Board game manufacturer:
Mayfair Games & Stratelibri co-production
Number of players:
8 and up
Kragmortha is based on the story telling game Aye, Dark Overlord! It’s extremely comical and it plays through fairly quick. It’s a party game, focusing on the players having fun, rather than strategies or thinking, is an odd mix of board play combined with performing silly physical actions.
The game and gameplay
Players control clever and sneaky goblins, who are hoping to filch a dusty tome of arcane lore from their Master’s collection. As a player you are trying to maneouver your goblin counter from its starting square into one of the squares where the Magic Tome cards are, in order to steal one of the Dark Overlord’s treasured books of magic.
You’re also steering Rigor Mortis away from you and into the other goblins so that they may suffer Rigor’s withering gaze.
Each player receives three movement cards for their hand. There are two types of movement cards, one for goblins and the other for the Dark Overlord himself. During his turn, a player plays a movement card. If he plays a goblin movement card, the player moves his goblin counter; if a Rigor Mortis card is played, the player moves Rigor Mortis.
Each movement card has two symbols on it, a green vial or a scroll. Each space on the board also has a symbol on it. To move to an adjacent space, one of the two symbols on the card must match the symbol on that space, regardless of their order on the card.A second space can be moved if the remaining symbol on the card can be matched from that new space. There is a crystal ball symbol also, that acts as a wild card and matches any symbol on the board. At the end of the player’s turn, the player draws a new movement card to replace the one just played.
If you enter a space with another goblin, you get to shove that goblin to an adjacent space, with the exception of the one you came from. This can set up a chain reaction where a shoved goblin enters the space of another goblin. In this case, the shoved goblin now shoves the next goblin and determines where it should go. Goblins can be shoved into teleport spaces or into Rigor Mortis himself.
If a goblin enters a teleport space, the player turns over a teleport token to determine the goblin’s fate.
If the token is a Magic Tome, the player gets one of the Magic Tome cards. If the token is a blue book, the player draws a Withering Gaze card. If the player flips over the surprised looking goblin, nothing special happens.
In all three cases, the goblin is then moved by the player to an empty teleport space on the board. If all other teleport spaces are covered, no teleport happens.
If Rigor Mortis lands on a teleport space, the controlling player may move Rigor Mortis to any empty space on the board.
A goblin that comes into contact with Rigor Mortis, either by moving into Rigor’s space or by Rigor Mortis entering into the goblin’s space, must immediately draw a Withering Gaze card, which tells some action the player must perform for the remainder of the game. Examples include keeping the card on your head, playing with one arm behind your back, playing the rest of the game with clenched fists, or playing with your chin resting firmly on the table!
Failure to honor a Withering Gaze card earns you another Withering Gaze card, effective immediately. But you can only have one of a particular type of card. Each Withering Gaze card has a symbol in the upper left corner of the card that indicates their type. If you draw another card with a symbol matching one of the Withering Gaze cards you possess, you must draw until this is not the case.
A Magic Tome card can be played once, and then turned over, and its effect is applied to the current game. Unless the card specifies otherwise, this action can only be done during the player’s turn. This cards are powerful spells that can change the course of the game. For example, they can give you extra movements, increase your hand size to four cards, free you from a Withering Gaze card, or the chance to give to other player one of your Withering Gaze card.
Finally, in the event of tie breaks, the Magic Tome cards can determine the winner of the game.
The game ends when a player accumulates four Withering Gaze cards or if all of the Magic Tome cards are seized by the sneaky goblins. The winner of the game is the one with the fewest Withering Gaze cards.
Pros and cons
The game’s sole purpose is in the Withering Gaze cards and the actions that they make people do. It’s really a good and funny party game that can keep everyone laughing at each other’s curses and forgetting their own.
Kragmortha is an awesome game for almost anyone. It’s not for people who are afraid of being silly or are overly shy, however.
I would almost rate Kragmortha a 5 out of 5 because of how fun it is. But it might not be for some people. Get it if you want a great group game and if you enjoy a comical chaos rather than a strategic session.