Hero Quest review
Originally released by Milton Bradley and Games Workshop in 1990, Hero Quest
(also sometimes written HeroQuest
) was a boardgame set in the Warhammer universe, and could be played by 2-5 people. Many people at the time referred to it as "D&D Lite", meaning that the game captured the essence of Dungeons and Dragons, while keeping the rules required to play relatively simple. The goal of the game is for the heroes to finish the dungeon and complete objectives, or die trying.
Keeping with the "Lite" aspect of classic Dungeons & Dragons, HeroQuest is played with at least 2 players and up to 5, with one player assuming the role of the gamemaster, or evil wizard. The other players choose between classic archetypes like the Barbarian, Elf, Dwarf, and Wizard, each with specific strengths and weaknesses.
: This character is all about melee damage and has good defense, but cannot cast spells.
: This character is skilled in melee (but not as good as the Barbarian) and can also cast spells from one element.
: The Dwarf is the toughest of the bunch, but cannot cast spells. His attack is on par with the Elf, but the Dwarf has the unique ability to disarm traps without the use of a special disarming kit that needs to be purchased.
: The Wizard is very weak in melee, but compensates by being able to use the most magic of all the characters.
The game originally stood out to me because it was not a single isolated board game. It is a game system
, with its own expansion packs, additional content, and quests. Additionally, it featured many 3-dimensional game play elements to provide a greater feeling of immersion. These include doorways, creatures, furniture, and of course, the characters themselves.
Combat is handled by use of special 6-sided die. These die each feature 3 skulls, 2 hero shields and 1 monster face. Each character involved in combat rolls a certain number of hit dice. Attackers must receive more skulls than the defender rolls shields, with the exception being that the evil wizard character must roll monster faces as his defense.
Spells are cast by the Elf and Wizard characters, as well as certain special monster characters. The spells can be generally categorized as offensive, defensive, or passive.
remains to this day a fun and engaging game to play with a couple friends when there's nothing better to do. I especially love the props that it comes with - they make great props to use in my D&D games. :)
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