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World of Warcraft: The Boardgame» Forums » Reviews

Subject: World of Warcraft: I miss the point, I guess rss

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Ed Browne
United States
Terre Haute
Indiana
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I have played 3 sessions of World of Warcraft and have tried to give this game every chance to be fun for me as it is a favorite of some of my closest friend/gamers.

CONTENTS AND GAMEPLAY: The game is chock full of good artwork (cards, characters, mapboard)and lots of pieces. The plastic figures of characters and monsters are nice, but tough to tell apart as some types of monsters are very similar (is that a gnoll?). I'm sure having just a few colors cut down on production costs (and made the game simpler by having the color match a different "level" of the monster), but can be very confusing. And there is no way to keep the figures seperate unless you want to bag them yourself.

Each player gets to choose a character class and a side, either Alliance or Hoard, that can be chosen any way the players pick, but the sides have to be even. Then the players draw cards for quests, which will place monsters in certain areas and by defeating those monsters, characters will gain experience, gold and items. Quests also place "wandering monsters" in areas other than the quest areas to cause roadblocks for the teams. Quests can be done by an individual character, or as a team (thus splitting the spoils).

Characters receive two actions per turn, which can be resting, training, buying items, moving, or challenging (whatever is in the territory they are in, whether monster or opposing team members).

When fighting monsters, different colored dice are rolled based on what type of abilities, skilles, items, etc. a character has. Hand to hand damage uses red dice (and actually is used as a "parry" in combat as well), ranged damage (spells, bows, etc.) are blue, defense dice are green. There is also "attrition" damage which represents delayed effects (like poison, life draining, etc.). So you can see how different character types will excel in different types of "dice." Your "melee" fighter types will have red dice (and some green from armor), your wizards will have ranged dice (blue). There is a "target" number given to whatever creature you are fighting that you need to roll to be successful, whether it is to damage with the red and blue dice, or to protect yourself with green dice.

Spells are "powered" by points of energy each character has. They also have "hits" represented by blood drops. Each character has a choice of skills when they level up, so there is some versatility in what one chooses to "specialize" in.

There are also Event Cards that have a minor effect or may place "lesser bosses" on the map that either side can take on.

The game is won when one side beats the "boss" drawn at the beginning of the game. If the boss hasn't been beaten by the end of the time allowed, then the two sides come together for one large Player vs Player battle to see who is stronger.

MY OPINION: I just don't enjoy this game. I am a long time role-player so it seems to be the kind of game I would enjoy. I've played 3 times with 3 different characters and each one "seemed" the same: I was just rolling different dice. And each game just ended up with a very long (often confusing because suddenly the combat rules changed dramatically) Player vs. Player battle that, even though I won each of them, left me not feeling that great about winning. I didn't really feel a "theme" to the game; the quests and creatures were all alike to me and the different colored dice seemed that way as well. During the game itself I found myself trying more to just "beef myself up" to beat the other team than trying to defeat the Boss because of the time limit.

Many seem to really like this game (my aforementioned best friends being among them), but I felt maybe someone thinking about buying this might benefit from a negative opinion. I truly believe there are better games of this type out there. I'm a big fan of Fantasy Flight and would certainly recommend some of their other games. But if you are on the fence, your money might be better spent on Arkham Horror (for theme) or Descent (for character development, monster bashing).



 
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Jason Jullie
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Richardson
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It's good to hear some counter points on these boards. I can see how you wouldn't like the game if you really don't see the point in "beefing up" your characters. This game is mainly a race/character advancement game. If you aren't really into building your characters, then this game really won't have much appeal to you.

One point I'd have to disgree with you on is your recomendation of Descent for character development. In my opinion, Warcraft has a much deeper character development system than Descent. In Descent your advancement is nearly completely equipment based. Sure you can buy new skills, but there is no "stacking" of skills. In Warcraft, you have a skill and talent system that go hand in hand to build upon each other in addition to the equipment advancement. Descent is all about tactical moves, where Warcraft is about character development.

Just my two cents.
 
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Matthew M
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I agree with Jason that the character building is well implemented in WoW and feels pretty different from class to class. However I also agree that there is a certain sameness about things. I can overlook that but I can see how it might not.

One minor correction - players don't choose what side they are on - they only pick their class. Then all players roll to determine what side they are on. The only exceptions are the Paladin and Shaman, which are automatically assigned to the Alliance and Horde, respectively.

-MMM
 
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