I had a chance to play and preview/review the card game Beneath Nexus that is now on Kickstarter.
Game play is fairly simple, one player is the blight lord and the other 3-5 players are the heroes intent on defeating them. At the start of the game the blight lord gets to choose one of four lords, each with their own play style and abilities. The other players get to choose from six characters which take on the traditional archetypes such as the healer, tank, support, etc.
One thing I liked right off the bat, is the team needs to be constructed as a whole and engineered to combat the specific blight lord. So you (if your not the blight lord) will get to play different characters each game. The heroes fight their way through two dungeons and then defeat the blight lord in the final battle.
Each game consists of three encounters (unless the Blight Lord kills them sooner). The first two encounters take place in rooms of the dungeon, with differnt monsters and a different challenge. The last encounter is a battle with the Blight Lord itself.
You get seven types of cards in Beneath Nexus. Dungeon Rooms, Heroes, and Blight Lords are all oversized cards while Hero Abilities, Treasures, Monsters, and Blight Lord Spells are all standard sized cards. At the start of a game players determine what roles they will play. There are six different heroes and four different Blight Lords, each with their own abilities and set of spell cards. Once players have chosen their roles and taken the ability and spell cards that belong to their characters the game is ready to begin.
Your hero starts with 12 hit points, I tracked this using a dice, but there will be some sort of tracker with the final game. (It was not in the prototype version I reviewed) and a hand of three abilities from their personal, unique ability deck – they’ll draw an additional ability card after each of their turns.
The game plays out over three encounters. To start an encounter, 3 encounter cards are drawn. These are locations where the encounter takes place and each has its own special setup conditions and rules. The players will pick which one to take on, and the encounter begins. The Blight Lord always will act first in a round and gets 1 action per opposing hero. They can play Spell cards from their special deck, activate Monsters, or use an ability on the Blight Lord card. Once the Blight Lord has used all of his/her actions, The players will get a chance to jump in on the action. Each Hero has its own initiative rating from Fastest to Slowest. Each Hero has a passive ability and an ability. You get one action per turn. It could be an ability on your hero card or an action from the Hero’s unique deck is up to you. Reactions can only be played when it is NOT your turn and will list what the card can react to. Monsters and Heroes both have Hit Points. After a Hero has taken an action, they draw a card and the next Hero in the initiative order goes. After all Heroes have taken their action, the round ends and another begins with the Blight Lord.
The third encounter is the final one, and the Blight Lord card flips to reveal its second more powerful form. If the Heroes survive this encounter, they win the game and the city of Nexus is saved from the Blight Lord. If they lose, I don’t want to think about will happen 🙂
This is a fun but satisfying dungeon crawler, the addition of one player being the blight lord is a nice touch, it’s very fun to do very bad and evil things to your friends. All in the name of a good game you know? This also on the other hand, leads to some great collaboration with the other players, as they try to figure out the best way to stop the blight lord and what they are throwing at them.
I wont speak much to the artwork on the cards as I said before, mine was a prototype, but it was pretty darn stellar. I’m guessing this is pretty much what it will look like, and that’s a good thing. I have no complaints to this. My biggest complaint the was the rule book (Which I had to look online to get (Again, Prototype) there were some confusing parts in the rules. I had to read a few time, but I would think by the time this is done and the kickstarter is over, that will be corrected. So I’m not worried about it.
Gameplay seemed to flow smoothly after the first round, it’s pretty easy to pick up and you learn your actions and such you can take. I would say the first game you play will go a bit slower, as your learning the rules and how to play. But after it’s seemed like it went pretty smooth.
Overall I liked the game a lot, it’s a fun dungeon crawler, I can see this being one of those games that will be in my rotation for game night.
You can find more information on Beneath Nexus at the official website
You can of course, jump in and pledge to the kickstarter and pick up your on copy as well
We would like to send a BIG THANKS to Silverclutch Games LLC for providing us with the prototype copy to review/preview