Style: Tactical Card Combat
Mechanics: Dice Rolling, Hand Management, Variable Player Powers
Publisher Description: Summoner Wars is a fast-playing, action-packed 2-4 player card game. Players take on the role of Summoners: powerful beings who harness the power of mysterious Summoning Stones to lead their race to conquest on the war-torn planet of Itharia. These Summoners wield terrible magic on the battlefield, freezing their foes in place, draining their enemies of power, and even bringing rains of fire down from the heavens. But most notoriously, they summon their great race’s hordes of warriors to the battlefield, to clash in the never-ending struggle for supremacy. A Summoner is both mage and general, and must combine their wizardly might with clever tactics to defeat the enemy Summoner on the opposite side of the battle.
Summoner Wars uses a simple but deep rules set to capture both the strategy of deck construction and card playing, with the tactics of miniature war games. By purchasing expansions or multiple Starter Sets, players can customize their Faction Decks to suit any style of play and to keep their opponents guessing. During the game, players summon and move their various warriors about the battlefield using their unique powers and abilities to wreak havoc on the enemy lines. In the course of a game each side will inflict terrible casualties upon the other in their brutal quest for victory.
Scott’s Thoughts: When it comes to 1v1 tactical board games, it’s difficult to come up with a better answer than Summoner Wars. The rule set is learned in minutes, but the strategies and tactics you employ will grow and change over many, many plays. The different available factions give a truly unique experience and the matchups are impressively well balanced. It’s a staple of my collection, and if you have any affinity for grid-based warfare in a fantasy-themed world, ripe with unique races and powers, you’re going to love this title.
Prize: Winning this tournament is going to net you your own collection of Summoner Wars cards/sets. How complete that set is will depend on funding.