23-Apr-2002All month

No other game has polarised our group more than this one. Three of us love the game, we each have a copy of the game, whereas the other four members of the group absolutely hate it. Im one of the three that loves the game but will attempt to reflect the opinions of the others.

We tried the game last night for the first time with the new English edition. This introduces 10 new characters to the game. Eight are potential replacements for the existing characters with the other two allowing for a 9th character to be introduced. The new characters have similar abilities to the cards they replace but different enough to affect gameplay. The rules suggest changing no more than 2 characters. We replaced the Assasin with the Witch, the Warlord with the Diplomat and introduced the Queen.

The major complaint of the original version was that the player to the right of the king, gets little choice on his turn and could be stuck there for a few turns if the king got assasinated. This has been addressed with a change to the new version in that the crown still moves even if the king is assasinated.

Another complaint of the dissenters is the downtime involved in the game. This was an issue in last nights game with players taking longer than usual to select their character, but to be fair we did have somone whod never played the game before, the rest of us havent played the game in almost a year and we were playing with new characters. I agree that with 6 of us there is going to be some downtime while players choose there characters but as with all games this should decrease the more the game is played and becomes familiar.

A final complaint of the game is that it is possible to have no action on a turn if you are assainated/bewitched. Since the crown was moving around a lot more last night due to the new rules, most players had a choice of a few characters most of the time, so nobody got picked on all the time, though Boog did seem to have more bad luck than the rest of us.

As to the game, Steve and Andy set an early pace which they maintained right to the finish, Since most of the players were obviously not enjoying the game we all marked it down.

From a personal perspective I think the new characters do add to the game and have improved an already great game. Unfortunately within our group I can only see this being played again in the near future as a three player game.

Final Scores
Steve 29, Andy 26, Oggie 24, Tel 22, Kev 19, Boog 12

Ratings / 10
Steve 6, Andy 4, Oggie 5, Tel 7, Kev 2, Boog 2
Scores: Steve 29, Andy 26, Oggie 24, Tel 22, Kev 19, Boog 12
Ratings: Steve 6, Andy 4, Oggie 5, Tel 7, Kev 2, Boog 2
Winner(s): Steve