I didn’t get in a lot of gaming over the weekend (despite getting in a review copy of OTB‘s new 10 Days in the Americas), but my brother was in town and we got a chance on Saturday night to take a spin through what is probably my hottest game right now, Catacombs.
I chose to be the Gorgon as my crypt lord, and Tony (obviously) took on the role of all four adventurers. He did pretty well in the first room, but I got his Wizard in a bad place in the second room and took him down significantly in health. He picked up equipment that made both his Elf and his Thief way too cool (getting both the Invisibility Cloak and Poisoned Knife is almost broken), but I came one point away from killing the Elf in the next room (I blew a shot that would have taken him down).
After the healer, however, I completely misplayed my level 2 room and all the creatures were killed before dealing a single point of damage to the heroes (I think that’s true, but they may have dealt one or two). I was far too worried about the potential for the thief to just kill a creature outright on turn 2, so I moved my creatures out of their start area, and put them right into harm’s way from the other characters.
So as they came into the last room, all of the adventurers had 6 or 7 health, and I was pretty worried. Tony had saved up his teleport spell, so he did the teleport/rage combo using the Barbarian to wound my Gorgon and kill another creature. That incapacitated him, however, so I was able to move out and make an attack against the Elf, wounding and incapacitating her (with the Gorgon’s special ability). The thief came back in, but wasn’t able to get a clear shot at the crypt lord, so she didn’t do much at all. Meanwhile, I killed off the Barbarian and the Elf (turning her to stone) and closed in on the Wizard.
The Wizard did manage to wound the Gorgon one more time, however, bringing her down to 2 life before she could stun him as well. But I did another fair job of concealing her from the monster side of the board (where the thief has to reappear after using the cloak). Tony still had a chance, though, if he could make a tight little shot and hit her, he would win the game since the Thief still hadn’t used her Poisoned Knife (which deals 2 damage the first time it hits in a round). He lined it up and took the shot, and he hit her! But unfortunately for him, he nicked one of my Centaurs first, killing it but using up the poison, so the Gorgon only took one point of damage. On my next turn, I killed the Wizard and incapacitated the Thief, winning the game!
Again, even with only 2 players, Catacombs is a lot of fun. And this particular play came down to the wire! It seems to me that the game may be a bit tilted in favor of the heroes, but a lot of that still depends on the flicking skill of both sides. So for now, Catacombs will remain at the top of my hot list, and I’ll be looking for chances to get it to the table again!