In the Middle Ages, kings and nobles would send their armies to siege the enemy strongholds.
While the combined armies generally all fought on the same side, the true victory was won by whomever was able to walk away with the most glory..
Fast forward to today and sadly there are no longer any castles to siege.
However, thanks to the latest addition from Ben Mora over at Mora games, Wages of War gives your band of would-be kings and nobles a chance to lead your armies against a common enemy. In the end, the castle will be destroyed, but only he who inflicted the most damage will seize all the glory and thus win the game. Since this is an uncooperative game you will have to stay on your toes to determine who is your true ally and who only has their own best interest at heart.
One of the core mechanics in Wages of War is the inverse worker placement system. Your army of meeple soldiers is a resource unto itself that you will have to carefully and tactically reserve, using and deploying when most advantageous. Otherwise you will find yourself watching your friends go off to battle while your stuck cleaning the latrine for the 5th time.
Laying siege to the castle is the way to earn victory points. No matter how you slice it, storming the castle is a lot of fun, but it also involves a degree of strategy. A well-timed attack can cause your fellow players to attack when they are not prepared, resulting in casualties. Casualties cost you victory points at the end of the game, so casualties are something you want to avoid.
Wages of War gives players a variety of options for laying siege to the castle. Will you soften the castle's defenses with siege weapons and bow men first? Or will you invest in a Zerg-style army and crash headlong on to the enemy defenses?
While one strategy might work well for you in one game, the next time round that strategy might not work out as planned since part of your strategy could be foiled by your fellow players.
Each of the above actions give you an opportunity to play an action on your turn that affects all players who have a building at the played location. Some of the cards also allow you the chance to re-position your troops,shifting them from range to melee or upgrading them to stronger weaponry.
The Tableau, which is where each player organizes and manages their army, are excellently designed and provide ample room to build out your army. You can easily track future purchases and upgrades with the built-in currency chart. With this at the ready, there's no need to reveal your plans to purchase maybe a cannon or starting to gather wood by asking another player how much something costs.
In our Pletatest, we tried out the 4 player version of Wages of War and in my post-game interview with all the players all involved gave Wages of War 2 Siege engines up!
This game has a good mix of strategy and fun! By fun we mean, fun for you when your only option is the worst possible scenario for your "ally"! But beware: what goes around comes around in Wages of War!
Wages of War will be landing on Kickstarter on April 11th be sure to check them out!
Wages of War Kickstarter
Check out our quick video review of Wages of War - coming soon on our YouTube channel!