By Dale Medhurst
By Colby Dauch & Plaid Hat Games
I love Christmas! Love, goodwill and games!
One of my presents this year was the lovely, big and shiny Summoner Wars Master Set and, oh, boy, was excited to open this baby!
But, was I disappointed…?
Inside the box are an updated rulebook that clarifies some old and new rules, plenty of lovely dice and wound markers, a gorgeous playing board (replacing the wrinkly paper mats from the Starter Sets) and, most importantly, six new decks of cards representing six spanking new factions.
All of this comes in a great plastic tray insert that allows you to store ALL the factions from the Summoner Wars range, dice and tokens. A masterpiece of box design!
The new factions all have different flavour.
The goat-like Mountain Vargath can take damage and knocked their enemies all over out the battlefield or charge into their opponents’ side of the board, dishing out pain.
The Benders mess with their enemies draw deck and units, sowing confusion.
The Swamp Orcs cause vine walls to pop up all over the board, tangling their foes whilst leaping out to attack.
Then there’s the magic-bending Deep Dwarves, the shifting, wriggly Sand Goblins and the swift and deadly Shadow Elves…
All the rules for the units are on the cards so once you pick up the easy rules you’re ready
to play. For those of you haven’t played Summoner Wars, the rules are easy.
On their turn, a player draws up to five cards into their hand then, using cards from their magic pile, can summon more units next to the walls on their side of the battlefield.
Magic is accumulated by destroying enemy units or casting certain spells.
Next a player can cast spells/ play event cards or place more summoning walls on their side of the battlefield.
Then up to three units are moved up to two spaces. Diagonal movement is not usually allowed.
The fourth phase is ATTACK! Up to three units can attack. Those with ranged attacks can strike those within a straight line of three spaces whilst melee combatants can attack opponents adjacent to them. Attacks are successfully resolved by rolling 3 or more on a D6 and units have as many rolls as those shown on their card. When a unit takes enough wounds they are usually placed in their enemies magic pile.
The last phase is the Magic-Build Phase. A player can place as many cards as they want from their hand into their magic pile. This is one of the most strategic elements of Summoner Wars. Do you get rid of several cheap units so you can summon an expensive, but powerful, champion next turn? But you then run the risk of depleting your draw pile too quickly…
The game end when one player destroys their opponent’s Summoner.
Summoner wars is like a war game without the hours of mini painting and money drain.
The art and presentation is fantastic and it can be taught in moments but hours can be spent learning strategies for all of the factions.
Another cool thing is that their are another eight factions to buy with two more on the way and all factions have new cards to purchase now in the near future. Plaid Hat have also released Faction- specific dice which are very nice!
Oh, and before I forget, keep an eye out for the upcoming iOS Summoner Wars game coming soon!
Buy this and you’re ready for hours of fun. It usually plays in 30 minutes to an hour so can be a great start for a game evening.
You can buy Summoner Wars Master Set from: