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Old 05-10-2013, 11:58 AM   #1
Gidoza
 
Join Date: May 2013
Default A Couple Clarifications

Hello, there,

I am new to the game and have read through the rules and FAQ, and of course I still have lots to learn, but a couple things elude me. I would be very thankful if I could have clarification on the following couple of points.

Firstly, the FAQ presents the following scenario:


Q. If you use a one-shot Item during combat and someone tries to make it disappear through Curse or Theft, do you get the bonus?
A. Theft doesn't work while you are in combat. Use of a Curse could destroy an Item as you try to use it, but once you play the Item into the fight, it's not yours to be Cursed anymore.


My question here is: What is meant by "As you try to use it?" I'm gathering that if the potion is already played on the monster, then I can't curse the item. I can curse the item if it's being carried by a player. But if the player says, "I want to use this item," and goes and puts it on the monster, does this mean I can curse it at that point, because this is when the player is trying to use it?



My second question relates to a thief's theft ability. The rules say that theft cannot be done during combat, but seems ambiguous about other times. First off, can I steal things basically any other time I want, as in, during other players' turns?
Secondly, I have the following scenario: Another player has the boots that stop "kick-open-the-door" curses from affecting him. It is my turn, and I draw a curse that causes me to lose my class, and I'm a thief. When I encounter this curse, can I try at that moment to steal the other player's boots so that if I succeed, I will become immune to the curse that threatens to destroy my class?


My last question (for now) relates to the following items I see in the standard deck: Cloak of Obscurity, Spiky Knees, Singing & Dancing Sword, Limburger and Anchovy Sandwich, Pantyhose of Giant Strength, Kneepads of Allure, and Really Impressive Title.

None of these items are indicated as armor or footwear or any such thing, and the sword is presumably a weapon, but has no number of hands. Does this mean, then, that these are straight bonuses that have no association to weapon, armor, footwear, or the like? (In other words, is there a "legging" type item that would prevent me from using all of the Spiky Knees, Kneepads of Allure, and Pantyhose all at once, or do these count as footwear, or do I just use them all if I'm the right class or race? And of course, can I have two hands' worth of weapons, and then also use the singing and dancing sword?) As for the really impressive title, it's not really an "item" per se, but it just gives a bonus. What kind of curse would destroy an item that has no particular classification?


That's all I have to ask. I thank you for your help! :)

-Gidoza
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:20 PM   #2
StormCrow42
 
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

First off, unlike certain "other" games you might be familiar with, there is no "stack" mechanism for playing cards. Each card or action is fully resolved before the next can be played. So by the time someone announces that they want to use a one-shot item, it's too late for you to do anything to effect it. Similarly, once you've kicked down the door, you need to resolve any curse that you turn up before you could do anything else.

There are a number of items that don't require hands, feet, a torso (armor) or head. These are "slotless" and you can wear as many as you have. For instance the singing and dancing sword hangs out next to you, so you don't need hands to wield it.

Curses like "lose one small item" or "lose one big item" might be able to destroy them, as would "Annihilation". But since the curse-ee gets to pick what he'd lose, they're probably harder to get rid of.

The "really impressive title" isn't an item at all, although it provides a persistent bonus. So a thief couldn't even steal it.
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:29 PM   #3
Gidoza
 
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Quote:
First off, unlike certain "other" games you might be familiar with, there is no "stack" mechanism for playing cards. Each card or action is fully resolved before the next can be played. So by the time someone announces that they want to use a one-shot item, it's too late for you to do anything to effect it. Similarly, once you've kicked down the door, you need to resolve any curse that you turn up before you could do anything else.
This makes sense to me, but if this is the case, I feel as though the FAQ question I quoted provided an answer with very ambiguous and unhelpful language. The phrase, "Use of a Curse could destroy an Item as you try to use it" suggests something quote other than what is being described here. I'm not dwelling on this to be picky, but I'm dwelling on this because in the FAQ there are *VERY* frequent references to the phrases "read the card" and "specific says so" and so on, and if the game is going to be this specific about grammar in order to indicate what a card does, then the descriptions of how game process works need to be just as rigorous or it'll leave a person confused, as I still am.

As for "really impressive title," for much the same reason, I could ask why it isn't an item. Given that the yellowish/goldish card backgrounds always indicate an item, it's confusing to be presented with a card of the same background that isn't what all the others are. Yes, I agree that you can't "steal" a title, and your comment that it isn't an item makes perfect sense to me, but from a game rules perspective I would never assume this: it simply isn't obvious. Something more needs to go on the card to make it more clear.



In any case, though, your answers are helpful and I appreciate them. Thanks! :)
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:15 PM   #4
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza View Post
As for "really impressive title," for much the same reason, I could ask why it isn't an item. Given that the yellowish/goldish card backgrounds always indicate an item,
No.
Items, by definition, are cards with a Value (or "No Value") printed in the lower-right corner. Being a treasure card does not guarantee it is an Item.
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:15 PM   #5
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Items all have a Gold Value (including No Value which is treated as 0 Gold Pieces. The lack of a Gold Value is what distinguishes Really Impressive Title as not being an Item.

That background coloring does not denote an Item. It denotes that the card came from the Treasure deck. Lots of cards in the treasure deck aren't Items. Go Up A Level cards are just one example.

As for the FAQ entry: That wording is probably there because there are some cards that can be used to expressly cancel a card as its being used. This is a case of a card's text overriding a normal rule.
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Old 05-10-2013, 02:26 PM   #6
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza View Post
This makes sense to me, but if this is the case, I feel as though the FAQ question I quoted provided an answer with very ambiguous and unhelpful language. The phrase, "Use of a Curse could destroy an Item as you try to use it" suggests something quote other than what is being described here. I'm not dwelling on this to be picky, but I'm dwelling on this because in the FAQ there are *VERY* frequent references to the phrases "read the card" and "specific says so" and so on, and if the game is going to be this specific about grammar in order to indicate what a card does, then the descriptions of how game process works need to be just as rigorous or it'll leave a person confused, as I still am.
The others have already covered the Really Impressive Title issue. The reason the phrase, "Use of a Curse could destroy an Item as you try to use it" is worded that way is because in order for something to be used it must hit the table.

If you say, "I'm going to use my Flaming Potion (assuming it is on the table and being carried) but don't pick it up and put it into the fight right away I can Curse you with a card that says you must lose one Small Item. At that point if you a) have no other Small Items in play, or b) don't want to discard any of your other Small Items then you would have to discard your Flaming Potion.

Same can be said for a Thief's steal ability. You can announce you are going to use it but until your discarded card (the trigger) hits the discard pile you aren't doing anything. If I can somehow make you lose your Class or use my Item you are out of luck.
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Old 05-10-2013, 06:05 PM   #7
Gidoza
 
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Hey everyone, thanks for the clarification on the treasure items, that really helps. :) I see the difference, now.


Tremorlaine, I am still thinking about this phrase.
Quote:
If you say, "I'm going to use my Flaming Potion (assuming it is on the table and being carried) but don't pick it up and put it into the fight right away I can Curse you with a card that says you must lose one Small Item. At that point if you a) have no other Small Items in play, or b) don't want to discard any of your other Small Items then you would have to discard your Flaming Potion.
This seems like a really dubious distinction. Why should I think that a player's word saying that he is going to use a Flaming Potion is distinct from his actually using it? If the player had said, "I use my Flaming Potion," would this change matters? The fact that it takes time to move the potion from one place on the table to the other does not change the fact that it has been declared to be used. The other option is to just take the potion and toss it directly on the pile of items buffing a monster, thus giving other players no verbal warning of its use, therefore completing the action before they can react. The quote and example you provide simply doesn't work in practice, and is open to too many loopholes. I need something much more concrete to work with than this.
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Old 05-10-2013, 08:29 PM   #8
MunchkinMan
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza View Post
The other option is to just take the potion and toss it directly on the pile of items buffing a monster, thus giving other players no verbal warning of its use, therefore completing the action before they can react.
That's logic based on a stack system. It also ignores the fact that one-shot Items (as well as other cards, like Monster Enhancers) can be played from the hand to affect the combat immediately. From the strictest interpretation, you must play the card to actually play it, and that's the one we officially stand by. Declaring your intent means nothing, because you can choose not to follow through, without penalty when it comes to discussing what cards you might play. And since you can't just win the combat without giving the other players a reasonable amount of time to stop you, then everyone has a chance to "react" by playing cards that can change the situation from the player winning to losing again. Of course, there are few cards which could immediately cancel the just played card as well, but the card must be played for you to be able to play them. Again, a player's expressed intent on what cards he's going to play is not to be taken that he has played them until he has actively moved them from the table in front of him or taken them from his hand and added them to the combat.
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Old 05-10-2013, 11:01 PM   #9
Gidoza
 
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Quote:
Originally Posted by MunchkinMan View Post
That's logic based on a stack system. It also ignores the fact that one-shot Items (as well as other cards, like Monster Enhancers) can be played from the hand to affect the combat immediately. From the strictest interpretation, you must play the card to actually play it, and that's the one we officially stand by. Declaring your intent means nothing, because you can choose not to follow through, without penalty when it comes to discussing what cards you might play. And since you can't just win the combat without giving the other players a reasonable amount of time to stop you, then everyone has a chance to "react" by playing cards that can change the situation from the player winning to losing again. Of course, there are few cards which could immediately cancel the just played card as well, but the card must be played for you to be able to play them. Again, a player's expressed intent on what cards he's going to play is not to be taken that he has played them until he has actively moved them from the table in front of him or taken them from his hand and added them to the combat.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure that this is helping me resolve this issue, as I'm getting two layers of feedback that seem to contradict one another. StormCrow42 said earlier that there is no "stack" mechanism, and thus each card must be fully resolved before continuing. On the other hand, you say that there's no "stack" mechanism, but insist that each player needs to have a chance to "react" to what is done.

If a potion has been put into play, I can no longer get rid of it with a curse because it's not on the player's board (if it's in play and not in the hand, of course); I can react to it by adding one of my own potions to the monster, but I can't "curse" the item because it's already left the player board and this is not a "reaction." This just begs the question again: If I'm going to use a potion from my player board, why would I ever say out loud, "Hm, maybe I should use this potion"? Either the action is fully resolved or it isn't! One-shot items can be played from the hand to affect play immediately, but one-shot items played from the player board also affect play immediately! Sorry, but I need a much, much more concrete example illustrated to me if this is going to make any sense.
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Old 05-10-2013, 11:48 PM   #10
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Default Re: A Couple Clarifications

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza View Post
Unfortunately, I'm not sure that this is helping me resolve this issue, as I'm getting two layers of feedback that seem to contradict one another. StormCrow42 said earlier that there is no "stack" mechanism, and thus each card must be fully resolved before continuing. On the other hand, you say that there's no "stack" mechanism, but insist that each player needs to have a chance to "react" to what is done.
There is no contradiction; they are two different models. Your logical error is in attempting to apply the Combat model (an extended series of events, card plays, and interactions) to the basic Card Play model (one distinct event and its consequences).

Combat is explained in detail in the rules, and explicitly says that you have to allow your opponents a reasonable time to "react" (that is, do something like playing a card or throwing a one-shot) before you can declare that you've won the combat. Playing a card has no such rule; you put the card down, do what it says, and it's done. No stack.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza
If a potion has been put into play,
Pause here for a moment. "Put (an Item) into play" means exactly one thing in Munchkin: the playing of an Item card from one's hand to the table. When I say that I "put the Singing and Dancing Sword into play," that means that I have taken the S&DS card out of my hand and put it onto the table in front of me, where it becomes an Item that I am both carrying and using (since it has no Hand requirements or anything else that prevents its use), and which is "in play." What you're talking about is taking a potion that is in play and "activating" it, aka "throwing it into the combat." That involves taking the card from in front of you and putting it into the part of the table where the combat is happening. This may sound pedantic, and I mean no offense by it, but it's important as we "unpause" and continue with your question:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza
I can no longer get rid of it with a curse because it's not on the player's board (if it's in play and not in the hand, of course); I can react to it by adding one of my own potions to the monster, but I can't "curse" the item because it's already left the player board and this is not a "reaction."
Given the clarification above - yes, this is correct.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza
This just begs the question again: If I'm going to use a potion from my player board, why would I ever say out loud, "Hm, maybe I should use this potion"?
Excellent question; I almost never announce such plays. I just pick up the card and put it into the combat. As a courtesy, I'll say what I'm doing as I'm doing it or just afterward, but that's just so everyone doesn't have to crane their necks and read the card's effects for themselves.

ETA: As a direct answer, deterrent is about the only reason for such a deliberate "maybe I should use this card" announcement. It can encourage someone to offer you an incentive NOT to use it...but that can also backfire. Tricky tactic. Another reason is if, say, the player in combat is up by six points and you have a +3 potion on the table. You wouldn't want to waste your card, but if someone else has a +5 that they can throw in, you two might want to discuss your options. Neither card would turn the tables individually, but if you remind the other players of your card, it could spur them to act. (And then, if you're a fiend, you can NOT throw your potion in, causing them to sacrifice a card in vain. This is likely to cause strife, especially if you struck a deal and are trying to back out of it after he fulfills his part of it; in a tournament setting, you would be expected to complete the deal. However, if you never actually made the promise... Again, tricky tactic. Use with caution.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gidoza
One-shot items can be played from the hand to affect play immediately, but one-shot items played from the player board also affect play immediately! Sorry, but I need a much, much more concrete example illustrated to me if this is going to make any sense.
You seem to have a decent grasp of the situation, just a bit muddled by multiple definitions (and thus uses) of the word "play." Hopefully my clarification above will help it click for you.
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