|Pretty game, no?|
Widowers Wood, by Privateer Press, follows the adventures of Olo, Agata, Skarg, and Vaskis (plus kickstarter extras Victor Pendrake, Lanyssa Ryssyl, and wolf team Crede & Jagger) as they seek to prevent the mad ritual of a crazy, water fearing Gatorman witch doctor as he tries to unleash unspeakable evil upon the swamps. The Widower's Wood is a small stretch of marshy wilderness outside the walls of Corvis, which harbors all manner of creature, from simple bog trogs to wild Tatzelworms, not to mention Gatormen, Croaks, and tribes of Farrow.
There are four main characters and three kickstarter characters in Widowers Wood. You can interchange them as you please, but just to get the feel for the game we have decided to begin by using the main four. Let's take a look at them.
Chapter One: It Takes A Village
The four heroes decided to pay a visit to Rasheldonak's former village in an attempt to find where the Witch Doctor has gone. Long ago, the Gatorman village cast the Witch Doctor out due to his mental instability and the strange aversion to water that plagues him. However, it's the best chance they have of tracking him down. As they enter the village, they are ambushed by bog trogs, herded by two Gatorman brutes. Knowing that Trogs are often the unwilling pawns of the Gators, the heroes must try to kill off the Gator, and hope that the grateful Trogs will be able to give them information.
|Chapter one set up and ready to go|
Game turns -
Each round begins by turning over a card from the Event Deck. The Event cards are special conditions for what the environment is each round as our heroes battle through the swamp. For example, the Ominous Silence card has no special effects, while the Ripples in the Water card spawns a deadly enemy near the hero who rolls worst. Then, each player takes their turn.
|Round 1, GO!|
Player turn -
There are three parts to a player turn. First, at the start of EVERY player's turn, they spawn a villain by a dice roll that determines type of villain and spawn site. EVERY TIME!!! That means in a four player game, villains spawn FOUR TIMES A ROUND!!! At the beginning, it's not that bad, but believe me, it gets out of control very quickly!!! And if you run out of monsters to spawn, then the monsters get an extra activation... ugh!
|Villains waiting in the wings|
After the spawn, it's the hero's turn. To start, movement! It's a little different from a standard Hordes game... for instance, there is no "run" movement. You can walk one space, or charge two, but only if there is a target you can reach. After movement, there is the action phase. This ranges from attempting a stat challenge, making an attack, using feat cards to make some superhuman, epic move... you know, the good stuff! Then, you draw an extra feat card if you have less than three in your hand, and end with .... VILLAIN ACTIVATION!!! Dum dum DUM!! Because they haven't have enough chances to ruin our plans!
|Event deck, character sheets, Villain actions, and the villan reserve|
|Vaskis, are you napping? GET UP!!!|
|Fill up that clock!|
Agata used her restorative potion on Vaskis to get him back into the fight, and we made a bit more of an effort to get rid of the mist speakers. Luckily, one of the Gatormen spawned right next to Agata, who managed to take care of it using a combination of her Great Strength powers and feat cards! However, the other Gatorman was a bit more of a problem. It gave Skarg a bit of a beating, and we wasted a few more precious rounds trying to seal the deal...
|Agata chops up some Gator for lunch.|
|Skarg becomes a Gatorman chew toy.|
|Piggy Power! Agata saves the day!|
This is a great game! We learned a lot, and the next chapter should go a little bit more smoothly. Big lessons this time... don't leave support characters by themselves, and don't forget how many rounds you have to wrap up the victory. We spent a while after the game was done looking at the abilities that we could buy with the huge pile of XP we accumulated, so we'll have a little more control over our next adventure into the Widower's Wood.
|Look at all that XP!|