Part III: Gambits and Turns
Welcome to the third gameplay article for Herobane! If you haven't read the previous articles on Rooms and Your Dungeon and Heroes and Minions, you'll need to read them to understand this one. We're going to discuss what you do during your turn and the final card type, gambits.
The first thing that happens in your turn is handling any abilities on cards that watch for when your turn begins. There won't always be any, but watch out for face-up heroes eager to bust down your doors. After handling those abilities, if any, you draw three cards from the dungeon deck (where the room and minion cards are). Then the best part of the start of your turn: roll the resource dice. You look at your dungeon and collect the appropriate resources from the cell you hit (as seen in part I). The next player in turn order also collects resources based on their dungeon and your roll, but any other players in the game don't collect.
In between the start of turn and end of turn, you've got the turn actions. There are six things you can do. You can do these in any order, as many times as you'd like (including zero).
Discard for Resources
You may discard any two cards from your hand and get one black chip or red chip. There will be plenty of cards to discard - cheap rooms once your dungeon's getting full, expensive cards when you need something cheap, anything at all when you're down to the wire and need to pull out a victory.
Play Dungeon Cards
You may play cards that you've drawn from the dungeon deck. This includes room cards and minion cards that you've seen in the previous two articles, and it also includes gambit cards, such as Callous Bribery.
Callous Bribery is the first wild card you've seen - you pay its cost by paying seven chips of any combination of black and red chips. On the middle-left, you'll see what kind of gambit it is; this one's a skill. To play a gambit card that's a skill, put it into the dungeon deck's discard pile and then do what it says on the card. To play a gambit card that's a boon or a curse (you'll see these next week in previews), put it on the table with what it's modifying.
Use Abilities of Cards and Your Avatar
While many cards have abilities that watch for something and add on effects or modify that event, some cards (and most avatars) have usable abilities. You've seen this on Rosethorn Warlock and the Arachnotitan's dungeon. These are written with a ▻ symbol, with any costs and requirements on the left and the effect on the right. They may limit how many times you may use it in a turn (like Venomous Bite does) or require something else to be true to use it, but you're never required to use an ability.
Lure a Hero
The hero row is a row of five face-up heroes on the table that changes every turn. If there's one that you'd like to introduce to its doom, you need to lure it into your dungeon first. You can only have one hero in your dungeon at a time, but once you defeat one, you can lure in another in the same turn.
Attack a Hero or Curse
To start an attack, pick one minion to be the attacker and roll its combat dice. Other abilities may now check for what you rolled and modify it, but then you're done with this step. You don't have to immediately determine whether your minion wins or loses - you can take other turn actions before you resolve the attack! Each minion gets to attack just once per turn, but any number of minions can attack a hero (albeit one at a time).
You may have noticed that the label for this action also mentions curses - as you'll see in next week's previews, you can attack curses to break them.
Resolve an Attack
Once you're done taking any other turn actions to sway combat in your favor, you can choose to resolve the ongoing attack. If you use a gambit or ability to deal enough damage to a hero or curse, taking this action will result in defeating that hero or breaking that curse, even if there's no attacking minion. Remember the three possible results from last week's article: the hero's defeat, your minion's defeat, or the hero being stunned.
If you don't want to take any more turn actions, it's time to end your turn. The very first thing we do here is to check if there's a minion attacking whose attack hasn't been resolved. Sneaky you, trying to end your turn with an ongoing attack! That attack gets resolved. Next, handle any abilities that watch for ending your turn, like how Callous Bribery wants you to give back the minion you borrowed.
After resolving any attacks and handling any abilities, you start closing out the turn. If there's a hero in your dungeon, discard it to the hero deck's discard pile and roll the resource dice, losing the resources you hit instead of gaining them. Discard the oldest hero in the hero row, then refill the hero row from the hero deck to five cards. Finally, if you have too many minions (max five) or too many cards in hand (max eight), discard down to those maximums. Now it's the next player's turn.
Next week, we'll have an in-depth how-to-play article with a lot of pictures, walking you step by step through setup and three turns of the game.
There are still a handful of details that you'll need to wait on until the game's release and you have it in front of you. We hope that you've learned enough about how Herobane works to decide that you'd like to support the project and turn your dungeon into a reality.