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Subject: Can't decide need some expertise. rss

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Rathma P.
Canada
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I'm so torn, I want to buy a new game, but can't decide on these that I have been reading up and watching reviews. I love adventure with theme mixed with some strategy and conflict, exploration and war and also be able to play solo. The games I can't decide what to get is below.

1. Mage Knight the board game - Love the mechanics and the game play so far that I have seen in reviews and videos.

2. Lord of the Rings the card game - This one's a deck builder, but has great strategy and theme

3. Star Wars Imperial Assault - Another great game that plays dungeon crawler style and theme.

Ya those are the 3 that i can't decide on.
 
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Steve Hart
Canada
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Not to make things worse for you but have you looked at

Pathfinder the Adventure Card Game - Rise of the Runelords?
 
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X YZ
India
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If those are your only options, I'd recommend going with Mage Knight Board Game. Not only does it satisfy literally every one of your criteria, but it is widely regarded as the best solo board game as well.
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Pater Absurdus
United States
Carrollton
Texas
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There's really no wrong way to use a margarita pool
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"What is best in Life? To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women."
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Be aware that Mage Knight is uber heavy and complex. The other two I havn't played but I would bet that they are much less so.
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Tobias R.
Switzerland
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Lord of the Ring is a money sink. And it can be very, very frustrating - especially when played solo (it's brutally hard to win). Apart from that, Arkham Horror The Card Game is going to be released soon, which is based on the same mechanisms, but got streamlined a bit. If it doesn't matter which theme it is, I would wait for Arkham.

Mage Knight is great, but takes a long time to set up, a really long time to get into it and a long time for each round - and it is much more of a puzzle than an adventure. But if you're ok with that, it's a really good game.
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Jim Ryan
United States
Lee's Summit
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I'll second Mage Knight. Having played all three, its solo play is fantastic and is the only one of the three you listed to really hit all of your "loves".
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Eugenio
Argentina
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Another vote for Mage Knight.
I haven't played the other options, but you know what they say: when in doubt, go Mage Knight.
(Just made that up)
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Rathma P.
Canada
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Awesome thanks everyone, Mage Knight it is. Can't wait to play it.
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Eugenio
Argentina
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rathmax wrote:
Awesome thanks everyone, Mage Knight it is. Can't wait to play it.


Just be prepared to take some time to set everything up. laugh
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(ɹnʎʞ)
Germany
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rathmax wrote:
[...] I love adventure with theme mixed with some strategy and conflict, exploration and war and also be able to play solo.

Except for the "adventure" part, you pretty much described Mage Knight.
As others mentioned before: this game has a steep and long learning curve, so if you don't like lengthy, heavy games with 2 (!) rulebooks (written in small font) and are afraid of many rules details and exceptions, I would reconsider buying Mage Knight. This game also demands a lot of time: time for learning the rules, time for setting up the game, time for playing the game and time mastering the game, because you will be pretty bad in the beginning.

rathmax wrote:
2. Lord of the Rings the card game - This one's a deck builder, but has great strategy and theme

It's actually not what most people understand as a "deckbuilder", because you construct your deck before you play the game, which is something that you either hate or love to do. Once you have your deck and some expansions, fine-tuning should not take too long though. This game also has a steep learning curve in the beginning. As someone said before, it can also be a money sink. Be warned that the difficulty can be - depending on the scenario and your card options - really brutal.

I hope you don't mind my negative approach talking about both games here, but it's my way of warning you about certain aspects of both games that many people dislike. Both can be excellent games, depending on your taste.

Good luck with your research !
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Daniel Reid
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Kyur wrote:

Except for the "adventure" part, you pretty much described Mage Knight.


I see this said about Mage Knight with a regularity. I find that I don't agree with it. I'll grant that it is not a typical adventure, you're not a character that is rushing off to see what the world has to offer. There is no sense of being the underdog that must overcome the stacked odds in order to blah blah blah. Its more like adventuring as Gandalf than as Frodo. You're character has power, skill and confidence, from the outset. You can be overwhelmed if you stretch too far, or plan poorly, but that's because you are facing an entire land as your opponent not a single enemy or encounter. ...but maybe that's just me. Mage Knight feels like a grand adventure that is quite different than anything else.

Maybe I'm doing it wrong, but I don't consider Mage Knight to be particularly notable in its setup time, either. Maybe I'm comparing it to Duel of Ages II, or building a force in something like Attack Wing (so many cards/powers), or even setting up Descent (freakin' tile hunting). Though, it is much slower than games that play right out of the box with nothing more than shuffling or dropping a board on the table, I say its fairly reasonable for something like an adventure game.
 
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(ɹnʎʞ)
Germany
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Hammuabi wrote:
Kyur wrote:

Except for the "adventure" part, you pretty much described Mage Knight.


I see this said about Mage Knight with a regularity. I find that I don't agree with it. I'll grant that it is not a typical adventure, you're not a character that is rushing off to see what the world has to offer. There is no sense of being the underdog that must overcome the stacked odds in order to blah blah blah. Its more like adventuring as Gandalf than as Frodo. You're character has power, skill and confidence, from the outset. You can be overwhelmed if you stretch too far, or plan poorly, but that's because you are facing an entire land as your opponent not a single enemy or encounter. ...but maybe that's just me. Mage Knight feels like a grand adventure that is quite different than anything else.

What I personally miss for having some feeling of adventure is a) doing shorter quests and b) having some form of storytelling or narration. The game is often praised for having a low amount of luck, but this also makes the game's world feel pretty static and cold.

You are right, it's a really nice and different approach to already start out as a pretty powerful character and I have to say that there is no other game I know of that makes leveling up feel so impactful and satisfying. If you gain a level in Mage Knight, you really feel like lightning hit your character and you doubled in power.


Getting better at this game enhances this feeling even more, besides the fact that you have the freedom to interact in a "good" or "evil" way when visiting towns and monasteries or when choosing your targets.

You don't have the entire land as your opponent though, as you can still always visit towns and monasteries unless your reputation reached rock bottom.

Besides the non-existing feeling of adventure, it also took me a while to get used to the game's combat system -- and I still have problems actually calling it "combat" because it is very different from other games and feels so very bookkeep-ish.

Because of all this, it took me a while to appreciate this game and overcome the wrong expectations I had. By now, it's an acquired taste to me. Not a top-favourite game of mine, but I always respected it for its ambition and understand why it is so popular.

If there would be a streamlined and less clunky version, it could easily become one of my Top 5 games.

Hammuabi wrote:
Maybe I'm doing it wrong, but I don't consider Mage Knight to be particularly notable in its setup time, either.


I think the setup time adds up so much because you have to shuffle 5 decks of cards + 1 deck per player, shuffle and specifically create a pile of landscape tiles depending on the scenario and also shuffle 7 stacks of cardboard tokens + 1 stack of character skill tokens per player. And you have to stack the character's command tokens in a way that makes sense when leveling up. All this really does add up. Placing all the components in a way that provides overview, access and makes sense is another thing, as you can't just put them on the table in an unstructured way since many card stacks share the same card back.
 
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Tobias R.
Switzerland
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Hammuabi wrote:
Mage Knight feels like a grand adventure that is quite different than anything else.


I don't agree with the adventure thing. Mage Knight doesn't feel anything like an adventure to me, because it has very little surprises, you calculate most of the stuff in advance (not only the fights, but also calculating the risk of hidden tiles, remembering the remaining cards in your deck etc.) and there is more or less no story-telling. Additionally, even moving the character can be really challenging when optimizing your next turn - so beginners often feel like not going anywhere at all.

When it comes to adventures, Lord of the Rings LCG has so much more theme and flavour to it... or games like Eldritch Horror and Robinson Crusoe.

But Mage Knight sure is a unique exoperience.
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