From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.
Still here? Okay well my first impressions are based on watching a two player game, playing in a two player game, and then playing a 4-player game. All fun games.
Advantage definitely goes to players who can time their cards and their movement of models well, but then also roll decent dice. The game is played over three rounds of 4 activation per player, where an activation can be to move, charge, attack, or something else. But 12 goes is all you get. This is not kind to a round of bad dice, so there’s a level of variance you have to accept.
The two gangs that come in the starter box play very different but provide a curiously balanced experience. The advantage can go from one player to the next and back again with just one error or set of fluffed dice rolls.
There are opportunities to play cards after each activation, meaning you can upgrade your models quickly if you get the advantage, or else try and use a ploy to get yourself out of trouble. Ploys that move models, yours or an opponents, can be very powerful.
The figures in the box are comparable to those in the Space Hulk box in terms of detail level and material. I think assembly is easier here though, not that Space Hulk was especially difficult.
With new gangs on their way to provide more variety (and possibly depth) Shadespire could be a significant release. The buy-in for the game is very low and the models can be push-fit together and used for play immediately. No need to learn how to paint before you can get started. This can only increase the potential audience for the game.
There were some points in the games played where a couple of minutes thinking time was taken by one player or another. If Shadespire is going to become a tournament game then some sort of turn time limit will be necessary.
All in all this looks like a solid release from Games Workshop, and an interesting addition to the tabletop miniatures space.