I have a soft spot in my heart for the old side scrolling adventure games of yore. Kid Icarus and Metroid being my favorite. I know that I can not go back and play them with the dame verve that I had when I was young but I have discovered a neat way to feed that nostalgia. The game Boss Monster.
Boss Monster is a card game based around these self same side scrolling 8-bit adventure games. Players take on the role of the Boss Monster at the end of the dungeon. Your reason for being is to entice heroes to your dungeon and kill them for fun and profit. To accomplish this you build dungeon rooms that are both damaging and enticing to certain types of heroes.
The game is for 2-4 players and takes about 45 minutes to play the first time and then about 20 minutes after that. Each player is randomly dealt a Boss Monster. Each player is also dealt room and spell cards to begin the game. Play begins with the Boss Monster with the highest xp value and then proceeds down. Each player places a room card face down and once everyone has done so they reveal the rooms. The heroes then go to the most enticing dungeons based on the treasure type listed on the cards in the dungeon. If there is no single dungeon to attract a given hero, they remain in town and more heroes arrive. This can cause a bottle neck of heroes and builds tension in the game.
The winner of a game of Boss Monster is the first Boss to achieve ten souls harvested in their dungeon. A player can also lose the game by taking enough damage from heroes that reach them without dying in their dungeon.
Boss monster is fun and easy to play. It conjures up those fun Saturdays of banging your head against Metroid with out actually being Nintendo hard. I was pleased when I saw one of the heroes that is in the set looks just like Kid Icarus. It made me laugh and fight hard to lure him to my dungeon. One of the game play things I liked was that you can level up as a Boss. Once your dungeon reaches five rooms, which is also the maximum size of a dungeon, you level up. This allows you to do the special action listed on your boss Monster once during the game. This is a special action that gives a small advantage over the other bosses for the moment. It was pretty cool to be able to level up as the bad guy.
I have really enjoyed sitting down to play this game. It is easily accessible and makes for a good gateway into the gaming hobby. The $25 price point is hard to beat as well. There is alson an expansion out for the game that adds power up to the heroes coming to the dungeons which sounds pretty interesting as well.
I am looking forward to more hours of playing Boss Monster and hope for even more expansion for the game in the future.