Talisman: The Horus Heresy Design Blog Part 3

Welcome to the Talisman: The Horus Heresy Design Blog.
The Blog will be split into 4 parts.

Part 1 of the Design blog can be found HERE
Part 2 of the Design blog can be found HERE

In part 3 of the Design Blog we will be looking at board navigation, Quests and the End Game.


Crossing from the Outer to the Middle Region

The powerful Sentinel guards the bridge over the Storm River in Talisman as one of the main routes from the Outer to the Middle Region. Because attacking the Sentinel is classed as a battle, it’s harder for characters who rely on Craft to get past the towering creature. Rafts or Spells have generally been the safest way for those characters to cross.


For T:THH, the Sentinel has been replaced by crossing the Warp at The Rubicon Straits, which is a dice check on either your Close Combat or your Ranged Combat. You must roll a die and add your Close Combat or Ranged Combat ability (your choice). If the total is 9 or more, you may pass through the Warp to the Middle Region. This is fairer for all Warlords, no matter which ability is their highest.


There are other board Sectors where crossing the Warp is possible. The bottom-left corner Sector (Nikaea) allows Loyalists to cross if they roll a 5 or 6, and Traitors can do the same from the top-right Sector (Signus Prime). There are two ‘neutral’ Sectors where die rolls can all a Warlord to cross the Warp – The Phall System and The Maelstrom.


Quests have had a bit of an overhaul in T:THH, with several of the Talisman rules regarding quests being revisited to put the power into the players’ hands.

Available quests in T:THH are determined by your allegiance. Loyalists have 6 Errant Quests they may undertake, and Traitors have 6 Infernal Quests. 3 of each allegiance’s quests are the same, but the other 3 are specific to each allegiance. Each allegiance has their own version of the Warlock’s Cave space where they will be given their quests.


In Talisman, quests are completed automatically and a character is immediately teleported back to the Warlock’s Cave. In T:THH, a player must choose to complete a quest manually, so they will not be automatically moved back to the quest giver.

The option to replace a quest is a house rule in Talisman, but always available in T:THH, at the cost of 1 Resource (gold) each time a quest is replaced.

Warlords CAN enter the Inner Region if they are on a quest, unlike in Talisman where the Portal of Power remains closed to characters on a quest. As quests are completed manually, by the player, there is no chance of a Warlord being dragged out of the Inner Region back to the quest giver as can happen in Talisman.

If a Warlord already has a Talisman, he cannot accept a quest, but the Sectors which provide quests (Davin and Titan) also provide other bonuses should a Warlord still travel there.


There are two types of Talisman in T:THH, one for each allegiance. Warlords can only have a Talisman of their own allegiance and cannot take a Talisman of the opposing allegiance from a Warlord if they defeat them in combat.

The End Game

The standard Crown of Command ending of Talisman has been replaced in T:THH with an encounter with either Horus or the Emperor, depending on allegiance. Traitor Warlords will encounter the Emperor when they arrive at the centre space on the board, and must defeat him, much like the Ice Queen or Demon Lord endings from Talisman. Loyalist Warlords must defeat Horus. Both have several lives and Warlords must remove all of them to be victorious. Losing to Horus or the Emperor causes the Warlord to be ejected from the Vengeful Spirit and cast back out to the Middle Region.


If there is a Warlord on the centre space (the Vengeful Spirit) and another Warlord loses their last life, they are not killed and they are returned to the game. This is in case a Warlord is defeated on the Vengeful Spirit and is moved to the Middle Region.

In part 4 of the Design Blog we will be looking at some of the final changes we made to the game.
Talisman: The Horus Heresy is out now on STEAM.


Talisman: The Horus Heresy (PC)

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