Comic books and board games are two things many gamers love. In Sentinels of the Multiverse, we get a combination of the two. It’s no secret that I really enjoy cooperative board games. This is the 4th game I’ve reviewed in that genre. There is just something about everyone working together towards a common goal that I enjoy.
I also have had a great love for comic books every since I was a little kid. Hell, I still read them today.
In Sentinels of the Multiverse, you and your fellow heroes are working together to take down a nasty arch-villain. The game play is fairly simply, with quick turns and lots of variation. Does Sentinels of the Multiverse have what it takes to defeat your desire for a great superhero game? Read on to find out!
Sentinels of the Multiverse is a cooperative card game for 2-5 players that plays in about 45 minutes. The game plays best with 4 players.
Sentinels of the Multiverse is a cooperative card game where players try and take down an arch-villain. The very first choice you make in the game is which hero to play. Each hero has their own unique theme (fire, psionic, ice, etc…), most of which should be familiar to comic book readers. The staples like fire gods, tech workers and the ninja types are all present. Each hero also has a varying degree of difficulty to play and offensive ability.
The villain has it’s own deck of cards that come into play each round. Throughout the game you’ll be playing power cards to either attack the villain or defend yourself from events happening around you. Players must work together to take down the villain (who can sustain a lot of damage) before he kills all the heroes. In addition to that, both the heroes and the villain have environmental effects to deal with. Watch out for that falling building!
Sentinels of the Multiverse comes with a large amount of high quality of components. The first thing you will noticed is how thematic everything is. All the artwork and design screams to you “This is a comic book game”. So kodus to the designer that one. Every hero and villain will have custom artwork done in a comic book style. The game also comes with a number of tokens for keep track of status effects during the game.
One thing you will notice when you get everything organized is that the box has a lot of empty space. The publisher has decide to give you a lot of room for expansions for the game. So on one hand, I’m glad they planned ahead. On the other, the box looks so lonely and sad being only a quarter full. It’s not really a big deal though. I’m sure I’ll be filling it up with cards rather quickly.
How to Play:
The game play in Sentinels of the Multiverse is fairly simply. Once setup is done and you will have your villain (and environment) and chosen heroes, it’s time to start attacking.
The villain goes first in the round and each will have their own special rules on powers to punish the players. Each round, a card is drawn from the villain deck and it’s effects are applied. These cards will mostly be attacks on the players in the attempt to reduce their life to zero.
After the villain goes, the players get their chance. On a players turn, they may play a card, use a power and then draw a card, in that order. Cards played are either one shot attacks or cards that stay in play: such as equipment or ongoing effect cards. When your turn is over you draw a card and the next player clockwise gets a turn.
Once the heroes have all taken a turn, then the round ends with a draw from the environment deck. These cards are things that affect both the heroes and villains, such as falling buildings and debris and other thematic effects.
Rounds continue in this fashion until either the heroes have fallen or the villain has been defeated. The game play is quick, easy and fun.
When playing Sentinels of the Multiverse, you feel like you are in an epic battle with a comic book villain. Your team of heroes MUST work together to take down the villain and each round someone will be taking damage or firing off weapons. I think Greater than Games did a good job producing this game, as each of the heroes feels like it has its own strengths and weaknesses. Some heroes are straight up damage canons while others play more of the support role. Since this is a cooperative game, I think that was a good decision. If every hero was just a damage dealer, the game could have easily turned into multiplayer solitaire. But that doesn’t happen with Sentinels of the Multiverse. The different roles force the team of players to work together to take down the villain.
And some villains are hard. Really hard. You can choose your enemy based on the challenge rating or you can just do a random draw. We have had some villains that we’ve walked all over and some that have taken us down to the very wire. When we were fighting one particularly tough villain, half our team of heroes was KO’d and the last survivor manged to take him out before he would have died. I love tough games like this.
Speaking of being KO’d, Sentinels of the Multiverse does a great job with player elimination. If a player gets knocked out, they turn their character card over and now have 3 powers they can use on their turn. This are just about all buffs for the remaining heroes. Basically, you are inspiring your fellow teammates to fight harder after you went down. A very well done and thematic mechanic.
I also love the artwork and design in this game. Everything feels right out of a comic book, even though these are all new intellectual properties. It was probably a bit of an uphill battle to not have a any Marvel or DC heroes in a superhero game, but some solid game mechanics and stellar artwork helped blast through that barrier. There are also some hero’s that are clearly inspired by the more iconic heroes from the big companies, but that’s OK.
Sentinels of the Multiverse also can easily expand with the number of players you have at the table. A lot of the villain damage will says things like: Do N+4 damage. In that case, N=the number of players. It’s a really simple game mechanic to help scale things easily. Cooperative games that are too easy, usually don’t make it to the gaming table very often. But some good game mechanics have helped Sentinels of the Multiverse avoid that pitfall.
The hard part about this mechanic is that it takes some calculating in your head. The cards can get fairly text heavy, so it can be a little difficult at times to keep track of everything. Between the villain cards, the environment cards and the hero cards, everyone has a lot to pay attention to. It’s not a huge issue, just something to be aware of.
In Sentinels of the Multiverse you can expect a lot of action, damage and good old fashion super hero brawling. With so many heroes to chose from, this game holds a lot of replay value and is probably the best comic book hero game out there.
Sentinels of the Multiverse is a very fun game and I love having so many different heroes to choose from. Since they are not using licensed content, Greater than Games has a deep well to tap from when looking for new heroes: their own imagination. Even still, while they can’t copy any existing characters, it will be pretty easy to make similar knock-offs.
The art was also very well done. It has a unique style and you feel like you are playing a comic book game. The easy of game play and the quick play time hit just in the right spot. You could play this game with hardcore gamers and casual fans as well. Rules explanation can be done in about 5 minutes with a game taking less then 45 minutes to play.
Overall I really enjoyed this game and it has made its way to the table quite often. They have already come out with a number of expansions for the game, so there is a large pool of heroes and villains for you to battle with. If you are a fan of comic books or the superhero genre, then be sure to Sentinels of the Multiverse a try.
If you are interested in getting a copy for yourself, it’s about $30.
Final Score: 4.5 Stars – Combines some great comic book fun with cooperative game play. Want to play again!
• Great artwork
• Fun, cooperative game play
• Easy to learn rules, very accessible
• Appeals to comic books lovers and gamers a like
• Some heroes could use a bit more variety
• The box is quite empty, feels like they held a lot of cards out to sell later as expansions.
My wife and I just spent the money to grab this and all the expansions. It’s a fantastic game for a group or for a duo experience, if you think you can handle two characters at once.
My only problem with the game is that I feel like it’s very bogged down with the level of text and math required to keep track of. When you’re trying to calculate how much damage the villain does to each character taking into account 6 different modifiers, each players equipment, any auras and buffs from heroes and any enviroment specials in play it really slows down the momentum of the game after a while. Also, the manual isn’t very well written, but I guess it isn’t fair to compare them to established companies like Fantasy Flight and Days of Wonder.