Spotlight– Thwarted! by Vile Genius Games

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Fun At Dice Tower Con

itsoverIt’s been about two weeks since Dice Tower Con, and I can now reflect a little on my time there. Once again, the good folks who run the show, and all the volunteers, did a great job. Thanks to everyone behind the curtains, attendees got to game and have a good time for an amazing week. Unfortunately for me, I was sick like 75% of the time, and the other 25% was spent on a mixture of volunteering and short bursts of gaming. Needless to say, I did not get the most out of my time at Dice Tower Con. However, I did get to meet some awesome designers, players, and the like.

During a rare opportunity, I got a chance to actually play some games. On Saturday of the con, my friends and I got a chance to play Thwarted!, a game designed by Lloyd Kochinka (who was actually there and was nice enough to teach us the game) and published by Vile Genius Games. They just launched on Kickstarter last week and I felt that the game was worthy of a little spotlight love.

A Guide To Thwarting Your Enemies

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Feline Faux. Photo Credit Vile Genius Games Facebook page

Standard villain monologue— I am the sacred leopard… My true potential has finally been unleashed! With all this new power I will prevail! Never again will I be rivaled. My nemesis, White Leopard, doesn’t stand a chance against me now. She and the rest of those ninjutsu fools will pay for all they have done, and I will be the most powerful villain this city has ever seen! My name is… Feline Faux!

In Thwarted! Players take on the role of a villain whose powers have recently become magnified by some unknown source. Now that they have all this extra power, they are hitting the city with great force. The heroes defending the city are the first targets… But villains being villains, they don’t like when their peers get the best of them. Thwarted! is a “take that” game, where the super villains, try to take down the most heroes and stop their villainous peers from doing the same.

This is a quick and easy game for 3-5 players. On their turn each player will draw a card, then play power cards and/or attack a hero. Attacking heroes, or playing abilities to harm your fellow super villains, may leave you blocked or thwarted. Other players have the opportunity to stop you from attacking or performing actions. Thwarting will stop an action (a Thwart card can thwart another thwart card) and blocking will stop an attack on a hero (block cards can be thwarted).  At the end of their turn players will draw another card. Play will continue like this until either the draw deck has run out or if there are no more super heroes left in the city. Players then add up the points on their defeated heroes, and the person with the most points is declared the winner.

The guys over at Just Got Played did a really great, short overview of the game play, so I figured I’d add it in.

What’s In The Box/ Pledge Levels

I’ve decided to combine these two sections, since most of the pledge levels add in a bunch of extras to the base game, as the amount of your pledge increases. (Let me know if you like this structure better in the comments below– Thanks!)

-Pledge $1: Thank You For Support

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Basic edition contents. Photo Credit: Thwarted! Kickstarter campaign page

-Pledge $15: Thwarted For One

  • 20 Hero cards
  • 100 Power cards
  • 5 Villain aide cards
  • 5 Promo cards
  • 1 Player marker standee
  • Game box
    • 6in x 4in x 1.25in
  • All stretch goals

-Pledge $25: Villain Powers Activate

  • Everything in Thwarted For One, plus:
    • 10 Villain persona cards
      • Each with their own rival hero
      • Each with their own villainous special power
    • 10 Hero buff cards
    • The Power Pack 25 card expansion pack
    • A bigger game box instead of the base one
      • 14in x 8.5in x 3in

-Pledge $30: Big Box of Villainy

  • Everything in Villain Powers Activate, plus:
    • 5 Player mats on card stock
    • 1 City game mat on card stock

-Pledge $40: Padded Box of Villainy

  • Everything in Big Box of Villainy, plus:
    • 5 Neoprene player mats (instead of card stock)
    • 1 Neoprene city game mat (instead of card stock)
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Kickstarter Promo Cards. Photo Credit: Thwarted! Kickstarter campaign page

Pledge $50: Totally Evil Collection

-Pledge $50: Platinum Case of Villainy

  • Everything in Padded Box of Villainy, plus:
    • The game box will be signed and numbered
    • Only 100 available

-Pledge $250: Agent of Doom

  • Everything in Platinum Case of Villainy, plus:
    • You can get your likeness and name in the game as a custom villain
      • You will get the original custom sketch of your Villain and all stretch goals.(We reserve the right to approve names and powers of Villains.)

-Pledge $5000: Vile Genius Games for Life

  • You will receive every new release by Vile Genius Games for life
    • Only one spot available

If you really want to get the most out of the game, I would consider going for the $30 pledge level. Having the villain character cards gives more depth to the game’s theme, and the city and player mats are a great addition and an easy way to keep your villain area organized. I prefer the play mats, as I have tried the game with and without them, but they are not necessary to enjoy the game. If the play mats don’t interest you, the $25 level is the way to go.

fb6362dbbee81a150a5321dc88535fce_originalStretch Goals

There are currently 2 stretch goals in addition to the initial funding goal. I will list them below, and any that have been reached will have a purple diamond next to it. If more stretch goals are added, I will put those in as well.

  • $4,500: Funding goal
  • $7,500: Double the KS promo cards
  • $10,000: 5 New hero debuff cards

Vile Genius Games

55919d_6a91eb76b175438c8dfc0881f3a49895.pngVile Genius Games is a small indie publishing company run by Mark Sierens, V. Brad Culbertson, and Manny Aguilera. After playing games and throwing around game ideas for years, the three decided to put their heads together to start producing and publishing their own games. Their publications already include Evil Genius: Deathray and Tales from the Taverns: Legends of Goblins Past.  If you’d like to keep up with the guys from Vile Genius, you can check them out on Facebook and Twitter.

Thwarted! will be Lloyd Kochinka’s first game, but hopefully not his last. Having had the chance to meet him in person, he is a super nice guy and a pleasure to work with. Keep an eye out for this guy, I hear he is already working on his next game.

Final Thoughts

Having gotten a chance to play Thwarted!, I can say that this is a pretty solid game. Not necessarily the best for me, because I’m such a passive player, but for people who really love the “take that” element, this game fits the bill. I am definitely willing to play and despite my play style, I am still able to find the game fun and engaging. This is an easy game to learn and should be easy to teach to any kind of gamer.

I’m really looking forward to seeing the full product for this game, and to seeing the rest of the finished art. The copy we played at the con was slightly truncated to just give a taste of the game and some of the art was unfinished. I believe all the art is now finalised. It’s been really cool following Lloyd on Facebook, because he has been posting art progression pictures, showing the evolution of his original art ideas to what the artist was able to turn those ideas into. It’s pretty sweet.

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One of the Evolution of Art pictures. Photo Credit: Lloyd Kochinka’s Facebook page.

As of right now, the campaign is funded and there are 22 days left to get a copy of the game.

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Was this helpful to you? What other information would you like to have seen? Have suggestions for future Spotlights? Would you like me to do a review/preview? Please leave a comment below, or head over to my contact page to send me an email, tweet, or Facebook message. Thanks for reading!:)

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