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Tips & Strategies (20)

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4
Gamer - Level 3
Rated 25 Games
36 of 37 gamers found this helpful
“Android Dummy Player App”

I would HIGHLY recommend the Android app “Mage Knight Dummy Player”. This helps to make solo and co-op games go by MUCH faster. Since it doesn’t require the use of any physical cards, it can also essentially free up the “dummy” deck/character for another player to use, increasing the co-op player max to 4.

For solo games, it makes it much easier as you just need to track one action card color, and one spell card color at the end of each round, instead of flipping cards for an NPC deck.

Makes games run much more smoothly, and it’s very simple/easy to use. One note – there IS an option to save, mid-game. During the game, the “options/settings” button at the bottom of the screen (on the notification bar, fourth one from the left) will bring up a “Save” option. When restarting the app, a RESTORE button appears, allowing you to easily continue a game.

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1
30 of 31 gamers found this helpful
“Don't be afraid of wounds”

The biggest mistake most new players make is trying to avoid wounds at all costs. With Tranquility cards in each base deck, and plenty of villages, monasteries, and magic glades peppered around the map (especially on the countryside tiles), there’s plenty of opportunity to heal those wounds. If you can get something useful in exchange for suffering a couple wounds (level up, new card to your deck, etc.), and there’s a healing tile nearby, or you haven’t drawn your tranquility yet, then it’s worth it. Not taking any wounds essentially means Tranquility is a ‘dead’ card in your deck (albeit one that can replace itself by drawing). So not taking any wounds is arguably preventing your deck from reaching its full power. Depending on the skills and cards you get along the way, it might even be beneficial for you to have a few wound cards circulating in your deck.

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10
Miniature Painter
Expert Advisor
Inventor
Advanced Reviewer
15 of 15 gamers found this helpful
“When Wizkids Gave Me Lemons...”

The most recent expansion Shades of Tezla has gained notoriety for having major production quality issues, including Monster Tiles that are 20% smaller than all other ones! At first, this was a very frustrating dilemma, but after reading discussion between other players, a solution appeared that should also help me bring this awesome game to the table more often. Using dice bags to hold and randomize monster tokens instead of stacking them on the table.

The number one reason I don’t play it as often as this game deserves, is my aversion to the massive amount of set-up and tear-down that surrounds each play. Rows of tiles and columns of various decks of cards, all of which need to be individually shuffled and stacked create an expenditure of energy daunting enough to steer me towards less labor-intensive games.

With dice bags, almost all of the tasks revolving around the tokens is eliminated. This gives me more time to play and enjoy this wonderful adventure! I should have thought of this earlier, but thankfully Wizkids’ dubious quality control has helped me find the light.

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10
Miniature Painter
Expert Advisor
Inventor
Advanced Reviewer
49 of 52 gamers found this helpful
“Play Your Deck, Not Just Your Hand”

Maximizing the potential of your hand by choosing amongst the many ways it can be played is part of the finesse that makes this game great. But by tracking your Deed deck and knowing what cards you can expect to draw into, you can take your game to the next level.

After playing a few times, you should be familiar with the approximate amounts of each type of card in your deck. If you just played many cards that give you movement, you should realize that over the next few turns, your character won’t be going too far from where he currently is!

A single combat card in hand usually will not be enough to help you purge a nearby enemy. Common practice is to just play it sideways to get 1 point of something else useful in the current turn. However, if you know that you will be drawing into the rest of your combat enhancing cards, it may be stronger to hold that single combat card until it can be matched with the upcoming ones for a really big attack next turn.

Make the effort to learn the composition of your deck and you will attain a new level of mastery in this game!

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7
Knight-errant
Cooperative Game Explorer
Amateur Advisor
Gamer - Level 6
25 of 26 gamers found this helpful
“Friends? Who needs friends?”

Having played this game for a while now, one of the things that I notice is that many people forget that they can play the game with a mean streak. Not necessarily against other players, but against the game itself. Pillaging the town to get two extra cards at the cost of a reputation point might seem to be a poor tradeoff, but unless you’re recruiting allies constantly, it won’t really matter too much in the long run, and card advantage can help you make the most of your turns. Also, burning down a monastary to get an artifact card can really affect your reputation, but you also gain the fame from the monster that you fight, so you can get some pretty significant rewards right away.

I like to be the good guy in a lot of games that I play, but reputation fluctuates a lot in this game, and mostly when you can get good stuff. And since you’re going to be attacking keeps and cities anyways and taking reputation hits, it kinda puts things in perspective.

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9
Miniature Painter
Rosetta Stone
Advanced Reviewer
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
33 of 35 gamers found this helpful
“Your buddy can't plan a turn in advance? Don't even let them know you own this game.”

Just about everyone who has a bunch of friends to play board games with will have at least one friend who just will NOT plan their turn during other people’s turn. There are plenty of games where this is not an issue. This is not one of them.

The game is going to take a couple of hours with 3 or 4 players who know what they are doing and everyone is firing on all cylinders making the turns go quickly and smoothly. One person who doesn’t even look at the board, let alone their cards until their turn comes up is going to add at least an hour to this. Worse, inevitably they are going to fall in love with the game and want to play it every time they come over, and everyone else is going to hate the game and never want to play it again.

There is no reason that someone like this can’t have fun with a gaming group without causing others to pull their hair out, but there are much better options out there than Mage Knight to do that with.

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9
Miniature Painter
Rosetta Stone
Advanced Reviewer
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
33 of 35 gamers found this helpful
“Interested in learning about Mage Knight? Read the Walkthrough first!”

This game is a pretty pricey proposition, and while I love Mage Knight, it isn’t for everyone. Be advised, however, that if you decide to look at the rules before purchasing the game, be sure to read the Game Walkthrough on the official website, as opposed to the Rulebook.

Simply put, the walkthrough teaches you to play the game, and the rulebook provides additional errata and options to utilize once you know how to play. The walkthrough provides a logical progression of how each turn and round will be played, and the rulebook does not.

It would be a shame if you turned down this game solely because the rulebook is hard to read. If you like to read the rules in advance, pick the right set of rules to read!

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1
21 of 22 gamers found this helpful
“Listen to your hand”

Don’t try and force your hand into doing what you want it to do. Instead try and figure out what it would be best at, and do that. If you want to conquer a ruin, but your hand is mostly movement, then go explore for now, and fight some other tiles later on. If you want to explore, but have influence cards in your hand, see if you’re able to recruit instead. Playing cards sideways to try and force something you want to happen but don’t have the optimal cards for is wasting the power of your deck, and hurrying the game along without your getting as much as you could have out of your deck.

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7
Advanced Grader
Movie Lover
I'm Completely Obsessed
15 of 16 gamers found this helpful
“Don't spring multi-player combat on a first-timer!”

This game is complicated!! If you plan on teaching someone the game, tell them that player on player combat won’t be available for the first game. Just go your own way and learn the basics first, it takes a little while to see what the deck is truly capable of and an experienced player will decimate a newbie nine times out of ten which will detract from the gameplay experience. Let them get a firm grasp of the rules first – then decimate them in the next game!

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10
Critic - Level 5
Professional Advisor
Expert Reviewer
Marquis / Marchioness
38 of 43 gamers found this helpful
“My Suggested Storage of Mage Knight”

There are a lot of bits to Mage Knight (and, they all come prepunched, with the figures being pre-painted!)

What I found works well for storage is:

– Put together 4 baggies, one for each of the players (this is alluded to in the walkthrough book). I added a post-it note in each bag that details what goes in it. In essence, everything related to a given character goes in their bag except the figure. I keep the four figure and four cities in the insert they come in. There is space for these 4 baggies under the figure/city insert. The figures and cities fit snugly into their slots, making it safe to flip the insert upside down to fill with the baggies, and then place this insert piece back as it arrives.

– The thinner middle section of the insert I’ve removed. This leaves the right amount of space for the monster tokens, crystals, and dice. Each color of monster is in its own bag, the crystals are in a bag, and the dice in another.

– The third piece of the insert I use (mainly to keep map tiles well secured, as they have a form fitting well). I put all of the remaining cards in a single baggy (advanced action, wounds, artifacts, units, spells, location aids, etc.) This bag will then fit in the well that the cards initially came in.

You can then put the fame and day/night boards on top with the rules, and the box will close flat.

One note, I do not sleeve my cards. If you do sleeve, you will likely need to removed the third insert holding the map tiles and cards. Without the insert you’ll lose the map tile spot, but you should gain plenty of space for the cards. A single bag will probably be too small, but having a bag for different types should work well.

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6
PC Game Fan
Indie Board & Cards fan
13 of 14 gamers found this helpful
“try creating a circular map”

After playing the prescribed scenarios several times, I started to mess with the shape of the Mage Knight “world”. I’ve created a circular world where green tiles eventually transform into the brown tiles then back to green as one takes a full lap and returns to the portal tile. This means not having tiles in the center, and players could choose either direction to start their adventure. My son and I have “raced” around this circle while accumulating as much fame as possible as we battle foes, and capture mage towers and cities along the way.

The tiles that come with the Lost Legion expansion pack may be necessary. I use the A side of the portal tile to keep the circle 3-wide.

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3
I'm a Real Person
Advocate
24 of 27 gamers found this helpful
“Quick Start”

Allow players to either draft or randomly select one advanced action from the advanced action deck at the beginning of the game. It will make a huge difference in getting the game rolling. For further help you may also try to add an artifact or spell.

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9
USA
Platinum Supporter
Petroglyph
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
46 of 54 gamers found this helpful
“First Time Walkthrough ~ An MK Tip!”

The rule set in this game is long. My game group tried to play it cold, and that was a big mistake. Two of the four did not want to play again. I, however, can see the potential of Mage Knight to be a great game with a few plays.

So, how to avoid this problem? Read the rules and do the walkthrough like they suggest… but, when you introduce the game, play the advanced rules with combat. The walkthrough is too dry to captivate anyone. All four of us felt like it was missing something, and 3 hours is a long time to play a bland game.

Tip ~ Learn rules ahead of time… introduce the advanced game!

I worry I will not get this back to the table because of my mistake.

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3
USA
Eminent Domain Fan
20 of 23 gamers found this helpful
“Skills and Followers”

Skills and followers are essentially having the same cards in your hand each and every turn. Get them early and often, and particularly in the case of skills, do not forget about them!

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2
I play black
“Saving time on setup”

I bought an insert from daedalus production and REALLY saved time on the setup.Because of that the game comes more often on the table and it’s also GOOD-LOOKING.Everyone that saw it asked me question to where to get it so….

http://www.daedalusproductionsinc.com/product/mage-knight

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7
Knight-errant
Cooperative Game Explorer
Amateur Advisor
Gamer - Level 6
20 of 24 gamers found this helpful
“Watch your "health" when adventuring”

Wound cards are a real nuisance. You can’t use them for anything useful, and they block your hand so that you don’t have as many useful cards. You can take a rest to discard them, but once you have them, you should make getting rid of them permanently your top priority. You can get rid of wound cards by use of a Heal action card, resting at a magical glade, or by buying healing at a monastary, so there are quite a few options.

If you don’t clear out wound cards early enough, they can make it easier to fail at a task and get MORE wound cards. If you load up with wound cards, eventually you won’t be able to do anything, and will have serious trouble recovering from this condition.

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3
I'm a Real Person
Advocate
20 of 27 gamers found this helpful
“Take it slow”

Very simple advice: take your time… especially on solitaire.

What I mean by taking it slow is moving slowly across the map. Running ahead and trying to explore everything tends to leave you weaker when you run into cities, dragons, and the like. Spending a lot of movement to get back to the weaker enemies takes too much time, so I recommend crawling across the map, defeating everything as you go.

On solitaire this is especially true. The dummy player rarely presses you for time, so take it slow and build your level up before you reach those massive cities.

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3
USA
Eminent Domain Fan
21 of 29 gamers found this helpful
“Solo Variants”

Don’t forget that many of the other scenarios can be played solo. Full Conquest, Blitz Conquest, Mines Liberation, Druid Nights, and Dungeon Lords all are challenging and rewarding solo games. Remember that a “dummy” player is always needed in solo games.

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6
USA
I'm Completely Obsessed
10 of 31 gamers found this helpful
“3 mins turn”

we time everyone to take under 3 mins a turn to shorten the game time a bit

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6
USA
I'm Completely Obsessed
4 of 32 gamers found this helpful
“get many cards ”

yep get cards when you can

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