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Brotherwise Games – Boss Monster: Tools of Hero-Kind (Review)

February 19, 2016

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Publisher Brotherwise Games
Genre Card
Number of Players 2 – 4
Play Time 20 minutes
Initial Review Date 2/15/16
Last Updated 2/15/16
Official Rules Basic | Advanced

This an expansion for the game Boss Monster. It adds a new kind of card along with a few room and spell cards that interact with the new type of cards.

What’s New

Twenty Item Cards: This is a new kind of card. Item cards come out one at a time and automatically attach themselves to heroes. There are five different types of item cards, fighter, priest, thief, wizard and universal items. Class specific item cards will only attach to a hero of the class type it is for. Universal items attach to the first hero available. Each hero can only have one item each. So, Items could build up in town waiting for an appropriate hero to arrive and, like heroes, items have priority according to the order that they showed up. Item cards make the hero they are attached to more powerful by granting them a special ability. If the hero ends up damaging you, the item is placed face down in your used item pile. If you manage to kill the hero  you place it face up near your boss card. You can then use the boss ability granted by the item the same as you would use a spell card (placing it in the used item pile after use). If you acquire another item card before using the item card you already have, you must choose one to be sent to your used item pile.

Four Advanced Room Cards: There are four new unique room cards that interact with Item cards.

  • Burial Mound: Once per turn, you may discard two Room cards to flip over a face-down Item card in your scorekeeping area.
  • Orcish Smithy: Once per turn during the Build phase, choose an unattached Item in town. You may attach it to any Hero, regardless of Treasure type.
  • Artificer’s Workbench: Once per turn, you may choose a face-up Item in your scorekeeping area and flip it face-down to draw a Spell card.
  • Magnetic Ceiling: Once per turn, if a Hero enters this Room with an attached Item, you may place that item face-down in your scorekeeping area.

Two Spell Cards: There are two copies of a new spell called excavate. Excavate allows you to flip a face down item card face up or vise versa. Since this can be used on any player (including yourself) it has both offensive and defensive uses.

One of the problems I have with the room and spell cards is that there is no easy to identify symbol indicating that they are an expansion card. If you look at the cards very closely there is super tiny text that says TOHK followed by a number and copyright. This means that it’s a bit of a pain to sort through the room and spell cards if you decide that you don’t want to always play with the expansion.

Conclusion

The expansion does exactly what it claims to do. It makes the game more deadly. At the beginning of the game it’s pretty manageable, though if you get a poor draw you can easily end up taking damage. Late in the game is when it becomes dangerous, since you start getting epic heroes who have extra abilities. In the game I played it came down to the outcome of an epic hero. If the hero died, that player would win. If the hero survived their opponent would win, since they already had 3 damage. Not only that but their opponent was in similar position, they just happened to go second.

The expansion is good but if you want to make sure the room and spell cards show up I would suggest the following.

  1. Setup the game as normal (setting up the discard piles and dealing out starting hands).
  2. Take the top 20 room cards and shuffle in the four new room cards
  3. Place those 24 cards back on top of the room deck
  4. Take the top 10 spell cards and shuffle in the two new spell cards
  5. Place those 12 cards back on top of the spell deck

In this way you can be sure that at least some if not all of the new cards will show up in your game.

If you like Boss Monster and you’re looking to add some additional danger to the game this will do just that. On the other hand if you struggle to stay alive in the base game you probably won’t enjoy this expansion.


Brotherwise Games: Boss Monster – Review
Brotherwise Games – Boss Monster 2: The Next Level – Review
Brotherwise Games – Boss Monster: Tools of Hero-Kind (Review)
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