The most important and exciting part of any adventure are the heroes of course, and the Heroes of HeroQuest are no exception! For my 2014 project, I’ve given the four classic characters – the Barbarian, the Dwarf, the Elf, and the Wizard – a bit of an update to make them more distinct and exciting. I’ve also given them two new friends; new Heroes the Knight and the Thief! On the board, all these Heroes (just like the Monsters) will be represented by the awesome chibi-style Super Dungeon Explore models.
A bit of explanation is required about the characteristics and abilities of the Heroes before we get into it;
Movement : How many Dice the Hero rolls to determine how many squares it can move each turn. The Dwarf and Elf have modifiers to the result (moving slower and faster respectively).
Body Points : The Hero’s health.
Mind : The Hero’s intelligence, willpower, whatever. How many Dice they roll when they take part in a Contest that requires their Mind. Barely used in the European version of HeroQuest, HQ2014 will feature more things that rely on the Hero’s Mind, such as bypassing obstacles and puzzles, and resisting harmful magic.
Attack : How many Dice the Hero rolls when making an Attack.
Defence : How many Dice the Hero rolls when Defending.
Senses : The Hero’s perception and cunning. How many Dice they roll when they take part in a Contest that requires their Senses, such as finding treasure and avoiding traps.
Heroic Abilities : Any special rules or abilites the Hero might have. Different for each Hero, and helps to define them.
Special Potion : This is an idea I swiped from Super Dungeon Explore. When a Hero finds a Potion, they can use it as a basic healing potion, or they can use one of the Special Potion effects of any Hero on the Quest. For example, if the Barbarian, Knight, and Elf are on the Quest and the Barbarian finds a Potion and goes to use it, she can declare to use it as a healing potion, or as Giant Strength (her special potion), Lion’s Courage (the Knight’s special potion), or Eagle Eye (the Elf’s special potion).
Right, now that’s covered, let’s look at the Heroes!
Movement – 2 Dice, Body – 8, Mind – 2, Attack – 3, Defence – 2, Senses – 2
Heroic Ability: Berserker – The Barbarian can make two Attacks per turn.
Special Potion: Giant Strength – The Hero who drinks this potion gains the Massive Damage rule on their Melee Attacks until the end of their next turn (their Melee Attacks do 2 Damage).
As in the original game, the Barbarian remains the premier beatstick. High Attack and Body, and a special ability that lets her make two attacks a turn. Combined with her potion that bestows Massive Damage, and she can easily kill a tough boss monster in a single turn!
Movement – 2 Dice, -1, Body – 7, Mind – 3, Attack – 2, Defence – 3, Senses – 2
Heroic Ability: Bulldozer– The Dwarf can move through spaces occupied by non-Elite Monsters.
Heroic Ability: Sturdy – The Dwarf wins draws when Defending.
Special Potion: Blasting Powder– The Hero can use this potion on their turn as an Action to make a Ranged Attack with 2 Dice against each monster in the same room/corridor as them.
No one wanted to be the Dwarf when I played the original HQ. Hopefully that’ll change now! He has buffed Defence, and wins draws when Defending, making him a tough cookie. His Bulldozer ability makes up for his reduced speed, and his potion is actually a room-clearing grenade. By my beard!
Movement – 2 Dice, +1, Body – 5, Mind – 5, Attack – 2, Defence – 2, Senses – 3
Heroic Ability: Bow – The Elf can make Ranged Attacks.
Special Potion: Eagle Eye – The Hero who drinks this potion can reroll any number of its Dice when it Attacks. Lasts until the end of their next turn.
The Elf has changed from her lacklustre hybrid fighter-mage role in the original HQ. Her Body has been reduced to emphasise her role as a fragile “back-row” Hero, but her Mind has been upped to compensate. Her Senses mean that traps aren’t too much of a concern to her, and her potion provides the ever-useful reroll. Her main strength is obviously her ability to make ranged attacks; stick her behind the Dwarf and she can pew-pew-pew with impunity!
Movement – 2 Dice, Body – 4, Mind – 6, Attack – 1, Defence – 2, Senses – 2
Heroic Ability: Magic Spells– The Wizard starts each Quest with 8 Magic Points. On her turn, she can cast a Spell as an action by expending a Magic Point. The Wizard can cast the following spells;
Fire Blast – Ranged attack vs. one Monster with 4 Dice. Causes Massive Damage.
Freeze – One Monster can’t move or attack next turn. Doesn’t effect Elites.
Heal Wounds – Restore 4 Body points to a Hero, and cure them of Poison.
Heroic Might – One Hero gets +2 Attack or +2 Defence until the end of their next turn.
Invisibility – Until the end of her next turn, the Wizard can move through spaces occupied by monsters (and vice versa) and can’t be attacked.
Telekinesis – Disarm a Trap or open a closed door, revealing the room’s contents beyond.
Special Potion: Magic Tonic – The Hero who drinks this potion regains 2 Magic Points.
Aaah, squishy Wizard, how I’ve missed you. Rather than faff around with the old-fashioned “one use only” elemental spells, I’ve given the Wizard a condensed spell list of her own, and a Magic Point system. As her stats are pretty appalling, she’s reliant on other Heroes to do the heavy lifting, but she can contribute when required, with a Fire Blast to destroy a tough monster in one shot, or to dispense healing and buffs. She’s selfish with her potion in that only she benefits from it, but who cares when you can set things on fire with your brain?
And as mentioned, there’s two new Heroes added to the roster!
Movement – 2 Dice, Body – 7, Mind – 3, Attack – 3, Defence – 3, Senses – 2
Heroic Ability: Shield – The Knight has +2 Defence against Ranged Attacks.
Special Potion: Lion’s Courage– The Hero who drinks this potion gets +1 Attack and +1 Defence. Lasts until the end of their next turn.
The Knight is a middle-of-the-road fighter. His stats are great, but he’s not *quite* as fighty as the Barbarian, and he’s not *quite* as tough as the Dwarf. His Shield ability is of limited use as only a few Monsters have Ranged Attacks, but his potion is a solid buff.
Movement – 2 Dice, Body – 6, Mind – 4, Attack – 2, Defence – 2, Senses – 3
Heroic Ability: Disarm Traps- As an Action, the Thief can disarm a Trap that’s been revealed, and that is in the same room/corridor as her. The Trap activates harmlessly.
Heroic Ability: Keen Senses – The Thief can Search twice a turn.
Special Potion: Cat’s Grace– The Hero who drinks this potion gets +1 Senses and a +2 modifier when rolling for Movement. Lasts until the end of their next turn.
The Thief has inherited the original HQ Dwarf’s trap-disarming abilities, and improved on them! While she’s only an average fighter, the Thief clearly makes a great scout, going ahead and searching for traps and secret doors and disabling any threats to the other Heroes.
Well, that’s all the Heroes! Next post, we’ll go a bit deeper into the rules, and see what’s new…