Man, I love Talisman. It's probably my favourite boardgame of all time. Yeah, it's not particularly balanced, and a lot of it relies on the luck of the cards, but it's a heap of fun.
My wife expressed some interest in playing it, so who was I to say no? Easy pickings, thought I, but as we prepared to play my worst fear was realised - she drew the Prophetess as her character!
Now, there is one sure-fire method for winning Talisman - play as the Prophetess. It's almost impossible to lose. As far as I'm aware, about the only way to beat her is for all the other players to do their best to kill her at the beginning. Otherwise, she'll just merrily go on her way taking all of the good cards and avoiding the bad, and you will lose.
Nevertheless, I didn't want to go totally cut-throat on my wife for her first game. I would trust to my experience to see me through! I drew the Priest, and we got going.
I had a bad start. Turned into a toad three times! Raiders stole my stuff! Killed by Bandits! It was a while until I started to build myself up. My wife was steadily acquiring nearly everything, but eventually I got close to her and made a dash for the Crown of Command. I made it with one life to spare, but she was close behind and in no mood to surrender as I blasted her with my mighty crown. Alas, she got to the middle as well, and utterly killed me. My Talisman reputation was destroyed!
But revenge, as always is sweet. The next night she drew the Wizard, and I drew the Warrior - both very viable characters. Without the precognitive powers of the Prophetess, the laws of the universe were righted! I had all the luck with the cards, and when she looked like she was getting a bit too powerful, I mugged her and stole her mule. In revenge she hunted me down for a little psychic combat, but my Warrior must be some kind of mental giant, because he even managed to win that. In the end I made it easily to the Crown, as my wife was killed by a Goblin.
After the foray into Talisman (which my wife is dead keen to try again) we tried Hero Quest - but more on that tomorrow!