An Inside Look At Dungeons & Dragons: Temple of Elemental Evil Board Game

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Ken Staples a poster over at BoardGameGeek had a chance to play Temple Of Elemental Evil Board Game, this past weekend. He shared what he found.
From what he says it looks to be pretty much like the other games, but there is one difference.

Classes – There are five playable classes that apparently match up (name and class) to the Icons of the Realms starter (minus Drizzt). I played the cleric and my daughter played the Rogue so I saw what they had. I know some of what the others played but didn’t see everything. The classes play as you’d expect them to. Reminded me of the WoA & CR heroes.

– Cleric, Dwarf – Felt like playing a dwarven cleric. Gets a nice warhammer and a light crossbow as starting equipment/at-will powers. Special powers gets rid of disadvantage when on same tile as other heroes, gives 1hp to others when he uses a daily/utility power. Gets a big heal, can reveal traps, and some other powers I can’t recall at the moment.

– Rogue, Halfling – It’s a rogue. Lots of positional damage, trap disabling (very important in this game), can do a three attack daily power, can take 2 non-attack actions per turn (similar to Drizzt).

– Wizard, Elf – Blows stuff up. Teleports. Burns things. I think it was mostly elemental-focused magic but not 100% on that.

– Fighter, Human (or barbarian?) – Has a big axe. Swings it pretty well. Kills things. Can swap places with another hero within one tile.

– Ranger, Elf – Moves fast and shoots things. Can do well in melee if needed.

 

And now for the difference I talked about.

Campaign – Yes! There’s a campaign feature! The adventures are recommended to run in order and utilize the campaign system. Still only goes to level 1 & 2. But you can spend gold to level up and purchase upgrades (like +1 damage), buy/sell stuff and things like that. You can re-spec your powers. And there were some other things that I can’t recall at the moment.

How do you do this?

Why it’s simple really… you go to the town.

Wait, did he say you go to a TOWN?

 

Yes, there’s a town. With a tile and everything! Unfortunately I didn’t get to play it. But I got a quick look and did some fast perusal of the rules. It looks fun. Doesn’t go as far as some of the fanmade stuff but hey, it’s officially there!

 

From the rest of what he said, it seems to be pretty much like the others.

Monsters – As you might expect, many of the monsters are elemental-based. There are cultists for each element, empowered cultists for each element, and an elemental for each element. Gnolls are the main monster race found in the dungeon. There is also an ettin, a bugbear, firebats, and a dragon. Elemental monsters also seem to like to move around between player control.

Map Tiles – They look really nice. The background art has a nice look & feel to it. The spawn symbols are elemental symbols. Not sure if there is a mechanic to the different element symbols are they just put them on for flavor. There are also dragon symbols on the tiles. Not sure what they’re for but my guess is they’re not there for fun. Lastly, many of the tiles have traps built into them. Traps are individual squares and (assuming we played them correctly) they trigger when you move onto/through them. This is where the cleric’s ability to reveal traps on a tile and the rogue’s ability to take a 2nd non-attack action come in handy. We drew several traps that were harmless but some hurt pretty bad.

Conditions – I like what they did here. They took advantage/disadvantage from 5th edition and made them the conditions. So when you have the condition you roll twice. If it’s advantage keep the higher number, disadvantage keep the lower number. Cool to see them add in a new edition mechanic while keeping the core game the same. Nicely done IMO.

Encounters – Oh joy, the encounters. The ones we faced were mostly unpleasant (as you might expect). Some were attacks, some spawned monsters, one pulled a character off the map (similar to that one Ravenloft event), some had multiple effects. Didn’t see them all but we got a good feel for it.

Treasure – Treasure was sort of disappointing and I think it was because we were just playing a single scenario. A lot of the treasure was coin. In the campaign game coin is very important. In a single scenario we would have liked multiple items. As we get used to this game we’ll make the call if we want to sub in another treasure deck for single scenario play. I think Ashardalon’s treasure would be fun in here as a first thought. But I’m sure in a campaign setting it will be really fun.

 

It sounds like this is going to be another great “Adventure” game! The game hits April 30th. It’s not up on Amazon yet, but when a preorder hits, I will be sure to link it.

 

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