I played this game multiple times at Gencon 2010 and wanted to take a few moments to post a play session and let you know how much fun this game is and how enjoyable it was for both myself as a hardcore boardgamer and my friends who are more social gamers.
The game plays very similarly to dominion with a few nice exceptions the addition of the mansion deck with is how a player can level up and win the game.
We played with the Leon and Ada characters
We had the basic game setup
The game progressed with us first building up ammo and herbs and slowly exploring the mansion to get a scense of what monsters are in the deck for this game session.
Once we got more of a scense of what danger awaited us we started building up actions that give us amo and gold as well as the ability to rtrash our deck to be able to focus our deck more.
Then we started to get better weaponry and ammo
As we foguht off monsters and started to level up we slowly started to trash more and more cards to focus down our decks
We basically ran the same type of deck with a few variations on weapons and actions
Once we hit Nemesiss Leon was able to beat him and won the game.
Its a great game and well made and the variety of cards gives the game alot of diversty and numerous combinations of card combos
I'm not sure exactly what you mean by hardcore gaming but while I agree that it is fun and great for social gaming I would question REs appeal as a competitive game. The high luck factor and the balance issues will probably make it a more "for fun" game than anything that will see serious competitive play by players wanting such.