Friday, February 4, 2011

Review of Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer

Hello! Tonight, I wanted to share my thoughts on one of the recent games in the
family recently picked this up at a local gamestore. Funds have been tight, so we
actually traded a handful of Magic cards in for store credit. Our daughter thought it
was rad that we traded five cards in for that. She said, "You traded in FIVE cards and
got that game!?! That wasn't smart of them... there's like over a hundred cards in that
box!" But... on to the game.

Ascension Chronicle of the GodslayerAs I mentioned, Ascension is a deckbuilding game. What does that mean? For those of you familiar with Dominion, this is a game using the same basic mechanic. For those of you new to the concept, here's how it goes. You start the game with a deck. A small deck. On your turn, you acquire cards for your deck. Purchased cards typically go into your discard pile, which you shuffle when you get through your deck. This adds purchasing power for better cards and easier acquisition of point cards. You shuffle a lot. The concept started with Dominion, and has been popping up in other games like Thunderstone and Ascension. It's a good mechanic, and it makes games that use it easy to teach since you begin the game with a premade deck of just a couple different kinds of  cards.

Ascension works for 2-4 players. It has a board to organize the cards. There is a deck
of characters and monsters to defeat or purchase, and some spiffy plastic crystals to
track Honor (victory points). Six cards are laid out on the board, and these are either
going to be characters which go in your deck (purchased with Runes),  monsters to defeat
(using Power) or constructs, which are cards that go through your deck that you may play
into your play area and they stay in effect indefinitely. Most characters will provide
Power and/or Runes. Runes are the currency you use to buy cards, and Power is what you
use to defeat enemies. You can buy as many characters or constructs and/or fight as many
enemies as you have the Power and Runes for in your turn.

I like this game quite a bit. It is simple. Ascension is much less of an endeavor to set
up than Dominion is. We own all the released sets for Dominion, and it really seems like
a monumental undertaking to set up. Ascension, on the other hand, just requires you to
grab a starting deck, lay out the board, shuffle the card supply and count out the Honor
crystals. The simplicity of this makes it much more likely to hit the table if just my
wife and I are playing. Additionally, the possibility of buying characters and fighting
enemies in the same turn is nice, especially compared to Thunderstone's clunky dungeon

So... anyone else have thoughts about Ascension? About deckbuilding games? Let us know!

1 comment:

  1. Glad you guys liked the game! Shoot me an e-mail at and I'll ship you some promos to add to it :-)