Super Dungeon Explore – No I didn't miraculously finish painting all the models. Yes they are still in the same state as my last post about this game. Yes they are on their way back around to my que. Yes I finally played a game ... AND IT WAS AMAZING!
I've played the various D&D board games and while they're fun it really just feels like D&D without building a character. It's fun enough and scratches that itch but it kinda like 100 calorie pack of anything, far from filling and you wind up going back to the cupboard looking for something else.
Super Dungeon Explore is a different animal. You go in kill things and grab loot. Rinse and repeat. The beauty of the game is its simplicity. You roll the number and color of dice as indicated on your stat card, your opponent does the same. If you get more stars it take a hit. If a heart of potion appears and you do damage it pops out and you give it to one of your heroes.
My wife, myself and a friend played a game over the weekend and had a blast. I chose the paladin, ember mage, and rouge; my wife chose the druid and dwarf; Ben was the consul.
Right away we spilt up and started hacking at things. (Not the best plan as my healers were far away from the people they needed to heal) I quickly learned the power of the rogue when she teleports next to something she can quickly take down most anything if she can survive the backlash. (she can't we used both resurrection charms on her that came up, and I wasted several potions teleporting to treasure only to be attacked by Boo Booty).
Once we realized the error of our ways we moved closer together and tried to take out the bosses. Starfire is a beast to take down and we wound up losing the dwarf, rogue and paladin to the mean old dragon. The ember mage was able to take advantage of the rogue and paladins noble sacrifice to blast the dragon with a magma blast to finish the game. (The angry bear/druid kept the Rexes [or Rexi] busy in the other corner of the dungeon).
Overall it was really fun although it did take a long time to play through. I'm guessing part of that is my son is between crawling and walking and found the game far to interesting to take his normal nap, so pass the baby happened a lot between turns. Coupled with the fact that it was the first time we played and had tons of questions and initially my wife didn't realize it was co-op for the heroes that game tool awhile to play through. I would suggest for the first few games to just play the 8-bit version of the game fewer heroes, fewer tiles and faster gameplay.
I love this game. The simple rules make it quick to teach and learn. The cute models make it more universally appealing. The whole video game feel tugs at the nostalgia heartstrings. The quality of the sculpts and plastic is top notch. My only complaint is the quality of the game boards and cards, both are not quite amazing, functional but not amazing. But to be honest two packs of Dragon Shields solves the card issue and once I finish painting the models I'll be making 3D dungeon tiles for this game. Probably not as elaborate as the photo above but more compact and easily stackable. Who knows if the rest of my group like this as much as I do maybe I'll go nuts. As it is I'm already looking at the Caverns of Roxor expansion and eagerly waiting for the "Castlevania" Expansion.
Speaking of nostalgia Impact miniatures is doing chibi style D&D figures based of the old cartoon. I'm really digging these as I loved the cartoon and fondly remember having the Fortress of Fangs and Warduke, of course they were the only two figures I had from the line but he was able to do battle against Crystar, the Crystal Warrior for hours of enjoyment.
Sorry for the tangent, my point is that these minis could give you an alternate sculpt for the characters in the game, I'm sure at some point someone will want to run a party of mages or rogues. (I know I like to do it with Final Fantasy on the DS so why not in this Dungeon Brawl?) It seems like they'd be great to rebuild HeroQuest as well if you prefer those rules.
I can also see using these models with the SDE rules to make a custom version of the game that feels like the old cartoon.
Did I mention a chibi Lord Soth (I'd use him to replace the paladin personally)?
Cute-thulu can you really pass that up?
Am I pandering for people to kick this to see if it gets anywhere near the Reaper one? Probably.
But honestly I don't see a use for all of these but a few of them are must haves that I'd consider picking up as an impulse purchase if I saw them on the shelf.
Ok now I'm just filling space, that graphic is just so long ...