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Borin's Armor clarification

Discuss Quests, Cards, Monsters etc, from HeroQuest Game Systems.

Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby Kurgan » Sunday June 9th, 2019 1:53pm

Borin's Armor (NA rules) is just Plate Mail without the movement penalty (and as an artifact, you can't sell it). That's how we've always played it.

Despite the picture on the card showing a helmet, we always allowed combining it with a Helmet. SO...

Base defense (2) + Helmet (1) + Shield (1) + Borin's Armor (2) = 6 defense dice.

Lucky the Hero that finds it, I say!


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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby wallydubbs » Wednesday July 15th, 2020 8:42pm

I took a trip back in time and read an argument that took place back in May 2013 between ChaoticPrime and The Road Warrior and those two really seemed to have offensively tore into eachother.

That argument is long since closed and I'm not trying to reopen it, but I'd like to point out an observation I made while reading. Bare in mind this only applies to the North American version.

First off I'd just like to say I'm siding with Road Warrior and Ethica on the matter. But nobody directly pointed out how such an important artifact, like Borin's Armor, makes its appearance so early in game; which seems to have played part of the reason for the argument.

Quest 7 may not seem very early in the quest book, but considering artifacts only start appearing in Quest 5, it does seem questionable why this really valuable artifact would be the third one attained.

Most artifacts in the Game System are thematically connected to their respective quests:
The Talisman of Lore, Elixir of Life and Spirit Blade are the objectives of Quest 5, 9 and 13.
The 4 Wizard Artifacts (Wizard's Cloak, Wand of Magic, Wizard's Cloak and the Spell Ring) all appear in quests where the heroes face an evil sorcerer (Grak, Balur & The Witch Lord).
The Ring of Return is found in the Castle of Mystery to give the heroes an alternative exit.
This only leaves Borin's Armor and Orc's Bane to cover Quests 7 and 11. There are no Orcs in Quest 7, so it seems likely that this was the only possible option for Borin's Armor.

Personally Orc's Bane seems lower tier compared to Borin's armor and should be available sooner.

In my opinion Orc's Bane is a preferable reward for beating Grak. The Wizard's Cloak could be taken from Wardoz in Quest 7 and Borin's Armor would be great reward for the Gargoyle guarded chest in Bastion of Choas.
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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby Davane » Monday November 23rd, 2020 2:29am

Interesting thread, but as a UK player that has played many versions of HQ, I want to put my penny's worth in.

Firsty, the UK and US versions of HeroQuest are not seperate games designed with no connection of each other. The US version is actually an updated version of the UK version, with more emphasis on co-operative than competative play. In the first UK version (with the Maze as Quest 1), there are more instances of rewards where only one player gets the reward. It would be foolish for any argument to be based on the idea that the UK version isn't somehow relevant, and that it's totally impossible that the designers of the US version simply overlooked things when updating it. Especially at a time when redesigning components for even simple changes could be fairly costly.

Secondly, the UK version only has FIVE artefacts, and they were all designed to be unique quest treasures that were better than the pieces of equipment they replaced. They were not neccessarily meant to be the BEST combinations. For example, Orcs Bane is an improved Short Sword, and Spirit Blade is an improved Broadsword. Since both the Short Sword and Broadsword can be used with a Shield, neither is designed to be better than the Battle Axe. Likewise, Borin's Armour is improved Plate Mail. In this latter case, the improvement is that it negates the movement penalty for wearing Plate Mail.

Finally, the UK version awarded more gold than the US version, so there was more chance that players would be able to afford better equipment. A key part of this was that a Hero that completed three Quests could become a Champion, and would be awarded 500 gold coins. That means it was more than possible that a Hero would have gained the 850 gold coins needed for Plate Mail by Quest 7. Thus any idea that Plate Mail was supposed to be a late game item is somewhat redundant. This is important, because the US version doesn't allow Heroes to become Champions with an added influx of gold coins, but instead Champion is reserved for when you complete the Game System quests.

As such, it's more than likely that Borin's Armour was completely overlooked when the US version was designed and rebalanced, and thus Borin's armour became OP just because they didn't want to design an entirely new quest or move when Borin's Armour was to be found.
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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby Kurgan » Monday November 23rd, 2020 9:36am

I feel like between the two versions (EU "2nd ed" and NA) Zargon got stronger and the Heroes got weaker, even though they got access to more Artifacts (called "Quest Treasures" in EU).

Allowing the Wizard to regularly defend with 5 (EU) vs. 3 (NA) and attack with 3 (4 against Undead) or twice (with 2 against Orcs) in EU vs. just 2 (and diagonally, NA) makes him a lot stronger and is a big advantage for the good guys! Until very recently I only was looking at ways to incorporate the unique bits of the EU into the NA and not really thinking about the balance of each version in and of itself. Interesting stuff.


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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby Bareheaded Warrior » Sunday March 14th, 2021 6:05am

For my 2 cents worth, we always played Borin's Armour as standard plate but without the movement penalty. At least we did for the first two generations that I played with. By the time the latest/current generation were ready to play I had realised that, as many others have stated, that getting plate armour that early on was over powered and as part of my amendments to prevent players maxing out too early I amended Borin's Armour as below;

Borin's Amulet

This amulet can be activated once per Quest and will cancel out all skulls from any single attack after you have rolled your defence dice as normal. After use then turn the card face down to show it has been used.

Other amendments that I made to the original Quest pack is to change the reward for The Stone Hunter and Fire Mage to 300gc for the group and dropped The Shield from Bastion of Chaos (instead you can just take a Treasure Card for that room/weapons rack). This removes at least 1350gc from the total rewards pot, a little more if you assume that whoever got the Amulet instead of the Armour will have to by mail at some point.
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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby Daedalus » Saturday July 24th, 2021 4:14am

wallydubbs wrote:. . . Quest 7 may not seem very early in the quest book, but considering artifacts only start appearing in Quest 5, it does seem questionable why this really valuable artifact would be the third one attained.

Most artifacts in the Game System are thematically connected to their respective quests:
The Talisman of Lore, Elixir of Life and Spirit Blade are the objectives of Quest 5, 9 and 13.
The 4 Wizard Artifacts (Wizard's Cloak, Wand of Magic, Wizard's Cloak and the Spell Ring) all appear in quests where the heroes face an evil sorcerer (Grak, Balur & The Witch Lord).
The Ring of Return is found in the Castle of Mystery to give the heroes an alternative exit.
This only leaves Borin's Armor and Orc's Bane to cover Quests 7 and 11. There are no Orcs in Quest 7, so it seems likely that this was the only possible option for Borin's Armor.

Personally Orc's Bane seems lower tier compared to Borin's armor and should be available sooner.

In my opinion Orc's Bane is a preferable reward for beating Grak. The Wizard's Cloak could be taken from Wardoz in Quest 7 and Borin's Armor would be great reward for the Gargoyle guarded chest in Bastion of Choas.

As an NA player, I like your thematic solution that rebalances the order of inclusion for Orcsbane and Borin's Armor..
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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby bleugh » Monday July 26th, 2021 3:11am

Can the Wizard use the armour then....
Card doesn't say he can't - wheras the equipment cards all say what he can / can't use.
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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby Davane » Monday July 26th, 2021 7:06am

In my HQ CERB discussion, I came across something that made me rethink how I perceive Borin's Armour.

I've always viewed Borin's Armour as being Platemail without the speed penalty, but if you look under the Pit of Darkness rules in AtOH, Borin's Armour is actually treated as Chain Mail. As such, the magical enhancement of Borin's Armour isn't that it has no speed penalty, but that it is magically tougher than standard Chainmail, making it much more powerful.

It's a small mind-shift, but the worth of the artifact makes more sense in the quest where it is, if you realise that it's supposed to be replacing a 350 gp suit of Chain Mail for one Hero, and not competing with an 800 gp suit of Plate Mail...
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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby wallydubbs » Tuesday July 27th, 2021 3:01pm

bleugh wrote:Can the Wizard use the armour then....
Card doesn't say he can't - wheras the equipment cards all say what he can / can't use.

The European version does not restrict the wizard from wearing it, as far as I know.
However the North American version does indeed specify that he can't.
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Re: Borin's Armor clarification

Postby Kurgan » Wednesday July 28th, 2021 4:01pm

I didn't think much about it until I saw the European sticker album acknowledge the fact... !


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