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European Card Readme

by Zenithfleet

Chaos Spells - Quest Treasure
Spell Scrolls - Quest Treasure Bonus Pack

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Chaos Spells

The North American edition of HeroQuest included Chaos Spells for particularly powerful monsters to use. I've adapted these cards to the European English (UK/Australian) format, art style and rules for all the Morcars out there. Give the Witch Lord the power to raise the dead! Power up the Fire Mage with extra burnination! Zap the players' favourite items and watch them crumble into corroded lumps! (Er, the items, not the players.)

My aim was to produce 'official-seeming' cards with the sort of wordings and rules that I like to imagine the European creators of HeroQuest would have used if they had included Chaos Spells in the game.

I've provided a summary below of the changes I made to make these fit the EU rules. If you don't agree with them and want to make your own versions using an art program, no worries--I'd love to see what you come up with! (Please credit me--and drathe--if you make and distribute your own versions, though.)

When adapting these spells, I compared the NA Chaos Spells to those in the EU boxed game (Fire, Water, Air, Earth) and those supplied in the rare 'Wizards of Morcar' EU quest pack. (You can find the WoM spells freely available on the web if you have a look around.) Since EU players may wish to use the Wizards of Morcar spells alongside these Chaos Spells, I've tried to make sure mine are clearly different in some way... with varying success.

I've tried to use wording consistent with that used on the official European cards. This means sexist pronouns, I'm afraid. 'He or she' took up too much room, and 'they' caused all kinds of grammatical confusion. No, those aren't the best excuses. At least it's consistent for 1989...

I've also toned down the power of several spells, since the EU version of HeroQuest is generally easier than the NA version.

Before you ask why harder Quests aren't a good thing, let me just point out that the EU version's easier difficulty, limited Equipment cards and Hero-versus-Hero rules encourage more competition and rivalry among the Heroes than the teamwork-focused NA version. It's only fair that the monsters be less of a threat when you have to keep a wary eye on your fellow Heroes too. Anyone who has been shot in the back by a crossbow bolt and seen his hard-won Plate Armour nicked by a treacherous Elf will know exactly what I'm talking about.

Nonetheless, the boss monsters in EU HQ can be a bit of a letdown. Wish the Witch Lord could put up more of a fight? A couple of these spells might be just what he needs...

Ball of Flame/Ball of Flame
Now the same as the spell in the EU Fire set, but with the NA art, as burning a werewolf alive seemed inappropriate. Not that it didn't already, what with the lack of werewolves in most quest packs and all, but never mind.

I used a variant of the EU Sleep spell from the Water set for resisting and/or breaking free of this spell. (Oddly, the NA version asks the Heroes to roll 5s or 6s on normal red dice when trying to resist many of these spells, when rolling Hero shields on white combat dice would have the same probability. Use the cool gimmick dice, people!)

Renamed as there's a WoM Necromancer spell called 'Fear' with quite different effects. Resisting and breaking free uses same variant as Command.

There's one of these in WoM too, and it's almost identical to my version, but I couldn't bear to change such a straightforward name. Rust is now *more* powerful than in the NA version as it can affect almost any item of equipment rather than just swords and helmets. However, it can't destroy certain items, like Quest Treasures. (Thoughtful Evil Wizard players may note that the WoM version of Rust can be interpreted as lacking any such restrictions. Mwa ha ha, says the High Mage.)

Lightning Bolt/Thunderbolt
Renamed to distinguish this spell from the WoM Storm Master's Lightning Bolt spell (the one with the unnecessarily fancy floor tile thingy). Thunderbolt is longer-ranged than Lightning Bolt but does less damage.

Cloud of Chaos/Cloud of Chaos
The NA version appears to be the same as Sleep except that it knocks everyone out instead of just one Hero. This seems a little unfair, so I've made my version easier to wake up from than the EU Sleep.

Escape - not included
This spell transports the caster to a square specified on the NA Quest map. Obviously this is unlikely to exist in the EU maps, and when it does there's usually an alternative rule for getting there (e.g. Balur running through the wall). However, the High Mage in WoM has an Escape spell that makes a perfect replacement--it transports him to any unoccupied square on the board. If you'd like to use Escape, I suggest simply printing that spell and putting a Chaos Spell card back on it.

I toned this down to bring it into line with the spells in the Fire set. If Ball of Flame is a direct, powerful one-target spell, and Fire of Wrath is a weaker but more versatile one-target spell, then it seems logical for Firestorm, as an area effect spell, to be potentially weaker still--or at least a lot more unpredictable. You might escape the burning room unscathed. On the other hand, you might get cooked alive. That's why it now does three *dice* of damage, not three automatic hits.

Now the same as the spell in the Water set, with a little wording adjustment for clarity.

Now the same as the spell in the Air set. I used the Air art and flipped it, just because I like crackly clouds.

Summon Orcs/Summon Greenskins
I wanted to call this 'Summon Orcs & Goblins', but it wouldn't fit on the card... For those not familiar with the Warhammer Fantasy game on which the HeroQuest monsters are based, Orcs and Goblins (plus their tiny cousins the Snotlings) are collectively referred to as Greenskins.
The NA version of Summon Orcs is, in my opinion, much too powerful for the EU edition of HeroQuest, while the WoM spells use separate cards for Orcs and Goblin summoning. For this spell, I've reduced the number of monsters that can be summoned. I nicked the art from the WoM Orc spell since I prefer it to the NA art.

Summon Undead/Summon Undead
Again, I think the NA version is far too powerful for EU HeroQuest, so I've reduced the number of recently alive people it summons.

Chaos Spell card back - EU style
This was a lot easier to make than I thought it would be. I'm no Photoshop expert, but I think I managed to create something passable. The black border is a bit thick, but oh well. (I shouldn't have said anything--you might not have noticed...)

Misc notes
If you plan to use these Chaos Spells in your EU HeroQuest games, you might also want to use a couple of the Treasure cards from the Wizards of Morcar quest pack. Most of them are specific to that quest pack, but one or two of them (like the Potion of Magical Resistance) could be slipped into any Treasure deck to give the Heroes a little extra defence against these spells.

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Quest Treasure

These unique Quest Treasures (Artifacts) were distributed throughout the North American Game System, Kellar's Keep and Return of the Witch Lord adventures. You may wish to include them in treasure chests or special rooms while playing these quest packs, or use them in your own adventures.

I haven't included certain Artifacts that I felt weren't much use in the EU game. For example, the Dust of Disappearance is identical to a Veil of Mist Spell Scroll, and the Anti-Poison Quill won't see much use, as trap types (poison/gas/etc) aren't often specified in the EU version, to the best of my recollection.

I've attempted to word these cards as if they were 'official' European HeroQuest releases. Due to the differences in the two rulesets, you'll find that the rules presented on these cards are slightly different to their North American counterparts. In a few cases I've added a little extra (e.g. the Fire Ring now protects the wearer from harm in hot areas).

Note that I interpret the EU rules as stating that a Hero dies as soon as he is reduced to 0 Body Points - no chance to drink a last-minute healing potion as in the NA edition. However, some people don't like to play this way. I've tried to word the Elixir of Life so that it can be used whether you allow people to drink last-chance potions or not--either way, you can use it to resurrect another Hero who died some time ago (although his gear and gold might have been stolen by then!) However, the Armband of Healing *definitely* brings you back to life if you die and haven't yet used it.

Also, note that the Fire Ring description refers to 'Chaos Fire' spells. Chaos Spells were also unique to the North American edition. I've adapted the Chaos Spells to the EU format as well--please check out my other card packs for download!

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Spell Scrolls

12 EU format Spell Scrolls (one for each spell in the HeroQuest basic game). These can be used by ANY player to cast the spell on the scroll--not just the Elf or Wizard. However, the scroll crumbles to dust once used.

The North American editions of Kellar's Keep and Return of the Witch Lord included these Spell Scrolls for players to discover and use. I've adapted these to the European (UK/Australian) edition of the game. The Morcar player might like to hide a few of these in treasure chests, or find other uses for them.

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Quest Treasure Bonus Pack

These cards are adapted to the European (UK/Australian) edition of HeroQuest. They're my own little variations on items from the North American edition of the game. Hopefully they'll inspire some extra excitement in your adventures if you can find a use for them.

As ever, I've tried to word these cards as if they were 'official' European releases. Yet more sexist pronouns...

The Cursed Spell Ring is a little item I cooked up for my quest pack 'Trials, Dark Deeds and Terrors', but I thought other players might find a use for it. The inspiration should be obvious, yes precious, yes it should.

The Mystic Portal Spell Scroll is inspired by the 'Scroll of Town Portal' from the Diablo video game. I've always thought you shouldn't be able to buy gear while playing through Kellar's Keep and Return of the Witch Lord--I mean, how are you supposed to get out of Karak Varn for a spot of shopping? Are there helpful zombie merchants wandering the Dead City or something? Anyway, if you play with such a restriction, this scroll will definitely come in handy.

The rules for the Chaos Spell Scrolls are the same as those included in my EU Chaos Spell pack, with a few exceptions. First, some spells aren't included as they're identical to elemental spells (e.g. Sleep). See the normal Spell Scrolls in the EU Quest Treasure pack for those. Second, I've tweaked a few rules because the Heroes are casting these:

  • Rust can now reduce a monster's attack and defence dice.
  • Command can enslave an Undead permanently since Skeletons, Zombies and Mummies have 0 Mind points and thus can't roll to resist the spell. This seems reasonable to me--they're not exactly rebellious types after all--but see how you go...
  • Summon Greenskins and Summon Undead have been combined into the (potentially more powerful) Summon Monster. Be careful! Although Summon Monster allows you to grab a monster from anywhere on or off the board and put it somewhere visible near you, that doesn't mean you get to control it - you're no Evil Sorcerer, and it's probably quite annoyed about being hauled across half a dungeon by black magic only to find its master absent... Is the spell worse than useless, then? Maybe not. Get creative!

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Thanks to drathe for his excellent EU Card Templates, and www.yeoldeinn.com for scans of the NA cards and various art collections.

If you find any errors or problems with these cards, please let me know on the Olde Inn forum.

~ Zenithfleet

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