Designed by Michael Shinall
# of players: 2 (3-6 variants)
Ages 14 and up
Playtime: 1 hour
The ships’ crews are made up of single-minded constantly replenishing mobs that charge headlong across the gangplanks to attack key features on the enemy ships. To turn the tide of battle, players must use their Heroes and their unique abilities.
Cool Mini or Not (CMoN)is very reliable when it comes to components. The plastic figures are very detailed and a little delicate because of it. Aside from that, the board, cards and tiles are sturdy.
CMoN has gone “all in” creating a full back story and lore. Although no one will likely read it, this probably is to help justify all the expansion sets. I'm not complaining. The artwork is great, pirate-y and zombie-ish. They made sure to keep the theme front and center. The instruction book is good. There is a lot of ground to cover and they do a good job.
This is another good-luck-getting-it-all-back-in-the-box games. On top of that, there is all the expansion sets that add characters. So acquiring some additional storage on your own may be necessary or your a magician that can make it all fit.
This game kind of hangs its hat on the fact that it is meant to be similar to a style of video game called MOBAs. For those of you who don't know what that means, its not really that important. For those of you who do, you probably have a burning question on your mind. Let me answer it: Yes, Rum and Bones is just like League of Legends. Just. Like. It.
Lets get into what that means. The two ships are parked next to each other with 3 gangplanks joining them. On each ship there are 3 spawn points from which a never-ending supply of mindless minions charge across to the other ship and are in perpetual battle with the minions from the other ship. All attacking is based off of dice rolling.
The game ends when 3 objectives have been destroyed (the monsters count) As mentioned, downing objectives tends to give you a permanent advantage. So, there can be a little bit of a snowball effect. If your enemy has knocked out 2 and you have only gotten 1 or none at all, it is unlikely you will be able to turn things around, but it is possible.
Rum and Bones is a more “old school” game in the sense that, sometimes, even if you employ a good strategy, a bad roll of the dice or draw of the cards can ruin you. Losing like that tends to leave a bad taste in your mouth. Of course, taking a risk and having it pay off certainly feels good.
Rum and Bones is a lovechild of a tabletop miniatures game and League of Legends. It is not really that tough to learn to play, for gamers anyways. Obviously, this is not a casual or party game. The game is basically a duel and, although its possible to play with more, team play isn't really the focus of the game.
You don't tend to have close finishes. With each success, you get stronger and this encourages a “snowball” effect. Still, Rums and Bones is pretty fun to play. (Especially if you drink rum while playing it!) With the expansion sets, you will have a lot of pretty unique characters to choose from. The theme, artwork and lore all add to the fun. I recommend Rum and Bones and look forward to the expansions and future game plays. (Taco Editor note: he is just upset I keep beating him)
+ Feels like a classic board game or MOBA style video game
+ Plays in about an hour
+ Expansion heroes add to freshness of the game
+ Pirate Theme
+ Dice and Abilities are balanced
- High cost if you decide to get all the extras
- One side can snowball to victory
- Hard to find/expensive kickstarter exclusives
- Need Expansions if you want variety