So I got this cool minotaur mini and, it being bright red plastic, I started to wonder how to use it as a HeroQuest hero...
|Mightier than the barb!|
I feel a minotaur hero would be completely wrong in the game canon. So how about some kind of transformation effect? Look at that awesome hammer! So here comes...
The Hammer of the Beast
A hero wielding the Hammer of the Beast attacks with 4 combat dice. If all the dice roll a skull, the hero becomes a raging minotaur!
While transformed, the hero attacks with 5 dice and defends with 5, regardless of the previous statistics and gear. He must always move towards the nearest enemy with a free adjacent square and attack it, and cannot move away from the enemy until he kills it.
The transformation ends as soon as there are no more monsters on the board.
Cannot be used with a shield, can only be used by the Barbarian.
Transformation Effects In Your HQ Game
Of course the Hammer of the Beast is designed to suit my specific model and personal taste. But you can introduce similar effects, based on the cool models you have around, or if you feel you need an excuse to buy new models, of course!
The easiest way to add a transformation effect is to make it the special property of a magic item. It can be a ring, amulet, mask, etc.
Then you may go one of two ways: the transformation can be activated voluntarily by the wielder, or it can have a specific trigger, like my Hammer, or it can have a specific "cost".
For a voluntary activation, I would make it available once per quest.
If you go with a trigger, you can choose a lot of different situations. For example: losing 1 BP; losing more than 1 BP from a single attack; having only 2 or less BP left; rolling all skulls (or black shields) on an attack roll; rolling all white shields (or black) on a defense roll; slaying an enemy; slaying a monster of a specific type; being targeted by a spell... the possibilities are endless really.
A "cost" activation means the hero must sacrifice something in order to activate the effect. It could be a BP or MP, or a specific type of potion, or a piece of metallic equipment, etc. Of course a "cost" should only be applied for a really powerful effect.
Then you must of course define the effect of the transformation. It can be as simple as granting a single extra skill (flying, becoming immaterial, ranged attacks, and so on), or a boost to the dice (extra movement, or attack dice, or defense, or a combination), or a complete substitution of statistics ("you become a gargoyle", for example).
The official Druid heroin, for example, has a (bear form) Shapeshift spell card that grants +1 AD and +1 DD. The effect ends as soon as she loses 1 BP, but she can gain the spell card back again if her BP are healed back to the starting amount. This is the type of simple design that I love in HQ. You don't really need a ton of fiddly rules, they rarely add to the fun!
If the transformation is really powerful, you may want to add some sort of drawback, as I did with the minotaur, who must charge into enemies all the time.
Finally, you probably need a condition that ends the transformation. This is the same as the trigger above.
Once broken down into steps, the creation of such items or effects is quite easy. The best way to do it is to always start from the concept you want represent (or the mini you want to use!). Figuring out the game statistics is usually fairly easy from there.
Into HeroQuest? Check out my other HeroQuest posts!