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[Spoilers ahead for scenario 49]

Six players are playing Betrayal and the haunting has begun. It is scenario 49, "You Wear It Well".

One way the traitor can win is when the "Astral Spirit inhabits the soulless body of a hero". This occurs when the spirit makes six successful sanity rolls on a hero and places that many Sanity Roll tokens next to his or her body.

The good guys begin a haunting by taking six knowledge tokens and six sanity tokens and setting them aside. A hero can acquire one of these tokens by making a successful attack of that type against the spirit.

The game only comes with six sanity tokens.

The spirit needs six tokens to win by possession, but as soon as the heroes make one successful sanity attack, there are fewer than six remaining in the "set aside" pool.

Which of the following, if any, is the correct interpretation?

  1. Once a hero gets a single sanity token, the spirit cannot ever win via possession. If he wants to win this way, he must make the possession before the heroes land a single attack. (this seems unlikely because he would need to fend off five attacks per round for a minimum of six rounds, with a printed sanity stat of 1)
  2. Once a hero gets a sanity token, the spirit can return it to the "set aside" pool by killing that player.
  3. If the spirit needs to acquire a sanity token and there are none left in the "set aside" pool, then he can take one from any hero of his choice.
  4. If the spirit needs to acquire a sanity token and there are none left in the "set aside" pool, then he can take one from the hero whose body he is attempting to possess, assuming they have one.
  5. Your game box is defective and was supposed to come with 12 sanity tokens. Make six more out of scraps of paper or similar.
  6. You should treat the sanity token pool as if it were infinite. If it runs out of actual tokens, make new ones with scraps of paper or similar.
  • There's no reason to believe that the tokens are supposed to interact. Neither book mentions being able to take tokens from the other team, or having tokens taken. I think component limits should just be worked around. – Samthere Mar 1 '16 at 13:34
5
+50

This Haunt is one of those that causes... issues and debate among the playerbase due to ambiguities in it, even after revisions (one printing of the haunt actually gave the astral spirit a Sanity of 1 instead of 6, which would prevent them from even possessing a body in the first place!). Liberal use of the rule on the inside front cover of the base rulebook is pretty much required here. The exact text of that is as follows:

What If There Isn't a Rule for That?

Many hours went into playtesting this game, but it's still possible you'll run into situations where the game rules or haunt books don't clearly answer a question about game play. Don't let that slow you down. In such cases, come to an agreement as a group for what makes the most sense and go with it. (If that doesn't work, flip a coin to decide.) Then continue your experience in the house.

There are a few potential house-rulings to fix the token shortage:

  • Given that the revised text is that the heroes must HAVE the tokens, not HAVE COLLECTED, the tokens they gained would be lost upon the destruction of the hero's soul or body and returned to the pool of tokens the heroes set aside. An immediate rebuttal is that the tokens are used to represent damage dealt to the Astral Spirit, and a second one is that in a 6-player game, you're still going to have the token limit problem even with this.
  • Given that the sole reason for marking the body the Astral Spirit is attempting to affect is to count the number of successes, there is no reason why an alternative marker (e.g. a standard d6) couldn't be used. Unlike the previous house-ruling, there is no obvious rebuttal to this, and this in particular completely bypasses the physical token limit. In addition, in a 6-player game, it is actually possible for the Traitor player to place down 20 Tokens without ending the game (which is more than the total number of attribute tokens the game comes with), and these tokens are never removed.

As for the six interpretations you provided:

  1. erroneous sanity stat aside (Astral Spirit's stats are 3 Speed, 6 Knowledge, and 6 Sanity, go grab the revised traitor's guide), in a 5-player or 6-player game, this presents a problem as the heroes would only need to score two or one (respectively) Sanity attack successes against the Astral Spirit. Also, note that the Astral Spirit must have already destroyed the soul of the body it wants to affect before it can start affecting it, and if the Traitor (not the Astral Spirit) were to deliver the finishing blow, the body is destroyed instead of the soul [same effect from the Hero's perspective, but the Astral Spirit can't use the destroyed body].
  2. See the first proposed house rule above.
  3. This has the problem of basically cancelling the progress made by the heroes. A potential fix would be to swap out the hero's Sanity Roll token for a Knowledge Roll token if you were to do this, as this would preserve the hero's progress while also not allowing the physical token limit to stop the traitor from winning by the special victory condition.
  4. This is even worse than the previous as if all 5 heroes were to have scored a Sanity Roll token, the traitor is still locked out of that win condition.
  5. Not likely, given the traitor can place 20 tokens down in a 6-player game and the game only came with 18 attribute tokens total. If the Astral Spirit destroys 4 of the five souls and then affects each of their bodies 5 times each, the game still doesn't end.
  6. See second proposed house rule above.

Of note is I think this is the only haunt in the game where the physical limit of tokens is a problem.

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