So to continue the why I love series about board games that are on my shelf, I will delve into Cthulhu Wars and why I always enjoy bringing it out.
The best and biggest thing is definitely the aesthetic and table presence. Although it doesn’t help the price tag or shelf space requirements, this game definitely pops on the table. Big models are stomping around the world and laying into each other.
And laying into each other is what they do. This is a dudes on a map game where it can escalate quickly. No-one is ever too far away as they hope to sneak in some hurt to you while they earn some points and abilities. You have to try to protect everything while also being aggressive and building your economy.
It isn’t perfect. It is a Dice based combat system where, although combat isn’t very deadly (forcing retreats more than deaths), if you get a bad roll or given your opponent the opportunity to cripple you with a good roll, it can be difficult to recover. In fact, with some faction goals, you may even become a target. The game is relatively quick so your recovery chances may be slim.
Also the Onslaught 1 stuff is probably best. There is allot of variety with neutral monsters and maps you can use to vary the gameplay. However, some of the later expansions introduce some pretty bad balancing issues that are slowly being worked on (Tcho Tcho comes to mind).
So although not a horror game, Cthulhu Wars plays quickly and has a good theme. I really love the feel of the game and the assymetry. It does have its flaws, but it is far more fun than it has any right to be. And that is why I love Cthulhu Wars.