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Dragonwood™

Gamewright

Age: 8 years and up

MSRP (CAD): $17.99

MSRP (USD): $14.99

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EDITOR'S REVIEW

Very popular with our testing families who loved the richly illustrated fantasy theme as much as the game play itself. Especially popular was the variety of choices players have to earn victory points, and in particular whether to go for lots of easy wins or build you deck to tackle the big challenges. It's very easy to achieve success in this game, which gives the game its broad play appeal as well as making it quicker to play. And the beauty is that as kids get older and want an edgier game, giving the mechanics a few house rule twists can make the game more challenging and extend the appeal of the game right through the teens. Here are a few suggestions that we've tried:

1. Instead of allowing players to keep all enhancements they win, limit both the ownership and use of enhancements to having a maximum of 2-3 per player at any one time, and using only one per attack.

2. Make the penalty for a failed attack losing all cards used for the attack, rather than just one card of the players choice, which under the current rules could even be an unneeded card from your hand. 

3. Make all enhancements "one use" cards, to be discarded back into the Dragonwood deck until they are won again.

4. These adapted rules will likely make the game longer, so to speed it up we suggest that instead of requiring players to choose to either reload or attack, allow a two-part turn where they can both reload and then (optionally) choose to attack - or perhaps do a second reload instead.

WHAT THE KIDS SAY

Mia

12

It's really fun to play and my whole family can play together. I like that there are little cards that help you remember how the Stomp, Scream or Strike are, there are 2 of those little reminders and there is a big one with pictures, so my little brother who doesn't read [English] well can understand. I don't understand why certain cards have a game value of 2 points, but they need a higher score to win than another card with a value of 2 points.

Lydia

9

I enjoyed playing this game with my friends at the cottage. It's not too long and the rules are interesting. I like adventure board games and dragons.

Kai

11

It's really fun to play, I like dragons and I like that the instrucitons are also pictures so I can easily remember when I need to win. I like that with the 3 different ways to attack I can try for the one with the least points. My favorite is the Stomp, you need less points.

Genevieve

15

It's really a fun family game, from 2-6 even though it says 2-4 on the box there is no reason not to play 6 people. The instructions seem a little more complicated than the acutal game, we quickly became addicted and we play a few games everyday. If we want the game to play a little longer we don't try to win over the dragon, unless I am winning, then I totally try to get the dragon!

Sebastien

13

I love the dragon theme and the dice are a cool color, I like the name on the cards, like Wild boar, siggling goblin, I like the special cards like the charmed potion, and even if the box says only a max of 4 people can play, we played with 6 people and my brother was super aggravating, but I still won.

Kyle

8

I like that there are 3 different ways to attack the creatures and that the game has different combinations of cards to do different attacks. The game was easy for me to learn. I found it easier to get lots of little creatures then get the big dragons as it was hard to save up enough cards. I like when I get special stuff you can use to make your attacks stronger and I like the big dragons. I like the picture of the wizard on the cards.

WHAT ADULTS THINK

Rebecca Y.

Parent

Wow! I'm shocked at how much my kids have been enjoying this game. Ezra (M7) has taught friends how to play and has gotten numerous kids playing. It's a strategic twist to rummy and the kids love the risk of trying to capture the different cards. It's a winner!

Marta W.

Our family enjoyed the game and the time we spend together playing it. It is interesting and involved. Fantasy and adventure themes appeal to my child's (F9) imagination which makes it even more enjoyable to play. The recommended age could be lowered as it is easy to play. The average time play was 20 minutes. We played a couple of times a day. You collect sets of cards to earn dice, which you then use to roll against your foes. Stomp on some ants, scream at a troll, or strike the orange dragon with a magical silver sword. You have to choose your strategy carefully because the landscape of Dragonwood is always changing. Only the bravest will overcome the odds to become victorious. The game comes in a neat little box with colorful set of adventure fantasy type of cards and a set of vintage looking dices. The instructions need a little improvement as it took as a couple of tries before we figured out the game properly. Dice rolling, hand management, strategy skills and planning are the educational values one will get out of playing this boardgame.

Daniel H.

It is a game that the whole family can play together and it is easy to learn. It is the right lenght of time to play, less than 20 min and the kids learn about probabilities when they have to calculate the score they need and who many dice they need to acheive this score.

Tara R.

With a retail price point under $20, this is going to be my new favourite birthday party gift. High production values - mature, but not too scary imagery, the boys (7 & 9) will be proud to give this game to a friend. Some strategy required, basic math, and fun probability challenges, there's also great play value here, with kids and adults alike enjoying this quick-to-play game. Note: When we started we played 3 rounds of this game before we realized that the dice only go to 4, not 6 (which makes a HUGE difference in outcomes!). After school today, I tried to get the kids to go outside & play in the sunshine, and they refused, wanting to play another round of Dragonwood...

Allison M.

I really liked this game. The game is easy to learn and fun for adults to play as well. I liked the different approaches on how you could win. It's educational to teach kids strategy and planning. The different options for how you can attack the creatures and the enhancement cards add a fun dimension to the game. We've seen winning through creature number or through focusing on getting the big dragons instead. The game was a good length and fun for grown ups and kids. We even enjoyed playing it with only adults.

FEATURES

Manufacturer Description

A Game of Dice & Daring... Dare to enter Dragonwood! Deep in the heart of this mythical forest lurk angry ogres, giggling goblins, and even the famed and fearsome fire-breathers themselves! Collect sets of adventurer cards to earn dice, which you will use to roll against your foes. Stomp on some fire ants, shriek at a grumpy troll, or strike the menacing orange dragon with a magical silver sword. Choose your strategy carefully because the landscape of Dragonwood is ever-changing. Only the bravest will overcome the odds to emerge victorious! Enhances the following skills: Probability; Math; Strategic Thinking

ABOUT THIS GAME: It may be hard to imagine, but Dragonwood, with its vast array of richly illustrated cards, started out looking much different than where it ended. Inventor Darren Kisgen submitted a prototype without a single illustration – just simple words and numbers written in marker on blank white cards. Well apparently that’s all was needed, because within moments, our play testers were enraptured with the simple-to-learn but deeply engaging fantasy-themed game. Illustrator Chris Beatrice beautifully captured the wit and humor depicted in Darren’s words to create one of our most visually appealing games. 

Model Number

Stock # 108

Year Introduced

2015