Talisman Batman: Super Villains Edition

Talisman Batman

Have you ever wanted to take on the role of your favorite villains from Gotham? In Talisman Batman: Super Villains Edition you can!

USAOpoly brings us a new take on the classic game Talisman with Talisman Batman. Having never played a Talisman game I didn’t know what to expect but loving Batman’s rogues I knew that this game would be right up my alley so when The Op Games offered me a review copy I jumped at the chance.

The goal of the game is to play as one of the various villains (what game let’s you do this, honestly?) and sneak your way through Arkham Asylum until you reach the security tower. Finding the exit isn’t simply the end though, you must also face down the greatest detective himself- Batman! Each turn your villain performs two actions, movement and encounters. In terms of movement your dice determine what happens and as always a roll of 1 is a failure, meaning Batman is moving as well. When you finish your movement you must resolve your encounter with the space you are on. Encounters will vary based on the space itself or if you share that space with either another player of Batman himself.

I loved the theme of the game and was honestly surprised there wasn’t an option where you could have someone play as Batman himself. Doing a larger group would have been quite fun if one person was playing the bat and everyone else had to either avoid him, work with each other to escape or face him directly. The mechanics worked well for the game and having to roll for your movement (instead of a default setting) added some stress inducing variables that made for some tense moments. If you’ve ever wanted to play the villain this game is a must for you but leaves a bit to be desired for those uninterested in the role.

Codenames Harry Potter from USAOpoly.

Codenames Harry Potter

Based on the original by Vlaada Chvatil, Codenames is back with Codenames Harry Potter from USAOpoly.

USAOpoly continues to prove they are the masters locking down the best intellectual properties like Marvel, Disney and even Harry Potter with Codenames Harry Potter. This of course is not their first foray into the magical world of Harry Potter but it is the second one we’ve had the pleasure of trying out.

Visually the game has top quality cards using hires images from the various movies but at a glance the game looks more like a version of Memory. The concept is that as operatives of the Order of the Phoenix you must use clue or “Codenames” to lead your teammates to tracking down the hidden members of the Order. This sounds rather easy but you must do it while avoiding the Death Eaters in the field. As time turner cards are revealed you get closer to running out of time. This puts a bit more urgency in the gameplay and the need to decipher the coded messages more imperative.

The simplicity of the game is quite brilliant in that the game is limited in only how creative you are in creating and deciphering the clues. The game is typically quickly played, the first game taking about 30-45 minutes and followup games closer to the 15-20 minute mark. If you are looking for a quick game that features some of your favorite Harry Potter characters then this is a must purchase for you.

Hogwarts Battle Card Game Review

Hogwarts Battle

Players take the role of their favorite Hogwarts heroes in the Hogwarts Battle Cooperative Deck Building Game from USAopoly!

In Hogwarts Battle players work together fighting against increasing odds but with the help of your expanding decks of spells you will be able to fight and eventually defeat them. The fine folks at USAopoly supplies us with our review copy of this game (along with others) and we let our son choose which we played first. So one thing became apparent early on in the game- the more players you have the easier the fight will be. Makes sense because anytime you have a set number of enemies and increase the number of people fighting them you usually will have an easier time of it.

Hogwarts Battle

We went around the table adding cards to our individual pools of magic spells in order to quickly get an upper hand against Draco Malfoy, Crabbe & Goyle and eventually Professor Quirrell.

I’m notorious for misreading rules the first few times I go over them so to save time I asked my wife to give them a quick read and we were able to jump right into the game within only a couple minutes. The rule book is full color and well written and you’d have to be a fool to misunderstand them. Somehow I did and she straightened it out quickly.

Hogwarts Battle

The first stage of the game took about forty five minutes total, including multiple readings of the rules and even a check of them again later on. In our house the toughest critics are the kids and after completing the first stage Merrick immediately asked if we could do the second stage tomorrow. This game is a definite keeper and I think this image says all you need to know about whether or not you should get this for the Harry Potter fan in your life.