Feb 4, 2015

[Games] Munckin Adventure Time

Even before we bought a copy of Munchkin Panic, we picked up a copy of the tie-in version of Munchkin, this being Munchkin Adventure Time. And while I'm not exactly the world's biggest fan of this particular card game, I do go a little nuts over Adventure Time. And so the decision to get this game was not a difficult one.

Munchkin Adventure Time is a wee bit more than a reskin of the classic Munchkin game, which is a bit of a relief since they developers could have been really lazy with this. Instead, we get a pretty fun game experience that feels scaled a little better for younger players and yet feels just as ruthless for older ones. It's just one of those kinds of games.

And the game is a wonderful celebration of the cartoon series given the many, many, many character that they dug up for the game. You don't necessarily have to be an Adventure Time fan to enjoy this game, but man it does make a heck of a world of difference in terms of how much this game will make you squee in case you are one.

Munchkin Adventure Time is a card game in the Munchkin family developed by Steve Jackson but obviously with the flavor of Adventure Time. The game supports 3-6 players in that classic race to get your character to Level 10.

Like the core Munchkin game, players encounter challenges by "kicking down the door" and resolving the encounter card you draw. You fight monsters by having total attack power greater than the creature's level where your attack is determined by your level and your various items and equipment that make you stronger. Should you defeat the monster, you go up by a level and you draw treasure cards based on the reward stated on the card.  If you don't draw a monster you can then choose to fight a monster from your hand or just draw the top card of the encounter deck.

One of the main differences of the game other than the types of monsters you face involves the one of 8 possible character cards that represent who you are in the game. These are different from the old Race and Class cards that we had in the core game. Character Cards are literally folks from the TV show that have special powers that apply to you throughout the game. And given the existence of the Fionna and Cake alternate universe of Aaa, each card has male and female versions of all characters, so you can keep track of your gender that way. By default you choose the gender which aligns to your identity now (whether male or female) unless you get BMO, who of course has no gender.

Character powers make all the difference in the game and certainly augment your skills right out of the gate. For example, a player who is playing Finn / Fionna gets a +2 bonus when fighting monsters of Level 10 or higher. Lumpy Space Princess / Prince on the other hand gets a +2 bonus when fighting a monster alone. Thus depending on your chosen character and your initial hand of 4 door cards and 4 treasure cards, you're in a good position to fight some moderately high level monsters even without asking for help.

One quirk though is that the Classes in the game seem really weird compared to other Munchkin games. Thus far, I find myself aiming for a Class only to be able to use items associated with the Class  versus the Class abilities themselves. The Hero class is pretty easy since he gets bonuses when helping other players. Wizards have some pretty powerful items. Royalty gains strength the more Allies they have and they're the only ones who can have multiple Allies. Musicians confuse me, but at least you get to use Marceline's Axe if you happen to draw it. But really, character powers tend to be more helpful versus Class abilities.

Now the early game goes by pretty fast compared to other Munchkin games given the relative ease of defeating monsters given all the bonuses you get between Treasure cards and your character abilities. And the number of one-time use items can get pretty crazy and in every game we've played thus far, it quickly accelerates to that stalemate point when everyone is at Level 8 or 9 and every attempt to get to Level 10 results in a ridiculous exchange of curses and one-shot items against the offending player. It gets pretty brutal, but on the whole it's still fun.

The unmistakable Adventure Time feel of the game goes beyond the card art. The card abilities themselves tie into the game rather well whether we're talking about the negative abilities of the monsters or the quirks of your Treasure cards. And yes, the waving snail is hidden in different cards in the game and finding him can result in benefits for you. BMO has no gender and thus all the gender-related powers don't work with or against BMO. And of course a lot of debates come up whether or not a monster has something red in their card art in order for a Marceline / Marshall Lee to get a bonus. It's all great fun.

Munchkin Adventure Time is officially my favorite version of the game with Space Munchkin coming in second. The games are a little ruthless, but the silly nature of the cards helps diffuse some of the stress related to that. Thus the game gets 4 clever monster powers out of a possible 5.

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