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Subject: A quick review for a quick game rss

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Played it tonight with 3 players. I currently am into Coop Games, but I wouldn't recommend getting this one. It's not a bad game, just not really interesting enough. Also we did not try the variant with R2D2 and C3PO, though I do not think this would change my opinion of the game.

A quick rundown:
You are playing as Jedi Knights fighting off droids for 5 rounds until Yoda arrives to save you. There are 3 types of droids, with 1, 2 or 3 hit points respectively. The board is divided into 28 regions, each consisting of 3-6 fields. At the beginning of the game you randomly draw 4 region tiles and place a groups of level 1 droids on it (3-6 droids depending on the size of the region). You do the same for the level 2 and 3 droids, having 12 occupied regions at the beginning.

In each of the 5 rounds the following happens:
You draw one major threat and 3 minor ones and place them on the board. The threats have dice symbols (2-5 dice on each card) on them and you need to match the dice symbols with your dice rolls or reach a noted sum with your dice to counter the threat. You need to counter the major threat in each round, if you don't you lose. The minor threats usually bring in more droids or you lose force. If the force reaches 0 you lose as well. The force (level 0-10) can be used to add or subtract one number to a single die result. If any group of droids runs out, you lose as well.
After revealing/solving the threat each player rolls one die and places it either on one of the threats or on his player board. The player board allows to attack droids. A 6 for example lets you defeat 2 level 3 droids, or 3 level 2 droids, or 6 level 1 droids, or any combination you like and can reach. You can move before and after each attack in a straight line on the board. You can also place a die in a section that moves the force marker (higher number means more force) or a special ability section that allows you to defeat certain droids without movement or gives force as well. After this you roll the second die and do the same, and so on until every die is placed on the threats or player boards.
Then you fill up regions that were not entirely defeated with the same droids that are already in the region. After that usually 4-6 new regions are invaded by new droids with various levels.

That's the gameplay. So basically your decisions are: Counter a threat, fight off droids, increase the force. The problem here is that most decisions are pretty obvious.
You have no choice with the major threat, since you would lose the game when it is not countered. It's your first priority.
The minor threats usually need 2-3 dice to counter, and the punishment is either a force loss or new droid groups (usually also 2-3). In most cases you won't be able to successfully attack 2-3 groups with 2-3 dice, so countering these threats is also better than attacking already present groups. Same goes for the force marker, where you get 3 force points in the best case scenario on your playerboard (for a 6) and could lose 4 in a threat that requires a single 6.
Balancing the force mostly isn't hard. When you see it's getting close to zero add more, or just add it up to 10 and live from it for 2-3 rounds.
This only leaves attack which only is a viable option if you can wipe out entire groups or have nothing else left to do.

So it comes down to:
1. Counter major threat
2. Counter minor threats
3. Balance Force
4. Attack droids

The only thing that most likely would make you lose is running out of droids in one group. But you always can see which droids will come in next and can act accordingly with the dice you use for attacks.

When reveling the 5th round threat we knew it was almost impossible to lose. The threats are always manageable with enough force and we knew that there would be 6 new regions filled with droids (2 of each level) after we placed our dice. All but one group hat more than 10 droids in the reserve, so we only had to defeat one group of the needed type and knew, no matter how bad the draw would be, we always could place the droids.


Hope you have a first impression with this short overview. I think it's a game that can be played well with kids, because of the difficulty level and the simple mechanics. For me there isn't enough complexity and decision making to warrant plays with adults.
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Anthony Rubbo
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I highly suggest playing with the R2D2 rules, and removing 5 droids from each battle pile at game start (this is suggested at end of rules to make it more difficult).

Also note that you are not required to move in a straight line to defeat droids, you can move in a contiguous area that is unblocked by pillars, players, or droids.
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We weren't sure about the movement, but all the pictures showed straight line so we decided to play it that way. Removing additional droids wouldn't have changed the outcome in our play.

I read the rules for R2D2, but do not think they would make me want to play the game more than without them. I just have too many Coops that interest me more, so unfortunately this one won't get a second chance.
 
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Anthony Rubbo
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Fair enough. To address your closing sentences in the impression - for me, using these rules there is enough complexity and decision-making to warrant play with adults.
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Chris Maloof

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LemonyFresh wrote:
I highly suggest playing with the R2D2 rules, and removing 5 droids from each battle pile at game start (this is suggested at end of rules to make it more difficult).

After one play, I agree with Anthony -- these two changes made the game feel quite close, which made the details of our decisions pretty important. The trickiest decisions involved whether to place an early die to use an individual's special power (to try to maximize efficiency), or to counter the threat cards (to avoid counting too much on luck for the later dice rolls). It was quite tense and fun.
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Freddy Dekker
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I'm not familiar with coop games, but this one drew my attention because of it being star wars, which my youngest is into right now, and us being familiar with the scene portrayed.

Now I wonder as you are into coops, which game WOULD you recommend.
 
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If you like the theme, go for it. It's not a bad game, just did not post enough challenge for me.

Other coop I would recommend: Flash Point. Playing as a firefighter is awesome.
 
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Jon Reed
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airsonist wrote:
It's not a bad game, just did not post enough challenge for me.


Yet you didn't try the more challenging suggestions in the rulebook that would have provided more complexity and difficult decision-making?
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