Game Day September 2010: A Touch of Evil

This entry is part 3 of 5 in the series September Game Day

A Touch of Evil Box ArtA Touch of Evil is a huge game that would be difficult to sum up in just a paragraph or five.  Instead of trying to describe it all myself, here is the game’s description:

“Tis’ the dawn of the 19th century; an age of science, superstition, and witchcraft. Howling fills the night as a full moon rises over the small, secluded village of Shadowbrook. Gruesome murders have become a daily occurrence and terror haunts the streets at night. An evil creature has taken up residence here and the countryside is engulfed by a tide of darkness. But all is not lost…not yet.

A small group of heroic individuals, with the courage and strength to fight, have arrived in town. Some just passing through while others have come with a purpose; but all will be put to the test as they race to save this cursed town from falling into darkness. It will take a cunning mind and strength of spirit to determine who is friend and who is foe… to solve the mysteries and hunt the beast to its lair.

But the secrets of Shadowbrook run deep. Gossip and rumors run rampant and these few Heroes may soon discover that they are outsiders here and this town is already so rotten from within there is little left to save.

A Touch of Evil, The Supernatural Game is a fast-paced game of fiendish creatures, dashing Heroes, and high-adventure. Each player takes on the role of a unique monster-hunting Hero, racing against time to stop the forces of darkness from claiming another foothold in the world of man. Only by investigating the town and building your Hero’s strength can you hope to hunt down the Supernatural Villain to his Lair and defeat him in an epic Showdown. Players can race Competitively to be the first to defeat the Villain and save the town, or they can work together Cooperatively to defeat a much stronger Villain.

Featuring a gameboard map of Shadowbrook and its surrounding countryside, eight Heroes to choose from, and four different Supernatural Villains to hunt; each with its own host of unique Minions and powers to drastically change the game. A Touch of Evil is designed to create an adventurous cinematic feel as the story and game unfolds.

So grab up your Wooden Stake, stuff some shot in that Musket, and hold onto your Tri-corn Hat; no one is safe from the creatures of the night and no one can be trusted…for inside everyone lies A Touch of Evil.”

Despite there being 8 of us at the table, we ended up playing a 7-player game.  I teamed up with my girlfriend because this game would require a lot of work to make fully accessible. Even with a magnifier, the game’s multitude of cards would be difficult to read on my own, and the included dice are all mini d6s.  The game board has a lot of text on it, since characters have to explore different areas and each one has a unique name listed on the board, such as the Abandoned Keep, the Marshes, Town Hall, Blacksmith, Windmill, and more.  It would be quite a feat to reprint all of these cards in large print or Braille, and since we weren’t playing in cooperative mode we had to keep our hands hidden from others, meaning I couldn’t ask for help from the people sitting next to me.  Though the game was very fun and I would certainly play it again and recommend it to others, it may be difficult to play without help from someone else if you have any particularly limiting disability.

While playing the game, references to the game Arkham Horror kept coming up.  I haven’t played Arkham Horror, but apparently many of the game mechanics are similar between the two games.  However, even if you don’t like Arkham Horror you may enjoy A Touch of evil (as was the case with some of our players) since they’ve changed things just enough to fix some of Arkham‘s (supposed) fatal flaws.

A Touch of Evil does have a co-op mode, as well as an Advanced mode, but the game’s owner felt that the first time we played the game should be done on regular mode and non-cooperative.  Apparently, in co-op mode the game’s villain gets exponentially more difficult, and Advanced mode adds several elements to the game which make it simply brutal.  We all felt pretty good about the decision to play the game mode that we did, especially since it took around 3-1/2 hours to finish the game even on easy, non-cooperative mode.

One final note about the game is that it has its own sound track.  At just shy of 39 minutes in length, you will wind up listening to it 3 or 4 times at least before the game is over.  However, it does a decent job of setting the mood, even if it isn’t the most high budget opus you’ve ever heard, and made a fitting backdrop to our gaming session.

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