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Subject: Who Shall Be Crowned King? rss

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Rauli Kettunen
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Been a while since I played Conan, but after catching Ahnuld's Conan on tv a while back, the Conan flame got a new spark. That lead to re-reading some Conan tales and since the Conan boardgame isn't out yet, well, Conan ccg to the rescue!

A couple of side notes first though:

#1: The cardpool we use isn't that big, 4 starters (1 of each, natch) and maybe 10 boosters. Those cards have been made into 3 different decks of equal size which are nicely competitive vs each other.

#2: Also, the decks aren't specifically made for any one Conan, so before each game, we roll to see which Conan you use in that game (we have 6 of the 8 Conans).

So, after playing a re-acquintative game first, seeing if we recalled the rules well enough, we dove into this session. We rolled for Conans and got Conan the Barbarian (me) and Conan the Adventurer (my friend). I went first. I wrote down all the moves for Conan as they were played, but not the Foe moves.

Turn 1

Barbarian

Looks like this game starts with true Conan fashion, with Conan the Barbarian Carousing for 2 cards. Nothing else to be done in the Prepare step, time to head to the Warrior step.

Foe Draw: 3x Sabretooth Tiger, Servant of Bit-Yakin and Khitan Peasant
Foes: Servant of Bit-Yakin and Sabretooth Tiger

Before any battle is joined though, Conan unleashed his Heathen War Cry to discard 1 and then draw 2. Against the Servant, Conan attacked with a Cimmerian Lock and against the Tiger an Elbow to the Throat. Both Foes fell before the might of Conan!

All in all, Conan took 3 Damage, but used his Vitality to heal all 3 points. Barbarian gained 10 Renown.

Adventurer

Nothing to be done in Prepare step, so straight to Warrior step.

Foe Draw: Swamp Devil, Khitan Warlord, Khitan Peasant, Khitan Bowman, Kushite War Chief
Foes: Khitan Warlord, Khitan Peasant, Kushite War Chief; 3 zones

Conan decides to deal with the Warlord and the War Chief first. He launches some Incendiary Arrows against the 'lord and a Vicious Upswing at the Chief. He also uses his Reflexes during the Barbarian phase. Both enemies are taken down though Conan takes some damage.

Seeing only the the Peasant left, Conan heads into another fight, coming at the Peasant with a Desperate Attack and again using his Reflexes. Killing the Peasant, Conan declines on Pressing on, choosing to move into the Rest step.

Having taken a total of 10 Damage during the battle, he uses a Well-Deserved Rest on the Peasant, getting back 4 Health and using his Vitality to heal another 2. Conan the Adventurer is at 9 Renown.

Turn 2

Barbarian

Looking to prevent thirst during a battle, Conan picks up a Wineskin during his Prepare step.

Foe Draw: Thoth-Amon, 2x Zamboulan Guard, Aesir Clan Chief, Frost Giant, Aquilonian Footsoldier.
Foes: Frost Giant, Aesir Clan Chief, Zamboulan Guard; 3 zones (Thoth-Amon is used, dropping Conan down to 9 prowess)

Barbarian's special ability allows him to play moves into 3 zones, but with only 9 prowess left, he really needs to beat his foes in the first go. With this in mind, Conan goes forth with a Gleaming Arc of Steel against the Giant, a Stomp into Submission on the Chief and a Thundering Charge at the Guard. All Foes are vanquished! With 0 Prowess left (even with the Wineskin option available), Conan decides to not Press on.

This turn Conan took 3 Damage (all from playing moves, nothing from his opponents' moves) and again his Vitality is enough to cover this. Barbarian is at 23 Renown.

Adventurer

Prepares for the coming fight(s) by playing a Cimmerian Shield and a Wineskin.

Foe Draw: Bat Demon, Thing of Earth and Fire, Khitan Peasant, Cimmerian Swordsman, Kozaki Outrider and Aquilonian Horseman.
Foes: Thing of Earth and Fire

Since the Thing is solitary, it was either it alone or Bat and 2 Minors, I decided to try with the Thing, esp since I had moves in hand that had offensive icons on both sides. If I could get a hit on each side, the possible 8 Damage was appealing. Seeing as the Thing heals in each Survey phase, Conan goes at it from both sides. Axe Throw followed by a Laid Open to the Bone are enough to bring the Thing to a halt. In addition, Conan plays Grisly Trophy to gain 2 Renown. Conan decides to Press on. Conan the Adventurer has the ability to draw up to 2 cards, and using Wineskin adds 1 more.

Foe Draw: Thalis, 2x Aquilonian Footsoldier, Kozaki Outrider, Shemtish Archer, The Starved One and Blood Defiler
Foes: Thalis, The Starved One, Kozaki Outrider; 3 zones

Having no Allies, Conan want to kill Thalis off first, so comes at her with a Gleaming Arc of Steel. Starved One is met with a Axe Throw. Thalis dies off nicely, and with an Arrow Through the Neck played on the throw, Starved One is also defeated. Only the Outrider remains, but Conan decided to Retreat nevertheless! This costs him his Grisly Trophy.

Another bad turn for Conan on the receiving end, 8 Damage taken, using his Vitality to heal 2. Conan is down to 10 Health. Adventurer is at 29 Renown.

Turn 3

Barbarian

Foe Draw: Death Knight, Man-Ape of the North, Black Ones, Aesir Clan Chief, Aquilonian Footsoldier, The Crawler, Zamboulan Guard, Kozaki Outrider
Foes: Death Knight, Black Ones, The Crawler, Kozaki Outrider; 4 zones

Conan uses In Chains versus the Knight, Mace and Laid Open to the Bone against the Black Ones and Fists of Iron on the Outrider. All three foes fall, leaving only the Crawler. However, the Black Ones managed to land 2 Grapple icons on Conan, so he's had to discard 2 cards, drawing only 1 in return. Poor quality of the moves leads to a Retreat! This results in not only losing the Kozaki Outrider from his Chronicle Area, but also leads to Drowning One's Failures.

Conan took 8 Damage and could not use his Vitality to heal any, leaving him with 12 Health. Barbarian is at 34 Renown.

Adventurer

Having only 10 Health, Conan feels like he needs extra protection and dons a Scale Armor.

Foe Draw: Kappa Demon, Khitan Peasant, 2 Aquilonian Footsoldier, Aquilonian Horseman, The Crawler, Kozaki Outrider and Khitan Bowman
Foes: Kappa Demon, Aq. Footsoldier, Aq. Horseman and The Crawler; 3 zones (Veterans naturally in same zone)

Conan decides to leave the Veterans alone for now, focusing on the other 2 foes. Kappa has high Health, so Conan goes all out on the offensive against it using his wits in an Improvised Attack and then a Stomp Into Submission, killing the Demon. While not having as much Health as the Demon, the Crawler has a nice damage-reducing ability. Seeing this, Conan displays his Savage Strength and then with a Carve to the Breastbone finishes off his second foe. Conan discards the Armor to prevent damage from the Horseman. He decides to tough it out against the Veterans. Somewhat oddly, Conan attacks the Footsoldier with Savage Claws and kills him. Finally, using In Chains, Conan finishes off the Horseman.

Conan has taken 8 Damage this turn, using his Vitality to Heal 2, leaving him with only 4 Health! Still, Adventurer is at 46 Renown.

Turn 4

Barbarian

Decision time is at hand, Conan gears himself with a Cimmerian Shield.

Foe Draw: Man-Ape of the North, Servant of Bit-Yakin, 2x Khitan Peasant, Zamboulan Guard, Sabretooth Tiger, Aesir Clan Chief, Cimmerian Swordsman, Aquilonian Footsoldier
Foes: Servant of Bit-Yakin, Sabretooth Tiger, Zamboulan Guard, 2 Khitan Peasant; 4 zones (2 Khitans share a zone)

Fully into his rage, Barbarian yet again plays moves into 3 zones. Against the Servant, he comes in with a Bone-Crunching Swing, against the Tiger a Desperate Lunge (hoping to use the Initiative 4 to kill it before its move comes into play) and finally a Menacing Advance between the Khitans. Conan clears house, killing all 4 foes, leaving only the Guard. Deciding to finish what he started, Conan forces the Guard to Break Like Rotten Twig. Having done enough to again take the lead, Barbarian heads into the Rest step.

But it's not all R&R, as Disturbed Rest produces a Man-Ape of the North. Lauching a Hewing Slice, Conan hopes to kill it off in 1 go. Sadly, since it is a multi-icon attack, if only one of the icons needs to get blocked for it to be fully blocked and that's just what happens. Undeterred, Conan then uses a Stomp Into Submission to finish off the Man-Ape.

Conan only took 3 Damage this turn, again having enough Vitality to cover this. Barbarian is now at 57 Renown!

Adventurer

Starting the turn with only 4 Health doesn't really bode well, so Conan goes Carousing for 3 Health.

Foe Draw: Blood Defiler, Swamp Devil, Shemtish Archer, Bat Demon, 2 Khitan Peasant, Cimmerian Swordsman, 2 Kozaki Outrider, Aquilonian Footsoldier and Khitan Bowman
Foes: Blood Defiler, Bat Demon, Kozaki Outrider, Cimmerian Swordsman, Khitan Peasant; 4 zones (Cimmerian and Khitan share a zone)

Conan tries to make the Blood Defiler Break Like Rotten Twig and attempts to Run Through the Peasant, but to no avail, Conan is defeated!



Post-game thoughts:

- the card pool being what it is, my feeling is still that Conan the Barbarian is the best of the ones we have (no Destroyer or Champion). Getting to play into 3 zones might take its toll on Prowess, but you get that back every turn. If I'd have to choose a #2 Conan, it'd prolly be Savage; sure he might have the lowest Health, but most of the time he heals 5 Health between fights (barring opponent screwing with him/pressing on).

- allies might help in this, but only have 1 Merc. Knight, other fighting allies are Maul Rats, so...

- Barbarian really lucked out in the fights, in 3 turns out of the 4, he only took 3 Damage and with a Vitality factor of 3, well... (again, be able to play moves into 3 zones prolly has a lot to do with that)

- no other game has cards with such kick-ass names/titles !!!
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