The card drafting mechanic comes back today in this game by Cool Mini or Not, but isn’t the main theme like in 7 Wonders. As you may pick up from the title of the post, this game is all about Vikings! Blood Rage is a game where you control a clan of vikings in an attempt to gain the most glory among the different clans.
The board itself is visually stunning – the artwork is fantastic. The game also comes with 49 highly detailed plastic miniatures as well. I have over half of them painted in the copy I own – one of these days I’ll get to painting the rest (some are pictured below).
Apart from the aesthetics, the game-play is fantastic as well. This game is played in 3 rounds called ages (similar to 7 Wonders). The rounds begin with a draft of cards among the players, and then moves onto actions. Players perform actions by spending Rage points. Each round, a player gains Rage points equal to their Rage stat, which can be upgraded throughout the game by gaining control over provinces. Actions that can be taken are Invade, March, Upgrade, Quest, and Pillage. Some actions cost a specific amount of rage, while others cost 0 rage. The round continues until all players have used all their rage. At that time, everyone will discard down to 1 card, quests will be checked for completion, and then Ragnarok will occur, and destroy a province.
Each province has a limited number of spots (with the exception of Yggdrasil in the center) for viking or monster figures (recruited through upgrade cards). If a player decides to pillage a province, all vikings in that province will participate in a battle. Battling is resolved simply by counting the strength among the figures there, and the addition of any strength played by cards. Whichever clan has the highest amount of strength wins! If the clan who initiated the pillage wins, they flip over the token in that province and reap the award. If an opposing clan wins, the token remains face down. All losers of the battle are sent to Valhalla. In the event of a tie, all participating figures are sent to Valhalla.
In order to have more figures on the board at a time (rather than the standard 4), you will need to upgrade your Horns stat. The Axe stat determines how much glory you are awarded for winning battles. At the end of each round, Valhalla is released, and players get back any figures that were lost during that age. Any figures still on the board remain there until they are removed.
Here are some pictures of painted figures from my personal copy.
My Thoughts: This game is a favorite of mine, as well as some of the others that I play with. I have to give this one a 9.5/10. It’s outstanding and I always enjoy playing this game. It’s smooth, the rules are easy, there’s ton of player interaction, and it’s just overall a great game. The models and the great art on the board really add to the immersion. It’s simple enough for people to pick up and after 1 play through, they’ll really get the hang of it. With the games taking usually 60 minutes or so, we normally squeeze in two games at a time.
- Rating: 8.1
- Playtime: 60 – 90 min
- Complexity: 2.89/5
- Mechanisms: Area Control, Card Drafting, Hand Management,
- Category: Fantasy, Fighting, Miniatures, Mythology
- MSRP: $56