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Author Topic: Bulwark - a co-operative deckbuilder  (Read 769 times)

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Bulwark - a co-operative deckbuilder
« on: February 20, 2014, 11:13:24 am »
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A friend of mine has recently designed and published (and by recently, I mean it was actually about a year ago but he just published a new expansion, which kind of reminded me to talk about the game here) a co-operative deckbuilding game. I figured people here might be interested in it. The game is about building your deck up (unsurprisingly) and fighting enemies who are attacking whatever location you're defending.

Like Dominion, each game has a different setup - each player has their own Hero deck, starting with mostly the same cards ('Heroism', your basic currency plus three other weak cards depending on the Hero) plus a unique personal supply of cards, often built around some theme. For example, there's a cleric who doesn't have many options for attacking, but can rapidly clean out wounds (think ruins) from other players deck. On top of that, there's a location deck for the place you're defending, which usually contains 6 types of cards in the supply. And then there's the Foe deck, which contains the enemies who are attacking you. Some Foes are special and indicated with a crown - these are usually harder to defeat and/or have some nastier special abilities. Once you go through the entire Foe deck, you reshuffle all defeated crown foes and face them all at once, and if you defeat them all, you win. If ever the Wound deck is exhausted, or if everyone is killed, then the players lose.

Combining the abilities and powers in your location deck with the special abilities of your Hero, and tailoring purchases to the specific strengths and weaknesses of the foe deck while working with other players is the key to victory. And if that run-on sentence isn't enough to convince you there's a lot to think about, you can always turn the difficulty up with the game's adjustable difficulty settings.

The game plays in roughly 30-60 minutes I believe, depending on Foe deck and player count (some Foe decks are intentionally quicker or shorter than others). It's a fun game, and I think a good number of F.DSers might enjoy it as well.

Below is a quote from the designer, mainly on how to order and purchase, since I wasn't 100% sure on that myself :P.

Quote
The format is one 'base set', split into two products so it's not too big an outlay all at once - 'Bulwark' and 'The Winter of Death' together give you 4 heroes, 4 locations and 4 foes.

The other expansions are single decks, although they are released in waves with a common theme. They can be bought as pdfs.

'Travails of the Arcane'
- 'Magister Kelemen'
- 'Magistra Csenge'
- 'Jakab Startouched'
- 'The Tower of Secret Lore'
- 'The Arcane Messiah'

'Blood-Soaked Plains'
- 'Jedrzej the Hurler'
- 'Miksa's Redoubt'
- 'Traitor's Crossing'
- 'The Steppe Bandits'
- 'Fires of Fury'
- Extra Wounds

The principle differences from Dominion are things like the properly co-operative nature, and the player interaction it fosters. Fewer 'dead' cards is a thing, as well as money becoming less important as the game progresses, in favour of the ability to kill stuff. I also plays well as a solo game.

The main hub to buy/browse is at http://www.drivethrucards.com/browse.php?cPath=10024_10049

Supporting material, such as rules and spoiler lists are at: https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0BwGkynh3mSzPLUEtWVo0SVdkVU0

If people think it sounds interesting, I might be able to run a PBF if there's enough interest.
Logged
...spin-offs are still better for all of the previously cited reasons.
But not strictly better, because the spinoff can have a different cost than the expansion.
I hereby declare myself the best dominion player in the world. Obviously.
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