NFHS Football & Basketball
Dread Our Coming, Suffer Our Presence, Embrace Our Glory (Solonavi War Cry)
My brother and I got a chance to play this game again last night. (Incidentally, one thing that rocks about this game is a complete, fulfilling game only takes about 2 to 2.5 hours or so, once you know the rules. At least a 2-player game does, but I can't imagine a 3+ game taking TOO much longer, as the turns go pretty quick).
My brother was the Latari Elves (the good), and I was Waiqar the Undying (the bad). The Ugly was everything that happened in between
The board was set up in an interesting way; one one side of the board was a little jut of land with a bunch of Ore. In another corner was a decent amount of food, and in the last corner was mostly wood. A lot of Food was in the middle, though (although it tended to be closer to the Food corner). The starting realms were placed roughly equidistant from the heavy Ore areas. I got the Wood-centric area. There were 3 cities on the board; one near each starting realm, and one over by the Ore. A good number of neutrals were spread all around, including 2 Dragons (but no giants).
Both of us spent the first year doing the usual first-year things - spreading out, claiming resources, and getting ready for the battle that was sure to come. My city had a 3-Tactics Card symbol, but no neutrals to recruit. However, I took it, and moved into an area with food and ore (the lone ore not in the "ore corner".
The elves decided to be bold, and advanced to a high-food area right in the middle, and right next to my forces. I was still spread kind of thin, and couldn't afford to consolidate quite yet due to only mediocre food supplies. Our heroes did some questing.
In an effort to try and secure a foothold in the middle, I built a Stronghold in the Food/Ore area. However, my brother was able to overrun it, and drive me out. He had a lot of sorcereses, though, and so I wasn't always LOSING a lot of figures, just being driven away. I was able to retake my fortress, but now it was wounded.
My brother had ample resources, and was able to build some pretty strong armies. He kept pushing into my lands, and I was able to drive him back, thanks largely to some handy Tactics Cards supplied by my city and several Strategize options. Mad Carthos, my primary hero, was helping out on the front to slightly weaken the enemy. He also stole a Runeplate Armor from Ronan of the Wild, while finding a Shard of Timmoran himself. However, the Shard was kept secret at first, as there was no safe place to place the Rune yet.
I was able to recruit Verikas, who helped me bring a Dragon to my cause using a Tactics card. It was later in the game, so he didn't have time to do much else, though he did find a Timorran Shard dropped by Spiritseeker Mock when he was killed during a quest.
Toward the last season, though, I was able to build a wall of troops, behind which I was reasonably safe with my Rune Tokens. Thanks to some lucky recruiting, and the use of a Rally Cry to revive my recently recruited (but routed) dragon, I was able to overrun my brothers fortress, which he had built in the high-food area in the middle of the board, and then, using the Favor of the Warriors Guild, my troops were able to wipe out another Elven force threatening my weakened Food/Ore stronghold, which had been discovered to hold the Dragon Throne!
Finally, with a Strategize option available in Winter, Mad Carthos revealed his Timorran Shard, and after moving with my Strategize, I was able to claim 6 Dragon Runes (thanks to the Dragon Throne). The Elves had a Pegasus rider poised to seize a less-defended city with a Rune, but I had my 6 prior to then. (We did a faux battle anyway, just to see if it WOULD have helped, but alas, his Pegasus failed to hurt my lone Reanimate, and I drove him off).
Another great game, one that left us both wanting another one when it was finished. This was the first time one of us won by getting 6 runes (though it was in the Winter of year 6, so it was just BARELY so).
So far, every game I've played has kept me coming back for more. I haven't felt anything "lacking". Though the Neutrals are hard to get, the decision to use influence TRYING to get them, or just drive them away, made for some interesting decisions. I think trying to make them easier to recruit would take away some of that. And the heroes again had just enough involvement to keep them interesting, but not so much that they were "must haves" in the game. My brother had 2 heroes during the course of the game, and both died; however, he was able to adjust without them, and still did well, despite me winning.
I'm excited already for our next game, and hope to be able to play some 3+ player games soon as well!
Nice report. Fantasy Flight Games always excel at making a game feel like an experience. Runewars is no exception. That it's a big box game that plays fast and well with only 2 players is a great perk. And every game is like an epic story unfolding while still being a great strategy game.
A definite classic in the making, I think, and thanks for sharing your tale of conquest.
The more I read about this game, the more awesome it sounds.
I can't wait to play it next week.