It looks like the Dungeon Crawler genre is an endless mine for game designers. From HeroQuest (next year will be the 25th anniversary) to Warhammer Quest, real milestones, and the most recent Descent, Dungeon Venture or Mice and Mystics.
Of course the full list will be really long and it is not the intent of this article. What I think it is still missing is a real introductory game that can be played by kids but also challenging and enjoyable for adults/gamers. LEGO gone in this direction with the HEROICA series but, unlucky, decided to stop the production and anyway the rules were too much simple and lucky-driven for be real of interest for gamers.
Red Glove will present this year Super Fantasy, a game from Marco Valtriani, that try to fill this gap between complex Dungeon Crawl and too much simple roll-and-move. They idea is a game that can be scalable in complexity having some introductory scenarios but also challenges for real gamers. It will be a success ? Who knows … Red Glove is very provident in offering information about this game. Here something from the official (Italian) facebook.
What Super Fantasy is ? Imagine the classic fantasy dungeon crawler, with heroes, monsters and a mission to accomplish … now imagine hordes of monsters that invade this dungeon, hundreds of them, while your characters acquire awareness and extreme coolness. Mix everything with magic, special abilities, and you will have as a result of the first hack’n’slash table 100% Made in Italy.
Yes, the first thing is that Super Fantasy will try to reproduce on board games some of the feelings and mechanics typical of the hack’n’slash games.
In Super Fantasy players will face difficulty levels more and more complex, missions articulated, using the spectacular combos and power-ups of six possible characters. The monsters come in droves and they in turn will use powers and special abilities to stop/kill the heroes.
Non need of master because the game will offer an innovative artificial intelligence.
I don’t know yet the full mechanic (but I’ll be able to make a full preview when I’ll got the game, some weeks before Essen) but here something, again from the official FB page
In Super Fantasy you will have several choices every turn, up to a maximum of 6 actions. You can move, disarm traps, breaking down doors, fight, use special powers or combos, use special items or operate dungeon’s mechanisms.
There will be special dice for the actions that will be also used to load your energy to use with special action/powers.
You can then energize your character and download the combo at the right time by blowing up entire rooms of monsters, but be careful not to overdo it …. otherwise …
Nowadays we have informations/images about only three characters but reading the published texts we know they probably will be 6.The description and image of first one, The Warrior, is an absolute preview for our web-site!
The Warrior is not the classic tank of all dungeon crawler, but a real bringer of death in both hands. He can wield heavy and lethal weapons or shoulder the monsters away or draw them all on himself. But above all, can quickly jump into the battle inflicting heavy damage on a single target while the group will shield behind him.
Playing The Warrior will require courage, space management and altruism: seize the right moment to confront the enemy, sacrifice for the common good, pave barrel anyone who stands in the front.
Nevertheless, can be used as a battering ram by his companions to break down the doors of the dungeon or to blow up barrels and chests full of treasures!
The Gunslinger. Armed with hi-tech guns and the innate agility The Gunslinger is able to kill many enemies of small size in a short time, to blow up parts of the scenario and open gates in the walls with his Gatling! Pure firepower!
The Enchantress, in the guise of a little girl has some very special features. It can manipulate reality to generate force fields in defense of their comrades, move objects and people at a distance and overthrow pure arcane power against its targets. Armed with magic sticks and books will discover new special powers in the treasures contained in the coffers.
In fact, each new tome will add some special skills on magic attacks on the protection of the group or on altering reality. In other words it is not the classic “crystal cannon”, but very strategic character!
The game will be organized in scenarios, like most of th other games in the genre. This also will offer the possibility to easily expand the game with new scenarios online, both produced by publisher or community.
In Super Fantasy’s scenarios very often you will be faced with two options: brute force or the best use of the resources. For example, The Shadow and The Gunslinger will be able to use their skills (Move in the Shadow and Race on Walls) to jump hordes of monsters unnoticed and achieve the goal.
In other cases, The Warrior will be attacked by all the monsters defending the group as a tower, while The Duelist and The Slayer overthrow a rain of fire and pain..
The strategy should also be adapted according to the special powers of the monsters that will change according to the scenario played or the level of difficulty.
Super Fantasy is not just a roll of the dice but management of powers and training will be essential to victory!
The game will contain rules and scenarios. The exact amount of scenarios is still being finalized but each scenario can be replayed at a different level of difficulty. The monsters to deal with will be very varied and will, according to the mission, change characteristics and special abilities to ensure extreme longevity to the game.
For example, you might encounter a surly Kamikaze willing to blow themselves up to kill you, or a Dull not be able to open the doors!
The situations you will face will often be on the edge of paradox and you’ll find solutions really imaginative and creative to get by against the troops of evil!
It looks like there will be a lot in this game and I’m really waiting to try it and write a full preview. The publisher told me that the game actually can be played as full-cooperative but probably could be something more (but it is just my scent and nothing about it from the editor!).
The English name/descriptions of the characters and abilities can be subject to changes still the English rules are not in final version yet.