KAPOW: The Dice Building Game – PREVIEW
As a kid, I regularly played board games both alone and with my family. Everything from Connect Four, Monopoly, Life, and Scrabble found life in the arena of family competition. Nowadays, board games have risen to a golden age as game builders have taken their ideas to places like Kickstarter to fund their amazing game systems.
As a parent, getting together three boys and a little girl to a table to play something that isn’t a video game can be difficult. On occasion I’ve been successful but the most common deciding factor is the theme. If the board game’s theme is accepted, then they will join in. Commerce or kingdom building or making words aren’t very exciting for very long so being creative in my choices is key. One thing is for certain, superheroes are accepted by them all.
In steps a new dice building game on Kickstarter called KAPOW. Developers 2 Ton Porcupine intrigued one of my sons and I as we attended the Retroworld Expo in Hartford, CT. There at their booth, we sat down for a wildly entertaining demo round of this dice building game.
For the game, there are a number of 6 sided ‘Trait’ dice that are one of 5 colors. Each of these colors (red, yellow, blue, purple, and green) correspond to a specific symbol that the die has multiple sides of. Then there are the all powerful ‘blank’ or ACTION die. These dice have customizable faces. As you play, you are given the opportunity to add faces to the ACTION dice which makes for quite a bit of the game’s strategy.
The setup is simple. Sitting across from each other, players have a screen that prevents the other from seeing the initial dice rolls. On the table for each sits a rule card that basically shows what die result combinations correspond to what action. The actions that can be played are ATTACK, DEFEND, or POWER UP.
The first two actions are self explanatory. The POWER UP action leads you to the core of the the ‘dice building’ portion of the game. Once you carry out this action, you are given the opportunity to get additional dice (TRAIT or ACTION) as well as getting new faces for your customizable ACTION die. This is necessary to pull off some of the more powerful ATTACK and DEFEND actions.
Once you start playing, the addictive tossing of handfuls of dice builds the excitement as you anxiously pour over the reference cards to see what moves you should perform. The first person to knock the other one out (by reducing their hit points to zero) wins!
The best part about playing this game was the easy setup and the fact that there are very few rules you have to consider and read thru. You can get right to playing within minutes and the game will typically last about 20 to 30 minutes or so. There are even plans to use character specific rule cards that feature superheroes with their own unique attacks and moves also. This will spice up the generic rules that me and my son played with initially.
This Kickstarter Project is currently trying to get funded before the end of November 2017 so go NOW and help them reach their goal!