“Defenders of the Realm” popped on my radar back at the GAMA Trade Show in March, but they only had an early prototype with simple tokens instead of the finished miniatures. At long last, I got in a game at Game Depot this weekend. Additionally, I also got a quick game of “Fzzzt!” and a secret prototype. An Eagle/Gryphon Games representative dropped by Game Depot to get in a game of “DotR,” so I showed up specifically for this game.
Defenders is a co-op game with players fielding player characters (cleric, paladin, etc) to defend “Monarch City” against four evil generals and their minions. Their rapidly multiplying minions. Normal co-op mechanics apply, with minions randomly spawning everywhere, heroes exterminating minions and card collecting to get enough mojo to kill the four evil leaders. Since this is a fantasy game, you have to roll dice to kill minions and then get enough dice (though collecting cards of the correct color) to defeat the evil generals. Through some great teamwork and an excellent magic gate placement by your humble author, we defeated the evil and saved the world. Hurray!
Play is fast and easy to learn, but we stumbled over some of the turn sequences. Experience is an excellent teacher, so the next game should go smoothly. Overall, a fun game and i would play it again. I am an RPG player from way back, so throwing dice to kill things warmed my cockles. I know that Euro gamers often spurn the randomness of dice in favor of long-term strategies, but I happen to like a little chaos in my board games.
“Fzzzt!” places you in the role of a budding industrialist building some factories. This quick card game is distantly related to “Thunderstone” and other deck building games, but much simpler and uses a bidding system to get cards. These cards then enhance your pool of resources to build specific card combos. These combos equal victory points. I am uniformly awful at bidding games and my last place finish underscored the point. Still, a quick game and fun art.
Finally, I got in a round of a prototype medieval-themed card game that is still under development. It was a kick and had a great theme. Sadly, it is still so early in development that the rep requested no images. Suffice to say I will follow this one and let you know more as soon as I can.
Trask, The Last Tyromancer