Thunderstone: Wrath of the Elements - Board Game Box Shot

Thunderstone: Wrath of the Elements

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Thunderstone

Thunderstone returns with all new monsters, heroes, equipment, and now… traps! Thunderstone brought dungeon crawling to the deck-building game genre, and Wrath of the Elements takes Thunderstone to a new level. With four new heroes, six new monsters, and many new village cards, Wrath of the Elements adds to classic Thunderstone for a larger experience. Wrath of the Elements also introduces Traps. This new card type creates perlious dangers for your adventuring party when revealed from the Dungeon Deck. Can you overcome the new monstrosities and claim the Thunderstone?

Wrath of the Elements also features an attractive and durable card box large enough to hold both Wrath of the Elements and classic Thunderstone, and is even more compact and easy to transport! The box also comes with all new labelled card-type dividers for both the new cards and classic Thunderstone cards. Jason Engle returns again with more amazing art as well.

You will need Thunderstone to play this game.

User Reviews (4)

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5
Critic - Level 4
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BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
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31 of 32 gamers found this helpful
“A Solid Expansion to a Solid Deckbuilder”

Wrath of the Elements is the first expansion to the deckbuilding game Thunderstone. It does a good job adding variety to the base game but does not significantly improve things mechanically; the game suffers from many of the same problems with or without this.

The bulk of added content in this expansion is in new Hero cards, Monster cards and Village cards. Most of them just broaden the base of what’s available, but of particular note is the first Monster type that gets progressively stronger each time its type is turned up, instead of the normal, random distribution. Wrath also includes a second Thunderstone which can be shuffled into the deck with the first Thunderstone or by itself. Lastly, it adds Traps, an element that gets shuffled into the Monster deck to make it (even) more difficult.

The shining glory of this box is, well, the box. Wrath comes in a smaller box than base Thunderstone, but it is just the right size to hold two columns of cards along their long sides, with a complete set of dividers labeled for each card type, with art to match the box of the corresponding set. There are also several foam blocks to act as spacers and keep the cards upright. This is an invaluable method for storing and transporting the cards, and it’s a system from which other card games can take their cue. In fact, it’s rather shocking that, so far, no others have done this.

The same issues with random Monster decks potentially pushing all the hard ones to the top, never having the right combination of cards to hit the Dungeon, and/or an imbalance of available cards for the player count still exist; they are systemic and I’m not sure any expansion or single rule change can alleviate this issue. I recommended a change in the setup stacks which I believe helps, but only with part of the problem. Also, adding the Traps ramps up the difficulty without really giving the players something to compensate, which can be frustrating.

Having said that, this is still a fun experience, and players who like the general concept of Thunderstone can’t go wrong by giving themselves more Heroes and Monsters to choose from.

 
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20 of 23 gamers found this helpful
“Best expansion for Thunderstone”

When I was in my local game store I happened upon Thunderstone, a deck building game that was Non-collectible. I had played a little Magic the Gathering in high school, so I thought I had some general idea of what a deck building game should be, but now I think have a better definition. I would now consider Magic the be a BUILT deck game, where in games like Thunderstone and Dominion you are required to build your deck as a part of the game play. An element I always hated about Magic was that it seemed like the richest guy always wins, so when I found out a little bit about the mechanics and how it was avoided in this game, I had to pick it up. I didn’t write a review when I bought the base game, and I am already three expansions deep thus far, so I will just try to give you my opinion on many of the different options and components available in the game as a whole.

THEME
The theme of Thunderstone was immediately what jumped of the shelf at me. The theme is a fantasy world that is rich and vibrant, filled with monsters, exotic heroes and treasures of course. This game does have plenty of color, and the mechanics re-enforce the storyline well. I only wish the cards had some small text in the bottom with a little bit of background about the hero or spell, similar to what Magic the Gathering did. I think knowing a small fact about a certain hero, monster or spell would have fleshed the game out even more. Although the theme in the base game is good, it has seemed to improve dramatically from expansion to expansion. In Wrath of the Elements, we were introduced to traps, and Do*ate legion brought us treasures. The element of suspense and danger added by the traps, and the rewards offered by the treasures make the theme more life like (Assuming their were such things in real life). I was playing with a Korean friend of mine, and he even remarked about how much it really felt like he was getting ready for a battle every time he drew a new hand, and I have to agree. The moment you draw your cards, and start equipping heros with weapons and spells to do battle, I think you will feel the same.

PRICE
The price of the base game is roughly 25-30 dollars, depending on how you shop, and each expansion was roughly 20 bucks after that. I think that for that price you are definitely getting a good deal, and for every 20 bucks you spend on it, you will have added a significant amount of detail to the game. I will gladly fork over another 20-25 bucks every time the newest expansion is released, and feel good about it if AEG maintains this level of quality.

QUALITY
The cards in this game are well designed, glossy, and will hold up to heavy levels of play. I do have some concerns about using black borders, (usually meaning they will wear out quicker), but sleeving them will solve this nicely. The boxes for the game have gotten better since the original, and the designer has included some brilliantly designed separators to keep everything organized.

ARTWORK
The artwork of Thunderstone is absolutely amazing, and it is hard to comprehend that one guy was able to make all of it, (until Dragonspire). Jason Engle has got to be the worlds hardest working fantasy artist, and if I were him, I would be very proud to have my name and artwork displayed on this product.

LEARNING
This game can be a challenge to learn, not because it is a very complex game, just because the rule book is absolutely HORRENDOUS! It took me a couple of read throughs, and several forum searches to figure out what was going on. Once one player has picked the game up though, it is a snap to teach others how to play. I have found that even on the first play through, players can understand what they are doing enough to win the game, (something that couldn’t be said about Dominion even though it is a simpler game to teach).

COMPLEXITY
The game starts out at it’s easiest level with the base set, and introduces new mechanics through the various expansions very nicely. I have seen the game growing increasingly complex through each one, and so play time has also increased. Those looking for a simpler game might want to stick to the base set, and if they feel the need for something different add in one or two other sets. Truthfully, I love this games level of detail, and every new mechanic introduced so far has made the game better and better. I am completely excited about Thornwood Siege coming out in June.

INTERACTION
There is not a whole lot of player interaction in this game, and only a few cards truly punish your opponent. This game does feel like you are playing solitaire with other people, but **** who cares if it is as fun as this is. So far everyone I have taught this game to, has had a really good time playing it. There are times you have to think about what your opponent is doing, but this usually only means going up against a monster that you know you can’t beaten just to deny your opponent those points. I will be waiting to see how future expansions change the level of interaction between players, but for me it is a non-issue if the game is strong enough on it’s own, (besides, it is a game about fighting monsters in a dungeon, not another player).

WAITING
The wait time in this game is very short, and if playing with experienced players it seems like it is your turn again before you even finish drawing new cards sometimes. So if you don’t like to wait, you are definitely in luck here. The only time I have even a player take a long time for their turn was in the beginning of their first game when they had to read all the cards in the village before deciding what to buy. After a few turns everyone involved will have an idea what kind of strategy they are going for, and down time will shrink.

LENGTH
The designer claims that the game lasts 45 minutes, but I have found that it usually takes an hour to an hour and a half. The length of the game depends on what type of layout you have, and how new all the players are of course. As for me, it is good to have a card game that lasts over 30 minutes though, and I don’t mind the longer games at all.

RE PLAYABILITY
The level of customization available here is overwhelming, and there are tons of different ways the game can be set up and played out. While the base game might be rather limited in cards, the addition of one or two expansions make the game seem HUGE! I like the fact that I can set out my own custom layouts with only a few seconds of thought, or even use a randomizer like the iThunderstone iphone app. I will most likely be playing this game for the next 10 years, and am curious to see what the future holds for this game. I would rank it’s re-playability among the best there is on the market, and look forward to every game.

OVERALL
I thing that AEG delivered a solid product here, and a game that is not only fun to play, but looks great too. I get a great feeling when I pick up the box with all the expansions in it and feel how incredibly heavy it is. I think this game deserves a place in anyones collection that likes card games with fantasy themes. The production quality is amazing, and AEG really seems to listen to what their customers are saying. I see this product getting better and better, so I would highly recommend it. I rate Thunderstone 7 out of 10 as a standalone game, and 8.5 out of ten with all the current expansions added to it. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have.

 
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4
Sentinels of the Multiverse fan
Tasty Minstrel Games Fan
7
12 of 26 gamers found this helpful
“Pretty good card game, has some issues”

Even though this game is another non-collectible deck building it, it definitely is deep on theme. The problem is that you can have monsters in the game that are almost impossible to beat with the characters available. It just becomes a drag out type of affair at that point. There is just times when the combinations of cards don’t work and the game becomes annoying rather than fun.

When you have good card combos, it’s really good. When it has bad card combos, it’s awful

 
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2
7
1 of 22 gamers found this helpful
“Good expansion”

Like all the Thunderstone expansions so far, I’d advise using the basic layout first and then trading out a stack or two at a time until you get a feel for how the cards work together.

 

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