Tuesday, 13 October 2015

D&D Attack Wing Starter Set unboxing and Review Dungeons and Dragons

At the heart of the D&D Attack Wing Mega bundle is the Starter set, so that is where we are going to begin our look at the game.
It comes in a nice big box, that shows off the stunning models with a large plastic window.
On the back it has a nice show of the basics.  It advises the game is on average 60 mins, but we found it can be quicker or longer depending on what point level you play or adventure, but as an average its about right. It suggests ages 14, which is subjective, as Olivia can play it and she is 6, but to fully master the details and the subtleties list building the age may be about right.  If you are familiar with Star Trek Attack wing from Wizkids, or X-Wing from Fantasy Flight Games, you will be familiar with the basics fo the system, but there are plenty of subtle differences that make it worth a look.

Now what comes in this massive box? lets see.

You get a nice selection of cards, plenty of tokens, dice, range rules bases, models and manuals.
A nice packet of dice, we all like dice.  These are similar to the dice in Star Trek and Xwing, but with some new symbols on them.  The dragon symbol for dodge, the eye for concentrate (focus) and the normal hit and critical hit symbols.
You get an absolute ton of card tokens, these are all high quality, nice, bright and clear to see.
There is a distinctive style in this game, the dials are clearly written, and plainly decorated, which makes them easy to see and store.  The manoeuvre templates are great looking, they capture a fantasy style whilst being clear and easy to read.
The tokens are slightly larger then other games, though are all clear and easy to read, I like them like this, they are easy to read on the table.
You get a nice selection of objective tokens, again clearly labelled and easy to read.
You get a quick start pamphlet, that goes through the basics of playing and set up to get you going as quickly as possible, so its a great place to start if you haven't played a similar game before, as it eases you into the game then you can read the main manual to get the full game down.
Its easy to follow and will have you playing in minutes.
The damage deck has some nicely themed results, like crushed or shattered, when you receive damage in game you get them face down, but if you get them face up they have the effects listed on the card that can change effects in game.
Now onto the cards that come with the set, you get a generic blue dragon, and Eshadera the named dragon, she excels at fighting at range that provides her extra defence and attack dice. She is fairly manoeuvrable, and a tough opponent.  She is of evil alignment.  Armour works differently in this game compared to the shields in other games.  Regular armour deflects a number of normal hits depending oh how much armour you have, though critical hits get through, which is good so there is always the chance to take down the toughest opponent with luck and the right upgrades.
Then we have the Red Dragon Balagos, he is powerful and strong in combat, and has solid manoeuvres.  On the back of the flight card is an on the ground manoeuvre list, as flying creatures can land and fight on the ground, though they are not manoeuvrable at all on the ground. he is of evil alignment as seen by the monster skull on the lower left of her card.  other things to look for on the card, are the level.  higher level creatures move last, but attack first, Some items item's are also limited by level.  You have your attacks in the bottom right that show you the type melee or ranged, and also give you the range of them.  So in Balagos case he has a range 2 melee attack bite forward and a range 2 melee attack tail to the rear.  The arcs are on the creatures bases.  In the top right corner is the creatures energy type, in Balagos type it is fire.  These can come into effect with abilities on other cards.
The last dragon in the set is Galadaros, the copper dragon.  He is slightly more manoeuvrable then the others, but doesn't hit so hard.  He is of good alignment as you can see by the ring on the lower let of his card.
upgrades in this game are all clearly labelled, unlike the other flight path games that have pictures of them, this makes it easy to store, and simple to check during the heat of battle, I cant remember how many times I forgot about a critical upgrade playing Star Trek.  Each kind of upgrade has the same symbol on them.  These symbols are shown on the character cards to tell you how many of each you can take if you pay the points cost.  These are Divine upgrades,  we have command which cosrs 1 point, and you need to be a level 1 to use it.  You can see your characters levels clearly marked on their cards.  Prayer of healing is the other Divine card in this pack, you can use it to heal damage in battle to keep you alive longer.
We have a nice selection of spells, these often work with time tokens, you put the required number on them, and remove one each turn, and when they are all gone they can be used again.  You also get continuous effects.  These are shown by tokens relevant for them and when the timer runs out the effect finishes.  There are a nice mix of spells here,  shield for defence, magic missiles, haste, lots to try out.  I like how each upgrade type has such clear art to show you what they are so you can tell at a glance what kind of upgrades you and your opponent have to speed up game play.
Of course this being Dungeons and Dragons, and the starter set only coming with Dragons the most upgrades we have are the Dragon type.  Again I like the graphic design on how clear they are.
Lightning breath  is a line attack, you use the range guide and draw a straight line in your arc, what ever it goes through it hits.  As you can see its lightning energy and if you want a non lightning dragon to take it costs extra.  Eshaedra as we saw earlier has lightening energy so is the perfect match.
Acid Breath can pierce Armour and is desgined for Acid Dragons, once you have used it put 3 time tokens on and take one off at the ned of each turn then you can use it again.
Fire Breath works in a cone attack, which hits everything in your front arc and in range.  Hidecarved  scales can add some extra defence
Some upgrades are limited, as you can see Bushwack you have to be a red dragon, so either Balagos or the generic red dragon can take it.  Devotrix of Tiamat though states you must be Eshaedra to equip it.
Now the bits you have all been waiting for. the models.  They come with the stands needed.  They are fantastic, and would look just as good on a shelf as they will on the tabletop doing battle.
Eshaedra the blue dragon, a detailed model with a good paint job
she looks good from all angles

Galadaros, the copper dragon, the force for good in the box, he is well detailed, a nice paint job, and I love the pose, he's a very different style to the other dragons, so they all look different.

Then we have the  Red Dragon Balagos, the best painted in the box I think, and they are all good.
His paint job is great, and his pose is agrresive, as he is as well.
His wings look tattered like he has seen many fights
The models in this pack are great, and big!
Then we have the main rulebook, the art is fantastic, but then D&D has many years of great artwork to go through.  The book is 40 pages long, full colour with plenty of guides, illustrations and a campaign to play out of the box with the figures included.
Things are broken down nicely, and explained thoroughly so its a very easy to use book.
Plenty of diagrams explain all you need to know, showing you arcs of fire, and how the actions work.
It takes you through all the steps of a turn in order.
and on the back is a quick reference guide containing the basics.
So what do I think of it?  If I am honest, I really like it, its a familiar style of game, but with nice new twists in the way that actions work, for example now with the feint move (barrel roll or Sensor echo) you can do it but it will exhaust you.  Some creatures can pivot on the spot, which makes sense for the theme.  The fact there are levels of height, flying, swooping and ground.  Ranged attacks can hit any height, flying can only hit flying in melee, swooping can hit and be hit by ground troops melee and flying melee.  It adds to the theme really well of creatures soaring and diving to smash though enemies, wizards blasting spells, giants stomping across the field.
The fact each pack comes with a themed story adventure that can be a one off, or link together.  The models can be used for multiple purposes, and of course you can even roleplay using D&D then battle it out with attack wing.

Its a great system and the fact that if you get the Mega Bundle you get so much more to expand it for a bargain price makes this worth a look. Head here to find your local store and ask them about picking up the Mega Bundle.  If your store do not have it, tell the to contact Esdevium Games and they can get it there.