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  • craig duncton

Gadianton by exclusive games




‘Gadianton is a strategy game full of twists whose motto is “one against all, all against one!”, since the leader becomes the target of everyone else... Will you be clever enough to win the game?’


3 words to describe this game: thieves, guards, combat



Gameplay: In this game, you each take on the role of a thief, trying to collect keys to obtain crowns and sneak them out of the city without the guards and your opponents stopping you. You can be stopped in a number of ways e.g hand to hand combat and shot by an arrow. You can also be held up by your opponents play cards which allow them to open and close doors, force you out into the open if you are hiding and blocking you moving next turn.


Your moves are determined by a numbered dice and a die which indicates which characters you can move. This will either be both your thief and the guard, your thief and guard at half movement or just your thief.


Moving to collect keys and crowns is fairly straightforward but you will want to watch for your opponents who may have been able to get to theirs before you and ensure you play cards or movement which will allow you to impede their journey back out onto the outskirts of the city. Once you have retrieved your crown, you then become a target for the guards and your opponents where you can become engaged in hand to hand combat and or shot by an arrow from the city walls or anywhere (if your opponents are lucky to have a specific card enabling them to). There are some rules about how combat and arrows work but they are fairly straightforward as in arrows can’t be shot through walls etc. The arrows are shot using a range ruler that allows you to line up the distance between your piece and the person you are shooting and gives you a number you must roll on your die to succeed. You will also roll the archery die. Some sides show a target meaning the shot hits but beware of the flop symbol as this will make your shot void even if you rolled the desired number. There are also playable cards that negate shot arrows called ‘broken bow’.


Your goal is to retrieve the two crowns indicated on your objective cards before your opponents. You do this by safely leaving the city walls with the crowns on your head and making it to one of the demarcated arrival and exit spots.


You are able to change the length of the game according to a table on the side of the box for the number of players you have. This means you can choose to make it longer or shorter depending on who you are playing it with and how much time you have.




Components:


◦ 1 game board - the board is very easy to read and move about on and it’s clear what everything does and where the figures can move to and from. The board is immersive and helps you to feel like you are a thief entering a city trying to steal some treasure. You are able to see clearly the difference between the outskirts, the city walls, and the pyramid where the treasure can be collected

◦ 1 instruction booklet - very clear instructions, short and easy to get to grips with very quickly and teach to others within a few minutes

◦ 4 guard figures, 4 thief figures and 1 set of stickers for figures - these are ok, the stickers you add to the plastic figures before gameplay and they look really cute. We found the stickers tend to peel off a bit and in hindsight maybe we could have used some adhesive to make sure they stuck on better but overall these are neat looking. The only issue I would say is that the colours are muted colours and some are fairly similar so there might be some issues with keeping track of whose figure belongs to whom. It wasn’t a big deal but was just something I noticed.

◦ 4 doors and 4 bases for doors - work as doors, fit the gap between the city walls

◦ 44 action cards - these are great and are not language dependent. You can tell from the picture what the cards do and so this was great for younger players as we didn’t need to keep reading cards or telling our daughter what they had to do.

◦ 16 objective cards - depicting different coloured crowns that you need to retrieve in order to win the game. At the start of the game, you are dealt the amount indicated in the table for the length of game you want. If you draw cards of the same colour, then you swap these for new cards so that you have crowns of different colours which you are working to find and take out of the city

◦ 12 thief crowns (3 per figure) - a mechanic in this game is that some of the actions allow you to add crowns to either your figure or that of your opponent for a turn. These fit on the top of the figure markers and indicate for example thieves that are blocked from moving or guards which are sleeping

◦ 16 treasure crowns - these also fit on your figures and represent the different colours which you are trying to collect

◦ 32 key tokens - before you can steal a crown, you need to have the specific colour key (unless you have a key card)

◦ 1 arrow shooting ruler - this sits neatly on the top of the figure heads to enable you to line up shots and work out dice rolls needed to pull them off

◦ 5 die (2 black, 2 white, 1 green) - the black dice are used in combat, the green dice is your movement dice and the white dice are the archery and figure dice which we talked about in the gameplay section.



Overall thoughts:


To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect with this game. The box artwork gives you a clue as to what type of game it might be but having not heard about it before, I was a little unsure as to whether this would be my type of game. Setup was really easy and as I said earlier, learning the rules and then teaching it to my family took about 10 mins if that. We played initially with our daughter and she was able to pick it up with a little help and actually went on to win the game. We enjoyed the take that element of the game and particularly enjoyed shooting arrows at each other from the city walls and sometimes in surprise attacks. This is a family friendly game which is not language dependent and so everyone can get involved. It’s a light game but with those ‘remember when I did this’ moments that you will want to play it again. It’s frustrating and fun all in one. Our 7 year old daughter enjoyed it and we had smiles on our faces too as we got involved and fought to be the winner. This one is pleasantly surprising and I’m looking forward to more family games of this.


P.S I have seen a deluxe version of this game on their Instagram page and I want it 😂 - the version with the city walls and the pyramid. So one to look out for if you like ‘take that’ kind of games!



this was a review copy gifted to me from the publishers, opinions expressed are my own.

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