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Subject: Deep, Cooperative, Recent Games rss

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LargeGoblin
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I've been googling and searching this site for cooperative board/card games that would appeal to me, but it's really taking me too long to sift through all the results I find. I've been at this for probably a total of 40 hours, at least. You guys are the experts, though, right?

What I'm looking for is some fully cooperative, medium to very deep games, preferably that I can play by myself. One of the biggest problems I have with the lists I find on this site is that people recommend games that have been out of print for 20 years. I prefer to be able to get it from Amazon (without paying $200 in the marketplace) or my local gaming store.

I realize this is sort of vague, so maybe it'll help if I mention some games I'm talking about. I have and really like Arkham Horror, Wrath of Ashardalon, Castle Ravenloft, The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, and Space Hulk: Death Angel.

I was looking at Mage Knight and the Resident Evil deckbuilding game. I worry that the Resident Evil game might just be tedium, though. Mage Knight looks like it could be really cool, but I haven't seen a good playthrough of it to know for sure, and it's quite expensive. The upcoming Zombicide looks like it may be good too, although I missed the Kickstarter and will apparently not get all the content.

Some games that I have checked out that don't appeal to me are Pandemic and Defenders of the Realm. Defenders of the Realm just looks like a fantasy version of Pandemic. Is that right? I'm still willing to be convinced that they're good games, but I can't find a good video of what it's like that shows several turns being played.

Edit: I'm going to add some games here, so I can keep it straight for myself.
Definitely want:
Gears of War: The Board Game

Probably want:
Flash Point: Fire Rescue
Mage Knight Board Game
Defenders of the Realm

Need more info or unsure:
Sentinels of the Multiverse
Friday
Elder Sign
Resident Evil Deck Building Game
Ghost Stories
The Walking Dead: The Board Game
Runebound (Second Edition)

Upcoming games to keep an eye on:
Zombicide
Dark Darker Darkest
Zpocalypse

Do not want:
The Walking Dead Board Game
Pandemic
Agricola
 
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Mathue Faulkner
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http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/59360/a-crazy-couples-co-o...

http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/71364/do-you-know-any-chal...

 
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In less than a month of owning it, I've logged 26 plays of Mage Knight, most of them solo. When I first started I thought the solo scenario was very difficult but now I'm increasing the difficulty so I feel challenged. If a decent learning curve is your idea of depth then Mage Knight has that.

However, it's definitely a strategy game in an adventure game's clothing. If you're looking for something like Arkham Horror where you draw cards, read the wacky stuff that happens to you, and roll some dice, Mage Knight won't provide that. It's very enjoyable and, contrary to some people's opinions, I find it very thematic. But it's a game of resource management where there can be serious consequences of your actions (especially mistakes) not a dice-chucking romp. Not that there's anything wrong with dice-chucking romps, but this isn't one.
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LargeGoblin wrote:
Some games that I have checked out that don't appeal to me are Pandemic and Defenders of the Realm. Defenders of the Realm just looks like a fantasy version of Pandemic. Is that right? I'm still willing to be convinced that they're good games, but I can't find a good video of what it's like that shows several turns being played.



I have played both Pandemic & DotR and while I recognize Pandemic as the superiorly designed game I just like the theme and pieces better in DotR. It isn't what I would call deep though and the similarities between the two are more than skin deep.
 
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LargeGoblin wrote:
One of the biggest problems I have with the lists I find on this site is that people recommend games that have been out of print for 20 years. I prefer to be able to get it from Amazon (without paying $200 in the marketplace) or my local gaming store.


Over exaggerate much? I'm not saying people don't recommend OOP games, but ones that are $200, or have been OOP for 20 years are on the small side.

Also, I'm not really sure where you will find longer videos compared to what is already posted. I kind of wish Jeremy was doing videos so he could do a breakdown of it. UndeadViking would be the most ideal guy for it since he is known for hour long videos, but he also has to be motivated to do such a thing and that requires a ton of time on his part and him having the game.

alfonzo54 wrote:
contrary to some people's opinions, I find it very thematic.


It's the #3 thematic game.
 
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Friday has been keeping me busy. It's solo only. I like it a bit more than Death Angel...it's not up to Arkham Horror standards but it's also like $12 online and plays quickly!
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I think Mage Knight might suit you. When I read session reports on BGG about it, I was turned off. You chain together cards into elaborate combos to do stuff. Sounded like a pain in the ass. Then I played it for the first time, and there's a real nice crunchiness to the card play. I want to do A,B and C, but I think I can only do A…wait a second, I can do A and B…no, hold on, I CAN do everything I wanted to do! (Sometimes this eureka moment takes a few minutes, so it feels pretty rewarding when you can pull off an awesome combo.)

Great game
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LargeGoblin
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mfaulk80 wrote:

Ah, yes, this reminded me of Ghost Stories. I plan to check that out once it's posted on Watch It Played. For those who don't know, Watch It Played is a Youtube channel that convinced me to buy The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game and Wrath of Ashardalon. It goes through an entire playthrough of one game per season. I can't think of anything that gives me a better idea of whether I'd like a game. You can see it here: http://www.youtube.com/user/WatchItPlayed/videos?view=1

alfonzo54 wrote:
In less than a month of owning it, I've logged 26 plays of Mage Knight, most of them solo. When I first started I thought the solo scenario was very difficult but now I'm increasing the difficulty so I feel challenged. If a decent learning curve is your idea of depth then Mage Knight has that.

However, it's definitely a strategy game in an adventure game's clothing. If you're looking for something like Arkham Horror where you draw cards, read the wacky stuff that happens to you, and roll some dice, Mage Knight won't provide that. It's very enjoyable and, contrary to some people's opinions, I find it very thematic. But it's a game of resource management where there can be serious consequences of your actions (especially mistakes) not a dice-chucking romp. Not that there's anything wrong with dice-chucking romps, but this isn't one.

I really like the resource management and that there is no dice rolling, but I'm afraid that the winning strategy may be too obvious after a few playthroughs or it'll just feel tedious or something, I dunno. I think the cost is a serious cause of my reservations because it's pretty expensive, and I'd hate to get burned that badly. I know I'm pretty vague on this, but I'd like to see a whole game played out to know how it all works. I guess I should at least find and read the walkthrough that comes with the game.

jeffcuetis wrote:

I have played both Pandemic & DotR and while I recognize Pandemic as the superiorly designed game I just like the theme and pieces better in DotR. It isn't what I would call deep though and the similarities between the two are more than skin deep.

Thanks for confirming my observation. I only watched one review of each of them.

matthean wrote:

Over exaggerate much? I'm not saying people don't recommend OOP games, but ones that are $200, or have been OOP for 20 years are on the small side.

Also, I'm not really sure where you will find longer videos compared to what is already posted. I kind of wish Jeremy was doing videos so he could do a breakdown of it. UndeadViking would be the most ideal guy for it since he is known for hour long videos, but he also has to be motivated to do such a thing and that requires a ton of time on his part and him having the game.

I'm not sure where I exaggerated overmuch. First, I said that people post games that have been out of print for 20 years. This includes, to me, pretty much anything that was released before the late-nineties and I do see people recommending these things. I also don't just mean this one site. It takes me some time to go track down the date of the game and then I forget when I see the game again and have to go look again. The second sentence you quoted there was just a comment that I'd like to use Amazon to buy the stuff without having to get gouged in the marketplace if it's not something I can find in my local store.

I just wanted a list that didn't include any of the out-of-print games. Since your tone is not clear in a forum post, you sort of come off like I've offended you in some way.

As far as the videos, I guess I've just been spoiled by Watch It Played. Most video reviews I see of any board/card game gloss over the rules too much. I know I'm being slightly spoiled here. I saw that one video that showed what was, I guess, one round of Mage Knight but I kinda wish it had gone through 2-3 rounds and then explained how things progress from there.
gattz wrote:
Friday has been keeping me busy. It's solo only. I like it a bit more than Death Angel...it's not up to Arkham Horror standards but it's also like $12 online and plays quickly!

I just did a cursory investigation into this game and it does seem like it would be worth some more effort to track down details. I couldn't find any videos of it, so it'll take me a bit longer to make a decision. At least it's cheap, so I'll be more likely to give it a shot. Thanks a bunch.
Bipf wrote:
I think Mage Knight might suit you. When I read session reports on BGG about it, I was turned off. You chain together cards into elaborate combos to do stuff. Sounded like a pain in the ass. Then I played it for the first time, and there's a real nice crunchiness to the card play. I want to do A,B and C, but I think I can only do A…wait a second, I can do A and B…no, hold on, I CAN do everything I wanted to do! (Sometimes this eureka moment takes a few minutes, so it feels pretty rewarding when you can pull off an awesome combo.)

Great game

See that part sounds like it would be pretty fun. I think I'm worried more about whether you start to feel bogged down at some point because you get stuck with no possible outs and whether this happens often enough to ruin the fun. I see some people complain like this happens all the time and others say it happens rarely or never. I guess it might come down to how good you are at getting out of a jam with limited resources.
 
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Have you looked at Flashpoint? It isn't quite as deep as some of the other games you've mentioned, but it has great theme and can be found fairly cheap.
 
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Mage Knight Board Game. That's the one.
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While I agree that Mage Knight Board Game would be a good fit, I'd also recommend looking at Gears of War: The Board Game. It's essentially Space Hulk: Death Angel – The Card Game on ultra-steroids. Same designer, same general concept (space marines trying to complete mission against evil aliens), and also scales extremely well down to 1 person playing solo (you don't even need to play multiple marines yourself!). There's a lot more strategy here than in SHA, though.
 
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LargeGoblin wrote:

I really like the resource management and that there is no dice rolling, but I'm afraid that the winning strategy may be too obvious after a few playthroughs or it'll just feel tedious or something, I dunno. I think the cost is a serious cause of my reservations because it's pretty expensive, and I'd hate to get burned that badly. I know I'm pretty vague on this, but I'd like to see a whole game played out to know how it all works. I guess I should at least find and read the walkthrough that comes with the game.


The walkthrough will give you a good idea of how things function, but it will not show the flow of a normal game, really. There are some full plays in the play by forum section on this site, and there are a couple of videos of play (not full, though) in the video section. I can tell you that personally I've never felt the game getting tedious or that there's an obvious strategy. The random offers of spells, advanced actions, and units, the "Draw x+1, pick x" nature of skill and artifact acquisition, and the random drawing of tiles and enemies provides quite a bit of breadth and keeps the game fresh. There are quite a few optional rules to spice things up a bit. Whether or not that will work for you is of course impossible for me to say but I can tell you it works for me, at least after this many plays.

You might feel like you've gotten bogged down if you don't analyze your play and adapt. A couple of my solo plays I aborted on round (not turn!) two or so because I realized I really screwed up. Once every few games I have a turn (meaning one card draw of several within a round and there are six rounds) where I'm king of hemmed in because of my card draws but it doesn't have an overall effect on whether I win or lose. You just have to adapt. And adapting is fun.
 
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Twitch_City wrote:
Have you looked at Flashpoint? It isn't quite as deep as some of the other games you've mentioned, but it has great theme and can be found fairly cheap.

I meant to mention that I'm looking only for one to two player games. I'm not sure if you linked to what you meant to, as that seems to be a link to some card game played with normal playing cards.

Christine Biancheria wrote:
Mage Knight Board Game. That's the one.

I'm starting to believe that, more and more.

nbergom wrote:
While I agree that Mage Knight Board Game would be a good fit, I'd also recommend looking at Gears of War: The Board Game. It's essentially Space Hulk: Death Angel – The Card Game on ultra-steroids. Same designer, same general concept (space marines trying to complete mission against evil aliens), and also scales extremely well down to 1 person playing solo (you don't even need to play multiple marines yourself!). There's a lot more strategy here than in SHA, though.

Lots of love more Mage Knight on here. Wow, thank you for comparing Gears of War to Death Angel for me. I had given up on it, as I had seen quite a few unfavorable reviews, but I decided to go find a full playthrough after your suggestion. I found two playlists by the same guy on Youtube. I watched the solo one and it looked pretty rad. I'll watch the two-character playthrough next and likely buy it if it looks as good after that one.

alfonzo54 wrote:

The walkthrough will give you a good idea of how things function, but it will not show the flow of a normal game, really. There are some full plays in the play by forum section on this site, and there are a couple of videos of play (not full, though) in the video section. I can tell you that personally I've never felt the game getting tedious or that there's an obvious strategy. The random offers of spells, advanced actions, and units, the "Draw x+1, pick x" nature of skill and artifact acquisition, and the random drawing of tiles and enemies provides quite a bit of breadth and keeps the game fresh. There are quite a few optional rules to spice things up a bit. Whether or not that will work for you is of course impossible for me to say but I can tell you it works for me, at least after this many plays.

You might feel like you've gotten bogged down if you don't analyze your play and adapt. A couple of my solo plays I aborted on round (not turn!) two or so because I realized I really screwed up. Once every few games I have a turn (meaning one card draw of several within a round and there are six rounds) where I'm king of hemmed in because of my card draws but it doesn't have an overall effect on whether I win or lose. You just have to adapt. And adapting is fun.

It all sounds pretty good. I imagine it's more fresh each game than probably any of the other games I mentioned, based on your information here. I'll try to dig up some good plays in the forums, as you suggest. If you have a link to a good one, I'd be happy to check it out. If that's too much effort, don't worry about it. I'll try to find something.
 
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LargeGoblin wrote:
Twitch_City wrote:
Have you looked at Flashpoint? It isn't quite as deep as some of the other games you've mentioned, but it has great theme and can be found fairly cheap.

I meant to mention that I'm looking only for one to two player games. I'm not sure if you linked to what you meant to, as that seems to be a link to some card game played with normal playing cards.

I assume that should have been Flash Point: Fire Rescue.
 
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LargeGoblin wrote:
It all sounds pretty good. I imagine it's more fresh each game than probably any of the other games I mentioned, based on your information here. I'll try to dig up some good plays in the forums, as you suggest. If you have a link to a good one, I'd be happy to check it out. If that's too much effort, don't worry about it. I'll try to find something.


I can't attest to the quality of these since I haven't read them but here's the play by forum section. http://boardgamegeek.com/forum/1001332/mage-knight-board-gam...

Here's Paul Grogan's video, which is very good. It's what sold me on the game. http://boardgamegeek.com/video/11547/mage-knight-board-game/...
 
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binaryeye wrote:

I assume that should have been Flash Point: Fire Rescue.

Ah, yeah, that makes more sense. I checked this out and it looks a bit like Pandemic to me. I'm not sure that comparison is fair because I haven't played either of them, but it looks like Pandemic with fire instead of plagues. For some reason, it does look like it'd be a bit more fun though.

alfonzo54 wrote:

I can't attest to the quality of these since I haven't read them but here's the play by forum section. http://boardgamegeek.com/forum/1001332/mage-knight-board-gam...

Here's Paul Grogan's video, which is very good. It's what sold me on the game. http://boardgamegeek.com/video/11547/mage-knight-board-game/...

I've watched that video once before and some stuff still wasn't clear to me. I'll probably watch it again. I'll definitely check out the play by forum there when I get the chance. I also noticed that it has dropped to $73 on Amazon, and that's roughly what I paid for the other board games, after taxes, from local stores, so...
 
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LargeGoblin wrote:
binaryeye wrote:

I assume that should have been Flash Point: Fire Rescue.

Ah, yeah, that makes more sense. I checked this out and it looks a bit like Pandemic to me. I'm not sure that comparison is fair because I haven't played either of them, but it looks like Pandemic with fire instead of plagues. For some reason, it does look like it'd be a bit more fun though.

I like both, though Flash Point: Fire Rescue gets my nod. First, if you get into theme (which it seems you do), Flash Point has much more of a sense of urgency. It's more thrilling to be making your way through a burning building toward a victim (who might just be a false alarm).

Second, the roles are used in a more interesting way. You can actually spend AP to switch roles at the beginning of your turn if you're at the fire engine. The Hazmat Technician can be very useful at the beginning of the game, but later on, not so much.

Third, the fire spreads in a much more appropriate way than the diseases in Pandemic. At the end of each player's turn, the dice are rolled to determine a space in the house. If it's empty with no fire next to it, it's just smoke. If there's fire next to it, the smoke becomes fire. If there's already fire there, you get an explosion, which will usually get you 1-3 more fires and damage to the house.

All of that boils down to the fact that the more fire there is, the faster it spreads. In Pandemic, the disease spreads faster as the game progresses, and all you can do is just make sure you get to the cities full of sick people to prevent outbreaks. In Flash Point, you have to decide whether you need to focus on the fire (hoping you can bring it down to a manageable level), or whether to focus on the victims, risking the spread.


LargeGoblin wrote:
nbergom wrote:
While I agree that Mage Knight Board Game would be a good fit, I'd also recommend looking at Gears of War: The Board Game. It's essentially Space Hulk: Death Angel – The Card Game on ultra-steroids. Same designer, same general concept (space marines trying to complete mission against evil aliens), and also scales extremely well down to 1 person playing solo (you don't even need to play multiple marines yourself!). There's a lot more strategy here than in SHDA, though.

Lots of love more Mage Knight on here. Wow, thank you for comparing Gears of War to Death Angel for me. I had given up on it, as I had seen quite a few unfavorable reviews, but I decided to go find a full playthrough after your suggestion. I found two playlists by the same guy on Youtube. I watched the solo one and it looked pretty rad. I'll watch the two-character playthrough next and likely buy it if it looks as good after that one.

Gears has some unfavorable reviews, true, but from what I've seen, the people unhappy with Gears usually also aren't that fond of Castle Ravenloft and Arkham Horror.

Bonus: Gears is an excellent solo game. It's one of the few out there where you don't have to play multiple characters and keep track of all their stuff. (You technically could play only one investigator in Arkham, but you'd get creamed)


LargeGoblin wrote:
Some games that I have checked out that don't appeal to me are Pandemic and Defenders of the Realm. Defenders of the Realm just looks like a fantasy version of Pandemic. Is that right?

Well, yes and no. Defenders does borrow heavily from Pandemic, but adds a great deal.

The minions in Defenders are different from one another. The orcs are easy to take out, but spread like wildfire. The undead are a bit harder, and do more damage from the fear effect. The dragonkin are the toughest to take out.

Fighting minions in Defenders is very different from healing sick people in Pandemic. In Pandemic, it's one action to heal one cube (unless you're the Medic). In Defenders, it's one action to fight every minion in that space, but the dice will determine how many you take out (and if you're going up against two orcs and a dragonkin, you'll probably take out at least one orc, but that dragonkin is likely to still be standing).

In both cases, you have to worry about minions/sick people clumping up, causing overruns/outbreaks, but in Defenders, your roles will have a much stronger effect on who needs to go where. The cleric is strong against demons and undead, while the barbarian is most effective in heavily infested areas, since she can scare off creatures in neighboring zones when she takes out multiple minions.

Taking out generals in Defenders is also much different than curing diseases in Pandemic. In Pandemic, you get five cards of the same color, go to a research station, and boom, disease cure found. In Defenders, the generals are moving, so you may have to alter plans to take out the general getting a little too close to Monarch City. There's also more teamwork, since anyone on the space when the battle commences can participate in the battle, contributing cards for more dice to roll against the general. As with the minions, some generals are harder to hit than others.
 
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Sentinels of the Multiverse

slash thread done
 
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wajdag1 wrote:
Sentinels of the Multiverse

slash thread done

Except that Sentinels gets way too fiddly when played solo. It's really designed for four heroes, and it's difficult enough to keep track of one or two heroes, let alone four.

"Let's see, Wraith is doing one projectile damage to three targets, except that her targeting computer boosts that up to two damage apiece, plus I think I activated Legacy's power for another boost of one damage apiece, but the Mobile Defense Platform means I can't damage Baron Blade himself, and oh yeah, the Environment reduces damage by one, so . . . "

Fun game, yes ("Holy crap, Wraith just took out Baron Blade's thugs and his mobile defense platform"), but I wouldn't recommend it solo.
 
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wajdag1 wrote:
Sentinels of the Multiverse

slash thread done

Hm...I've checked this out a bit and it definitely piques my curiosity. If it's too hard to play solo, how about two-player?
 
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LargeGoblin wrote:
wajdag1 wrote:
Sentinels of the Multiverse

slash thread done

Hm...I've checked this out a bit and it definitely piques my curiosity. If it's too hard to play solo, how about two-player?

Whoops, completely forgot to answer this one earlier, sorry.

Sentinels can be played solo, or with two people, or with 3-4 (ideally with one person controlling two heroes). Things just get difficult for anyone controlling more than one hero. There's just a lot of stuff to keep track of for each hero.

Example:

Tempest starts his turn by using his Ongoing ability to deal one point of electrical damage to all non-hero targets. The Phosphorescent environment boosts this by one point. He does two points of damage to the Mystic Defenses environment (which is nice to take down, but Wraith's computer is reducing the damage the Defenses do, so they're no longer top priority). He would do two points of damage to Grand Warlord Voss' minion, but this particular minion is immune to electrical damage, so nothing happens. So that's two points of damage, which is reduced by one due to one minion and Warlord Voss being in attack mode (the one minion would reduce the damage by two if he were in defense mode). One more thing: since Tempest and Voss are nemeses, the damage is boosted by one more (this doesn't apply to the minions, though!)

So that's 1 + 1 (due to the Phophorescent environment) - 1 (due to one minion defending an attacking Voss) + 1 (due to the nemesis thing) = 2 points of damage done to Grand Warlord Voss.

Now Tempest is ready to take the first step of his turn, playing a card.

This is what I mean. If you're the Tempest player, it's kinda fun to figure all this stuff out, and to figure what the best way to take out minions, environments, and the villain himself are. It's still fun when you're controlling two heroes, but it does start to get annoying. Trying to keep track of all this stuff with four, plus trying to plan ahead for all four (some characters are more about manipulating decks [their own and/or the villain's], some are more about trying to get the right cards and combos, some are more about building their hands up, etc), and playing solo can end up being a big old PITA.

Of course, this is all my opinion. I could be wrong.
 
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