In Blood Rush, a 2014 Solitaire Print and Play Contest submission by Javier Martin, you are a band of monsters trying to capture seven villagers before the inquisition arrives.
This game consists of four location cards, five villager cards, a lair card and four double-sided monster cards. At the beginning of the game you have to place the four locations on your table from one to four. Then, place an Inquisition die showing the ‘one’ face on the ‘zero’ spot of the victim track on the lair card and another die on the ‘event die’ spot.
Your goal of the game is to capture seven victims before the Inquisition die shows a six.
In the town phase, you place one villager face-down below every location. The last villager is kept out of the round. After that, reveal the villager at location one, the forest. Then roll the event die, the value corresponds with an event that has an effect on the outcome of some encounters. One of the events is ‘Blood Rush’ at one of the locations. Every location has an amount of shields and Blood Rush means that those shields don’t count when monsters try to capture villagers on that location.
In the planning phase you assign the monsters to any location. You can assign multiple monster to one location. When you have done that, you resolve the encounters. At the start of an encounter, you can use the ability of the monsters there. For instance, the witch can exchange villagers or the vampire can bring more villagers to the current location. If you use an ability, your monster is weakened and cannot use this power again. After that, you reveal the villager. Every villager, like the locations, has a shield value. Every monster has a bat value. Add all the shields from the location and the villager(s) together. Add all the bats from the monsters on that location together and if you have more bats than shields you capture a villager (except in the forest, where no person can be captured), +1 one the victim track. If there are more shields than bats, the monsters lose and the ability of the villager activates. These abilities are like, +1 to the Inquisition die, lose a victim, re-roll the event die. Now, again, you can choose to use the ability of a monster and after that we move to the inquisition phase.
In this phase you increase the Inquisition die by one and return all the cards back to their stack. Keep in mind not to flip the monster cards. The weak ones must stay weak! Another round begins.
Let’s not beat around the bush, I do not like this game. I find the game too easy. It sounds very cool. Monster with abilities. Villagers with abilities.However, I have won the game every time without using any of my monster abilities. And because the weakening doesn’t concern the amount of bats the monsters have, the game doesn’t become more difficult when you have to weaken a monster. Plus, the events make it even easier to capture villagers.
I have found that if I neutralized the villager at the first location and made sure I had a decent chance to win the second and/or third location, I didn’t have to worry about the fourth. Every round the same thing and then I would win the game, easily.
This game offers no challenge at all.
The illustrations are kind of OK and the graphic design is pretty good too, but the game itself is just not for me.