Pssst. Yeah, you. Over here.
Looking to make a little extra cash? I could help you out. I know a guy who can get you into breeding creatures and mechs. Once you get good you can enter them into pit fights for big bets. Here, take a card. What have you got to lose?
Whatever you do, don’t spread the word. You know the first rule of Underleague, don’t you?
What Is It?
A steampunky fantasy card game where players pit their creatures against one another to earn victory points. They will need to supply their creatures with equipment to increase their worth, and work to play scheme cards effectively against their opponents to help take them down.
Each round is played in 3 phases – Pre-Season, Betting, and Combat. Players draw new strategy cards each round and will discard cards in order to pay the cost on which they want to play. During Pre-Season, players can also choose to replace a creature who may have fallen victim to negative effects, to try and get their next best fighter on the field. Once a player announces, during Pre-Season, that they have 20 or more victory points, they win! (If multiple players have at least 20 points, most points wins).
Who Is It For?
I think that fans of steampunk themes and art will be attracted to this because the game has some unique creatures and the images really put you into a different world.
I thought it would be good for families, since it plays up to 5, and ages 12 and up would be suitable because nothing is too scary or off-putting for younger players.
Those who have played and enjoy combat type card games will likely also like this, and potentially appreciate the addition of the betting phase this game offers.
Contents + Quality
Cards – Average card quality. Mine were a little bit warped when I opened the game up, not sure if that’s always a problem, but luckily they settled out fine. The art is kind of dark and almost creepy, kind of what you expect from the theme, and I really like it. The text on strategy cards, from cost to abilities, is all clear and easy to understand.
Dice – They’re just plain, one red and one gray set, get the job done. Clear printing, no issues.
Betting Chips – Come in 5 colors for 5 players. I’m personally not crazy about most of the colors, they’re kind of drab, and some are kind of close in color, at least to me, so it was hard to tell them apart at times especially from across the table.
Rules – These weren’t organized in an easy to read way, at least to me. For example, words are defined at the beginning of the rules and by the time they’re used you forget what they mean and need to flip back. And the win condition is listed first instead of at the end of how to play. There’s a few little things like that which ultimately just made the rules hard to read. They’re okay to start with, but you kind of just learn as you play a bit too.
Box/Insert – Everything fits nicely, and there’s extra room as well. Box has that cool art on it, just like the cards, so it’s inviting for gamers who like that style.
- 250 card shared strategy deck, so there’s plenty of variety for equipment and scheme cards
- 30 card creature decks also offer a lot of variety and different teams and strategies
- You can play with the identical creature decks or do deck construction or drafting for more options. This is especially cool after you’re familiar with the game
- The betting phase is cool and unique to head-to-head combat card games; you can still earn something by betting correctly even if your creature loses, or on opponent’s creatures for fights you aren’t involved in. It’s neat and works well!
- I just love the art, it’s so cool!
- Plays pretty smoothly and quickly once you get going
- The format of the rulebook just made it challenging to learn at first
- Not very interesting at 2 players. It plays okay, so I get why the box says 2 to 5, but it’s much better when you have more creatures to bet on, more options for combats, and more players to play cards against. At 2 it’s just an okay back and forth card game
- There’s a lot of luck between what creatures you draw, what strategy cards you get, and dice rolls. The cards can mitigate some things, if you can afford them, but it’s got a heavy luck factor, so sometimes you just feel backed into a corner
I thought this was a neat card game, overall. It had a cool look and I like the theme. It’s something I’d recommend to a group of 4 or 5 way before I recommend to a pair, and I would definitely lead with the heavy luck factor because there’s not as much strategy as you might think there is at first. It plays pretty quickly, so it’s a good light card game for your weekly game night if you’re into the style.
My Final Ratings:
Overall Game – 6/10
Aesthetics – 8/10
Difficulty – 4/10
Replayabilty – 6/10
*I was provided a copy of this game to do this review*
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