Thrown By WizKids Review
Quick Glance: Thrown by WizKids
Game Type: Dice Game
Number of Players: 3-5
Mechanics: Dice rolling, trick taking
Introduction/Overview: Over the past year or two, WizKids has released a series of trick-taking games that all do something unique with the genre. Spy Tricks introduced deduction to the mix and Kings’ Struggle added negotiation and backstabbing. Thrown by Adam Porter takes trick-taking a new direction by removing the one thing that all games of this style have had: the deck of cards. Thrown is a trick-taking DICE game for 3-5 players. Does Thrown ascend to the throne? Or does it stay a lowly vassal? And is Thrown the best dad joke game title of all time?
Gameplay: Thrown is played over a number of rounds equal to the number of players. Each round starts with the blind selection of four character cards that can be used to influence the results of the round. Each card has a different ability and a different way to trigger its effect. Players then draw a number of dice blindly from “The Void”…which is the box with a piece of paper to simulate “The Void.”
The lead player chooses 1-3 of their dice of the same color and rolls them. The result of that roll is the point the other players are going to try and beat. A player may also activate any character cards they wish during their turn. Some of the characters require certain rolls while others require discarding unrolled dice. Remaining players must then“follow suit” by rolling 1-3 of the same color dice as those led.
If a player doesn’t have the correct color of dice, they may roll any other color to try and trump the lead hand. All you have to do is roll a 6 on any one die.
After each player rolls, the highest total in the lead suit wins unless someone rolled trump. The winner gets 1 coin for every die rolled by their opponents. A round goes until only one player has dice left. That player then loses 1 coin for each die they have left. A new set of characters is selected and the process starts over again. Most coins at the end of the game wins!
Rulebook: The rulebook for this game is great. It explains everything in perfect detail. It even has a glossary that explains each character card in detail.
Theme: The theme only exists for the pun in the game title. But it’s an amazing joke, so I greatly approve of the theme.
Set-Up/Takedown: It takes a few seconds to get the cards sorted and set up properly, but it’s not unreasonable. Some of the variants can shorten set-up time.
Components: I need to talk about the gold tokens. The 1 gold pieces are some of the smallest game components I’ve seen since Alan Moon’s “Clippers” 15 years ago (look it up). One of the other players at my table even commented “They are so small, they couldn’t even fit the number 1 on them!”
Everything else is fine, but not great. The dice are small and plain. The card art is decent but not as good as some other recent WizKids games. The piece of paper for “The Void” was lame. A large dice bag would work much better to keep the dice hidden during drafting. I did enjoy the large size and clarity of the icons on the cards, but the game text needed to be bigger.
Final Thoughts: I really wanted to like this one, but it just didn’t work for me. I love dice rolling games, and I was excited to try a new twist on a genre I enjoy. Imagine trying to play Hearts or Euchre with your hand of cards face down. That’s what Thrown felt like to me. Even with the character cards I didn’t feel there were enough ways to mitigate bad rolls or interact with the other players which took strategy down to nearly zero. Maybe if the hands were competitions to get exclusive usage of the characters for the rest of the game? I don’t know, but it just didn’t feel like the stakes were high enough to make any daring plays. There were a few character cards that I did like, but not enough to make this an experience I would want to come back to often, if at all.
Unfortunately, Thrown is a pretty hard pass for me.