Actually, the full title is:

Epic Spell Wars of the Battle Wizards: Duel at Mt. Skullzfyre

Seriously.

This game breaks every single rule I consider integral to good game design. It’s is almost entirely luck based, mixing cards and dice with very little strategy. The balance is questionable. The art is pretty low on my list.

And yet: I love it.

Gameplay

Each player gets one of eight wizards. These don’t affect the game, but the card is used as your life counter. Favorites at the table are Princess Honey and her Furycorn and Fey Tinklebottom.

The game itself is played in rounds, which last until there’s only one wizard standing. A round begins with eight spell component cards being dealt to each player.

At the beginning of each turn, the wizards assemble their spells out of the different components, with a maximum of one source, one quality, and one delivery.

A complete spell (From Cryptozoic product page)

After each wizard has prepared their spells, each wizard gets a turn to resolve the effect. Spells with only one component go first, followed by two component spells, and finally three component spells.

First, you have to call out the name of your spell in a wizardly voice! Missing components? Don’t worry, just add the required elements and resolve as normal. You resolve spells in order: Source, Quality, then Delivery. Some do damage, some modify other cards in the spell, and some have unique effects.

Each component also includes a ‘glyph’ which powers up Power Rolls on cards with matching glyphs.

Knocked out first? Don’t worry: You get a dead wizard card! At the beginning of each turn, if you’re dead, you get another dead wizard card. At the beginning of the next round, each card gives you a bonus! Some dead wizard cards even give you coveted treasures.

Treasures are cards that you keep through an entire round that give you special effects. These range from treasures that offer you glyphs to the Proton Gem that can be used as a Wild Magic card every turn!

If you manage to be the last wizard standing (Or your spell kills everyone, including you!) you get a last wizard standing token. If you collect two, you win the game!

Let me get back to the subjective part of this review. Normally, I hate games that end up relying on specifically luck. If my choices can be negated due to luck, I won’t be happy with the game. Well, here’s the exception to prove the rule. Some cards pick based on the strongest or weakest opponent, and that will change a lot between spells. Some can turn a perfect spell into a not so good one. A lot can go wrong. But it doesn’t get in the way of this game. Powerful effects are often mitigated by the group attacks aimed at previous last wizards.

The art is something you’ll either love, or hate. Me, I’m not a huge fan of the style, and never have been.

One thing I’ll warn: Some of the themes that come up in the game aren’t exactly kid friendly, so don’t expect this to be a good choice for an eight-year-old.

This is mostly a filler game, but you can lose hours to it if you’re not careful. All in all, would be worth a purchase.

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