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Zephaus

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Go to the Quarriors! page

Quarriors!

81 out of 88 gamers thought this was helpful

Quarriors! is on its face an innovative first attempt at creating a compelling dice-building game. And if you like rolling dice and playing deck-building games, you will want to love this game. But after the newness wears off, players will begin to ask themselves things like “Does strategy even matter?” and “Who are these Quarriors?”

How It Plays

In Quarriors!, two to four players start with a pool of 12 basic dice that provide Quiddity (the game’s currency) and a low-level creature. A number of randomly selected cards in “The Wilds” representing creatures and spells tell you which dice to include in the total game pool, and provide special effects for the rolled dice.

Each turn, players roll 6 dice and use the results to summon creatures, cast spells, or buy more dice from the Wilds. Your creatures attack all the players around the table, and if your creature survives the whole round, you get to score it for Glory. The first player to reach a specific glory level (varies by number of players) wins.

The creatures and spells (and therefore dice) are randomly selected for each game, so you can play many games without encountering the same combination of cards/dice.

How It Works

If this sounds like fun, it is – at first. Building your pool, culling out weaker dice, rolling handfuls of colored dice… But after a few plays, you begin to feel like your best purchase is always obvious and your success depends primarily on luck rather than skill.

The advanced rules explained in the expansions are supposed to add additional decision-making, but really just feel like they drag out the game. And part of what makes Quarriors! fun is that it ends before you realize how little strategic depth there is to the game.

How It Looks and Feels

When Quarriors! was first released, a number of people complained about the quality of the printing on the dice. And yes, there are a few dice where the numbers are sometimes difficult to read. But given that the faces are printed on the related card, it’s not something that has bothered me, especially given the huge number of dice you receive in the game.

The original storage container required a lot of modifying to fit the game in a convenient way, but if you get the Quarmaggedon Expansion, it provides a fantastic storage case that holds all the dice in neat rows.

The Quarriors! themeing could use a little strengthening. After playing with my wife a few times, her comment was “This game is fun enough, but who is the Defender of the Pale? What is the Pale? Why is he defending it?” And it’s true – the Quarriors! universe could use a little bit of flavor, even just a line or two of flavor text on the cards. As is, you don’t really have a strong sense of what it is you are actually doing in the game beyond calling forth one-dimensional creatures that tease at something more interesting.

I actually re-themed the game with Harry Potter characters and spells, and it brought new life to the game for us and our gaming circle. It’s much more interesting to summon Lucius Malfoy than the Warrior of the Quay. I can only hope that perhaps one day WizKids can find a way to expand the Harry Potter licenses to include an improved version of the dice-building genre. Or that their upcoming Lord of the Rings Dice-Building game will be the one to take the step forward.

Conclusion

This is a fun game for Casual, Social or Family gamers, or Avid gamers looking for a light game to pass the time. But Power and Strategy gamers expecting “Dominion with Dice” will be left wanting.

8
Go to the Castle Panic page

Castle Panic

144 out of 176 gamers thought this was helpful

If you’re looking to play this with your weekly boardgame hobby group, you’re probably not going to be impressed. But if you want a fun, fantasy-themed board game to play with young kids, it’s great! The mechanics are simple enough that even my 4-year old can understand that he needs to match cards to monsters. And because it’s cooperative, you can ask questions and coach the kids through the game play.

At it’s most basic, the game mechanics churn out a series of orcs, trolls and goblins that advance each turn towards your castle walls. Once they bash down the walls and destroy your towers, the game ends.

Players use color-coded cards for each of three fields in front of the castle, and each color has soldiers, knights, and archers that can attack monsters in one of three rings of distance from the castle walls. Additional cards provide some special attacks and rebuild walls, among other options. Players can trade cards each turn, rewarding players who think ahead to future turns.

Highly recommended for family game nights. And a great way to teach your young gamers some basic strategy lessons without the pressure of cooperative play.

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