Who am I sir? A Utah man am I!
I carve cool pumpkins
I took King of Tokyo to a Halloween game party, along with the Power Up and Halloween expansions -- I figured that monsters alone make it a good match for Halloween, and the specific characters and costumes from the latter expansion made it even better.
For context, I think that Power Up is an absolute must for the game. I got Halloween solely for the new characters (Halloween is my favorite holiday), and had never bothered playing with the costumes. But since it was Halloween, I decided to give the costumes a try, and played with the optional rule where everybody starts with a random costume.
I played with:
* R, my 7 year-old son -- it's his favorite game. He tends to buy a lot of power cards, whether they make sense or not, and seldom actually gets much value out of them. And when he decides to start attacking, he will stubbornly refuse to leave Tokyo, unless I manage to convince him that he needs to leave and heal up, or he will lose.
* B, our friend's son, who I think is about 13, and has played before.
* S, friend of B, who I think is about 10, and hadn't played before.
* L, S's mom, who also hadn't played before, but is a great gamer.
The first really odd thing was the power cards -- for some reason, the three boys just kept using their energy to sweep them out and get new ones. Forget saving up to buy something, just keep sweeping them! Very few actually got purchased. I've never seen the discard pile get so large!
My usual strategy is to turtle up for a while and collect evolutions and powers, and then adjust my goal (VP or damage) based on what I get and what the other players do. Given my preference, I'll get aggressive powers and then attack, but duck out of Tokyo so I can alternate healing. I also usually with take things easy on the kids or new players, because I want them to have fun.
I played as Pumpkin Jack, I started with the Devil costume: "Whenever you deal damage, deal one additional damage." As usual, I turtled for a bit, and was very pleased with my first evolution: "Put an energy cube on this card. Each time you eliminate another monster, add an energy cube. When you deal damage, deal one additional damage for each cube on this card." Perfect! Usually when I get this card, it's late in the game, when there are few monsters left. I got this early enough that I'd have a chance of adding more cubes, and it went great with my costume.
Given these boosts to damage, plus a realization that I needed to accelerate the end of the game (close to bedtime, and needing to get home to greet an incoming relative who was making much better driving time than expected), I decided it was time to go on the offensive.
On my next turn, I think I only rolled 1 claw, but that dealt 3 damage and got me into Tokyo. Next, R rolled a claw or two, and moved into Tokyo Bay. By the time L finished her turn, I was down to 4 health, but stayed in Tokyo to attack everybody. Win or lose, I was going to get everybody's health down to hasten the end of the game.
On my turn, I rolled two claws, which meant 4 damage. Since R was in Tokyo Bay, however, he decided to use his costume -- Cheerleader: "When somebody else attacks, you may cheer for them. If you do, they deal one additional damage." That 5 damage was enough to eliminate B and L -- which earned me two more cubes on my evolution card! At this point, R got distracted by nearby toys, so B took over for him.
That left me alone in Tokyo, against two players who had at most 5 health left. If I got another turn, a single claw would deal 5 damage. However, I only had 4 health left. Since neither of them had enough VP to try to win that way, their only real chance would be to finish me off -- but neither of them realized that. Normally, I would have pointed that out to give them a chance, but since we were in a hurry, I just let them go. Their turns were uneventful -- maybe a little healing, maybe gaining some energy (and sweeping the power cards), but neither of them attacked me.
On my turn, I only needed one claw to win. I ended up with 4, for 8 damage. Yeah, a monstrous pumpkin cleared the other monsters with attacks of 3, 5, and 8. Sounds like a Halloween slasher pic to me!
Great stuff, we did the same thing with some neighbors and kids. The costume cards made it fun. We ended up with the zombie card beating all of us along with others mimicking the effect... So in theme the zombies took over and destroyed any monsters left to be king of Tokyo! The cards are just great! Made for a fun Halloween night.