Gen Con 2018: Vault of Dragons

it’s yawning because of all the lame attempts adventurers have made trying to bust in

Would you like some D&D in your board game? Vault of Dragons has you building up an adventuring party so you can make an excursion into the famed and titular Vault of Dragons.

You’ll need to recruit rogues, wizards, and fighters, but you’ll also need to collect powerful armor, weapons, and magic items if you’re going to survive. You’ll use actions to recruit new adventurers, send them around the town and collect the various resources there, and if you “control” a location at the end of a round you get an additional bonus. That also means you can fight (both NPCs and other players) in hopes to get the best stuff and to slow other players down.

Me and my army!

Each adventurer type rolls a different die in combat, and it’s a fairly simple “who rolls highest wins” although you don’t necessarily kill anyone, you just push them out of the location. Unless you have rogues, which can kill, but aren’t otherwise good at fighting. Wizards are powerful but expensive, and Fighters are cheap (and thus expendable). Fortunately, the items you collect can help you manipulate your dice, gain bonuses, or otherwise help your team succeed.

Eventually you’ll need to delve into the vault itself, which entails somewhat of a push-your-luck mechanism to overcome the challenges. Obviously the faster you can get in there and get the stuff, the better, since it’s a race to the finish line. But if you jump in too soon, you might not be ready to make it to the end of the line, and you’ll end up running back out to restock on gear and adventurers after your party gets crushed or you hit a dead end you can’t overcome.

It’s hard to judge a game with only a few rounds of play, but it looks like it could provide a nice little taste of DnD without requiring hours of play or complex rules. I do worry that it could run into the ground if players keep failing in the vault and losing a bunch of stuff and having to start over. As long as the game doesn’t last too long or run into dead ends, it could be a lot of fun.

Futurewolfie loves epic games, space, and epic games set in space. You'll find him rolling fistfuls of dice, reveling in thematic goodness, and giving Farmerlenny a hard time for liking boring stuff.

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