In Call to Adventure – Epic Origins, pick up your pack and hug your loved ones. Adventure is calling us!
Call to Adventure – Epic Origins
That’s it ! The third version of Call to Adventure just arrived. And frankly, frankly, it was worth the wait.
When I was just a simple reader of this blog, the killer article of our favorite editor made me jump when I read it.
Call to Adventure was already in a good position in our toy library at the time. And the last few years have only confirmed this choice, especially in duels.
So what’s new since the game was released in 2020?
The Name of the Wind
The first expansion The Name of the Wind, The Name of the Wind in French, already covered at the end of Gus’s article, added new cards. But above all, a new mechanic linked to The Kingslayer Chronicles cycleserving as the basis for the extension: the Naming. The act of naming.
When a challenge attempt is missed, you can, in addition to the XP point gained, try to Name, ie bind to, one of the 3 elements of the cycle: Iron, Wind and Fire. If the attempt passes, a token is collected. The latter, in addition to victory points at the end of the game, will allow switch automatically a challenge of this element later. No need to throw the runes anymore. What to reduce the part of randomness of Call to Adventure.
Most interesting are the references to the cycle of Patrick Rothfuss on the maps referring us to the history of Kvothe.
I didn’t know about this cycle. It was the extension that allowed me to discover it.
The Stormlight Archive
The second version of the game was a complete box, The Stormlight Archivenot yet translated into French, can be used instead of the base box or mixed with it and/or the extension.
The narrative base was based on a new Heroic Fantasy series, that of Roshar Archive by Brandon Sanderson.
Here too, since resetting everything to zero, we can discover new cards galore from the works of the cycle.
And this second supplement for Call to Adventure introduces a new mechanic as well, Radiant Icons. They can be added up for the final count, but above all they allow you to boost certain attempts thanks to the Destiny card (that of the third Act).
The great novelty lies in the option of play cooperatively/solo to try to destroy Odium, the Big Boss at the end of the level! A dedicated Adversary deck will pose additional challenges for adventurers who will have to sweat and work as a team to win. If they crash, everyone loses. If they make it, we go back to the basic point count system to find out which of the heroes will stand out from the winners’ lot and remain in the legend!
I will come back to this system more precisely later, since it has been refined to become the basis of the next version.
Once again, this fantasy cycle is a real good discovery for me.
The latest episode of this saga is therefore arriving on our tables these days. In VO only, for the moment.
He offers us to play a complete tabletop role-playing campaign in 60 to 90 minutes! No, I’m not kidding.
To achieve this, this new opus of Call to Adventure adds several nuggets: new cards offer a Legacy concept, a basic cooperative version and the VS version as a game option, envelopes to open forming a campaign. New game gear, then.
This time, and it’s stated from the start, the background is based on the 5th edition of the most famous tabletop role-playing game: Dungeons and Dragons.
Legacy cards offer a different new option specific to each race: dwarf, elf, human, anthropomorphic, half-orc, elemental, etc.
The Motivation cards of this version let appear the usual classes of Dungeons and Dragons.
The 9 envelopes are to be opened in order and offer play a great story arc. In each we find new cards: characters, stories or heroes. But also the famous Adversary cards which will be the ultimate bulwark towards your heroic victory!
Here we touch on the heart of the cooperative system, which is broken down into 3 stages.
First the Opponent receives a number of experience points (XP) based on the number of people at the table. As the game progresses, certain actions will add or remove XPs from the Opponent.
In a second step, at the end of the second act, the group will have to face the main lieutenant of the big villain. All members of the group will have to go there before starting their third act
No one has much to lose, but it’s always good to take some XP from the Opponent. The victory also gives us a small advantage for the future.
Finally, the first member of the group to place 3 cards in their history during their third Act triggers the end of the game. Starting with him, each member will then have to face the Big Boss in order to manage to remove all the remaining XPs.
If this is the case, we attack the count of points in order to know who was the most heroic during the campaign.
Otherwise, it’s defeat for the whole group and victory for Evil!
Not a narrative game?!?!
One last, important point.
Already in place from the first edition of Call to Adventureit is advisable for each participant to tell the story of their character at the end of the adventure by following the thread of the challenges and traits recovered throughout their story.
Our first game allowed us to play against the Lord of Darkness. And we won!
My character was then a rather discreet elven mercenary. He had to pick different locks during his investigations, thwart traps against him and make the rivals behind it all disappear. Unfortunately, he was cursed and turned into a…vampire. Which allowed him, thanks to his superhuman strength and speed, to face a tyrannosaur a few years later.
He had indeed made amends for his past deeds, had become a Paladin and sought redemption in the order of the Wizard Knights of Eldritch. It was also at this time that he had to face the wife of the Lord of Darkness.
During his last years of adventures, he discovered the hidden way to enter the local Tyrant’s fortress and killed him. Which definitely revealed his true nature as a Master Assassin. This happened just before participating in the defeat of the Lord of Darkness alongside his companions.
Yes, it’s a bit far-fetched. But we get the idea. Call to Adventure becomes, almost, role-playing that immerses us in an epic story.
So, Call to Adventure – Epic Origins, what do we think?
Impossible for me to remain impartial on this review as this game speaks to me. This is a pure masterpiece.
The illustrations are fabulous. The cards, in tarot format, are very pleasant to use and the specific sleeves are grandiose.
The only downside is the finesse of the individual trays. A frankly, frankly borderline aspect. But an insufficient aspect to lower the overall score.
Where I could hear, if not understand, Gus’ criticisms of the first version, in Call to Adventure – Epic Originshaving a group that helps each other during each other’s turns increases interaction. Even in a 4-player game, it’s far from endless.
Although, I must admit, I never found the games so endless with the basic version. Patience you will learn. Looks like a little green guy with big ears.
Perhaps I should add a second bad point. We haven’t finished opening the campaign envelopes yet. For the moment, the characteristics required to take down the Big Boss are the same as those of his lieutenant, which allows you to prepare in advance and makes the challenge a bit too… easy. I would have preferred to have at least one of them changing.
Definitely a house rule to put in place if it stays that way on the whole.
Again, not a good enough reason to lower the overall score, this game is so good!
Call to Adventure – Epic Origins, verdict
In case you haven’t understood it yet: I validate, re-validate and re-re-validate. Call to Adventure – Epic Origins it’s really, really good. Especially if, like me, you loved it Call to Adventure the base game.
Jump on it if you come across it on the road to your playful experiences! Could we hope for a French version by La Boite de Jeu in the more or less near future? Fingers crossed, and toes too.
- Creation : Chris O’Neal, Johnny O’Neal
- Illustrate : Darren Calvert, Antti Hakosaari, Ari Ibarra, Kevin O’Neill, Gal Gold
- Editor : Brotherwise Games
- Numbers of players and players : 1 to 4 (the must: to 2!)
- Recommended age : From 14 years old (a little younger for regular players)
- Duration : 60-90′
- Theme : Medieval-fantasy
- Main mechanics : Collection of cards, “dice”
And one last thing
The publisher, Brotherwise Games, relied on his game and the background of Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition.
He offers on his website A file allowing you to convert your character at the end of the game in order to create a RPG character to play Dungeons and Dragons afterwards.
Where Role Player offered to create a character, Call to Adventure – Epic Origins allows you to move up a gear.
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Article written by Chab. Role-player turned platoist for lack of time. Insider baker and Robbie Williams fan. Heartfelt patriarch of a herd of gremlins. Likes a game to tell her a story.
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