Out of the Woods
Preview the Characters and Rules of Talisman: The Woodland
From the moment you enter the graveyard, with its crumbling tombstones and piles of skulls, all you can think of is leaving it as soon as possible. So you start running – only to fall flat on your face after a few steps, legs tangled in spiderwebs. From behind a tombstone crawls not a ghoul or vampire, but a giant spider the size of a wolf, all eight of its eyes focused on you. You struggle and tear at the sticky threads binding you, unable to break free as the creature leans in and begins to open its jaws…
In The Woodland expansion for Talisman 4th Edition, you venture into the realm of the Fae, a mysterious forest haunted by mischievous faeries and filled with enchanted artifacts, where fate is worth more than gold and even the mist has a mind of its own.
Our first preview introduced some of the capricious creatures that dwell in the savage Woodland and the uncanny encounters that may occur there. You met Titania and Oberon in our second preview, which also explored the new rules for fate introduced in this expansion. Most recently, we looked at the Path and Destiny cards that shape your journey inside the Woodland and beyond.
Today’s preview highlights three of the new characters featured in The Woodland. In addition, we’ve added the rules for this expansion to the Talisman 4th Edition support page. You can download them (pdf, 2.3 MB) by clicking on the thumbnail on the right.
The Strength (and Craft) of an Oak
Emerging from the forest space in the Outer region, the Ancient Oak may at first seem an unlikely candidate for the Crown of Command. But living for thousands of years has given this tree almost infinite understanding and strengthened his resolve. Since the Ancient Oak can heal a life simply by being in a Woods or Forest space, he is almost invincible and immortal.
Trees grow until they die, and this one is no exception. As the Ancient Oak you can earn leaf-shaped Growth tokens whenever you turn in trophies. Each Growth token on your card gives you an additional life and increases either your Strength or your Craft value by one. With the red side faceup, the Growth token adds to your strength, with the blue side faceup, it adds to your Craft. At the start of each turn, you can flip the tokens to whichever side you wish, bending your Strength and Craft for to suit your present situation. This adaptability allows the Ancient Oak to thrive in any region of Talisman.
Portals of Power
Running through Talisman are currents of magical energy called ley lines, which fuel spells and other forms of magic. The ethereal Leywalker is so advanced a magician that he can travel along ley lines, teleporting from space to space free from the laws that normally govern movement. As the Leywalker, whenever another character casts a Spell outside of the Inner Region, you can place a Portal token on that character’s space. Then, at the start of your turn, you can choose to teleport there instead of rolling the die to determine your movement.
Gifted with such outstanding Craft, the Leywalker has little need to develop physical Strength. In combat he can discard a Spell to fight with Craft instead of Strength. Spells are easily expendable for this creature: the Leywalker gains a Spell upon entering a space where he has placed a Portal token, and whenever he lands in the Runes. By taking advantage of Talisman’s rich magical resources, the Leywalker can overcome any difficulty.
Delighting in sticky traps and creeping terrors, the compassionless Spider Queen seeks power for its own sake. Like the Leywalker, her Craft is greater than her Strength. But instead of casting Spells, she sends her treacherous webs and arachnid minions throughout Talisman to ambush and cripple her opponents. As the Spider Queen, you begin the game with six double-sided Spider tokens. Once per turn, you can place a Spider token, web side facing up, on any space with a character on it.
If you enter a space with a Spider token, you may remain there for the turn or continue on. If another character enters a space with a Spider token, he must end his movement there and face the evil that awaits him. Once another character has entered a space with a Spider token, you flip it to the Crawler side. You can add or subtract 1 from one roll that character makes in that space before removing the Spider token. The Spider Queen has better control over her own movement than most players have, but she truly excels in ensnaring and weakening other characters. Adventure Awaits
The Ancient Oak, the Leywalker, and the Spider Queen, although not native to the unpredictable and perilous Woodland, are particularly well-equipped to travel through that region. They are all capable of surviving the numerous dangers found throughout the realm of Talisman, all capable of winning the struggle for the Crown of Command. These characters and the others introduced in The Woodland can also be played in any game of Talisman, independent of the other parts of the expansion. Whether you scatter spiders across the Woodland, or travel across Talisman as a thousand-year-old tree, unknown adventures await you.
Download the rules from the support page, and pre-order your copy of Talisman: The Woodland from a local retailer today!