EXCERPTS FROM THE FALL 1999 GA REPORT
Reviewed by Dave Rapp
BRAWL (Cheapass Games; $6.95 per deck)
Brawl is the latest release from James Earnest and Cheapass Games. Brawl’s production values are higher than most Cheapass products. Most noticeably, the game is in full color and doesn’t come in an envelope! Each Brawl deck is illustrated with anime-inspired, vibrant art by Ryan Kinnaird. There are six different fighter decks to choose from. Inside each deck, you’ll find a folded instruction sheet and 35 cards. Games can be played with two to five players and each player needs his own deck.
The goal of the game is to win control of bases by pummeling your opponent(s). Games begin with two bases placed between the players. Players can place cards on either their end or their opponents’ end of a base. Control of a base goes to the player with the highest number of “Hits” on their end of a base. Hits are the most prevalent card type in each fighter’s deck and come in three colors: red, blue and green. When a hit is placed on the end of a base, it can only be followed by hits of the same color…. Players also have other cards to help them outmaneuver their opponents.
Color specific “Block” cards prevent the placement of further hits onto one side of a base. “Press” cards void blocks. “Hit-2” cards pack quite a punch, counting as two hits. “Clear” cards allow players to remove an entire base and all attached cards! Extra “Base” card allow player to set up new bases to control…Each player also have three “Freeze” cards which are always placed on to the bottom of the deck after shuffling. Freezes end the placement of further cards onto a base. When all bases in play are frozen, the game ends. The winner is the player controlling the most bases.
What makes the game elegant are the two different modes of play. In training mode, players take turns playing the top card from either their draw deck or discard stack onto the play area. This allows a player to strategically control the ebb and flow of their card inventory while setting up devastating chains of attacks and “clears”. In the real-time tournament mode, players place cards simultaneously instead of taking turns! A fast player can get cards onto bases rapidly but a slower player may be able to block and clear bases at will, making these games incredibly intense as well as incredibly quick – real time games usually last less than a minute. – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Dave Rapp
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Fall 1999 GA Report Articles