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We played our first two rounds of Descent a few days ago and we (3 heroes) always lost against the Overlord.

The biggest issue we experienced was the summoning of enemies in direct attack distance (still out of sight, but around a corner).

We were arguing about whether the Overlord can summon and move/attack his new summoned fellows in the same round but we couldn't find anything that clarified this in the rules.

I have no idea which edition we played, but I think it was 1E...

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Not sure what you are looking for here. There are only three phases for the Overlord player. Start of Turn, where the Overlord would play cards (some allowing summoning new monsters, I think), and the Activate monsters where monsters are activated in groups, and finally End of Round. monsters in the same group are activated at the same time (even newly summoned ones), most likely to avoid bookkeeping nightmares. Page 8 under Overlord Turn Summary. –  user1873 Dec 10 '12 at 15:12
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Since you weren't sure which version you played, I'll post my answers for both editions, although i'm significantly more familiar with 1E rules than 2E.

From the First Edition Descent Rules:
The overlords turn consists of:

Step 1: Collect Threat and Draw Cards
Step 2: Spawn Monsters
Step 3: Activate Monsters

You spawn monsters before you activate them, where activating them is considered moving and attacking. Again, this is for 1st edition, and I haven't played second edition so I'm not familiar with the 2E rules and the PDF doesn't want to load for me right now.

The Second Edition Descent Rules seem to imply that you place and activate the monsters at the same time, in their respective groups(p. 8 & 16). The FAQ doesn't have a specific clarification on the issue.

I would honestly be surprised if the overlord wasn't able to place and activate monsters in the same turn. In 1E, you only expect monsters to last a round or two when thrown into direct combat with the players so I would expect the same from 2E.

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Monsters do die quickly in 2E. They have scenario-by-scenario rules for where they can spawn--often at the entrance or an exit--so from the OP's description, it sounds like 1E. –  sitnaltax Dec 11 '12 at 4:09
    
Thanks for your answer. It cleared up quite a lot for me :) –  WarrenFaith Dec 11 '12 at 11:56
    
For 2E, it depends on the scenario (this is usually spelled out under the Reinforcements section). Some scenarios say "place monsters" while others say, "place monsters -- monsters can act the turn they are placed." –  bryanjonker Jan 9 '13 at 20:32
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