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Dungeon Twister» Forums » Reviews

Subject: First time playing, enjoyed the game. rss

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April Weimer
United States
Silver Spring
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Set-up consists of shuffling the dungeon cards and placing them face down. The cards are flipped over during game play. Each player uses their information card as a screen and selects which characters and items they want to place. Placement is a crucial function of strategy for game play. I especially enjoyed being able to organize my game tokens behind a screen, both because it gave me the ability to look at different combinations and because it hid them from my opponent. The first step in placement is to select and place which four characters will be at your starting line. These can be any four of the eight available characters. Each character has its own attributes for speed and strength, plus special abilities which can also be useful in strategy and placement.

The first turn is played slightly different than subsequent turns. The Action Cards are played so that what the second player is allowed to play is based on what the first player actually plays. The rules read so that during the first turn the first player can only play the 2 actions card. Then during the first action card cycle (until players run out of action cards) a player can only play a card with a number of actions equal to or smaller/higher by 1 action than the card previously played but the opponent. Basically if the first player plays five actions, the second player has to play four or five actions. Once the cards are all displaced they are picked up again and allowed to be played in any order. The cycle continues this way until the end of the game. I would need to play more to appreciate how this functions overall in the scheme of the game. Right now I just accept it with indifference. In a way it makes sense but I can’t quite get a hang of why.

Now for the actual game play. One of the first major things to happen in game play is revealing rooms. Once an active character is standing adjacent to a room they can use 1 action to reveal the room. The directions are very specific that a room must be revealed by pulling the room to the side, away from the rest of the board, and flipping it over without looking at it first. Flipping it to the side and over without looking at it prevents players from moving the room to their benefit before placing it right side up. Once revealed each dungeon room can be rotated or “twisted” by using a rotation device found within the dungeon. Typically the room can be rotated in one direction, indicated but the arrow on the rotation device. It takes 1 action per ¼ rotations, so to turn the room 90° you would use 2 actions.

Combat cards can each be used once. There are seven cards ranging from strength +0 to strength +6. Each card can only be used once in the game. This adds another aspect to strategy. In this first game I choose not to use one of my higher cards as I was saving it to protect a more valuable character at the sacrifice of a less valuable character. The result was that my opponent earned 1 victory point for the kill and I never got to use the combat card I had been saving. More detailed rules for combat can be found in the game rules, please see the following file:

Victory points are used to win the game and can be earned in several ways. You need 5 victory points to win and they can be earned by exiting the dungeon through your opponent’s starting line or killing an opponent’s character. The goblin is a weak character with no real special abilities except that you earn two points but getting him out of the dungeon. It is advantageous to try to place him as close to your opponents starting line as possible. Then try to get the Goblin over it without getting killed.

There is a very steep learning curve to this game. There are a lot of aspects that can vary for each game and the first time you play, especially if it’s against someone who’s played before, you’re probably going to get trounced. This was my first time playing and my opponent crushed me completely and I will admit I was quite aggravated at first. I will definitely play the game again. I love the fact that every game is guaranteed to be different both with token (item and character) placement and with the shape and nature of the dungeon itself.
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