Attacking Aliens, Rampaging Lizards, Giant Robots, Mutant Bugs, and Ferocious Gorillas: this game has them all! King of Tokyo is a European style game that combines a board game, a dice game and a card game. You play as one of the aforementioned monsters whose main goals are to destroy Tokyo and battle other monsters in order to become the one and only King of Tokyo!
The game comes with a clear & colorful rulebook, a game board, 6 monsters each with their own control boards with spinning wheels to keep track of damage and victory points, 6 cardboard monster figures with plastic stands, 8 dice to roll each turn, 66 cards you can purchase to give your monster special abilities, 50 tiny plastic cube energy tokens, and 28 round cardboard card effect tokens.
All of the pieces are sturdy and well designed. The energy tokens are a choking hazard and very tiny and easily lost. But, we found that this problem can be solved by giving players a tiny bowl to store them in during gameplay.
Gameplay can be fairly complex. There are 4 steps involved in each turn, and the game requires basic reading and an understanding of simple strategy. We think the recommended age range is spot on.
At the beginning of the turn, each player rolls six dice. The dice show the following symbols: numbers 1, 2, or 3 (representing Victory Points that can be earned), a lightning bolt (representing Energy that can be earned), a heart (representing Healing), and a claw (representing Attack). The player with the most Attack dice goes first (the fiercest).
The player then starts the turn by rolling 6 dice. Over three successive rolls, the player can which dice to keep or discard in order to advance.
Each turn consists of 4 steps: rolling and re-rolling the dice, resolving the dice, buying cards and using their effects, and the end of turn decision.
The fiercest player will occupy Tokyo, and earn extra victory points, but that player can’t heal and must face all the other monsters alone! When you add in cards that can have a permanent or temporary effect, like growing a second head, body armor, nova death ray, etc., you get a VERY exciting game.
In order to win the game, one must either destroy Tokyo by accumulating 20 victory points, or be the only surviving monster once the fighting has ended.
Family Game Assessment
This game fits so perfectly into our household of comic and cartoon obsessed boys, that it has eclipsed all other games that we own. My oldest son LOVES it, and often chooses this game when he has friends over. He tends to play for Attack and cool card abilities, while his more cautious friends play for Victory Points. My 5 year old was begging to try, and we gave it a few attempts, but he got bored very quickly. While he liked to roll the dice, the strategy and steps in each round frustrated him and he gave up playing, but stayed to watch.
What do you think? Sound off in the comments and let us know your thoughts!
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