Dragon’s Hoard: Review

OVERVIEW

Our Rating:

You are a dragon craving anything valuable. Coins, princes, wishing trees and more. Steal sheep from the farmers field and use them to get your treasure. Its a race to see which dragon can collect the most items and put them in their lairs. Slow down other dragons by sending angry mobs, wizards and thief's their way. Are you going to be the richest and baddest dragon?

Number of Players

Time to Play

Ages

2-4

20-45 min

8+

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CHARLENE'S REVIEW

My Rating:

Likes

  • thumbs-o-up
    Artwork
  • thumbs-o-up
    Intensity
  • thumbs-o-up
    Double Sided Cards
  • thumbs-o-up
    No Setup

Dislikes

  • thumbs-o-down
    Wish there was an expansion to add more players and cards

Intro/First Impressions

Each player is a dragon hunting for treasure, and in order to win the game you want to have the highest amount of points. To get points, you have to buy treasure cards and place them in your lairs. In order to buy treasures for your lairs, you must collect sheep from the farmers field. The higher valued the item, the more sheep you must collect. Other players can send angry mobs, knights, wizards and more to slow you down. The battle quickly can get heated and intense. This card drafting game can last about 20-45 minutes and are between 2-4 players. It is easy to learn and easy to teach.

Thoughts

Just looking at Dragon’s Hoard leaves me mesmerized. The artwork is so captivating, that it will leave you feeling completely submersed in the dragon theme. The sheep are amusing, with different appereances for each colour. There are 5 colours, yellow, red, purple, blue and orange. Each colour has a specific shape on the card so that it is friendly for colour blind players. I have played this game a lot and I still find myself admiring the artwork. But with that being said, the artwork is not what makes Dragon’s Hoard an amazing game.

The cards are double sized with one side having the sheep and the other side having the treasure, lair, or action. This is the first game I have played that has incorporated double sided cards. I am surprised at how well it works here and how much I like it. The side of the card that is facing the other players in your hand is the sheep side, while only you can see the other side which is the treasure/lair/action card side. 


Having the cards double sided forces you to have to make difficult decisions. You many have finally collected enough sheep of a certain colour to finally buy your treasure that is worth 8 points. But the sheep you need to use to buy it, has a treasure that is pretty good that you could buy later. Another sheep has a unicorn on the other side that is always nice to have on hand incase another player looks like they are ready to play an action card against you. Do you spend the sheep and buy the treasure or do you hold out till you get more sheep? Other players are able to see how many sheep of each colour you have. So if I am collecting red sheep and I look at the player beside me and see that they have a few red cards, I may want to use my thief action card and steal 2 red cards. Sometimes I will see that an opponent is desperate to collect sheep of a certain colour, so I will deliberately hold on to a card of that colour. The other player may then think the card is of high value, when its not. Sometimes the other player will then waste a thief card to steal it. This is very satisfying for me, and a bit evil but hey, we are playing as dragons. If you do by chance pick a card that is of high value but you don't need that colour but one of your opponents does, you may what to spend this card to buy a treasure card. The card will then get placed in the discard pile and will be out of play till the card pile in the field gets depleted. The discard pile then gets shuffled and becomes the card pile in the field. 


In order to collect the most points, you will want to collect treasures of the same colour. A lair card allows you to receive extra points when you have  2, 3 or 4 of the same colour. Two or three different colours of lairs will give you the most points. For strategy, I like to either focus on my colours to collect and not pay attention to the other players or I like to see what the other players are going for and start collecting those to stop them from collecting points. The second strategy usually ends in at least one player getting frustrated with me.


What strategy you take will greatly depend on how many players are playing. In a two player game, it is easy to say ok I will go for blue and red. The other player will notice this and typically start collecting different colours. In a 3-4 player game it is pretty much impossible to be the only player collecting one specific colour. You may need to collect treasures only worth 1 or 2 points, where as in a two player game  it is typically best to wait for ones worth more. 

Conclusion

Dragon's Hoard is a wow game in more ways then one. Its beautiful and a surprisingly intense card game. We always grab this game when we don't feel like spending anytime setting a game up, and when we are craving a strategy game that isn't really long. Would be a great game to take traveling!


This is definitely one of my all time favourite games. I was so upset when they stopped making the game pretty soon after it was launched on Kickstarter. They did end up making the game in German with the new tarot sized cards and new box artwork. I grabbed this version right away afraid that when my Kickstarter english version wore out I wouldn't be able to replace it. But good news!!! The game is now available again by Renegade Game Studios with the larger cards so you can enjoy the artwork that much more! 

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Charlene

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