Gather round, fellow adventurers and ale aficionados! Today, we’re diving into the mystical lands of Barcadia, where the monsters are tough, but the drinks are tougher. Pull up a chair if you’re parched for fun and thirsty for victory. You’re in for a treat with “Heroes of Barcadia the game where your drink isn’t just a drink—it’s your lifeline.

Rollacrit: Creators of the Game

Once upon a time, in the hallowed halls of ThinkGeek, a group of geek culture aficionados dreamed of crafting experiences that could blend their love for gaming, humor, and beverages. Out of this merry band of creators, Rollacrit was born, a company with a knack for turning whimsical ideas into tabletop triumphs. With a legacy of making fans chuckle, gasp, and cheers, it was only natural for them to take a wild, fermenting concept and distill it into the game we’re raising our glasses to today: Heroes of Barcadia.

Heroes of Barcadia: What’s the Gist?

A Quest Born from an April Fools’ Joke

Believe it or not, the quest into Barcadia didn’t start with a map but with a mild misdirection. What was once an April Fools’ joke, a cheeky nod to gamers and their well-documented love for drinks, gradually bubbled into reality. The concept was simple yet brilliant: marry the sociable fun of drinking games with the strategic depth of a tabletop adventure. And like the best jokes, it caught on until the line between fantasy and reality blurred into the happiest of mediums. Rollacrit packaged it in a full adventure and created a Health Bar Straw Set, just so your regular sips would feel more like health potions. 


Tile Names!

Drink + Play = Fun?

Now, you might wonder, “How exactly does one play a game where your drink is your health bar?” The answer is with joyous caution. As you traverse the treacherous dungeons of Barcadia, battling foes and uncovering loot, your literal drink serves as your hero’s health. Sip too little, and you might miss out on courage points; sip too much, and you risk a premature exit from the game (or the party). It’s a game that tests not just your strategy or luck but your ability to hold your liquor—magically turning the tables into a land where social butterflies and strategic masterminds clash in a toast. The random, drink-themed dungeon dwellers will dish out the actual damage, and that damage will require you to drink from your character-themed cup. Each character will have abilities and potential boosts depending on their life bar. 

Boards, Beasts, and Brews

But what’s a hero without a quest? Barcadia unfolds on a board of randomly arranged tiles, ensuring no two adventures are alike. One moment, you could be facing down a dreaded Beerholder, nursing your drink with a wary eye on its many-eyed gaze. The next, you’re stumbling upon a treasure trove that could turn the tides of battle. The element of surprise keeps each game fresh and every sip filled with anticipation. The art design was very well thought out, as it is simplistic and approachable but also very readable and fresh. It will quench your thirst for beer puns, that is for sure!

Final Round: Why You Should Venture to Barcadia

“Heroes of Barcadia” is more than just a game; it’s an excuse to gather old friends and make new ones under camaraderie and light-hearted competition. Whether you’re a seasoned gamer looking for a new frontier to conquer or just someone who enjoys a good drink with great company, Barcadia welcomes you. So, what say you? Ready to brave the dungeons of Barcadia, where your prowess is measured not just by the dice roll but by the depth of your drink? Gather your party, pour your favorite beverage, and let’s make some legendary memories—one sip at a time. Remember, adventures in Barcadia are best shared. So, grab a friend or five, and dive into the fun. Because in the world of Barcadia, everyone’s a hero, and every drink tells a story.

Until our paths cross in the taverns of Barcadia, my fellow heroes, cheers and good luck!

Special Considerations: 

Best time to play?

When you build a more extensive collection of board games,  you begin to find that you may start to have a lot of the same or similar style games. Though random tiles dungeon crawlers may exist, nothing looks and feels this way. Barcadia removed much of the concern about success in the game, as the health bar is something your players can control. Do they want to quit?  Drink up!

Do they want to continue playing? Refill the cup! The rules may not be written around these behaviors, but you can feel the flexibility in its design. 

What about my kids? 

Our usual disclaimer applies: You know your kids and your family better than we do.

There may be a lot of alcohol-themed characters, themes, and presentations in the game, but there is no reason you couldn’t play this game with water, juice, soda, or whatever else you may choose. The art is also very friendly for any age. It is not mature or violent at all. This gives this game extra opportunities to become a family game that grows in “pickupability” (making the game the option to be selected to be played). So,  if you have younger heroes, have them grab a cup, and Rollacrit has made a game they can also enjoy.

Review written by Stephen Haberman
A copy of the game was provided for review purposes.

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