Ulisses Spiele's Aventuria was first launched in 2016. Designed by Michael Palm and Lukas Zach, it was promoted as two games in one. You could play it as a player vs player (PvP) duelling game - ideally as a two-player game, tho' you could involve up to four in PvP combat. However, the game was at its best in its alternative, solo or cooperative mode, where 1-4 players embarked on a quest.
The core game, shown here on Board's Eye View, incorporated three quests: two short adventures and one longer three-part adventure. Tho' the characters and monsters were fairly generic fantasy fare, the story for the adventures was strong and the game's adventuring and combat system was clean and solid: delivering something of a role-playing game (RPG) feel without excessive complexity and obviating the need for book-keeping or a dungeon master (DM).
The adventures typically involve tests where players will need to roll a d20 against one of the stats on their character card. To succeed you always need to roll the stat on your card or lower - so the higher your stat is the better.
Subtitled 'The Adventure Card Game', the Aventuria combat system is card-based, in that each of the characters has their own deck of cards to use, with accompanying die rolls to determine whether or not you hit and how much damage you dish out. You might detect echoes of collectible card games (CCGs), but Aventuria is playable straight out of the box: you can buy expansions but there's none of the chasing of rare cards in blind packs that's bedevilled CCGs over the years.
There are balanced decisions to take over whether or not to exhaust up to three of your cards in order to enhance your 'endurance', allowing you to play more cards. You'll also mostly be up against multiple foes: when you encounter the Big Boss, you'll have to defeat his henchmen before you can take a crack at him. That means there are decisions to take over who best to target with your attacks.
The limiting factor on the Aventuria core game has always been its very finite content: you can duel but if you want to play in adventure mode, you've got just the three scenarios in this box and then you're done. Happily, Ulisses Spiele released a bunch of expansions: collect them all and you'd have around 20 adventures to follow. And now there are more on the way, with a new Kickstarter campaign due to launch later this month adding two new Big Box expansions to upgrade the game. The Mythical Stories box will include eight adventures, and these will be much less linear than those in the original game: like a 'legacy' game, the choices you make along the course of your adventure will impact on the storyline. There are a LOT of new cards in the offing, and adding the Path of Legends box to your collection will extend to 19 the number of playable hero characters to choose between; all customisable with the new equipment and treasure cards for an even stronger RPG feel.
The Board's Eye View team have had a lot of fun playing through the original Aventuria core game so we're eagerly looking forward to seeing how the extensive new content drives the game forward. We'll add a link to the new Kickstarter when it goes live.
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