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Infinities: Defiance of Fate Review



Quick Look:


Designer: Steven Berry
Artist: N/A
Publisher: Vatal Entertainment Studio
Year Published: 2018
No. of Players: 2-4
Ages: 13+
Playing Time: 20-30 minutes per player

Find more info on BoardGameGeek.com

WARNING: This is a preview of Infinities: Defiance of Fate. All components and rules are prototype and subject to change.

Review:

Rules and Setup:
Infinities: Defiance of Fate (hereafter known as Infinities) contains two different styles of gameplay right out of the box. The first mode is called Skirmish mode, which is a direct player-vs.-player mode for up to four players. The game, though, also includes an Adventure mode, which comes in a separate book. The Adventure mode has select stories and objectives, and the stories have different styles of play, from a cooperative mode to a free-for-all mode.


In Skirmish mode, the setup of the playing area is very simple. Each player begins by picking their starting leader, faction decks, tokens, and markers. You will also set up a pile of the world map tiles, cubes, and dice, and place the Rift tile in the middle of the play area. Each player then takes their player pawn and places it on the Rift tile, shuffles their faction decks, and removes the top card to start the discard pile.


In Adventure mode, each chapter will tell you any changes to the setup steps listed above, along with any changes to the rules, whether it is something that occurs during a player's end step or a change to the amount of an attribute you must have to meet the win conditions.

Continuing the setup, each player will draw a tile from either of the world stacks (each player or team will have one stack) and place it face up on the table. I’m going to take a minute and talk about the tiles. If you look at the tiles, you’ll see that certain sides seem to have a dark black line on them. These are considered walls and block movement through that side. As you place tiles, you’ll be creating a path for the pawns to move, so placement is critical. Additionally, each tile has a numeric value assigned to it. This (highest) value is used to determine first player each turn. If there is a tie, the name of the tile is used to break the tie. Once the initial tile has been placed, each player will choose two more tiles and alternate placing them.


Each player then sets up their leader playmat, setting the attributes to the lowest setting, and their gambit track with a token. Each player then gets to draw their initial hand from their deck (five cards), and play is ready to go.

The rounds are all comprised of four phases for each player. The Start Phase is to check for first player, then it moves to the Action Roll Phase, where the leader (start player) rolls five dice. Any triggers based on dice roll could go off at this point, followed by you locking three of the rolled dice. This leads into the Main Phase, where you spend the rolled dice to perform actions.


Each die has five actions available on them. These include Energy (allows you to play and prepare cards), Fortitude (allows for movement of your pawn), Gambit (activate your leader’s ability), Power (destroy or damage your opponents’ leader or cards), and Star (wild – can be used for any of the actions). Once you use your die rolls, you enter the End phase, looking for any actions that may trigger, then go to the next player's turn.

Looking at the overall rules, due to the iconography, the game does come with a helper card to keep track of which icon does what action, which will be used a lot


In each mode (both Skirmish and Adventure modes), each game can have different end-game goals. Within the Adventure book, each scenario will tell you what the win conditions are. In Skirmish mode, though, there are a set of cards that a card is drawn from, and it’ll outline the game win condition.


Theme and Mechanics:
The theme of the game really works with the artwork and text on the cards. There is a dimensional rift open between two worlds, and you are working towards exploration and conquest.


The mechanics in the gameplay break down into a few basic mechanics that most players are familiar with. Draw a tile, place said tile in a certain direction, roll dice to determine available actions, play cards, and resolve actions towards a common goal. The interaction of these mechanics does make the game a bit slow the first few playthroughs, mainly due to the iconography. While there is very little room for Analysis Paralysis, you might find yourself playing just for the next turn as opposed to being able to take direct actions towards the goal. This is not a negative, but it does mean that you will have to pay attention and do some strategic planning.

Game Play:
Gameplay was pretty solid overall, and once the players were familiar with the flow and options, it takes roughly 25 minutes per player (the sweet spot is with 2 players, though a few playthroughs with teams did happen to see how it plays).


Artwork and Components:
As this was a prototype, a bit of the artwork and components were placeholders leading towards the final art. With that said, a good number of cards did have what appears to be final artwork completed, and it was very impressive and detailed, fitting into the theme and story.


Components were all prototype-quality, but the card stock was a heavier stock with a good feel to it. Even after shuffling and playing a number of games with it, no edge whiting was noted, and the cards were holding up.


The Good:
Not only is the Skirmish mode solid and has you planning a bit more than you would think, but the team at Vatal have given us an Adventure (story) mode that adds multiple game types, different scenarios, and multiple win conditions as you play through it. Bored with going 1v1? That’s fine; here’s a chapter that forces you to play together and meet the objective to win. Want a PVE experience versus a PVP experience? No problem!

The Bad:
You’ve heard me call this out a few times, but the iconography was the largest issue we saw with the game. This can easily be alleviated by a larger helper card instead of using one the same size of a standard card and filling both sides with the text and image. The Adventure mode could use additional scenarios, but I’m sure this is something that will be added on, either through the Kickstarter campaign or possibly an additional download in the future to keep the story moving.

Final Thoughts:
Just over ten games were played with the prototype provided, and once the players knew the order and options available, play was very smooth. I mentioned the helper card, and how it could be improved to help, but for most of the games, having the manual open to the pages that are used for references was helpful to make sure we didn’t miss anything. It does take a few plays to get used to everything going on, and what icons and actions could do, but most people enjoyed it!

Players Who Like:
Light strategy gamers will enjoy this game, as it does need some planning.

I am giving Infinities: Defiance of Fate 7 out of 10 super meeples.


Check out Infinities: Defiance of Fate on:

              



Delton Perez - Reviewer

Delton Perez is a FLGS owner with 2 locations in Puerto Rico. Originally from Boston, he currently lives in the wilds of Ohio, where he currently resides with his family. By day, he is a Retail Consultant working in New York in the Fashion Industry, but by night, meeples, dice, and cardboard take over. Delton also runs a gaming organization based in Northeast Ohio that focuses on running game nights at Libraries, Schools, and Churches on a scheduled, monthly basis. At times, Delton has even been able to sleep, though proof has yet to be found.

See all of Delton's reviews HERE.
Infinities: Defiance of Fate Review Infinities: Defiance of Fate Review Reviewed by Delton on February 08, 2018 Rating: 5

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