My first video game console was an Atari 2600. I had many games but the only two I can well remember were Enduro, a solo racing game and Space Invaders, which I don’t think needs any explanation. I come from the 8-bits (or less) era and of course, this new retro wave in entertainment has suited me perfectly.
Speaking about the 80’s, one board game jumped into its DeLorean and made an appearance into my games collection: Boss Monster: The Dungeon Building Card Game, a game with a title too long and descriptive that I will just shorten to Boss Monster, because if I keep repeating the name there will be no need to review it. I read a couple of reviews, read the manual, saw the gameplay from the Kickstarter creator and decided to give it a shot.
In Boss Monster, you are the programmer of this 8-bit linear dungeon, which because of system memory constrains, can have a maximum of 5 rooms; the good thing is that you are always remodeling your dungeon in order to make it more appealing to the heroes and deadly… of course. For a person who has played Magic: The Gathering, you will find the cards and interaction very familiar and won’t have any trouble to understand them, for a person who has never played the granpa of the card games, it will take a little more reading, but it is not a deal breaker, since the mechanics aren’t very sophisticated, my early teen son can certify that.
I am not into describing every game mechanic and details from games, especially in this occasion when I think the creators do an amazing job in the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtn6dNMpymw all I can tell you is that this is a game that with a 2-4 players can give you whole day of nonstop playing.
As a former MTG player, I have this small flame inside me which is always craving for competitive play and strategy, but as a father and finance guy, I can’t stand “investing” as much money as I did 10 years ago in cards to keep up to date with all the formats and competitive decks, then again, I find in some board games the satisfaction, this is the case of Monster Boss.
After playing some test games and feeling comfortable with the rules (Btw, the rulebook is quite bad, please the “Other resources” section for a link to the online advance Rulebook) I was amazed on how well designed and how 3 decks of cards could very well represent the theme of building a Dungeon, the idea of having to lure the heroes to your dungeon is brilliant! Because you are constantly trying to balance your dungeon appeal and power and at the same time trying to outsmart your opponents and making sure their heroes survive to hurt them, plain genius!.
Great game, the balance is nicely achieved, the gameplay is fun and there is just enough interaction for a competitive player and at the same time, not too much to scare a casual player; in games with 4 players, me and another ex MTG player as well as my son and one of his friends, me and friend focused on killing each other while the teenagers focused on building their dungeon, everyone was happy! The only bad thing I could say about this game is the quality of the cards, different back colors and they just feel like a poor imitation of high quality cards, nothing that some sleeves won’t fix, but I know this can be a real issue for some collectors.
I like this game so much that I really look forward to know how if it will stand the test time, would it be as fun as today in a year? Would the creators keep adding cards and make it a better game or would the new cards make it too complex to last?
To my two readers, I promise, two updates to this article:
1) When I convince my wife to play this with me.
2) One year later to see how did the game developed.
You should get this game if:
- You like the “In your face” games.
- You like strategy games and outsmart your opponents.
- You like cards interaction.
- You play / played MTG.
- Need a medium light game which plays in under 15 minutes per player.
You MUST get this game if:
- You like the “In your face” games + You like strategy games and outsmart your opponents + You like cards interaction + You play / played MTG.
You shouldn’t get this game if:
- You don’t like card games.
- You don’t like competitive games or “in your face” moves
As of May 5th, 2014, this game is ranked as:Board Game Rank: 786 at BoardGameGeek.com
Complexity: Medium Low
Feel free to ask any questions regarding the game, the mechanics or feedback to the review or visit my blog at http://gamervrsgamer.wordpress.com/ and read more on how to get your GF/Wife into games!
- Creators' advanced rulebook: http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1023782/boss-monster-advance...
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- Last edited Tue May 6, 2014 11:26 am (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Tue May 6, 2014 4:15 am