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The Knightmare Board Game - New Advanced Rules

To add far greater variety and more edge to playing Milton Bradley's Knightmare Board Game, feel free to add any or all of the following new/amended rules. It is recommended that these rules be added gradually e.g. one or two per game session to allow players to get used to the changes.

Most rules from the standard game still apply. Therefore only new rules and amendments to the standard rules are listed here.

For several of the extra rules, two dice are required (if a second die is not available, the player may merely throw the same die twice, but must commit to doing so BEFORE the first roll).

RULE 1: ENTERING THE DUNGEON

The beginning of the game has changed very slightly. Every player ("Dungeoneer") enters the dungeon in the red chamber as usual, but instead of rolling the die and leaving the chamber on the first turn, the Dungeoneer draws a card, obeys its instructions and then the first turn ends there. The Dungeoneer thus rolls the die to leave the red chamber at the beginning of the second turn instead (card instructions permitting).

 

RULE 2: LIFE FORCE CONDITION

In keeping with the TV series and books of Knightmare, the physical condition of the Dungeoneers and the characters on the game board is constantly under assessment. It is now possible for a Dungeoneer to "die" within the game. This, on an incidental point, makes it possible to play the game solo, because even without opponents there is no longer any guarantee of winning.

i)  The Dungeoneer's basic strength score starts at three (GREEN) as usual, but it is no longer fixed at that condition for the whole game - instead there are three possible conditions, GREEN, AMBER or RED. At various points in the game it is possible for the Dungeoneer to suffer injuries. The most common way to suffer an injury is to lose a challenge (see Rule 3), which will reduce the strength of the Dungeoneer by one point. (Exception: if in possession of the Shield of Justice - see Rule 8) For instance, when a player on Condition GREEN suffers an injury, his/her Life Condition is reduced to AMBER (strength score two). If a player on AMBER suffers an injury, Life Force is reduced to RED (strength score one). At this point Life Force is critical, and any further injury will mean death and that Dungeoneer is out of the game.

ii)  A Dungeoneer's Life Force can be restored by various means. The most effective method is to "eat" the food item at the beginning of a turn - the food item will be returned to its starting space in the Hobgoblin's chamber once used. Use of the food restores Life Force to GREEN. Alternatively Helm Tokens can restore Life Force at a rate of one strength point per token - however, players should note that there is a high price for doing this (see Rule 4).

Another method of recouping strength points is to drink from the stream in the Vale of Vanburn (the Ghost's chamber), although this is not a very effective method. In order to attempt this, a Dungeoneer must be in the Vale at the beginning of his/her turn, and should roll TWO dice. If the total rolled is two to six, the Dungeoneer simply moves as normal. If the total is ten to twelve the Dungeoneer's Life Force improves by one grade e.g. if Life Force was RED at the start of the turn, it improves to AMBER. If the total is seven to nine, the drink has no effect and the players turn ends there.

One other method for recovering Life Force is to possess the Cup That Heals (see Rule 8).

NB: No matter which method is used to restore strength, a Dungeoneer's Life Force can never go above GREEN.

 

RULE 3: COMBAT

The most sweeping changes to the game have been in the area of combat and challenging. Specialist individual powers of characters and items on the game board can hugely affect the course of a challenge.

i)  In a challenge the mace adds one to the bearer's strength total, be the bearer a player or a game board character. For instance, if a player fights the man-at-arms while the man-at-arms is in possession of the mace, for the duration of the challenge the strength total of the man-at-arms stands at FOUR, not three (notwithstanding the further addition of helm tokens).

ii)  In a challenge, the Sword of Freedom adds two to the bearer's strength total, although only if the bearer is a Dungeoneer. For instance, if a player in full health fights while in possession of the Sword, for the duration of the challenge the strength total stands at five, not three (notwithstanding the further addition of helm tokens).

iii)  In a challenge, the shield deducts one from the opponent's strength total (exceptions - see v)). For instance if a player with strength three fights the goblin, while the goblin is armed with a shield, for the duration of the challenge the player's strength total stands at two not three (notwithstanding the further addition of helm tokens). This rule applies to the shield with the Dragon Emblem only. If the Dungeoneer (not a game board character) bears the Shield of Justice, it deducts TWO points from the opponent's die roll. NOTE: If the use of a shield in a challenge reduces an opponent's strength score to zero or lower, the shield bearer wins automatically without die rolls or assessment of helm tokens. (Exception: If both combatants are legitimately armed with shields and both strength scores are reduced to zero as a result, the challenge is a draw.)

iv)  Whoever wins a challenge, be they player or game board character, they may take an item from the opponent (if available). A winning Dungeoneer may also take two fresh helm tokens from the castle store. If the loser used a weapon in the fight, that weapon is automatically the item that is handed over to the victor. (If more than one weapon was in the possession of the loser, the handover is prioritised by firstly the Defensive value, then the weapons Power level. In other words the Shield of Justice takes priority over the Dragon Shield, which takes priority over the Sword of Freedom, which takes priority over the Mace). The loser of a challenge is no longer cast into prison automatically. (Exception: A challenge between two Dungeoneers - see vi).) It should be noted that the Prison is now largely just a punishment confined to the cards or unfortunate die rolls. This is because the more serious punishment of death is now possible.

v)  Weapons and other items have strengths and weaknesses in certain combat situations. Weapons have no affect whatsoever against insubstantial opponents i.e. the ghost or the Pooka. By contrast, a Dungeoneer in possession of the Potion of Invisibility can confuse the eyes of the Barrow Lizard and reduce its strength score in a challenge by one.

Although the Medusa remains, ostensibly, the weakest guardian of a Quest Object in a challenge, she is now the most difficult to offer an actual challenge to. The Medusa has the power to turn to stone any opponent who gazes upon her. Therefore, to be able to survive a combat against the Medusa, a Dungeoneer must be in possession of a shield (either one) to protect their eyes. If a Dungeoneer challenges, or is challenged by, the Medusa and is not in possession of a shield, the player dies and is OUT OF THE GAME. Even if the Dungeoneer does possess a shield, using it to protect his/her eyes means that it cannot be used to block physical attacks, therefore the Medusa's strength score remains at six.

The Mercenary can be bribed. If a Dungeoneer is in possession of a bag of gold when he/she enters the Mercenary's Chamber (the pale-blue-trimmed Clue Room) and is challenged by the Mercenary, the Dungeoneer may leave the gold in this chamber instead of fighting. In return, the mercenary will never attack the Dungeoneer until after his/her next combat against any other opponent - during which the mercenary will act as the Dungeoneer's bodyguard (adding five to the strength score for that one combat). NOTE: This only applies if the Mercenary CHALLENGES the Dungeoneer. If the Dungeoneer challenges the Mercenary, combat will proceed as normal. If neither Dungeoneer nor Mercenary offers challenge, they will just ignore each other.

vi)  Battles can even be fought between Dungeoneers now, usually for right of way. If a player, in attempting to move, rolls the number of a room occupied by another Dungeoneer, instead of spending helm tokens to change the die roll or staying put in the previous room, a challenge may be attempted for right of access.

For any combat between Dungeoneers the challenger rolls first. If the challenger wins, the occupant of the room is cast into prison. The challenger now enters the room and may challenge the game board character residing there or draw a card as usual. If the occupant wins instead, the challenger stays put in the previous chamber and the turn ends there.

Whoever wins the challenge, of course, may take any one item from his/her opponent according to the usual rules (see iv)), and two fresh helm tokens from the castle store.

 

RULE 4: HELM TOKENS

Rules for the use of helm tokens are largely the same, but there are new rules for accumulation and loss.

i)  Each Dungeoneer may possess up to twelve helm tokens at any one time.

ii)  Helm tokens may be spent to restore lost Life Force energy, at a rate of one strength point per token (see Rule 2). This remedy should be used with great caution however, as the transfer is permanent i.e. every time a Dungeoneer spends a helm token to heal an injury, that player's maximum number of helm tokens is reduced by one. For instance, a player is on Life Force RED, and owns six of a possible twelve helm tokens. The Dungeoneer spends two helm tokens to restore Life Force to GREEN. This will leave the Dungeoneer with just four of a possible TEN helm tokens. Also note that although the helm token loss is permanent, the healing is not - the Dungeoneer will continue to lose strength points every time he/she gets injured.

iii)  The spending of helm tokens is required for the use of any magical items Dungeoneers may come to possess (see Rule 5). Each use of any magic item costs the bearer one helm token.

 

RULE 5: MAGIC

Magic is now more accessible, but also it can be far more dangerous to use. There are short cuts to magic power available in the Advanced Rules but beware - there is a price to pay for all of them, and the greater the magic, the higher the price.

i)  Possession of the magic ring gives access to the Spell of Resistance. Therefore, each time its bearer is attacked by a spell from another Dungeoneer, the ring can be used to dispel ("dis-spell") the attack. Every use of the ring costs its bearer one helm token.

ii)  Possession of the crystal ball gives its bearer access to the Spell of Foresight, allowing the Dungeoneer to choose which of the available chambers to travel to next). Every use of the crystal ball costs its bearer one helm token.

iii)  The spell-book is the most powerful of the magic items, as it gives its bearer access to all spells in the game except the following - Protection, Glory, Dragon-Ride, or Power (see vi) for a description of the three new spells). Each use of the spell-book costs its bearer one helm token, but mere possession of it is costly. For as long as the book is retained, the bearer is not allowed to keep or pick up any weapons, including the Sword of Freedom or the Shield of Justice. Thus if a Dungeoneer takes possession of the spell-book, he/she must relinquish any weapons and leave them in the current chamber. By the same measure, if the bearer of the spell-book wins a weapon and wishes to keep it, the spell-book must be relinquished immediately and left in the current chamber.

iv)  The Spell of Foresight, when cast in the Sorceress chamber, can have a different effect from when it is cast elsewhere. Directly beneath the cauldron there is a blocked shaft that leads directly into Level Two, and the spell can, at the caster's discretion, temporarily turn the cauldron into a third wellway. Once the spell is cast in this fashion, the caster may continue his/her turn by rolling two dice and totalling the scores. On a combined roll of two to six, the Dungeoneer moves as usual. On a total of seven or eight, the Dungeoneer enters Level Two in the Ogre's Chamber (the white trimmed "stomach"). On a total of nine or ten, the Dungeoneer enters Level Two in the Pooka's chamber (the yellow trimmed cavern). On a total of eleven, the Dungeoneer enters Level Two in the Vale of the Necromancer (the grey-black trimmed cave with the bridge). On a total of twelve, the Dungeoneer enters Level Two in the Mercenary's Chamber (the pale-blue-trimmed Clue Room). Once the spell caster has left the Sorceress' chamber, the wellway reverts to the cauldron.

v)  It is possible for a Dungeoneer to get a small glimpse of a possible near future within the Hobgoblin's chamber (the pale green-trimmed wooden room on Level One). After a Dungeoneer defeats the Hobgoblin in a challenge, if he/she rolls a six on the next turn he/she may either move as normal or "open" the chest in the corner of the room, which shows a vision of what lies directly ahead for someone. The Dungeoneer does this by drawing the next card from the castle stock, reading it, and then returning it to the top of the deck.

vi)  The Necromancer, Mogdred, is forever seeking to become the undisputed Ruler of the Dungeon. However he is not currently as powerful as he would like his opponents to believe. Therefore he seeks allies to help him overthrow the present Ruler of Level Two, the Frightknight, alias Lord Fear.

With this in mind, upon entering the Vale of the Necromancer, a Dungeoneer may, instead of giving challenge or drawing a card, pledge allegiance to Mogdred. In return for loyalty, the Necromancer will offer the Dungeoneer a choice of three very powerful spells. These are the Spell of Dragon-Ride, the Spell of Power, or the Spell of Glory.

Each spell can be used more or less without limit. The Spell of Dragon-Ride summons a wyrm that will carry the Dungeoneer to any Chamber in the Dungeon that he/she desires. When cast at the beginning of any Challenge, the Spell of Power adds six to the users die roll. The Spell of Glory is the most powerful spell in the game. It steals the Crowning Glory from the Gargoyle and transports it and the caster to the appropriate entry point of Level Three. However, these will only happen if the spells work.

BEWARE THE WEAPONS OF ENEMIES!

There is a risk involved in shaking hands with the Necromancer, and it should only be done in extreme circumstances, if at all. Once the pact has been made, the Necromancer will steal a helm token from the Dungeoneer at the end of every third turn. If the Dungeoneer has no helm tokens remaining, the Necromancer will start feeding on his/her Life Force i.e. the Dungeoneer will suffer an injury at the end of every third turn.

Furthermore, magic is always unreliable, dark magic doubly so. As such the spells will not necessarily work, and may even turn on its user. Indeed the more powerful the spell, the less likely it is to work. Worse yet, the more powerful the spell, the more terrible the price the Dungeoneer will pay if it fails to work. Before attempting to use any dark magic the Dungeoneer must therefore roll the die to determine whether or not the magic works.

If casting Dragon-Ride, the Dungeoneer must roll one to four for the spell to succeed. On a roll of five or six, the wyrm turns on the caster, who suffers an injury and, even in the event of survival, is thrown into prison, and loses the spell, and two helm tokens.

If casting Power, the Dungeoneer must roll an odd number for the spell to succeed. If the die roll is an even number, the Dungeoneer loses the spell, two helm tokens and all items, which are left in the Vale of the Necromancer. In this case the Dungeoneer is not cast into prison.

If casting Glory, the Dungeoneer must roll a one or a six for the spell to succeed. On a roll of two to five, the player loses all spells, helm tokens and items (which are left in the Vale of the Necromancer), and is cast into prison.

Even after the Dungeoneer loses a dark spell, the Necromancer continues to take a helm token/Life Force every three turns for the rest of the game.

If a Dungeoneer who has made a pact with the Necromancer wins the game, the Necromancer's power is increased. This means that the next time the game is played, the Necromancer's strength score will be one point greater than it was in the previous game. If a Dungeoneer wins the game without making the pact, the Necromancer's power decreases by one for the next game, although it cannot go below five. If the Necromancer's strength score reaches ten, he becomes Ruler of Level Two and he will not offer a pact in further games until his score is reduced to nine or less again, which of course will be all the more difficult to achieve when he is that powerful.

 

 

RULE 6: LEVEL THREE

i)  There is now only one entrance to Level Three. It is the door marked "NILREM" in the Mercenary's Chamber. (As before, it is impossible to enter Level Three without a Quest Object in possession.) When, at the start of a turn, a Dungeoneer has a Quest Object in possession and is within the Mercenary's Chamber, the door to Level Three opens. To enter it, the Dungeoneer must attempt to roll an even number. If successful, the Dungeoneer may either move his/her marker to the appropriate starting point in Merlin's Throne Room - at which point the turn ends - or move as usual. If the die roll is an odd number then, of course, the Dungeoneer simply moves as usual.

ii)  The rules for building the path to Merlin's throne within Level Three have changed. Upon entering Level Three, instead of the Dungeoneer returning all helm tokens to the castle store, the number of tokens still in possession is totalled. On every turn while in Level Three, for each token in possession, the Dungeoneer may be asked a riddle. Whether the answer given for each riddle is correct or not will no longer have any bearing on the end of turn. For each correct answer, one token (stone) is added to the path to Merlin's throne as usual.

iii)  When the Spell of Destruction is cast, the caster must roll a die, and the number rolled will be the number of the stone on the path to Merlin's throne that is destroyed (starting the count from the nearest token to the entry point of the Chamber). If the number rolled is the stone that the Dungeoneer on the path is standing on, that player is thrown into prison, and the Quest Object is returned to its original chamber. If the stone destroyed is between the Dungeoneer and the throne, he/she must correctly answer another riddle correctly to restore the path before proceeding, usual rules apply. If the stone is between the Dungeoneer and the entry point, he/she may ignore it and continue. If the number rolled is of a stone that has not yet been placed, the spell fails.

iv)  Once the path to Merlin's Throne is complete the Dungeoneer's turn ends. On each turn after that, the Dungeoneer must roll the die and move along the path by the number of tokens indicated. The exact number remaining must be rolled to land on the throne. If a higher number is rolled, the Dungeoneer does not move and the turn ends there. The spending of helm tokens cannot alter the die roll in Level Three.

 

 

RULE 7: THE PRISON

The prison is less significant than it was in the original rules. But this does not change the fact that it is not a nice place to become stranded in. In fact, it is even more dangerous than ever.

When trapped in the prison, at the end of every third turn a Dungeoneer will lose a helm token. If the Dungeoneer has no helm tokens available, but does possess the food, it may be used as a substitute (at which point it is returned to its original location). If the food is unavailable as well, the Dungeoneer suffers an injury.

 

RULE 8: QUEST OBJECTS

i)  Game board characters cannot arm themselves with the Sword of Freedom or the Shield of Justice in a Challenge.

ii)  Each Quest Object, once obtained by a Dungeoneer, will grant a special power to its bearer.

The Cup That Heals will restore one strength point every second turn that it is carried, up to the usual three point limit (GREEN).

The Shield of Justice reduces an enemy strength total by two in a Challenge (see Rule 3). It also prevents a Dungeoneer from suffering an injury in a Challenge, even when beaten.

The Sword of Freedom adds two to its bearer's strength total in a Challenge (see Rule 3). It also allows the bearer, when trapped in the prison, to escape to the starting chamber.

The Crowning Glory allows its wearer the privilege of rejecting any direct Challenge received from a game board character, although not from another Dungeoneer.

Big note of thanks to my brother Russell, and to Alec Downs for helping me to create these new rules.