This is a mini review of a new and impressive game coming from Pangea Games called War Co. I will not go into much detail on how the game plays, a full review and descriptions can be found on Grant’s write up, An Early Review of War Co. Expandable Card Game by Pangea Games. I just want to give my quick impressions of what I was able to see and play. I was only able to play one game but feel that I will be able to give a good summary of my thoughts. I also want to thank Brandon Rollins for allowing us to take part in his process of getting this game to gamers everywhere. I will also say that this style of game is not my favorite. I usually don’t like games where you go head to head against others. I often find the randomness, of getting the right card at the right time, too much for my liking. That may have something to do with my notorious bad luck when it comes to playing any game with randomness……I’m talking to you dice!!!
There are many positive things that this game has going for it. Some are unique to what I have experienced in this genre. I love games that have mini games within a bigger game and War Co. has a few.
- I really like the mechanism that the deck of cards you have is your life total. There is a mini game in there. Since you can choose to draw anywhere from 4-7 cards each turn you have to decide if you want to get more cards but drain your life faster or slow and steady but run the risk of getting a direct hit because you can’t get enough cards out. In my game, I noticed that Grant was ahead when it came to cards left. I then started drawing less cards each round hoping to lengthen the game to give myself a chance. It came down to the wire.
- I really like the fact that you will not see every card in your deck when you play. You might even play a game 10 times and never see a card since there is a lot of discarding from your deck. During the course of a game you might discard 15-20 cards from your 50 card deck.
- Traps and playing cards face down is a nice addition. You have to be able to afford the card when you flip it face up but you can use energy until you need to flip it. And then timing that right so that you have the energy when you need it is a fun mini game.
- Art work is really great. All the cards have unique and different art that shines through out the game.
- The decks we were given seemed to be very even and neither seemed better than the other. They were different enough to feel like they were a different race. Most of the decks are similar to each other but each have 1-3 specialized cards that are unique to that race.
- The game is really smooth and easy to get the hang of. Grant explained the rules for 5 minutes and we were off playing. It took 1-2 rounds for me to get the feel of it but after that it was smooth sailing.
There were a couple things that I was concerned with.
- The art work is great but was rarely noticed due to constantly having to read the cards. I am sure this will get better the more you play but I felt I was constantly reading cards to make sure I knew what they did. Not only mine but Grant’s as well. I was constantly asking him what that card says or that one. I could not imagine playing a 6 player game and trying to keep track of every ones abilities and cards.
- Some cards may be too powerful. Grant had a card (Ironic Siphon) that took 4 energy away from me as long as that card was in play. Normally that might not be an issue but when I was playing with the Bruiser deck and everything generally cost a bit more than others it was really hindering for me to have only one card out at a time. On the flip side, I had a card that Grant could not get rid of. It was just too powerful for him to destroy.
I really enjoyed my time playing War Co. by Pangea Games. There are plenty of new and interesting mechanisms to keep my interest through out many future plays. I look forward to exploring all the decks to find new and unique strategies to play with. If you are looking for a quick learning, medium depth expandable card game, War Co. is a solid choice that has plenty of replayability to keep you coming back and finding new combos.