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These first impressions are based on a shortened demo of the game at Essen.
Welcome, traveller, to the Dragon and Flagon, the finest establishment in all of arbitrary fantasy land. Why don’t I get you a mead?
Do I see your eyes drawn to the woman dressed all in purple? Well, I can’t blame you, she’s certainly quite the looker. But try anything on with her and you’ll be in a world of hurt! Don’t believe me? Oh-ho neither did the last lot, and I’m fairly sure that poor boy had to get the mug surgically removed…
Anyhow, you see, that’s not any lady, no, that there is Matt-ilda the Magnificent! You know if your eyebrows go any higher they’ll get lost in your hair. She earned that title during a particularly epic brawl that kicked off one night during the annual board games festival here in arbitrary fantasy city. You see, we had only a single flagon of our famous Dragon ale left and 7 thirsty adventurers seeking it. A fight was inevitable!
Of course, in all the chaos no one actually made it to the flagon, but the cause of a bar fight is never the determining factor of the winner. No! It’s all about who most clearly astounds the patrons and whose actions live on in memory! Though as I’m sure you’ll know, that’s often not as easy as it sounds. You need to be planning your actions at least a couple of turns ahead, and your big hits almost always take more time to perform, letting the others get the better of you while you recover. Not that you ever know for sure what they are planning. Expect to see more than a few chairs and mugs being flung into the space someone just left.
But each of those failures only makes the successes sweeter and more memorable! In Mattilda’s case, barely before the fight had started she had leapt upon the nearest table to boast how she was going give everyone a good thrashing. At that point I think someone threw a mug at her head but her actions that followed completely made up for that little embarrassment. Even being dazed means you’ll only need to plan an extra turn in advance (3 instead of the normal 2), and has no other impact on your actions. It’s a both an appropriate punishment, but not as debilitating as in other programmed movement games where a single error screws up the rest of your turn. Which is good, as it allowed Mattilda to quite literally swing into action, using the ceiling lights to propel herself at full force into the pirate. He went down hard to a roar of laughter from the onlookers and Mattilda took a great handful of his fame points.
Meanwhile, spells were unleashed, tables were shoved into one another or outright flipped in endless little cinematic moments helped no end by the crazy good scenery components in the game – I mean, that we had installed here, in our pub. Yes.
Just reliving the fight has me all excited for the next brawl. Maybe I’ll announce that we’re out of Dragon again… Anyway enough of my blabbing. Make yourself comfortable, I think you’ll enjoy yourself here.
If you have enjoyed this review, you can read more of my reviews and other board game articles over on my blog, www.creakingshelves.com.