Review – Heir To The Throne

“I’m the heir apparent to the heir presumptive”

– Princess Margaret

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The Story

Treachery and sabotage are in the air. players compete to build noble families and fight each other for the throne of King Graham, the aged ruler of Wysteria. Each player is responsible for building their lineage and defending their family members from rival families.

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Gameplay

Players begin the game with a Noble House Card that shows both a Lord and Lady. From there, players use Court Drama Cards to arrange marriages and have children and thereby grow their family tree. Each character can play two Court Drama Cards on their turn to maintain and develop their own family tree, or attack their rivals.

In addition to helping characters wed and have children some Court Drama Cards also let players make members of your opponents’ house illegitimate or infertile or even….Dead. This prevents them from having children, or at least having children with a rightful claim to the throne.

Especially killing them. Killing them definitely prevents them from having children or claiming the throne.

Likewise, other Court Drama Cards allow players to remove these negative effects and to restore themselves to their former glory.

In order to win the throne, a noble family must produce at least one great-grandson that is of age and neither illegitimate nor infertile.

Components

The pieces were easy to punch out and the cards are thin but of good quality. The art is cartoonish, but it works for the game.

Conclusion

I have to be honest, when I first pulled this game out I was not sure if I would like it. This game 100% won me over. For me, where this game shines is in the storytelling. I mean sure, you could just play it straight forward and do your actions and move on, but you shouldn’t. You need to gather your friends that you play Gloom with and play this.

One turn I married Charity The Greedy with Tim the Pennywise (I thought this might be a nod to Tim Curry in IT, but I’m not sure) and I told the story of how she made him miserable but it was for the good of the realm…until on a later turn she was stolen from Tim by David The Highwayman. And we kept moving David from bride to bride because, a highwayman’s gotta ramble. I seriously have not laughed out loud this much in a long time during a game (The infertility token and subsequent removal alone can lead to many stories). There is a “take that”  game in here for sure, but you need to play this with storytellers. I promise you that you will not regret it.

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ALL HAIL KING ZOLTAR THE MAGNIFICENT!

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Review – The Lost Expedition

“There, I believed, lay the greatest secrets of the past yet preserved in our world of today. I had come to the turn of the road; and for better or worse I chose the forest path..”
― Percy Fawcett

The Story

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Legendary explorer Percy Fawcett marched deep into the Amazon in search of El Dorado. He was never seen again. Your team has gone in search of him, but now you hope to escape the jungle with the greatest treasure of all: your life.

Gameplay

You will choose three adventures (Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the co1aunting shall be three) and take health for each character (you always play with three explorers no matter how many people are playing). Each round has two stages: Morning and Evening. Cards are drawn and placed in a row to show which adversities, challenges and confrontations you have to overcome. Sometimes there are good things that can happen, but not very often.

You try to place the cards in such a way that you have enough health and supplies left by the end of the round to make it through another day. You do this by using your health, bullets or food, depending on what the requirement is on the card.

Some cards have rewards for completing them.  Some have choices on them regarding the way you would like to complete the card. Other cards will require you to resolve multiple things.These are represented by different colors on the cards; yellow is to be resolved first, red is second and blue is last.The goal is to make it with at least one character alive when you reach El Dorado.

Components

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If there is one thing i can bank on from an Osprey game, it’s quality components. The chits are a good size, the cards are high quality, and the art by Garen Ewing gives me that retro comic vibe. Also, basing all of the explorers off of famous people was a nice touch. Teddy was mandatory for all my adventures.

Conclusion

This game is very difficult, and I mean that in a good way. I feel it really shines as a solo game with the ability to look ahead and try to map out your moves by yourself (I felt the same way about Fuse). Due to the amount of cards the replay ability is very high on this game. I felt like every adventure was a totally different experience and had to be managed in the moment.