Boss Monster is a fun competitive card game that was made possible by Kickstarter funding, and published by Brotherwise Games. Boss Monster puts 2-4 players in the role of the Boss at the end of a side-scrolling 8-bit dungeon. The players compete by trying to create the most effective dungeon to lure adventures to their death so the Boss can collect their soul.
Each turn, heroes enter the town, looking for the dungeon with the most appealing treasures (Fighters will go to dungeons with the most "sword" treasures, Mages are looking for "spell books," and so on). Players have a chance to build rooms in their dungeons or build on top of existing rooms to attract the heroes they wish to defeat. The dungeons can't be larger than 5 rooms, so choosing which rooms to build or replace is key to winning.
Spells can also be played to help yourself, or actively harm another player's plan. To win Boss Monster you must collect 10 souls from the unlucky heroes who die in your dungeon. But be careful, if a hero survives your dungeon and makes it to your Boss, you are dealt damage. If your Boss takes 5 wounds, you lose the game.
I love the artwork of this game! The cards are beautifully illustrated with pixel art and littered with video game references. Even the box is reminiscent of a NES game box. You definitely get the sense that the game creators are very passionate about video games.
I originally bought Boss Monster on impulse. I saw mixed reviews online about the game, and didn't expect to love it. After spending an entire day playing this game, I went out the next day and bought both the expansion and the sequel game Boss Monster 2: The Next Level.
Boss Monster is simple to play, and it's just competitive enough that it won't end your friendship with the other players. A game can be played in about 30 minutes, but in my experience you won't want to stop after one game. The randomness of the cards makes it excellent to replay again and again.
The only downside to this game is that you may get a starting hand filled with rooms that will just get your Boss wounded right away. It sucks to start out the game at a disadvantage. However, I've seen games where the person with wounds at the beginning ends up winning.
I'm always looking for games that my husband and I can play together. Sometimes you just want to stay in, order pizza, and play some board games together. The 2-player game play of Boss Monster is excellent. The expansion adds items to the Heroes, making them more difficult to defeat. If you plan on getting the game, splurge and add on the expansion for sure. Boss Monster is a game I would recommend you add to your collection. You can buy it online or at your local gaming store.