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Castle Panic: The Wizard’s Tower - Board Game Box Shot

Castle Panic: The Wizard’s Tower

New Threats. New Powers. New Panic!
Your Castle has been rebuilt, and a friendly Wizard has joined your forces. As long as his Tower stands, you and your friends have access to powerful magic spells.

And you'll need them, for the Monsters have returned stronger, faster, smarter, and with new abilities to threaten the Castle. You'll fight against magical Imps, evasive flying creatures, and more. Make your stand against six new, dangerous Mega Boss Monsters, including the Dragon and Necromancer. Use fire to attack the Monsters, but beware, your Walls and Towers can be burned down as well!

The challenge is high but so is the adventure. Can you survive more panic and defend The Wizard's Tower?

A new element in The Wizard's Tower is fire! Flame Tokens are used to indicate when something is burning. New cards in both the Castle deck and the Wizard deck will allow the players to catch Monsters on fire, causing them to take damage after they move. But the players are not the only ones with access to this new weapon. Some Monster Tokens can attack the Castle with fire, weakening and even destroying Castle structures! Castle Panic Fire

The Wizard's Tower is an expansion to the board game Castle Panic. It is not a stand-alone game and requires Castle Panic to play.

images © Fireside Games

User Reviews (13)

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Gamer - Level 3
Rated 25 Games
103 of 110 gamers found this helpful
“Add depth and difficulty to Castle Panic”

The Wizards Tower expansion is a must-have for Castle Panic. Whereas the base game suits family play with my daughter (almost 7), the expansion kicks it up a few notches for more experienced gamers. My daughter needs more assistance with what to trade/discard/attack using the expansion, but that just means the better she gets with these games, the longer Castle/Panic will continue to suit us. With the expansion, I’m more inclined to play the game with more “experienced” gamers. It doesn’t add any additional boards, but it adds the following:

1) Tougher Monsters. Mega Bosses with more HP and abilities, flying monsters, fire breathing, etc.

2) Wizard Tower – Replaces one original tower on the existing board.

3) Wizard Deck – Option to discard and draw a Wizard spell card on your turn, as long as the Wizard tower still stands

4) New castle cards – for varied “standard deck” cards, adding more options/combos

Last but not least, you even get a fairly decent monster token bag, with eyes on the side. Much better than using a box lid!

All of these additions make for a tougher, more varied game. Walls can be set on fire (as can enemies), cards can combo better, etc. This is a prime example of the perfect expansion, improving the game in just about every way, while not completely re-inventing the wheel. People who enjoyed the concept of the base game, but felt it was too simplistic/easy should definitely give the expansion a try. People who already enjoy Castle Panic will be pleased at how the expansion will keep the game fresh and exciting.

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Book Lover
Novice Reviewer
Cooperative Game Explorer
97 of 104 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 2
“A must buy expansion...”

The Wizards Tower is an expansion for Castle Panic. It is not a stand-alone game and requires Castle Panic to play.

The Wizards Tower plays almost identically to the original game. The Big changes are that during set-up you randomly draw three mega bosses harbinger tokens (stand in tile) and without looking at the pieces add them to the bag. These monsters are fearsome and can be very difficult to take down. The second major change is the tower. With the wizards tower you have access to spell cards that can only be gained during the discards and draw phase. These cards bring a verity of new effects including being able to attack in the forest ring. The final major change is the introduction of fire. When a wall, tower or monster catches fire you add a token. When a tower or wall gains its third flame marker it is destroyed. Monsters receive one hit during the move phase for each fire token.

This expansion also adds ten new monster types: Centaur, Climbing Troll, Conjurer, Cyclops, Doppelganger, Gargoyle, Goblin Cavalry, Golem, Imp, Ogre and Phoenix each with there own special ability. You will want to keep the reference card handy till you know the monsters.

Set-Up and Play Time,
Set-up time is a little longer than the original game since you have to remove specific tokens from the base game to play the expansion and draw the mega boss monster tokens. I suggest keeping the removed token in a separate pouch to reduce setup time for the next game.

1 Rulebook
10 Castle Cards
22 Wizard Cards
37 Monster Tokens
6 Harbinger Tokens
6 Mega Boss Tokens
12 Flame Tokens
1 Wizard Tower
1 Monster Draw Bag
6 Reference Cards
1 Plastic Stand

Instructions / Learning Curve
If you already know how to play the base game you can play this expansion. There are new elements so you will still need to read the rule book but the base game mechanics are the same.

Game Play
Game play is only slightly modified from the original game, and in my experience the Wizards Tower dose not add to play time.

The addition of mega boss monsters and the ten new basic monsters adds a lot of verity to the individual turns and the choices you make. Also secretly selecting half of the mega boss monsters increase this verity from game to game. The presence of the wizard’s tower and the potential loss of access to the spell deck adds another interesting dynamic to the game. But even with these changes the board remains the same and each turn new monsters appear out of the forest to try to destroy your castle.

Final Thoughts
I originally purchased Castle Panic to play with my six year old. After around ten plays with only one loss because of child development/age issues I was played out. The game was too simple for our family and ended up on the shelf. When this expansion came out I decided to pick it up and see if it could save Castle Panic from a permanent position on the shelf. After One play I will NEVER play the base game again. In my opinion this is a must buy expansion. Our family has now played Castle Panic: The Wizard’s Tower many times and has only won once, but have come soo close many times. I love the challenge and that the game now works as a straight co-operative game.

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Professional Reviewer
I play black
Silver Supporter
110 of 118 gamers found this helpful | Medals x 1
“Increased complexity and challenge breathe new life into Castle Panic”

Castle Panic was a quick, light, easy co-op, ideal for younger gamers. While it offered simple and intuitive gameplay, the lack of complexity or challenge quickly made it lose its charms for more seasoned gamers.
The Wizard’s Tower expansion, released in 2011, aimed to address these shortcomings. The result is a game that is meaner, more involved and ultimately significantly more rewarding than the bland entry-level base offering. Let us take a look at how it goes about achieving this:

Same premise, new components. The basic premise of the game remains the same – defend your castle from monsters swarming out of the forest. Survive the onslaught with at least one tower standing and you win. The only difference is that now one of your towers is replaced with the titular Wizard’s Tower, allowing you to blast enemies with spells.

New Monsters – Gone are the harmless 1-hit goblins. Replacing these in a new fancy black cloth monster bag are a hosts of new creatures. These range from intimidating 4-hit Ogres to speedy Warg Riders to creatures who are immune to attacks at certain ranges. These mix nicely with the base game monsters to provide a rich set of challenges. It takes a higher degree of planning to figure out how to overcome these and the game is not shy about throwing you curveballs as your carefully planned attack falls apart because a new effect or monster just shifted everything on the board.

New Bosses – in addition to a couple new regular “boss monsters”, Wizard’s Tower introduces an entirely new class – Mega Boss Monsters. These are formidable creatures like Chimera or Dragon that have upwards of 5 hit points and move about the board in an unpredictable fashion. While the game comes with 6 of these you will only encounter three during any given game (adding welcome unpredictability). The mega bosses provide great sense of culminating threat that was sorely lacking from the bland base game monsters.

New Abilities – As long as the Wizard’s Tower stands players may use “discard and draw” action to pick up a Spell instead of a usual card. The spells are somewhat more powerful than Castle cards – most of these are extremely effective in specific scenario (e.g. a group of monsters in the same space). Spells range from direct attack to movement to rebuilding your castle to strategic sacrifices for great gains. These bring a lot of new strategies and excitement to the game. The Castle deck also gets several new cards added to it with some interesting additional effects (like changing the range or colour of a hit card or allowing other players to take turns during yours)

New Mechanic – the most significant new rule is ability to set things on Fire. Little tokens can be added to structures and creatures, damaging these over time. Fire is most often produced by either Wizard’s spells or fire-breathing mega boss monsters. It is a neat new mechanic that doesn’t dramatically shift the balance of the game.

Combined, these additions change Castle Panic significantly. It is no longer a cute game about bumbling goblins but a serious challenge requiring all of your cunning that you are most likely going to lose anyways. New abilities granted by the wizard’s tower make players more powerful, but the game’s difficulty increases by a wider margin. This increased complexity and challenge is reflected in the age recommendation as it is bumped from 10+ for base game to 12+ for the expansion.

For serious gamers this expansion is necessary addition. It will breathe new life into your enjoyment of Castle Panic if you played it a couple of times and then lost interest. Combining the appeal and intuitive rules of the original with the challenge and complexity of expansion brings the experience to a whole new level.

May your defences hold strong against the incoming horde!

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Intermediate Reviewer
Copper Supporter
Viscount / Viscountess
106 of 114 gamers found this helpful
“Down to the Basics Review”

Disclaimer: The main goal of “Down to the Basics Reviews” is to show what the game is about, getting down to the basics, the bare minimum necessary to captivated the reader.

To read my Castle Panic review, please click here.

So, about Castle Panic: The Wizard’s Tower:

1) What it is?
An increase in variety and depth to the game Castle Panic.

2) What it adds to the game components?
– The Wizard’s Tower that allows players to draw magic cards from the Wizard’s deck.
– More types of monsters, like flying and magical ones.
– Six Mega Boss monsters.
– Fire tokens!

3) What it adds to the gameplay?
More decisions:
– you have to choose between two decks (castle and wizard)
– you have to think more about the cards you play because some monsters can be slayed in certain arcs while being imune to others.

More variety:
– Some monsters have ranged attacks in the form of fire
– Some monsters can move in different ways (the climbing toll can skip you walls!)
– Your structures can catch fire!
– Monsters can catch fire too!

More rules:
– Rules are suggested to make the game quicker or harder.

4) Is it worth?
Yes. The original game may become too easy after a few plays. Also, there aren’t a lot of decisions to make. This expansion makes Castle Panic a more replayable and challenging game. Magic, fire, trebuchets, giant flame boulders, hydras, dragons and necromancers are a really fun addition to the original game.

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84 of 92 gamers found this helpful
“Adds depth and replay ability to an excellent game”

I love Castle Panic to begin with. It was one of the first “non-kids” boardgames I taught my daughter…and at 6, she absolutely loved it! It’s still one of her favorites. Even though I love the game, the basic game did get a bit repetitive, even with the “challenges” provided at the end of the rule book to make it more difficult. The expansion adds a few features that make the game even more interesting and fun…but also give the players much needed assistance to meet the challenges of more difficult monsters.
Rather than describe details of the game…I’ll assume that you’ll look a review of the base game for that…I’ll just point out a few of my favorite features. First, several “big bad” monsters are added into the mix which are randomized at the start of the game. Players don’t know exactly which monsters they’ll be facing (apart from the usual goblins, orcs, and trolls). My kids and I always get a bit nervous drawing the tiles from the “monster bag” as we don’t know which of the creatures will come into play.
A second feature…which is a lot of fun…are the spell cards. As long as the Wizard’s Tower stands, players can draw a card from the spell deck instead of the regular draw pile. The spells are pretty cool and powerful, but not strong enough to unbalance the gameplay.
One of the things I like about the original is that the game is stacked against the players. It’s difficult to win…especially if you have a few bad die rolls and a lousy shuffle of the play cards. I like that this expansion doesn’t change that. In fact, if you are unlucky enough to randomly have the more difficult big bads, the game can be really hard with this expansion.
Surprisingly, once we figured out the mechanics of the new elements, the game didn’t last any longer than one played with the basic set…about an hour. For my kids, that was great…because even though they love the game, my daughter still is pretty young to sit still with the same game for more than an hour. The rules for the expansion weren’t easy enough for my kids to read and follow…but they picked them up easy enough when I explained them to them.
On a purely mechanical side, the quality of the added game elements was strong. The play pieces and additional cards match with the original well…so it seems like one integrated game. I also like that the new pieces were compact enough so that they can fit in the original game box…no need to keep the additional small expansion box (shelf space is precious!).
Overall, I think this is a great expansion to an already great game. The new elements keep the game interesting and fresh…and they extend the replay value of the game quite a bit. Some basic strategies from the original game will still apply, but it will take quite a few play-throughs before the combinations become stale.

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84 of 92 gamers found this helpful
“Makes the way a lot more difficult”

After playing Castle Panic again and again and again, it has gotten to the point where I feel like I will always beat the game. That is when you know you are ready for the expansion. So bring in The Wizard’s Tower.

This adds 4 new elements to the game:

The Wizard Deck – as long as your Wizard’s Tower is still around, you can cast spells
New Monsters – of course if you are going to have spells to add to your advantage, then there will be more challenging monsters, including boss monsters
More Castle Cards – it has definitely gotta be balanced out with more special types of castle cards
Fire – monsters can create fire, well you can also light them up as well

Add all these things to the mix and you have a more exciting gameplay experience. I find that Castle Panic is already quite exciting and I enjoy it every time I play whether I win or lose. But now with Wizard’s Tower, it adds a whole new level of intensity to the game especially since the new monsters are so powerful. I almost find that the it makes the game a bit too difficult. But that is not necessarily a bad thing because of course it makes you want to keep on playing it until you get better at it or start to really learn the tricks on how to use everything to your advantage.

So this is definitely a must buy for fans of Castle Panic. But I gotta say that the only downside that I have about this game is that there are times when you are just super unlucky and then your Wizard’s Tower gets taken out really quickly and then you can no longer cast any more spells. Once this happens too early in the game, you are pretty much doomed and the game will feel a tad unbalanced. But it is not like they had the intention of making this expansion a cake walk.

Anyways, definitely pick this one up because it will change up the game quite a bit without changing too many of the mechanics. Essentially it is still the same game but they added 1 extra step and modified some existing rules. You will still have loads of fun and panic!

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Movie Lover
Book Lover
I play blue
81 of 89 gamers found this helpful
“The Wizard's Tower adds Complexity to a great family game.”

Castle Panic might be the perfect family game. It’s co op, so the incentive to teach and assist younger players is high and a benefit to all. Castle Panic is also so cleverly designed with its concentric rings surrounding the castle walls. The objective and threats could not be more clear. So after dozens of plays, I bought The Wizard’s Tower.

Castle Panic: the Wizard’s Tower greatly ups the chaos and difficulty level of the game. That is good, but there’s a catch. Since the base game is so easy to grasp, I found that the youngsters were a bit overwhelmed with their game’s newfound complexity. For kids and families, it’s a bit like hopping onto a familiar carousel and finding that it is running at double speed. The tame, family ride is now a white knuckle thriller.

For adults and more experienced gamers, The Wizard’s Tower is a no brainer. The addition of several new monsters (some with four or five hit points), fire, and mega boss monsters make the expanded game tough. The additional cards and “Wizard’s Deck” also give players more potent attacks. And the game lasts about 50% longer with the expansion.

All of the components to The Wizard’s tower are discretely marked to distinguish them from the base components. So it is easy enough to return to the base game for newbies or those seeking a relaxing game. I find that one almost needs two copies of the base game. Combine one of them with the Wizard’s Tower expansion, and keep one as is. Then you can go to your game shelf and decide whether you want the regular or “extra strength” version of the game.

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Reviewed My First Game
98 of 108 gamers found this helpful
“Rook to Queen Four”

Please note: Castle Panic is absolutely not worth playing without the Wizard’s tower expansion.

Well that’s not entirely true. If you have the core game only, and that’s all you know, it’s still a fun game. Having acquired this expansion, however, I can’t see EVER going back.

New Challenges

The Wizard’s Tower

The Wizard’s tower gives you access to a new deck of magic cards, which you can keep using until this tower is destroyed. GUARD THIS TOWER WITH YOUR LIFE. Without magic use you will have a very tough winning the game.


The Wizard’s Tower expansion see the addition of IMPS, which are just annoying 1 point creatures which can spawn in the forest under a number of special conditions. Easy to kill, but they are legion and can overpower the game if you let them.


There are a number of monsters that can now sprew fireballs at your castle walls. If your structures are hit with flame three times, down they go.

Luckily some of the new Wizard Cards have spells which can inflict the same flamey damage to your foes. A flaming monster will take a point of damage each time it moves.

New Bosses

There are Six New MEGA bosses, some of which move in interesting ways, or do new interesting things. Luckily only three are used in a single game, because things definately get interesting once they show up in the forest.

Basilisk: When this boss appears all players discard down to a hand of two, and while the Basilisk is on the board all players skip phase two (which is the all important Discard and Draw) portion of their turns.

Chimera: comes onto the board breathing fire, and then moves 1 space counter clockwise and one space towards the castle.

DRAGON: Also comes onto the board breathing fire. When moving, roll the die and consult a special movement table. [Is there anything cooler than a table to consult?]

Hydra: A hydra will spawn two of the aforementioned Imps for every point of damage you inflict upon it (except for the killing blow) – so try to get this jerk in one attack if possible.

Necromancer: Very annoying. When he first appears, he pulls two monsters from the discard pile, and puts them back into the draw pile. Happily, if the Necromancer hits a wall (or tower) he’s immediately slain (yippee!) — hold on, for every hit point he has left one monster from the discard is pulled and put back into the draw pile.

Warlock: when appears all players are forced to discard a wizard card. Also, adding insult to injury, the warlock is uneffected by magic cards.

New Cards:

There are also a number of new Castle cards to go along with the new Wizard Cards — including, Berserk, Double Strike, Enchanted, Flaming, Knock Back and the awesome Stand Together (which will let you choose another player who might have a usable card – which would otherwise not be helpful on their own turn).

Separation Anxiety:

Note: if for some reason you ever do want to go back to just playing the original game, (although, the only reason I can think for doing this would be maybe to introducting a newbie into the hobby), all the cards and pieces are marked with a little wizard hat symbol for easily extracting the expansion componants from the game.

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Plaid Hat Games fan
80 of 89 gamers found this helpful
“If you thought the base game was a walk in the park...”

I have a soft spot for Castle Panic. It was the first cooperative board game that I played and I immediately fell in love with the simple game mechanics and constant pressure of facing wave after wave of monsters in the style of Tower Defense. Admittedly after playing several games, and each time with a different group of friends, it became evident that Castle Panic was a rather easy game to win – almost too easy. It doesn’t detract from my personal fondness for the game, but I can see how the replay value could drop, especially among my friends with a “One and Done” mentality.

Enter The Wizard’s Tower. This expansion is guaranteed to keep you on the edge of your seat, and the threat of actually losing is quite real. Your walls will fall, and your towers WILL get destroyed. Having played twice already, we lost the first round and won the second time with only a single tower remaining. The addition of Mega Boss monsters and creatures with different abilities is welcome, as it brings a greater level of depth to the game which will surely please the more experienced gamers in your group.

Fireside Games did a great job with creating an expansion that revitalizes its most popular game. With another expansion on the horizon set to hit the shelves in early 2015, Castle Panic is sure to be a crowd favorite to play with your gaming group!

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Miniature Painter
It's All About Me
77 of 122 gamers found this helpful

Castle Panic is a strong game; but extremely straightforward.

If you get Castle Panic, you need this expansion, hands-down. It adds just enough added randomness, just enough extra happening on the board that the players get more options for actions on a turn, rather than the basic and obvious choices that the base game will generally hand out turn to turn.

This should just be included right with the game, Castle Panic isn’t a game with any strategy without it.

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75 of 124 gamers found this helpful
“Once you play with it you never want to go back.”

What can I say about the Wizard’s Tower expansion other than it brings more fun to an already VERY fun game. It is so much fun that you won’t want to play without it. My daughters and I added it to our Castle Panic shortly after it came out and the tower and spells added easily to the game. The big super-bosses bring no small amount of challenge to the game and the imps are annoying, which are what imps should be. My 8 year old loves to call them “wimps.”
What is Fireside Games going to come up with next?

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77 of 129 gamers found this helpful
“This is a must own for Castle Panic”

While the base Castle Panic is a good game, the game play with the expansion is a new level of excitement. I would never play this game without it. So go ahead and take the box this came in, assemble all the components and add them to your base game.

Between the wizard tower, deck, additional cards, and a monster token bag there is a lot of value here!

Don’t even teach the game without this. In the end it should be within the base game! Hopefully in the next edition Fireside will combine them!

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Amateur Reviewer
73 of 129 gamers found this helpful
“A must have!”

If you own Castle Panic then you need to own this expansion. It adds a couple of new rules but doesn’t make the game much more complicated. You are still playing cards on your turn to knock away at all of the enemies trying to destroy your beloved castle. It adds so much more depth and a much larger challenge to the game. Castle Panic got old quick with my gaming group, but this brought new life to it again. I highly recommend it as this actually made me start bringing Castle Panic to game night again!


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