I've been playing Descent a few times with a few different players. Unfortunately players change, but we keep the XP and gold for the heroes that do play, and when a new player joins they are restricted to choosing only a hero that hasn't been picked yet.

However I'm really not sure how to manage the XP/gold when either

  1. A new player joins halfway through the campaign (or whatever act they may be on).
  2. The Overlord player wants to actually play a hero (because as much as I like being the Overlord.....it's nice to be a hero too).

I see only a couple of options:

  1. The "New" person picks a hero and starts with starting equipment.
  2. Some sort of house rule. To me maybe this would be a new person starting with whatever the "weakest" person has earned gold/XP-wise?

I really can't figure out a good way to do this. Having multiple campaigns with multiple sets of people would get really confusing, plus those who JUST played a certain act, wouldn't want to have to replay it. Plus, RP wise, new people join groups all the time so there is that?

What I've been doing is tracking XP/Gold per hero or Overlord, and not per player. So if someone new comes by and they want to play hero X, then they'd get all the benefits of that hero.

Anyone have any ideas for this conundrum?

3 Answers 3


I've found that Descent is really made for one-off games, and not for campaigning. As much as anyone's tried to tack it on.
If every game is a new game, and everyone always starts again at zero, then this problem just disappears entirely.
For campaign-style play, we just stick to classic pen-and-paper RPGs. Works well.


I suggest involve 4 heroes every campaign, regardless the players number, that will be fine, some veteran can handle more than one hero. If some new player join, he can pick any one from the four heroes.

There's some variant in BGG forum can make this like a co-op game, like this one.


We start with 4 Heroes. Everyone gets the XP and the loot. Even if there are only 3 Heroes, we take the 4 Heroes Loot (if its making an difference). Else the Heroes would be Later on to weak. Also for Shopping we play with 4 Hero rules. And if the Playnumber increase between scenes. We allow the Overlord to draw one Card. Groupsize should fit to the heroes (as normal).

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