Why Road To Legend is That good. Like a door you didn't know needed opening.
Like a door you didn't know needed opening.
Descent is one of our group's favorite games. It's strategic gameplay and interesting campaign scenarios mean that it's gotten to our table frequently, and our friends have started coming over specifically to play it. Descent could very well be the best game out there in our opinion, with a couple major caveats.
It's hard to play consistently and regularly because you need the same group of people to get together often so you can progress through the campaign. Logistically that creates some problems, and we don't often get to sit down for some un-interrupted monster slaying.
The Road to Legend App fills all the voids that were there, and even adds some surprises that adds a breath of fresh air to the entire experience. At first I was skeptical about the app, because I like the asymmetrical nature of the gameplay, and the 1 vs X combat that is unique to Descent. In addition I didn't trust the app would command the minions in such a way that would be authentic and engaging.
Boy was I wrong.
The app handles all of the above in such a great way; a way that encourages strategic thinking and planning amongst the heroes, and reduces the fussy-ness of managing monsters as much as it can. It gives monsters a set of 'orders', which they must obey. When you activate a group, each monster is given instructions that it must follow if able, like 'encounter the closest player' or 'attack the character with the least health'. This allows combat to be authentic, and so the heroes don't just setup the situation to be in their favor all the time.
But by far the best aspect of the app is the way it reveals the information to the players. In the main campaigns, the overlord needs to know all of the information relating to that encounter. They need to have knowledge of all the monster groups, triggers, and win conditions. Unless you have a seasoned DM at the helm, this could make the immersive experience and role-playing aspects of the game fall apart. I know this for a fact because I personally make a very poor DM.
The app reveals only the right amount of information at any given time, which is amazing because you don't know what's coming next. You're instructed to 'take cover' or 'explore'. This is so refreshing because you can just focus on the fun while not worrying about turn rounds and triggers. Instead you get to focus on having fun.
One minor gripe I had was knowing what the locations on the map were called. In the first encounter we were told to head to the field. I know from experience that they label the tiles in the campaign book, but there was no real way I could figure out how to identify what tiles were in the app.
All-in-all, the Road to Legend app takes an already great game and extends it's fun and functionality so that 2 or more people can have a less studious experience and go through a really fun and dynamic campaign. I really hope they continue to develop campaigns for the app, and then possibly make an Imperial Assault version.