Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Card Game for Me? Summoner Wars

I strive to be, like the guys at the Game On with Cody & John podcast say, a well-rounded gamer.

My first love when it comes to gaming is miniature war gaming. I also enjoy a variety of boardgames like Battlelore, Memoir '44 and Tannhauser.

However, I've never been much of a card game player...outside of Skip-Bo, that is (which gets played almost every day in our house).

There's been a wealth of collectible card games released over the years since Magic the Gathering essentially created the genre about 15 years ago. There's been a few that have tempted me like Upper Deck's Vs system or their Quickstrike Pirates of the Caribbean CCG simply due to the themes. Despite owning starter sets for both, I've never actually played a game of either. And, quite frankly, I'm just not enamored with the collectible aspect of CCGs in general. My gaming funds are limited and precious, and I don't want to be throwing money after cards I may already have and whatnot.

But, in the past few years we've seen a variety of card games that have eschewed the collectible format. Fantasy Flight Games changed their Game of Thrones CCG from collectible to what they termed "Living Card Games" wherein they release expansion packs each month. You know exactly what you're buying, but how you incorporate the newest releases into your deck is where the strategy lies.

I recently just learned of the game Summoner Wars by Plaid Hat Games from a mention on the Game On with Cody & John podcast. As I started looking at it, I started becoming very intrigued. Might this be the card game for me? And, the bigger question, can I get my wife to play it with me?

Plaid Hat has released a couple of two-player starter sets and some expansions (with much more to come). The game looks really interesting, and I definitely want to check it out. However, I see that in June 2011 they'll be releasing a Summoner Wars Master Set. This bad boy comes with:

  • 6 Complete Faction Decks
  • 1 Premium Board
  • 1 Revised Rulebook
  • 5 Six-Sided Dice
  • 20 Wound Markers
  • 1 Plastic Tray (with space for more Faction Decks)

All this for an MSRP of $49.95? Awesome. This is what I plan to pick up as my first exposure to Summoner Wars, and I can't wait. Plaid Hat is going to be at Origins and they expect to have the Master Set there, so I'm looking forward to picking it up then.

In the meantime, gentle readers, I see that Plaid Hat Games is based out of Fremont, Ohio just about an hour and half north of where I am in Delaware, OH. I'm hoping that sometime between now and Origins I can make the trek north and visit Plaid Hat HQ and interview designer and lead Plaid Hatter, Colby Dauch. So, stay tuned!