Showing posts with label Board Games. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Board Games. Show all posts

Saturday, May 4, 2019

A Forgotten Classic - The Dark Tower By Milton Bradley Company

As a child, I spent many hours attacking the Dark Tower. Back in 1981, this game was an incredible technological feat. Now, it seems rather simple, but I would kill to get my hands on one.

Game play was simple, up to four players adventured from their home citadel to find 3 keys to unlock the final battle at for the Dark Tower. Keys and three other treasures, The Sword, The Wizard and The Pegasus could be found in the 8 tombs and ruins around the map. At the Bazaar, players could purchase warriors, food, a Scout, a Healer and a Beast.

Warriors fight but could also carry gold for you, up to 6 bags each. If you ended a battle with more gold than you had warriors can carry it, you lose the surplus. Warriors also ate food. Up to 15 warriors ate 1 food per move, 16-30 ate 2 food, 31-45 ate three and so on. Moving without food caused the loss of one Warrior per turn.

On your adventures, you could make a safe move with no event occurring, get lost, encounter a plague, a dragon or engage in battle with Brigands. Battles were the most common event. In combat, if you won a round the Brigands would lose half of their force. If you lose a round, you lost one warrior. Winning or losing a battle could increase your gold, but if you didn't have enough warriors to carry the gold, you lost it. A Beast could carry 50 bags of gold, on top of what your warriors could carry. Getting lost caused you to lose a turn but if you had a scout, you could move again. When struck by a plague, you lost 2 warriors and possibly some gold due to carrying capacity being reduced. If a healer was purchased, you received two warriors instead of losing them. The dragon could wipe out 25% of your warriors and gold in one swoop. Having The Sword drove the dragon off and awarded gold and warriors.

The Wizard curse was a special event controlled by other players. When The Wizard was awarded to player, they could curse one other player. The curse transferred 25% of the other player's Warriors and gold to the cursing player. There was no defense and the effect was immediate. 

The Pegasus allowed a player to advance anywhere within the kingdom they were in. They could not use The Pegasus to leap over the Frontier. Any attempt to do so would result in a lost of the turn AND The Pegasus.

Once the player had all 3 keys, found in the other three kingdoms, they could advance on the Dark Tower but only from their home kingdom. Going to your home citadel with 16 or less Warriors would double your troops. You could repeat this, but only if you went to one of the other special places such a tombs or ruins before returning.

The assault on the Tower required the player to guess the correct order for the keys. The riddle showed a random key and the player would guess if it was correct. If it was, they had to guess the next key until the correct order was input. The game would display a random key, but the order was fixed in the system so that it would not change, making the process less painful than it sounds.

In the final battle, the number of Brigands was based on which of the three levels they players selected at the outset. Level 1 had up to 32 Brigands while 2 and 3 had 64. You could approach with up to 99 Warriors, but there was little point in doing so.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Supporting the Story

Last month, TheseOldGames.com provided two raffle baskets to Boy Scout Troop 601. Each basket had a board game, a set of dice, decks of cards and two sets of Story Cubes. Funds raised allow the Troop to absorb some of the cost of outing and activities such as summer camp.
Rory’s Story Cubes are a great, family friendly way to break the ice.
Having given away 4 sets, I am dying to purchase one (or more) for myself. You can check out the story behind Rory’s Story Cubes over on Youtube or click the video below.





Friday, March 13, 2015

Prioritizing Fun

I have so many great games to play, I keep putting off my D&D campaign. I need to prioritize my choices. Here are the games that have me hooked right now:
NHL 2015 by EA Sports
EA Sports has been doing the NHL series for years and it is still very addictive. I love the season system, building teams and players against the league. 





Destiny by Bungie
This one reminds me of Marathon and I love the game play. I haven’t really gotten into it too deeply, but it is a great way to blow off steam. It is expansive yet simple. 

Starfleet Battles and the family of great games by Amarillo Design Bureau
Star Fleet Battles. Or more correctly some mini’s a purchased a while back. I want to get these done so I can play with models.
Additionally, I picked up Federation Space from Warehouse 23. This is the game that really sparked my imagination as a child and directly lead to me playing Star Fleet Battles. I want to try this one with the kiddos.
I also want to sit down and design a custom ship with a great scenario hook and submit both to ADB. SFB is so expansive, that Amarillo Design Bureau needs to strike a balance between fun and reasonability. I really can’t decide if the hooks are good enough for submission or not. No way to tell if I don’t give it a shot.
D&D
Dungeons and Dragons. I have a campaign setting I’ve been working and want to see it in action.
For the past 7 months, I have been teaching a class on religion and this has noticeably affected my D&D campaign plans. I have created a Stave Church Map, a temple dedicated to the planets and a homely inn for the characters to relax at between adventures.
Gemstone IV
Gemstone IV just went F2P and I am hooked once again.

I really want to hammer out a more up to date review of Gemstone IV, but the game has so much depth, it is hard to wrap my mind round.

Rifts
On the way back burner is Rifts. I just picked up Triax and the NGR.
I’d really like to create a campaign for this game with a lighter, more humorous background. Nothing says lack of humor like a post-apocalyptic world. As always with Palladium, the main hook is the artwork.




Around Christmas time, we implemented Family Game Night. I can’t really complain about a lack of playing options. Nothing is more fun and rewarding that setting up Risk, Monopoly or Uno with the family and having a great time.