Review: Kingz – who has heart of a lion?

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Lion is no longer our king. The spirit of a brave warrior has left us. But the animal kingdom can not remain without someone who has the last word. It takes only one day of this freedom, and monkeys already walks over the roof of the palace, as if it belonged to them. There is no one on the throne who exalts respect. They feel no danger. Penguins use the royal pool and invited a hippopotamus in as well! There are terrible things going on here.

And it is up to the players to tame all those disobedient animals. The main objective of card game is to become a new king. The designer has prepared this game for us and his production has been released by and . Their collaboration in was supplemented with illustrations by and .

There is more than enough adepts for the king, even though we see only gorilla and tiger on the lid. Inside, players will be offered four screens, each with the image of one royal adept. In addition to the ones mentioned above, there is still a terrible polar bear and jagged crocodile. Each hero has its own options on the inside, but the front part of the screen is also interesting. This is because it contains a small white label row, where players must first write name of their hero (using attached marker). Only then can you start with setup. Each of the fighters will get a set of his nine action cards, puts three armor tokens and one courage outside of their opponent’s eyes (behind the screen).

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In their turn, players first randomly select two of their cards and put them aside. These actions can not be used in the round. And every such round has seven turns, that match number of cards that remained in their hands. In each of these phases, individual opponents pick one of the cards in their hand and put it in the center of the table. Together, they reveal their plans and find out order of their activities – according to the number in the flash symbol, which indicates speed of the chosen action.

It is time to evaluate card from the highest value downwards. The fastest is usually an attack towards an opponent. However, for his successful execution, the player must shout out the name of his opponent, whom he likes to hit with the sword. This is why the names of the heroes should be as short as possible.

If the player has succeeded and his target is not shielded (card), he must set aside his token of heroism, forcing the opponent to miss one point of armor. For this, a successful attacker will get one point of reputation behind his screen. Even when the opponent defended himself, the attacker still loses valuable token of heroism. This can be recovered by discarding a heroic card. It has no other effect, but such neutral heroic points each are worth a half reputation.

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Players can also greet viewers using action card. But such machinations are successful only if the hero is not caught by others hitting him. So if the hero is not hit after playing the greeting card, he gets one reputation. In case of failure, nothing is lost.

But the sword is not the only way to attack. This is a net. But its success depends on other players. If no one is going to use shield, then all opponents will lose one armor token. In the event that the player did not time his risk well (net against armor), he loses one armor.

But there is also a tricky card – disarmament. Here, player needs to shout out not only the opponent’s name, but also the magic word „Disarm!“ This player can steal his opponent’s card. However, the unfortunate victim has a chance to quickly pick up any card lying freely in the arena unless the owners prevents it. Anyone who stays the last one and therefore without a card must use the top of his deck instead.

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If someone in the round has lost the last point of the armor, they must now report it to their opponents. At that point, his rivals (those who injured him in the round) may decide whether to continue or not. The player must therefore try to redeem and offer a sufficient financial reason to save his skin (and thus get one point of armor for each player, who keeps him in play). According to their decision, they point their thumb up or down in the style of the Roman games. Otherwise, the player is immediately eliminated.

Players will unravel one card after the other like this, until they use the last one. If even after seven stages, there is no known winner, it is time for the second round and therefore chance for the new seven cards. The battle continues until the last fighter is in the arena or one of the participants gets the fifth point of reputation. This player becomes the winner.

The most interesting thing about Kingz is its processing. Unfortunately, the gameplay is not so good and will certainly fail to meet your expectations. The course is pure chaos, because in every round, players try to guess what others will do. But there is no chance at all to influence or at least deduct the situation.

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The most exciting moment is an effort to shout opponents name. But it is hard to decide here what was still within the rules and what not. The game mechanism is rather vague and depends only on players‘ feelings. And this can often lead to disagreements that are difficult to solve.

The idea with the name is interesting, but it is not enough to make the box a good attraction. The theme or experience is not enough. Overall impression will not be corrected by the short game time, which is around twenty minutes. Sometimes the battle will end sooner if the players quickly fall out or one of the players succeeds to score points of reputation. They are secretly hidden behind the screen, so the opponents must be careful and count. In two, the game is very weak. The more players, the better it works, but the chaos also steps in more and more.

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Kingz is a big disappointment for us. We were waiting for a thrilling fight and we got it. Likewise, you will all be delighted with beautiful graphics. But, unfortunately, the gameplay itself does not bring with it the satisfaction and the experiences we would be looking for. That’s why Kingz can not recommend you with a quiet conscience.

DesignerAntonin Boccara
ArtistMary Pumpkins
PublisherAnkama, Last Level
Year Published2016
# of Players2 - 5
Playing Time15
Mfg Suggested Ages7 and up
CategoryAnimals, Card Game
MechanicSimultaneous Action Selection
FamilyAdmin: Better Description Needed!
Primary NameKingz

Infos courtesy of boardgamegeek.com. More Infos.

Review: Kingz – who has heart of a lion?
Final word
Kingz is a game that tries to come up with a new idea of calling names. But authors put it in a sweater knitted out of chaos. This does not automatically mean problems, but there is extremely little control in here. And what’s worse, it is not replaced by the feeling of some interesting experience. The game is missing some extraordinary moment or element that would force you to play again. And without it, the Kingz game is simply weak.
Reader Rating0 Votes
Pros
naming characters
nice illustrations
chaos means funny situation
calling names is a good idea
Cons
too chaotic
virtually no control
weak in two
missing a larger charge
2
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