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Seven Dragons Review

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Quick Look: Seven Dragons


Designer: Andrew Looney
Artists: Larry Elmore, Derek Ring
Publisher: Looney Labs
Year Published: 2011

No. of Players: 2-5
Ages: 6+
Playing Time: 10-30 minutes.
 
Find more info HERE.
 
From the Publisher:

Seven Dragons is a fast domino-like game, where players attempt to be the first to create a connected territory of seven panels of their dragon. Secret Goals add the opportunity to bluff, and with aggressive Action cards in the mix, subterfuge is a necessity! Seven Dragons features original paintings by Larry Elmore, the legendary artist who painted dragons and other art from early D&D manuals and modules!

 Note: IMAGES within Tal The Wolf Card Guy and his High School Board Game Club’s reviews are taken from BGG and/or the publisher’s websites’ as it is against the privacy of the high school and the students to include them herein.
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Review:

Dragons are inherently cool. Dragons vying for dominance in the same space? Very cool.  Playing your dragons for board control while blocking and sabotaging other players? Yes please.  Seven Dragons is a relatively simple game with a surprising amount of strategy involved.

Everyone starts with a secret goal, their color of dragon, they need to make connections with to win.  Players take turns drawing and placing cards with their color of dragon connecting across seven cards.  Some cards are just one dragon while others have different combinations of two, three or even four different colors of dragons.  Trying to connect (touch) dragons of your color while setting yourself up to make additional connections while trying to block other players is fun and challenging!

Hand management and board control are the main mechanics in the card game. This one vs all game does not really allow for “politicking” of moves with other players but bluffing can certainly factor in.

Starting with the center dragon players simply place cards on the ever sprawling board trying to get to get a chain of seven connections.  Based on the orientation of the color of dragons on each card (left/right, top/bottom or grid) you try to build out.  Players may directly or indirectly break your chain connection by how they are building towards their color of dragon.  They may inadvertently help you out as well!  The action cards can be crazy powerful.  Each action changes the color of the center starting dragon.  We had games that ended with an opponent winning by accident by simply playing an action that benefitted us but made (or broke) a connecting chain for a dragon of a different color when the center dragon color changed.  We quickly learned to dread the swap and move goal action cards.  You could be working hard at building your connection chain just to have someone take your goal and win!  Another layer of strategy comes in with trying to make multiple connections with a single card.  Multiple connections in one turn allow you to draw more cards.  More resources in this game are vital.  There were players playing grid layout cards just to make two, three, and four connections even if none of them were “their” dragon just to draw more cards!

The cards were beautifully drawn by famous fantasy artist Larry Elmore.  Mr. Elmore has multiple pieces included in several fantasy Role Playing Game systems notably including TSR (Dungeons & Dragons) and has a handful of Magic: The Gathering cards.  There are no other pieces or parts to the game, just the card deck.

Seven Dragons is easy to learn and quick to pick up.  There are even alternate rules to include children as young as three years old.  This is truly a great family game.  The games can be quick enough for multiple plays in a session and there is high replay-ability as your goals and the board change every time!  The dragon card art is bright and colorful while portraying a medieval fantasy setting.

The action cards can be a touch overpowered.  Especially in games with younger players you may want to consider removing them completely.  This will allow everyone to just focus on building a connection chain of just their dragon without the fear that someone will just take their goal and hard work.  Depending on the mischievousness of players, there can be some frustration over just one card being played that can completely derail an entire game.

Seven Dragons is another lighter party style card game near the front of our library.  A highly rated family game for all ages with enough strategy to keep more experienced players engaged.

 Players who like dominoes (Mexican Train), Tri-ominoes, and the strategy of chess will like Seven Dragons!  Two dragon wings up!

 

After reading Tal the Wolf Card Guy and his High School Board Game Club’s review, if this sounds like a game for you at the time of this posting Seven Dragons is available for purchase. Check it out and get. yours HERE.

Disclaimer: Anytime you see a link to Amazon on our site, it is another way to get your product there for the normally listed price as well as a way to support Everything Board Games and everything we’re doing here, without paying any extra. We appreciate the support!

Did you back it based on our review? Please comment below letting us know!
 

 


 

Check out Seven Dragons and Looney Labs on:

                 
Disclaimer: Anytime you see a link to Amazon on our site, it is another way to get your product there for the normally listed price as well as a way to support Everything Board Games and everything we’re doing here, without paying any extra. We appreciate the support!
 


 

 

 

 

Tal the Wolf Card Guy – Reviewer

Tal is a Student Success Specialist at a high school in Michigan.  He runs a very popular after school game club there.  Tal grew up playing Advanced Dungeons and Dragons (2nd Edition) and started playing Magic: The Gathering in 1995.  Tal has an eclectic taste in games.  He lists his current favorites as including Magic (he has a local tournament winning Werewolf and Token decks), Munchkin, Fluxx, Scrabble (he is VERY good at this Math game.  It is not a spelling game), Catan, and Pit.  He also likes social deduction games and heavier story driven games as well.  “Playing games is a universal language and a great way to connect with people.  Even if you are not ‘talking,’ you are still communicating and connecting.  Sometimes that is all people and students need!”  

See Tal’s reviews HERE.

 


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