Talk about monsters, and one of the most recent that comes to mind is Godzilla. The last Hollywood version of the iconic beast wasn’t well received by everyone, but with a new Godzilla movie coming out in 2014 the big guy is certainly on the minds of giant monsters fans everywhere. This past year we were treated to the Kaiju vs. Jaeger fights in Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim. But this isn’t about the role of giant monsters in film. Instead, this is about a table top game that has the players play the part of giant monsters in King of Tokyo, which was created by Richard Garfield.
In King of Tokyo, your goal as the giant monster is either to collect 20 victory points or kill all of the players. The goal seems simple, but to achieve total domination over others, you have to roll 6 die. Each dice has on it the numbers 1, 2, 3, a heart symbol, thunder symbol, and a claw. Thunder symbols represent a cube or currency you can obtain to buy power ups. The total of the claw is the total attack a player has inflicted against you and/or any other players, depending on the situation. Hearts represent the amount you can heal yourself with, plus there is an additional effect on its expansion (more on that later). The number of 1, 2 and 3 represent your victory points, but the catch is you’ve got to get three of the same number on a roll. For example, if you get three 2’s then you will be awarded with 2 VP (Victory Points). Player can receive additional VP, but you have to get the same number, and will only be equivalent to 1 VP. Just like the example above, instead of you rolling three 2’s, you roll six 2’s so that your VP will be 5 (2+1+1+1). Player can decide to re-roll the die two times if he/she wasn’t satisfied with the roll, it should be noted that he/she don’t have to re-roll all of the six die.
There’s a board in the setup which has two spots of city you can invade, but only one can be open based on the total number of players. Every player begins outside of the city with 10 life and 0 VP. The first time a player rolls a claw symbol, regardless of how many, the player can only occupy the spot and not attack. Once you’re in the city you obtain VP and can attack others from the city. If a player stays on the city on his/her next turn, that player will gain an additional 2 VP. The catch is that whoever is in the city, only that player will receive the next attack by other players and he/she can’t heal inside the city. That said, players can yield and switch places with the attacker.
There’s an expansion pack for King of Tokyo that give players additional monsters and extra power-ups that only specific monsters can use. To gain the ability, you have to roll three hearts to gain one extra ability, called Evolution Cards, in addition to being able to heal a player’s monster. King of Tokyo is for 2 – 6 players. There will be another stand-alone game based on King of Tokyo called King of New York which will be released later in 2014.
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