вторник, 6 януари 2015 г.

Board Game: Boss Monster - EN

Boss Monster is a card game for 2 to 4 players in which you and your opponents will build beautiful and deadly dungeons. The game is by Johnny O'Neal and Chris O'Neal and it's published by Brotherwise Games in 2013.


  • 150 cards  
  •    25 spell cards 
  •    8 Boss Monster cards
  •    40 hero cards
  •    75 room cards


In Boss Monster you take on the role of a monstrous dungeon ruler who have only two tasks - to lure adventurers and take their souls. To achieve this you will need to build better and more attractive dungeon than your opponents. 
If you successfully attract a Hero he will explore all rooms in order and in the end (if you have not built your dungeon well) he will reach you and wound you. If you manage to kill him (by dealing him damage with the different rooms) you take his soul. Collect ten souls and you win, take five wounds and you're out of the game.

How you do all this? With many, many cards.

At the start of the game to every player is dealt a random Boss, after that they get five room cards and two spells. The Bosses are put on the table in front of the players. With this the setup is done, time to play.
Every player chooses one Basic room to start his Dungeon and put it with the back up on the left of his Boss. When all players are ready with this the cards are flipped and rooms now count as built. 

The rooms are two kinds - Basic and Advanced with two subtypes Trap and Monster. Advanced can be built only on Basic. Every room have few "stats" - what type of characters it attracts (this is indicated by the book, ankh, sword and purse), how much damage it deals ( the heart icon) and any special "skills" ( yes rooms with skills...rooms...with skills...yes).

Other types of cards are the Spell cards, you will draw them very rarely, but with reason, they're very powerful and if played at the right moment can turn the game. The main purpose of spells is to mess your opponents’ game.  

But let's get back to the Dungeon. After all Bosses have built rooms it’s time to lure Heroes. This happens by counting how many rooms with certain symbols your dungeon has. For example in Town there is one Warrior, who is attracted by swords. You have four rooms each giving you one sword, your opponent have five rooms each giving him one sword, He have more swords than you and the Warrior is attracted by his dungeon. After that all players draw new rooms and everything starts again.

Personal opinion

Dungeon Keeper...

The game has...interesting idea, you're the bad guy and without second thought you kill brave Heroes and take their souls. This you achieve thanks to your servants who wait in ambush or build nasty, deadly traps.

The cards...

Boss Monster is played only with cards, therefore its very important how well they are made. The answer is very well - the drawings are nice, detailed, funny and full with references to classic video game from the past. Also they're in the nostalgic 8 bit style, just to make you feel completely old.


Excluding the numerous promo cards related to the kickstarter of the game, there is only one expansion and that is Boss Monster: Tools of Hero-Kind. It adds all kind of magical weapons, armours and scrolls which will aid the Heroes in their quests by giving them new abilities. Those items change the game so much and make it so much more fun that I wholeheartedly recommend you to get it and never play without it.

Why not...

While the game is small, fast, retro themed and really fun it doesn't have so much to offer in the long run. There are not enough cards, the combinations between them are few and usually quite the same - buff this room, destroy this one to kill this Hero, draw more cards thanks to this one. Even the really well made expansion doesn't change that for long.

Second there is really good chance for one of the players to get out of the game before it end and in my humble opinion this is always bad. True, the game is not long, 30-40min at most, but still.

And at last as someone who plays a lot more video games than boardgames I'm tired of retro graphics and the art of the cards really failed to truly make me want to play the game. But this is really personal thing and actually I know some people who were really charmed by the 8 bit style of the cards.

Conclusions! If you really miss old video game classics, like dungeons and prefer to be evil DM I think Boss Monster have something to offer to you.


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