Raids Review - By Iello
Quick Glance: Raids by Iello
Game Type: Track-based / Resource Gathering
Number of Players: 2-4
Mechanics: Set Collection, Monster Fighting, PvP
Introduction/Overview: Raids is a Viking-themed strategy game that requires players to carefully choose their moves to acquire resources, vikings for their ship, and weapons. Along the way they may choose to battle fearsome monsters or flee if their viking army is not strong enough. Players must compete for different tiles to increase their victory point total.
Gameplay: The game consists of four rounds, and the voyage tiles are shuffled placed throughout the board. Players can choose to stop on any tile they wish and try to acquire the resource. While traversing around the track players will stop at various villages to acquire more vikings for their ship which strengthen their army and possibly multiply their victory point value if the player gains a Mjollnir tile to add to their longship. Weapon tiles can be used to lower the defenses of monsters encountered. Goods tiles can be placed in your longship and traded into port tiles for victory points.
While traversing, it’s possible that two players might want to claim the same resource tile. This is where a potential battle will occur or flee to a different tile if they do not wish to lose too many vikings from their longship. Also rune tiles are possible to acquire, the more of these you collect the higher the victory point score is awarded at the end of the game. Players must balance vikings, and other voyage tiles within the limited space of their longship. There are also bonuses for finishing each round that are random every time, such as who has defeated the most monsters and other game time conditions. Money (victory points) is earned when passing over certain voyage tiles first or when a bonus condition is met. At the end of four different rounds all of the possible earned victory points are totaled and a winner is declared.
Rulebook: The rulebook is printed in full color and is very descriptive. Everything from the board to the components of the game are clearly labeled. When I had a question, it was easy to find the answer I was looking for. I especially appreciate the full clarification of every type of voyage tile towards the end of the rulebook. Overall, no issues in this department.
Theme: The viking theme is always fun, as it usually generates some viking talk / accents around the table. The artwork is excellent and all images seemingly fits the viking theme quite well.
Set-Up/Takedown: Set-up is very easy to accomplish, the voyage tiles are shuffled and placed on the board for the first round and bonus objectives are shuffled and placed next to each round’s tile stack. Vikings are added to the board in the villages where players will pass through and collect. Every component of Raids is placed back in the box in a neat and orderly fashion for the next play-through.
Components: This is where Raids really shines. The game comes with coin tokens that easily could have been made of cardboard, but instead are of solid metal painted into three different colors and embossed with a value stamped onto them. The coins have some definite heft to them and feel like they are a high quality component. The voyage tiles are made of a hefty card stock and have a nice matte finish to them. The wooden longships are each painted in a bright color so it is very easy to see all players on the board. The vikings are my personal favorite. Instead of just brown painted wood, they have a nice stain varnish applied to them to presumably resemble longship wood.
Final Thoughts: Raids is great game, especially to warm up your table of friends with. The game is only lasts 30-40 minutes and is very easy to learn. The components are of very high quality and will last through many play-throughs. The only real complaint I have with the game is that the backs of the 3rd and 4th set of voyage tiles look very similar, but that is really nitpicking. Overall, Raids is definitely worth your time as it is a quick play, but the minutes are of high quality. Grab this one and make it your standard warm up game from now on.