|Coins and Curses
A Preview of Labyrinth of Ruin by Guest Writer Marcel Cwertetschka
|Descent: Journeys in the Dark Second Edition | Published 30 May 2013|
In February, we announced the upcoming release of Labyrinth of Ruin, a campaign expansion for Descent: Journeys in the Dark Second Edition. Set in a previously unexplored region of Terrinoth, Labyrinth of Ruin takes players on a riveting journey to the broken remains of a forgotten city. Throughout the many quests included in this expansion, heroes will enlist the aid of unique allies in their mission to stop the evil overlord.
In our last preview of Labyrinth of Ruin, we looked at the Apothecary and Beastmaster classes. We also met Ulma Grimstone, a dwarven Healer with more than a few concoctions up her sleeve, and Pathfinder Durik, an orc Warrior whose life in the wilderness has made him a rugged killer.
Today, guest writer Marcel Cwertetschka presents a look at the other two upcoming classes in Labyrinth of Ruin, the intrepid Treasure Hunter and the wicked Hexer. Marcel will also introduce you to two new characters: Logan Lashley and Dezra the Vile.
Marcel Cwertetschka on Labyrinth of Ruin
Today is a special day for me; I have the honor to write a preview for the Labyrinth of Ruin expansion! First, I’ll present an overview of the riches-seeking Treasure Hunter, a hoarder of immense wealth with the ever-present desire for more. Then, you’ll see the wicked Hexer, with her knowledge of many curses and diseases. Before we delve right into the new classes, let’s meet the veteran Scout Logan Lashley.
Always on the hunt for treasure and danger, Logan has attributes that truly focus around his senses and combat experience; high Awareness and impressive Might reflect his core goal of finding wealth and taking it. Still, he has a good amount of Knowledge, since as a wayfarer he had to know places to rest and hide.
Logan's Hero Ability represents his refusal to be stopped; he may never be immobilized! And given that immobilization is a powerful condition for the overlord to dish out with his minions, Logan is likely to use this ability often. Additionally, whenever he dispatches a filthy monster with an Exotic weapon from his arsenal, he gains a free movement point. Logan’s flexibility of movement also continues in his Heroic Feat. Once per Encounter, whenever he dishes out some damage to a monster, he may move up to his Speed and deliver a similar message to another!
There is Always Another Treasure!
The Treasure Hunter class is a perfect fit for Logan Lashley, but other heroes can also enjoy the rich possibilities this new class offers. Mobility and utility (for the tradeoff that you will mostly fight monsters that guard treasure), are the key features this new class offers. Its starting trinket, The Dead Man's Compass, can give you a free movement point if you are already near a search token. The alluring promise of unknown riches is hard to resist! And when a monster dares to stand in your way, the Leather Whip can be used to whip aside this nuisance. If you finally reached your desired search spot, Delver helps you dig deep enough in the search deck to find right what you need.
With increasing experience, the Treasure Hunter can further enrich his utility around searching with skills like Survey, Lure of Fortune, and Trail of Riches. Survey allows you to tailor the top search cards in any order you want, and it gives an extra stamina, which might come in handy to reach the next treasure. Lure of Fortune lets you make use of the stacked search deck, to bury less-than-necessary search cards beneath the deck. Plus, every time you dig for treasure, it recovers you health and fatigue. To build on this, Trail of Riches enhances the Treasure Hunter’s ever-lasting greed for more, by allowing him to grab more precious search cards without using an action!
On the other hand, you can play a more combat-oriented way method the Treasure Hunter. Dungeoneer gives you a free attack action after searching to protect your new found value with a preemptive strike. Meanwhile, Guard the Spoils and Finder's Keeper's grant you more defense along with an aggressive blow, while both increases in efficiency for each search card you are carrying!
Aspirant of Dark Arts
Now lets turn our view towards the dark arts of the Hexer class and its main incarnation Dezra the Vile.
Since she’s deeply focused on dark magics, Dezra's main attribute is Wisdom, closely followed by her exceptional Awareness. She knows how to influence small beings in her environment and gains pleasure from observing how her hexes and curses kick into action. Still, she has a moderate Might and Willpower, which reflects in a way her struggles with authorities and their constraints.
Dezra the Vile's draining nature is represented in her heroic ability. At the start of each turn, she may recover one wound or fatigue for each monster she is adjacent to! She truly saps the life force out of her enemies. Her understanding of anatomy goes so far, in fact, that with a simple gesture and spell she can freeze all nearby foes. Dezra's heroic feat allows her to immobilize all adjacent monsters if the overlord dares to activate a group next to her!
Dance, My Little Puppet!
Do you share the dark ambitions to seek for forbidden knowledge and bewitch enemies with curses so powerful they can halt whole armies? Then the Hexer class is for you. This class boasts a kit full of interesting hexes and curses for every situation, and can support your teammates with damage-enhancing capabilities. The main resource you will work with are Hex Tokens, which symbolize your effect on your enemies with a basic mark that can be used for different purposes. Enfeebling Hex allows you, on every successful attack, distribute a curse to any monster nearby your target and grants every hero on your team to convert this mark into a free damage on an attack against such a monster.
The Hexer class is not just for cursing a single monster per attack. In fact, you have multiple ways to spread around evil affliction. Viral Hex counts the number of hexed monsters nearby and allows you to distribute an equal amount of new hex tokens to other monsters! Internal Rot strengthens the power of curses by simply placing a second token on your desired target, and additionally giving you Pierce 2 against hexed monsters. And finally, Plague Cloud allows you to target each hexed monster in a single blow, but before you do, you might distribute more hex tokens to each adjacent monster to your targets, making even the powerful Blast ability look weak by comparison!
But not only offensively the Hexer can aid in battle. Plague Spasm allows to add a black die to the defense pool of a hero if a hexed monster attacks him. But the support power of the Hexer doesn't even stop in hindering monsters; you can Fel Command cursed monsters to attack themselves, or allow a nearby hero with Accursed Arms to simply slay the monster before it even can attack!
Which path will you choose? Trailing riches with the avaricious Treasure hunter or feeding on the life of your enemies with unpredictable hexes? Lead your band of adventurers into the Labyrinth of Ruin and survive its perils!
Thanks, Marcel! Look for more on Labyrinth of Ruin in the coming weeks, and head to your local retailer to place your pre-order today!
Descent: Journeys in the Dark Second Edition is a story-driven board game for 2-5 players that takes a party of adventurers deep into the dungeons of Terrinoth for adventure, treasure, and glory. Players will embark on a campaign of linked quests as they develop characters based on four fantasy archetypes.