So I snagged the "Limited Edition" of this sweet card game a while back (sometime early last year, IIRC) and only got to play a couple times before I packed it up in a moving box (we moved to a new house). At any rate, this is a very cool card game that has some expansion packs/decks and some very cool designer cards. I have the "Shade the Trickster" card, designed by Gary Gygax, himself. Here's that card:
Oh and here's a fave of mine...wonder why? Oh yeah, cuz I like vampires...right? RIGHT?!?!?
Ok, well enough of the "goodies"...how does it play? Very funly (yes, I just made that word up).
All seriousness aside, it's a very fast play, and you can dork around solo or bring along up to 3 friends. It's an every hero for themselves "dungeon crawl" though, so leave the teamwork at the portcullis.
Basically you have 4 stock heroes to choose from, a deck of dungeon cards (loot, baddies, traps, etc), a pair of d6s, and if you bought the Limited Edition version you get an extra card. In fact if you snagged any of the designer cards, you obviously have those to use as well.
So pick your hero, then go hunt down the Vamp, Count Lordrac! BTW, (per usual) you'll need a "stake" to defeat him. For heroes, you have this crew to choose from:
Princess Aeria - can unlock a locked door Izgar the Goblin - can pass any collapsed area Lalliard the Wizard - can open any Magically Locked Portal Macal the Swordsman - can jump past any Failing Floor
You draw cards and act on those as needed. If you encounter a baddie, battle ensues. It's basically a roll-off, but you can use items to help, including your weapon.
If you defeat the baddie, you get some loot (weapon, locked chest, key, etc). You can also find mad lootz just by drawing them as cards. You can equip an item to use in your next battle, or use healing potions, etc.
You may also draw a card resulting in a trap...yikes!
Baddies include skellies, zombies, ghasts, etc (undead), along with 3 vampire brides ("ambushes!" which prevent you from running away from their massive undead cleavage... err... badness), and then the big boy himself, Count Lordrac. As noted above you will need a stake to beat him for real-realz. If you defeat him without a stake, he gets shuffled back into the deck, and you're back on the trail to find him again (preferably this time with a stake).
Anyway, I won't go all into the rules here, mainly because they are posted on various sites, including the main product site and it's forums, and frankly because it's been a while since I played it and I'd hate to botch it up too much in a simple post like this.
The artwork is somewhat reminiscent of "back in '81" (or thereabouts), and old timers will most likely dig it. I sure do. Here's a shot (from the main site) of some other cards in the deck:
Back when I got mine, there was really only the main Castle Deck (LE) and a few of the designer cards (Gygax, Ward, Clark). I think I paid $20 or so for my stash...not bad. I'd like to get some more of the extras, but first I think I'll try to find my lowly basic set (Castle Deck), somewhere in one of those boxes in the basement.
Ugh, I hate the after-move effect, but it can lead to some serious dungeon crawling treasure finding on it's own. Heck, just yesterday I looted my old OD&D OCE white box (little brown books) set down in those basement depths of doom! What will I find the next trip down there? Stay tuned...