Hefting his axe, Mordrog gazed out over the hills. He had ventured over mountains, through rivers, and across reeking swamps, but now he stood before his goal. As he drew closer he could see the dragon scales reflecting the pale moonlight. Taking one last glance behind him, Mordrog charged ahead. A terrifying roar echoed through the night air, and the dragon reared back to see what loathsome creature has attacked it. Snapping forward, mouth open wide, the dragon lunged. “Finally,” Mordrog thought, “a challenge.”
The realm of Runebound is magical and dangerous, filled with powerful wizards, noble knights, vicious monsters, and power-mad tyrants. It is a world of great quests and mighty deeds. Above all, it is a world of legendary heroes... and the time has come for you to join them!
In Runebound, a fantasy adventure board game for 1-6 players, you and your opponents take on the roles of Heroes questing across the land in search of adventure. Along the way, you will find magical artifacts and cunning allies (represented by Item and Ally cards) to help you in your quest. You will also encounter terrible villains and fiendish traps (represented by adventure cards) that you must overcome in order to complete your quest.
Your objective depends on which adventure you and your opponents choose to play, giving Runebound a near limitless replayability. The adventure is the heart of Runebound, and it determines the object of your quest, and what wonders and obstacles you will encounter along the way. The adventure included in the base game, for example, is “Rise of the Dragon Lords.” The vile necromancer Vorakesh is trying to find the ancient Dragon Runes and use them to resurrect Margath, the long-dead High Lord of the evil dragons. As a Hero of the land, it is your duty to stop Vorakesh from carrying out his mad designs.
To start a game, each player receives a Hero card. This gives you the attributes and special abilities of the hero you will play during the game. Fans of Descent: Journeys in the Dark and Runewars will find a familiar cast of beloved characters, all legends in the rich fantasy realm of Terrinoth.
Over the course of the game, you will draw adventure cards to find what challenges await you. Completing the objectives on these cards will improve your hero’s abilities, allowing you to eventually face the ultimate threat and achieve success. Adventure cards are color-coded by difficulty. Green adventures are the easiest; yellow adventures are more challenging; blue adventures are difficult; and red adventures are the most daunting in the game.
What’s more, there are three types of adventure cards: Challenges, Events, and Encounters. Challenges are the most common and typically include an enemy to fight. Events can change the rules of the game, as they represent larger plots and ongoing changes in the world. Encounters may require skill tests, combat, or for your Hero to fulfill a secondary quest. This broad range of adventure types and difficulties creates many distinct paths to victory, and gives Runebound players plenty of options while saving Terrinoth.
Movement is one area of Runebound that offers particularly compelling strategic choices. Your hero will move about the board, seeking his or her adventures, using an original mechanic that features custom six-sided movement dice. Each die has two or three terrain icons on each side, and when you choose to move, you will roll five of them (in-game conditions and effects, such as fatigue or certain treasures, can increase or decrease the number of movement dice you roll).
You then select the terrain icons that correspond to the hexagons you wish to traverse. Want to cross a river, then a mountain, then a forest? You need to have rolled those three icons. If you haven’t rolled anything helpful, you can always forfeit your movement and rest, regaining fatigue points for later. As you move across Terrinoth, you’ll find yourself adapting your strategy to the luck of the dice!
If you’re able to move with greater efficiency and conquer the various challenges that face you, you’ll be rewarded with the aid of powerful allies and legendary artifacts. Then, treasure and glory await the hero willing to face the ultimate evil. Do you have what it takes to collect the dragon runes and save Terrinoth?