Castle Ravenloft is one of Hasbro’s better attempts at getting people to play Dungeons and Dragons. I say this because the game is totally 4th Edition Lite: it’s got all the basics of combat, power usage, and mechanics of the latest edition of the world’s premier RPG. The only thing lacking is role-playing and a DM – the entire game is played against a set of missions/modules provided in a handy rulebook; it’s a roll-playing game really. But you won’t find me complaining because it does it’s job pretty good.
For this particular mess, me, Mark and Adrian decided to go for the gusto and beat up on a Dracolich. Yeah, that thing with jaws the size of our figure’s heads. It was a pretty great game. The finale involved me being the tank – a Dragonborn Fighter – and being thrown around from room to room as I got directly teleported to the Dracolich’s lair. It was pretty close and I managed to use up all of the party’s healing surges – once you run out of those the entire party loses. Anyway, thanks to the Fey Thief and the Dwarven Cleric, we ended up with the image below.
After a pizza dinner, I unpacked the jewel of my collection: a vintage 1995 edition of Samurai Swords. Originally named Shogun, it’s one of Milton Bradley’s classic Gamesmaster Series – the others being Axis and Allies, Fortress America, Conquest of the Empire and Broadsides and Boarding Parties.
It’s a fairly good Risk-a-like – but better. First of all, it’s got plastic katana for turn order markers! Also, an innumerable number of plastic figures to indicated your forces. And finally, a humongous map of Sengoku-era Japan. A wonderful game on the over all and a pleasure to play.
Not that it doesn’t need improvement – we used several variant rules to make the game faster and more deadly. A six-turn limit and victory points for killing enemy generals made it a bloody, bloody, game. Fast, too.
In the end , though, the blue hordes from the south kicked ass so much that everyone surrendered.
As my final game of the day, we played another game of I’m The Boss, one of the game designer Sid Sackson’s better games. Fighting for investors and shares can get fast and furious in this business game, so seriously, it’s not for the faint of heart. Lost it again because I miscalculated.
Great fun and great games – we’ll be there again on Fridays and anyone can drop by and join.