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Thread: Complexity (or...Ashes versus Conquest)

  1. #1
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    Default Complexity (or...Ashes versus Conquest)

    Okay, so just up front, I've already pre-ordered Ashes just based on the amazing art and the rules...and my deep love for I'm a powerful sorcerer trying to put the smack down on another powerful sorcerer games.

    So, here's my question that I'd love to hear from the playtesters (or Isaac himself) on: how harsh is the complexity curve on this game?

    For example, I love Mage Wars, but the learning curve on that game is so harsh that I don't even want to try to teach it to someone because it's going to take at least 1-2 hours. I love Warhammer 40k Conquest, but the funky timing of certain cards and abilities makes middle to upper level play extremely complex, so again, very hard to teach (even though the basics are simpler than Mage Wars).

    Ashes seems like it might avoid the worst of those complexities and be a game I can actually teach people to play, but does it have any of that hinky timing stuff? Any other weird bits that would be hard for new players to get?

  2. #2
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    The mechanisms of the game are pretty easy to get a handle on. The hardest bits will probably be the placement of spells (ready spells going to the spellboard, and action/reaction spells going to the discard), and the difference between attacking a phoenixborn and attacking a unit (what the differences between blocking and guarding are for instance).

    As far as timing goes, the spells and abilities tell you "before" or "after" or "if a unit would" making the timing clear most of the time, and even when they would seem to trigger at the same time, the player who's turn it is chooses the order the effects happen, so pretty clear cut there too.

  3. #3

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    It (judging from the rules) seems decently easy to jump in especially taking on the recommended hand and First 5.

    I'm wondering about the complexity of the Phoenixborn. I assume some are beginner friendly? How'd you as a playtester rank them?

  4. #4
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    All the Phoenixborn have intricacies that might take a while to pick up on, as you keep playing the game gets more and more deep strategically. Putting the decks themselves aside and focusing on the phoenixborn only, I think Aradel, Coal, and Maeoni are the most beginner friendly in that order. Noah is probably the most complex for beginners, followed by Jessa, and finally Saria is about in the middle of complexity. I encourage other playtesters to chime in with their thoughts on the subject. Once you throw in the suggested decks, the order changes a bit though.

  5. #5
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    Okay, so going right along with this, how much deckbuilding is actually available right out of the gate? Been doing a little math, and assuming you can have all 6 decks built at the same time, that's about 180 cards, if there's a 241 card count, that leaves about 31 cards. I'm assuming about 15-20 of those are conjuration cards that aren't included in the deck count, so that means fairly minimal deck building if you want to keep all six decks built at the same?

    Just to be clear, that's not really a bad thing in my book either, but it may be a reason where some folks may want two core sets?


    Quote Originally Posted by Phuzzworthy View Post
    All the Phoenixborn have intricacies that might take a while to pick up on, as you keep playing the game gets more and more deep strategically. Putting the decks themselves aside and focusing on the phoenixborn only, I think Aradel, Coal, and Maeoni are the most beginner friendly in that order. Noah is probably the most complex for beginners, followed by Jessa, and finally Saria is about in the middle of complexity. I encourage other playtesters to chime in with their thoughts on the subject. Once you throw in the suggested decks, the order changes a bit though.

  6. #6
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    It's 6 base decks (which can all be built simultaneously, there is no overlap among the base decks), and that's it. I'm not sure how the 241 number is calculated, but besides conjurations, there are a bunch of reference cards, so that may be where the number comes from. There also may be more conjuration cards than you think. So, of course plenty of deckbuilding is available but you're taking from the other base decks.
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  7. #7
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    There are 3 copies of 60 different cards, all are built into decks. There are 61 conjuration cards, each conjugation has a battlefield limit, and enough included to field that limit in the base game (for instance 3 copies of the silver snake conjugation are included in the box). To deck build you would have to take appart at least some of the decks. 2 base sets are a good idea if you want to keep the base decks together and also deck build, though the pre-built decks are listed in the back of the rulebook , so it would be easy enough to reconstruct them at a later time if you disassembled them to deck build.
    Last edited by Phuzzworthy; 05-02-2015 at 11:32 AM.

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