The Final Season of Hearts' Game!

I mean, I’d have preferred taking any other Priest over Magpie, but it’s not like my hand gave me a lot of choices if I wanted to finally attempt a quasi-viable Pages run.

Aaaaaand done. Ironically enough, I’m missing the Exploits necessary to get nodded at. Oh well, in due time.

Presumably so they’d feel more “dynamic”. The whole point of them thematically is to demonstrate the agency of the targets. Unfortunately the implementation is just annoying.

And also to allow a minimum of counter-counter-strategy to mitigate Counter-play.

Choosing if/when to refill your hand becomes a tactical decision.

For example, if you are 3 CP of Progress away from winning but you have a ton of accumulated Counter-play, it’s better to stop drawing cards and play 3 checkless Progress cards.

Edit: in addition, if counter-play penalties were applied immediately, you couldn’t accumulate counter-play to get the worst options like progress loss or the burden.

Is that an example, or is it the one and only situation where you would choose not to draw because of Counterplay?

It’s the most obvious situation, but I can imagine at least another one.

If you have Counterplay at 2 you risk getting Tolerance from Theriac.
In some situations (e.g early in the round, and/or with Teeth) this is worse than usual, so you may want to delay Tolerance increase and play all your cards before drawing.

If you push Counterplay to 3 before drawing, you might even get “lucky” and draw Sanction which will reduce some Progress but might also reset Counterplay to 1.

I just received my Distinction of Motley a few days ago. I found it most useful to accumulate all the Poisonous Preparations I expected to need for the round (at least 7 or 8) first and then start trying to make Poisoner’s Progress. When I tried to get early progress first, I found myself tripped up by failing checks and would lose narrowly.

In addition, though my Persuasive with all modifiers is well over 300, I don’t play Hearts’ Game that way especially if I have a hard-hitting Accomplice that checks a different stat. For the last Motley run I only had an effective Persuasive of 260 or so.

By the way, I only had 9 accomplices for my successful run.

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And I got my nod. I guess I’ll be saving up 1k exploits until September, when the mood takes me to go back to the Cottage.

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The distinctions that force you play with a certain team makeup really helps you learn the strengths and weaknesses of each type of accomplice. So far I’ve learned that pages are bad at making progress, but they make up for it by being even worse at generating Poisonous Preparation or otherwise supporting your other accomplices.


I remember back when HG came out and with just Page of Roots and Page of Teeth you could get almost guaranteed wins. They have definitely fallen a long way since then. I do hope that Pages are given some sort of bonus in the next balance patch. Perhaps their checkless actions could generate less Counterplay or something like that?

I suggest the addition of a box to mention the current season on the wiki.


Having acquired the Nod, and having not much else to do until next season… I realized something.

The distinctions create a “bad to be good” problem.

In that… because of the hefty number of exploits needed to get all the top tier rewards? You’re low-key penalized for getting better at the game over time. Because you need 500 exploits per reward, and the faster you can rack up achievements? The less exploits you get overall.

All of which adds up to the following:

Once you’ve gotten all the distinctions? The optimal way to play Hearts’ game is to pick up the King of Motley if possible, draw the whole deck, and then lose on purpose until you get 500 exploits. Which is a pretty anticlimactic way to say goodbye to Hearts’ Game IMHO.

I’m still just waiting for trophies to be worth… something. Anything.

Gah, round 10 of this Pages run ends in a loss on 3 failures in a row (I stupidly didn’t think of / remember 2nd chances) and a counterplay to push Elusiveness to 8, with 3 or 4 points of Progress to go. So 6 wins in the run, and no Pages distinction.

I’d used Page of Lures, Page of Papers, and Priest of Smiths-- it seemed to work well enough, at least to get to 6 wins and 3 losses; this last run fell on bad luck, so I’ll try to recruit them again, especially as there doesn’t really seem to be a surefire Pages team. (My previous one was Page of Gambits, Queen of Cod, and Priest of Magpies-- it worked okay, but ended up relying on one Queen card to show up reliably, which it didn’t).

Strictly speaking, the “trophies” are a kind of placeholder; the medals they are supposed to be replaced with is the item of significance.

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Does anyone have the snippet saved for what happens when poison resistance hits 8?

AFAIK I’ve never seen it, and if so I most definitely did not log it in either my main or my alt’s journal.

(I’d be interested to know if my theory about the shames bears out.)

Does something happen when poison tolerance hits 8? The wiki doesn’t have anything that uses Tolerance besides the progress gain formula

I always assumed it was the 2nd (much rarer) fail condition for a round, until I realized I’d never seen it…

Is it even possible for tolerance to hit 8 before evasive hits 8?

Well, since no one else said it? I will.

If it’s not? It ought to be. Some interesting text on an (exceedingly) rare failure would be a fun consolation prize for losing players when they absolutely bomb a given round/run.

(The theory I was alluding to is that the freakier shames that Hearts seems to be trying to farm are a result of tolerance hitting 8 before the target escapes.)