I had a great game of Runebound yesterday, adding in some of the smaller packs for a bit more variety, and I really feel the need to talk about it today! Well, it is game day, after all. I’m still recovering a bit from a bout of general illness that seems to have swept through the family over Easter, I think I might have sinusitis at the minute, which is just a joy to behold. Anyway, the point is, I have spent the Easter break on quite the nostalgia trip, if truth be told, re-watching the original Star Wars trilogy, then introducing my wife to Indiana Jones as she has, incredibly, never seen them before. Getting to leaf through Cracken’s Threat Dossier was also a bit of a highlight, as I do love the old West End Games RPG! It’s put me in that mood, though, and I actually broke out Escape from the Death Star for some retro gaming while I was off!
Runebound isn’t quite so retro, of course, though it is one of the oldest games that I own, and always takes me back to the heady days of 2008 when I discovered board games as a “serious” hobby with my now-ex girlfriend. In the years since, I’ve played quite a lot of Runebound, almost all of it solo, which might seem a little odd at first, but it works quite well, really. See, the original board game doesn’t really have much player interaction – players take the role of a hero from high fantasy and go about their business in a bit of a slow race, with only very occasional fights between heroes that you can entirely avoid if you want to. So in some respects, it works quite well as a solo adventure as you wouldn’t really have any interaction with the other players, so I quite enjoy playing it for that immersive experience.
I played with a couple of the small card packs added in as well, and it was really quite glorious. I think the main reason for my enjoyment was the fact that I was playing one of the DungeonQuest heroes, a magic user which is always my favourite type of hero to play. I also had a lot of runes for my guy to be using, which buffed his magic attacks but also plays into the whole theme of the game. I really love it as a high fantasy game, and I love the fact that you have this great-looking map that you’re travelling around, with all these adventures where you’re basically building up to slaying dragons. Along the way, you’ve got all sorts of classic fantasy monsters, and I really enjoy the sort of narrative that emerges for the Terrinoth setting. True, it can feel quite bland, but if you actually take the time to read the flavour text along the way, it’s a lot of fun!
It’s a game that I really wish I would play a lot more of. It’s on my 10×10 list for this year, though, so you never know – there could well be more games coming up soon where I rhapsodize about just how much I enjoyed another foray into Terrinoth, and more battles against the minions of Dragonlord Margath!
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