Drew’s Reviews- Fates of Madness

This is a brand new Kick Starter I just received, Fates of Madness by Legendary Games. This is one of those games that totally takes you by surprise in how much content, fun and replayability and depth is in this little box. The story is that you are a party of 4 adventurers setting out to explore at least 3 locations or scenarios, then fight a boss at the end after your adventure was a success. The game is easily solo-able, in that you just have to play all 4 characters yourself. And there are some really cool characters here and a plethora to choose from, so half the fun of this game is making cool parties to see which combinations fare the best. The game consists of 2 sizes of cards, tarot sized and poker sized. Poker sized for things like equipment, treasure, potions and a fate deck, and tarot sized for the character cards and encounter cards that can either be creatures, locations, bosses or scenarios.

Another cool feature of the game is the aforementioned FATE deck. This is used instead of dice when making attacks or difficulty checks whilst adventuring. And in this deck are special 1 cards with a skull on them, known as madness cards. When they are drawn during some monster attacks or encounters, they have special effects like extra damage and other nasties. During the course of the game, more madness cards are added making things get crazier as the game progresses. I normally LOVE my dice, but I’m totally in love with this FATE deck and how it works with certain cards and attacks, giving the game a more urgent sense of danger and madness.

Again, I’m totally in awe of how much game Legendary Games has crammed into this box-full of cards! You really get the feeling of a small D&D adventure here during each session. After each game, I couldn’t wait to play again, it’s that much fun. The way your characters start with their special gear and have the standard D&D attributes like strength and dexterity plus a few more interesting ones. This is still a fairly light game that really teeters on the edge of being deeper and more engaging than your standard light fare. There is a lot on offer here in the depth and replayability as I’ve said before, and the boss monsters are menacing nightmare beasts in their own right.

I also have to make mention on the art quality of this game. It is off the charts beautiful for a small card game. To the beautiful and detailed character cards to the menacing bosses, the art here is beyond top notch, another thing I wasn’t expecting. With the surprisingly deep strategies and party formations, to the fantastic art direction and design, you are pulled into this immersive little world in the most exhilarating fashion. I haven’t been this much in love with an RPG type card game since One deck Dungeon. And I think this game even excels over that one in its D&D sensibilities and gameplay. You really get invested in your party as you journey on, encounter after encounter, battle after battle.

I know this was a small Kick starter that didn’t blow away its funding, it still funded and achieved a stretch goal or 2. Because of that, I’m not sure how available this will be at retail. Look for this game though, it is an incredible little adventure contained in a little box that will simply blow you away with what it has to offer in gameplay. I left a lot for you to discover like the myriad of characters choices and party combinations, to the way each party will fight in certain battles. Again, there is a lot on offer here, and with the intriguing FATE deck, great game design is just one quality this game has to offer. Track this one down and see if you can get a late pledge if not retail, you won’t be sorry, especially if you’re a D&D player with a penchant for darker fare, this game is exquisite in every way I can describe.

Off to adventure more,

Andrew Baumgartner