I am a big fan of the Warhammer universe. As a family we are huge fans of Adventure Card Games, especially Pathfinder. Combining the two should be right up our ally, right?
My first issue is not with the game, but Fantasy Flight Games. They produce top quality products and this is no different, however I am sick and tired of their non-standard sized cards. Pathfinder uses standard sized cards for every Adventure Path, this means I can spend pennies on penny sleeves and protect my game. Fantasy Flight Games requires specially sized sleeves, which cost more and are harder to get. I tried to order them from Fantasy Flight Games, but they were out of stock and sellers on Amazon overcharge to the point of insanity (200% markup, really?). Mayday Games sells sleeves that are similar to Fantasy Flight Games. Still why use non-standard sized cards at all?
The first thing I noticed about Warhammer Quest Adventure Card Game (WQACG) is that there is about half as much material as a Pathfinder Adventure Card Game base set. There is one five-part quest, and one generic reusable quest. There are four characters: bright wizard, iron breaker, warrior priest, and waywatcher. This got some funny looks, as we are used to having choice and options when picking characters. Half-the material for around the same cost, did not sit well with me, if I had paid full retail cost.
Characters consist of an image card with hit points and four action cards. Every character has the same four action cards: aid, rest, explore, and attack. Aid helps another character. Rest heals your character. Explore represents the character looking around the location. Attack is the character attacking one or more enemy. There are some differences between how each character performs the same action card, such as a ranged attack versus attacking multiple enemies.
Each turn, a player chooses one action that their character will perform. The player gathers dice for the action and dice for enemies engaged with the character. A roll of the dice later determines the result. Characters do not start out with abilities or equipment, like they do in Pathfinder, leaving characters feeling flat in comparison and instead of making decisions based on abilities and equipment to aid die rolls, hoping for a good roll. WQACG characters will acquire equipment in later adventures and can upgrade action cards, but the leveling is not as dynamic as Pathfinders.
A turn goes like this:
- Each Hero performs one action, which can result in the monsters damaging the characters (this is important and interesting design decision)
- Each monster engaged with a character takes an action, which can be as simple as monster does X damage to character to as complex as monster moves to another character and does X damage (note that characters can take damage from monsters twice in a turn)
- The Location ability activates, if applicable. Most locations have an ability that affects the Heroes. Unlike Pathfinder where there are multiple locations in play at one time, WQACG only has one location in play at a time and some of them have a profound effect on the Heroes.
- Lastly, the Peril counter moves forward one-space. Think of peril as a timer, each time the peril marker moves forward an event can trigger, which most often does damage to the Heroes.
The game is over when the Heroes complete the adventure goal or lose. Yes, that simple. If playing a campaign, winning or losing affects the next adventure. What we noticed was that Heroes take a lot of damage and they do not come with a lot of hit points. Further, there are not a lot of ways to heal damage. The four actions, only one of which can be done a turn makes for some interesting decisions, but at the same time left us wanting the ability to do more.
I think that sums up our experience with WQACG best, we wanted more. More content in the box. More adventures. More ability to do more with our characters both in game and leveling. Pathfinder Adventure Card Game has spoiled us with options, but I think that is something that WQACG can learn from in future expansions. Warhammer Quest Adventure Card Game is a solid game, easy to learn and difficult to master, but needs more.