn't seem to understand how searching for treasure works. He keeps saying things like 'the treasure chest in this room allows the Heroes to draw treasure cards' instead of providing a gold value, as if he's playing Warhammer Quest from the future (or possibly Advanced Heroquest?).

It's weird, but I don't mind it too much since the EU rules only allow one treasure search per room. I'd say it works best with the chest that gave three searches with no chance of a Wandering Monster. However, there was another instance when specific searching of the Weapon Rack was necessary to draw a Treasure Card. Was this intended as an additional search, or just the standard once-in-the-room-only search with flowery prose? That I mind.

Zenithfleet wrote:Most alarmingly, it looks as if the falling block trap on the bottom right of the map will make the Quest impossible to complete.* The players can't get into the central room without the Brass Key (unless Genie works?) and have to go past the falling block to find it. But then they won't be able to get back to the door and so can't fight the Sorcerer. Meanwhile, anyone stuck on the near side of the block won't be able to reach the stairs.

I like the Genie idea. A Pass through Rock spell to enter and then open the room from the inside would also do the trick. But yeah, the falling block trap squrely short circuits this Quest. Hopefully the Heroes have the Ring of Return handy. This is why Zenithfleet made localized EU Artifact Cards.
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Re: Problems with this Quest as written

Postby Davane » Tuesday February 23rd, 2021 5:51am

Daedalus wrote:
Zenithfleet wrote:Most alarmingly, it looks as if the falling block trap on the bottom right of the map will make the Quest impossible to complete.* The players can't get into the central room without the Brass Key (unless Genie works?) and have to go past the falling block to find it. But then they won't be able to get back to the door and so can't fight the Sorcerer. Meanwhile, anyone stuck on the near side of the block won't be able to reach the stairs.

I like the Genie idea. A Pass through Rock spell to enter and then open the room from the inside would also do the trick. But yeah, the falling block trap squrely short circuits this Quest. Hopefully the Heroes have the Ring of Return handy. This is why Zenithfleet made localized EU Artifact Cards.


The Ring of Return was only in the US version of HQ, so there's no reason to suspect that UK players would have it, and GW was still breaking into the US market when this quest was designed. Thus, I don't think this quest was designed with the Ring of Return in mind.

Either Carl thought that the party would be looking for traps automatically by this point, so would detect and disarm this trap, or that fallen blocks can be removed somehow. Of course, the quest is full of fallen blocks that dead-end the Heroes, so perhaps the soft-lock is intentional, since the quest itself doesn't require killing the Chaos Sorcerer, and it's supposed to be a "d'oh!" moment when you realise what the key for, and that you've missed out on the big room with the big loot (a 200gp treasure AND a three-card Treasure Without Doom effect).

If the Heroes are caught on the wrong side of the Fallen Block, then a lenient EW might allow Pass Through Rock or Genie to work to access room H. If they go this route though, then the resulting cave in from the defeat of the Chaos Sorcerer might cause the south wall to collapse, allowing the Heroes to escape to the rest of the dungeon, but they are STILL only able to enter two NEW rooms before the complex collapses. Since there are only two routes with rooms that feature another door besides the entrance, it's a 50/50 chance that they survive. Best they choose wisely!

Alternatively, the single fallen block tile outside room H could be converted to a fallen block trap. This gives the Heroes another chance to be able to complete the Quest by getting the Brass Key, and the Heroes should be more wary of fallen block traps in the area after the first one.

Finally, a really nice EW might allow the wall north of the room to the left of the stairs to collapse as the Heroes pass when the cave in has started, giving the Heroes an escape route (if they blocked or not) after defeating the Chaos Sorcerer. It's worth noting that the treasure chest in this room doesn't have any effect, so having the wall collapse ON the Treasure Chest might just haunt the Heroes enough to think about all that lost loot.

Combining these options allows the Quest to be fully playable as intended, but gives the Heroes more chance to escape, since the collapsed wall presents a 50/50 chance of finding the stairway straight away, AND any intelligent player will realise not only that there is nowhere else to go if they explored the whole dungeon, but in order to survive, the next room they enter has to contain the staircase (especially if you let the Dwarf figure out roughly how long they have). This should make the party hesitant to just rush in to every room if they haven't explored the complex, and only makes the dungeon a potential deathtrap if they didn't use the Brass Key to enter the Sorcerer's room...
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Re: Problems with this Quest as written

Postby j_dean80 » Tuesday February 23rd, 2021 6:53am

So you need to look at this Quest from the EU rules perspective:

If you set off a trap it is placed on the board.
If you search for a trap it is placed on the board.

However, you can always disarm the trap and remove it. This is whether it was searched or tripped. So, in other words, they never actually trap you.

The biggest issue with the falling block trap is: Where is the arrow?
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Re: Problems with this Quest as written

Postby Kurgan » Tuesday February 23rd, 2021 1:51pm

Interesting stuff guys. I had this one printed out (the version posted on Phoenix's site) for ages but still haven't played it (and I try not to study a quest until its time to play it for the first time, to avoid "spoilers") so didn't know about these issues.

Anybody want to mock up a proposed fix?

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