Chairman of the Board: Friendship isn’t magic

Illustration by Ed Appleby
Illustration by Ed Appleby

‘Epic Spell Wars of the Battle Wizards: Duel at Mt. Skullzfyre’ game review

By Ed Appleby, Illustrator

Games are meant to be shared among friends. Some friends like to play games of strategy against one another, some like to work together in cooperative gameplay to defeat a bigger foe, and some friends like to melt each others’ faces off with totally crazy spells.

Epic Spell Wars of the Battle Wizards: Duel at Mt. Skullzfyre is a “Take That” hand management game for 2–6 players designed by Rob Heinsoo and Cory Jones and published by Cryptozoic Entertainment in 2012. Players use cards in their hand to construct spells to damage other players. The last remaining player receives a “last wizard standing” token and a new round begins. The first player to receive two tokens, wins, and the game is over.

Spell construction can be both extremely simple and complex, with things like damage, initiative, targeting, and additional effects to consider. This can lead to a little over-analysis at times, but it also gives the players an enormous range of control in how they dole out damage in the game.

I have mentioned before that I generally don’t like elimination games, but Epic Spell Wars balances this out by giving players increasing advantages for the next round depending on how long they’re out of the current round. This balance can lead to a long game if there are a lot of players.

The game is extremely fun to play, but not for the young and impressionable. The hilarious and extremely graphic art by Nick Edwards and the brilliantly vulgar writing add well to the over-the-top nature of the game. I would recommend this game to any mature adult who wants a little dose of insane immaturity.