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Epic Roll

In the mood to beat the snot out of a fearsome Lich, but don’t have three hours to spend building up a character to do it?  Perhaps you should take a look at “Epic Roll”, a game that supports two to three players.  Each player will choose a character (Wizard, Warrior, or Elf) and battle for their lives by rolling dice against enemy mobs like skeletons and ghouls in order to gain the items they’ll need to defeat the Lich.  Before we get started, I’d like to thank Matt Nord, the Co-Founder of Summon Entertainment, for providing me with a press copy for review purposes.

 

2-3 Players, Ages 14+, Average Play Time = 15-20 Minutes

2-3 Players, Ages 14+, Average Play Time = 15-20 Minutes

 

Components

The game includes a game board, three hero dice (one for each class), two encounter dice (basic and advanced), two monster dice (basic and advanced), two power dice (hero and monster), three glass hero counters, two glass health counters, twenty treasure cards, and an instruction booklet.

Setup & Gameplay

Each player will start by choosing a class and receiving the die of that color.  Players also take the matching glass hero counter and place it on the board’s matching start space.  The treasure cards are shuffled and placed off to the side.  The Wizard takes the first turn, followed by the Warrior, then the Elf.  In the event of a two player game, the third character’s pieces (whatever class wasn’t chosen) will not be used.

On a player’s turn, they’ll begin by resetting their health to the “6” position on the hero health meter via a health counter.  Then…

1. Advance the Hero – The player moves their active hero to the next space (left to right).

2. Encounter a Monster – When a space is marked by crossed-swords, the player rolls the basic monster encounter die to discover what foe they’ll be facing.  The advanced encounter & monster dice are used when the hero gets past the “Level Up!” space on the board, though the hero gains a power die to use as well.  The health counter is placed on the appropriate starting health value on the monster health meter.

3. Fight a Battle! – The player rolls both the hero and monster dice together, adjusting the health counters as appropriate based on their results.  Treasure cards can be used/discarded to help you win battles, though your maximum hand limit is two.

4. Determine the Battle’s Outcome – The hero will either win or lose the battle.  If the hero wins the battle by having one or more health remaining at the end of the battle, they’ll draw a treasure card and add it to their hand.  In the event that the hero is defeated, they are returned their starting position on the far left and lose any cards they may be holding (a hero returns to the “Level Up!” space if they passed it earlier).  They begin questing again on their next turn.  The player can choose to flee rather than die by moving back a space, but the monster gets one last attack (the monster die is rolled by itself).

5. Continue On, or End the Turn – The player may choose to take another turn with the health they have now, or end their turn (they’ll gain full health on their next turn).

The first player to defeat the Lich (who has his own power die) is the winner!

Editor’s Note: The above doesn’t cover all of the rules found in the manual, but should give you an idea as to how the game is played.

The Review

“Epic Roll” is certainly simple enough to learn and play, so the 14+ age requirement listed on the box is more for the benefit of parents who may have younger children who like to put things in their mouths.  I’d say that a semi-mature eight-year-old could play this game…it’s that easy to play.  You’re essentially rolling dice against monsters and choosing whether or not to push your luck by immediately taking another turn should you win.  Of course, your health doesn’t reset back to “6” until your next turn, so choose wisely.

I do like the fact that each character class has a different die, complete with different die results on the faces.  The wizard die (blue) is like a glass cannon, capable of doing tons of damage but lacks defense and accuracy (blanks result in a miss).  The warrior die (red) has a balance of attack and defense, while the elf die (green) is the most consistent but lacks the high damage potential found on the wizard and warrior dice.  In addition to that, you’ll get a white power die when you “Level Up!”…meaning you get to use a special unique ability every time a star is rolled.  The wizard’s power is “block”, the warrior’s power is “heal”, and the elf’s power is “hit”.  The Lich’s, just as a side note, is to “heal”.

The components are sharp in terms of color scheme and the artwork is well done.  The gameplay felt equally good and while luck-based dice rolling games are sometimes unfair, there is some strategy in choosing whether or not to retreat, use a treasure card, and etc.  I just wished that the game supported more players, especially since there are five of us in the house.  I also had a slight problem with the “elf”…which is technically a race and not a class. While the wizard and warrior are both classes, I felt that “rogue” or “ranger” would have been better than “elf”.  Since this is a casual game I can live with it, though more classes and an increased player count would have been nice.

All in all, “Epic Roll” is a fairly decent dice rolling game that’s both quick and easy to play.  You’ll find it for $25 (as of 2/29/16) via the official website (link below), which I believe is fair for what you’re getting here.

Final Verdict: 8/10

Purchase: http://www.epicroll.com/

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