A big part of Gloomhaven, beyond raiding and looting dungeons is the legacy aspect of the game- exploring the unfolding story through map locations, road and city events, and unlocking characters.
In this post we are going to explore some starting tactics and considerations when playing the game, making sure *not* to spoil any of the unlocks or decisions as they are one of the unique features of the game.
Breaking out the mathhammer and game theory tactica…
Gloomhaven, stripped of the narrative, is a game with a timer.
Each dungeon has a win condition you have to complete before the timer runs out- that timer being a combination of your character health and cards in the deck.
Run our before the win condition = loss.
So at the start of the game, your character is at the strongest with regard to the timer, and every turn you get a little bit weaker and weaker.
Enemies, traps, and effects speed this process up by taking damage, or making it more difficult to get the win condition.
What this means, in building a tactics checklist, is that winning the mission- completing the dungeon is *the* primary consideration.
Tactical play is used to slow down the timer, by not taking damage where possible, but also magic items, mainly consumables should be used in each mission at the correct point to speed this up.
Second to this is gaining experience- looking to execute as many actions as possible to gain experience- playing cards that gain experience, as over time this levels you up, which works to slow down the game timer working against you by better dealing with enemies in the dungeons.
Third is loot.
Loot is *very* important for gaining the cash for consumables, but also for unlocking leads, new locations, and story events. Focus on treasure chests and defined loot drops, over the coins/loot tokens dropped by enemies- grab those as you can, but don’t go out of the way if it takes away from points one and two.
That is the Gloomy tactica checklist.