One of the problems that I had with Hero Wars before it came out seems to have remained. It's to do with fighting multiple opponents. Imagine your band of Heroes meet their greatest enemy, surrounded by his minor minions (which, according to the rules, would have increased Ap's but no increase in skill). When the fight begins, the minions rush forwards and battle the PC's. This would be a stock scene applicable to many different adventures. The idea is that the minions are not a major threat, why should they be, but might hinder, hamper or injure the PC's.
However, because of the way the system works the minions are unlikely to injure the characters. Why? Well, their skill rating will be far lower than the Heroes, as it should be, but even when they do succeed in making an attack they will probably only get back AP's they previously lost anyhow, so the chance of taking a character down are slim. So they'll get slaughtered like sheeps, and the Heroes will come off unharmed. However, to add insult to injury, the Heroes will have sucked up their AP's like a human vacuum cleaner ready to do battle with the evil bad guy. In fact, the more minions you have, the better it is for the characters as the more AP's they have ready to harvest. If you met a Zorak Zorani Priest with his horde of fourty trollkin (let us say split down into eight bands of five trollkin at 16 skill and 80 AP's) versus eight Heroes, then the eight Heroes are more than likely (not assuredly so, especially if the trollkin bet ridiculous AP's and hope to high heaven for a lucky roll) just going to get 80 AP's each from the encounter, ready for the bad guy. Even if the trollkin do bet ridiculously high, this takes some of the fun out of the game as few Heroes would survive a 75 AP bet from a trollkin band which then spawns it's dice roll - kinda ruins it for you (and what exactly would a 75 AP bet indicate in game play terms!).
"Aha!" I hear you cry already, "They can attack and when they win just exchange 7 AP's for a Hurt level." This works. But it is far from realistic, and I mean realistic in the level of common sense. Why would any man just attack someone knowing that they weren't going to defeat them just injure them so that when they were later killed, it'd be easier for their boss to do away with the person being attacked. Only those rare few who would fight with the intention of dying, or just not giving a toss, i.e. undead and their ilk, would do this sort of thing. Henchmen and trollkin bands wouldn't try and kill themselves in such a fashion.
I do have what myself and a friend came up with as an answer. If you limit the maximum number of AP's a character can have, discounting followers, support etc..., to double the skill they are using, then this doesn't wholly eliminate the problem, but does mean that minions and henchmen are seen as more than a source of AP's for the Heroes to get. What do you think? Does anyone else feel that this is a problem? Or has it already been discussed, dissected, and solved?
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