The genre of cooperative board games is very common among the gaming community, and for good reason, because such board games are ideal for cozy “home” evenings with family, evenings full of adventure, conversation, fun and teamwork. As strange as it may sound, board games are one of the few ways to bring people of different ages, interests, and even intellectual level closer together. Abroad, it is practiced with might and main to heal intra-family conflicts that have arisen as a result of misunderstanding, disunity and other factors, by means of board games. Remember one wonderful board game – “About Mice and Secrets”, which, having a rather serious threshold of entry and difficult gameplay, is an interesting fairy tale, the heroes of which are the participants in the game; The conclusion suggests itself – this game is ideal for playing in the company of “parents and children”, because it can easily interest both some and others. Nevertheless, today we will have a review of another game that is not a dungeon crawler, but is a representative of the classic tabletop RPG. So welcome, Andor!
- Band together; Forge the fantasy; Live the legend
- 2-4 Players, 60-90 minute playing time
- 8 page fully illustrated rulebook
- Live the legendary tales as you unite to battle ever-encroaching enemy forces
- High quality components
Andor is quite an original and interesting game. It is noteworthy that its creator is Michael Menzel, not a developer, but primarily an illustrator of board games, but at the end of his career he decided to try himself in a new role, and I must say, it turned out very well. A talented person is talented in everything, this is the truth!
The Andor series is a massive trilogy, not counting various minor additions. Even this fact suggests that the game was able to win the players’ favor and gained sufficient interest in the global board games market. Today we will talk about the first part of this epoch-making trilogy, and in the future we will analyze the other two.
Andor is a classic tabletop RPG in the battle fantasy genre. The game is designed for a company of two to four players, who will appear in the world of Andor as one of four available characters (warrior, gnome, wizard and archer). For fans of battle fantasy, it doesn’t matter whether it is a board game, a computer game or a literary work, such a company of characters will be painfully familiar. Remember the trilogy The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn is a classic warrior with a sword, Gimli is a thick-skinned dwarf berserker, Legolas is a clever elf archer, and Gandalf is a great wizard. The four of these characters are the most common class variations among fantasy genre works, however, becoming a kind of classic, and not a cliché, this battlegroup model is a good solution for a board game. Becoming one of the characters, you will travel across the kingdom of the same name of Andor, trying to protect it from all kinds of enemies and misadventures throughout five legends (five game scenarios). The game party will take from an hour to two, depending on the number of players and the chosen legend. Since this is a story-driven game, we will not spoil but just get to know the basic mechanics and take a peek in the game box.
- Requires the legends of Andor base game
- Full size expansion with two-sided game board
- Includes 4 new legends plus new heroes and creatures
- Recommended for ages 10 and up, 60-90 minute play time
- A cooperative role-playing adventure game for two to four players
Considering that the developer Andora is an illustrator and artist, it’s easy to guess that the game has a colorful and dignified design. A double-sided game card deserves special attention, it is simply incomparably designed, with all the rivers, forests and mountains depicted on it. Also, you will fall in love with playing cards, which, contrary to the latest trends, are quite large (in size comparable to tarot cards). These cards show all the necessary information regarding the development of the plot, the events taking place in Andor, and other information necessary for acquaintance in the process of passing the scenarios. Players’ tablets are double-sided, and provide the opportunity to play as both a male and female character. The box of the Andor board game contains a huge number of components that may confuse you a little when you first get to know the game, but then, after the introductory game, it will be easier for you, and you can easily figure it out. The only thing (we do not consider this a drawback, but this situation could have been played out differently) is that the numbering of locations on the playing field, which is made for the convenience of placing units and enemies, confuses even more due to the random application of numbers on locations. In other words, you are looking for location 24 near location 23, where, in fact, you are, but alas, there are only 12 and 53 nearby … Where 24 is known only to Michael Menzel. You get the point, let’s move on.
The rules of the Andor game cannot be called too complicated, but it will not be possible to examine them in detail within the framework of the game review, so if you wish, you can familiarize yourself with them. A game round begins with the first player performing an action that takes time and is tracked on a specific time track. The following actions are available to the hero:
- Moving. Moving to an adjacent location takes one time hour, and the player is limited only by the playing time allotted to him for performing actions.
- Fight. Being on the same location with the enemy, the player enters into a battle with him. One round of combat also takes an hour of in-game time.
- Skip turn. If you do not want to move or fight (for example, waiting for your ally or lying in wait for the enemy), you take the “skip turn” action, which will also cost you 1 game hour.
There are actions that do not waste time and are performed according to special rules and under special conditions, indicated, for example, on one of the game cards. After the first player has spent all the time allotted to him, the next player begins to walk, and so on.
When the players have finished their actions, the “game phase” begins. During this period of time, events happen, monsters move (along the arrows), and the storyteller marker (which is a specific game timer) moves further, bringing the beginning of a new scenario closer and urging players to fulfill the conditions of the actor. Overall, Andor is a very distinctive and interesting game. It has a number of interesting and unique mechanics, but due to its excessive thoughtfulness, it can grow into a banal mathematical calculation of actions and time. The timing mechanics and the influence of the narrator on the gameplay are very interesting, but the fight, which is a banal dice throwing, is a little discouraging. This is not bad, but this may not be enough for the modern player. However, this is not Zombicide, and the combat here is just a background of game events, which are truly large-scale and exciting. As for replayability, Andor can be played over and over again (like a good computer RPG), but it will have to be done at some time intervals in order to have time to be saturated with this energy and the spirit of upcoming adventures.