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Hero Advancement Rules

by Dewayne Agin

Philosophy Behind Advancing Your Heroes

Advancing your Heroes is not as simple as raising their stats in some way. There is quite a bit for you, the Game Master, to think about before you allow the Heroes to do so, during the game, and after the quest is completed. Allowing the Heroes to advance can give them a goal to work towards, and a feeling of accomplishment when the goal is achieved. The thoughts below were written for my system of advancement, but can be applied to any system that you use.

The first thing that you have to decide on is the cost. The figures I gave are really just guidelines. You will have to decide yourself how much to charge the Heroes to raise a stat, study in a spell college, or learn a new spell. If you make the cost too low, the Heroes will be advancing too much and will not get the sense of accomplishing something difficult that they should. On the other hand raising the cost too high will discourage the Heroes. A good rule of thumb is to allow a Hero to raise a stat about every 30-40 quest levels played. You may want to change this depending on your players, but you should pick a number of quests played per stat advancement. See if your players are training at this level you have set. If not, you may need to adjust the cost.

The second thing you need to work on is the rewards given during a quest. If your Heroes are getting huge amounts of gold, or are able to keep all the gold they find without buying supplies, then you may reduce the amount of gold the Heroes are given during the quest or for completing the quest. Likewise if the Heroes are finishing quest packs without seeming to gain anything monetary wise, and are using all the gold they find to buy supplies, you may need to raise the amount they find. Changing the amount of gold found in treasure chests or as a reward for completing the quest is an alternative to changing the price for training.

One of the biggest things you need to do when your Heroes are raising their stat levels is to make the quests harder. While an occasional easy level can be fun, if every level is too easy for the Heroes the game will quickly lose its interest. There are two ways you can make a quest harder. One is to add more monsters into a room. If a room has 4 Goblins, add one or two more. If a room has three Zombies, add a Mummy and/or a couple of Skeletons. The second way is to purchase some new figures. Make these figures have harder stats than those that came with the basic HeroQuest game. This will give the Heroes a challenge after they have raised their levels. Be careful about introducing harder monsters too quickly, though. When you first begin allowing the Heroes to advance, after one of the Heroes has raised his Body Points once is not the time to introduce a Horde of Dragons, each with 15 Body Points. Bring in the new monsters at the proper time.

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Advancing Your Heroes

The Heroes can advance in between quests by visiting the Heroes Guild. For a cost of 2000 gold coins, the Barbarian, Dwarf, and Elf can train here and raise their Body Points, Mind Points, starting Attack Dice, or Starting Defence Dice by one. Wizards can study and raise their Mind Points by one for a cost of 2000 gold coins. They may also raise their Body Points, starting Attack Dice, and Starting Defence Dice by one, but at a cost of 4000 gold coins. This extra cost is because their frailer bodies must have much more extensive training to raise these stats.

Raising a Hero's stats is permanent. If a Hero raises either his Body or Mind Points and looses some in combat, a potion or spell of Healing will raise them back to this new level. Raising a Hero's Attack or Defence Dice raises the number of dice by one before any Weapon or Armour modifiers are added on. If a Hero looses his Weapon or Armour, the Attack/Defence Dice will still be at this new level.

Spellcasters (Elf and Wizard) can learn new spells by studying at one of the Colleges of Magic. For 6000 gold coins a Hero can enroll to study at the college. This enables the spellcaster to learn the 4 basic spells offered by the college. A Hero can also study at the college and learn any of the additional spells offered for another 2000 gold coins per spell. Each of the Spell College files has a list that the spellcaster can use to check off the spells as he learns them.

Spellcasters start out knowing the spells from the Earth College, Wind College, Fire College, and Air College. At the start of the quest, the Wizard can pick one set of cards from any of the colleges he knows, including the cards from the new colleges. The Elf then picks a set of cards from any of the colleges that he knows, and then the Wizard picks three more sets of cards from his remaining colleges. Each spellcaster can only choose four cards from the chosen set, even if he has learned more than four spells from that college.

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Other Magic Rules

These are some alternates to the rules stated in the paragraphs above. You may want to give them a try.

A Wizard may cast an extra spell for every two Mind Points he gains through training. An Elf may cast an extra spell for every four Mind Points he gains through training. The Wizard starts off knowing 12 spells and the Elf knows 4.

The Wizard chooses four spells from any of the colleges that he knows. The spells do not have to be from the same college. The Elf then chooses all of his spells from any of the colleges he knows, once again the spells do not have to be from the same college. Finally the Wizard chooses the rest of his spells.

Print two full sets of each of the spell cards from the colleges. This would allow the Wizard and the Elf to choose the same spell during a quest.

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