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Home Forums The Gaming Room King Down (with unboxing)

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    Hello there

    Recently i received King Down, which was on KS last October. It’s a (sort of, but except the movement of the pieces you couldn’t tell) chess-based game for 2-4 players with nice little plastic minis, great visuals and an interesting card mechanic where you pay tolls for everything you do. It plays rather unexpectedly chaotic and fast, I’d take wiz-war as a comparison, and has caused quite a discussion over balance and some rule changes already.

    Any of you got this?

    Also, since there was none to be found, i created a little unboxing video myself for you guys. Mind you though it is my first try on a video of this kind and my English is not perfect to say the least. If there are some weird things, errors or quality issues with the sound…well i made it rather quick to just get it up here. Hope you enjoy it nonetheless!


    CK Lai

    Nice to see this. I backed this but dropped at the last minute. Too many other Kickstarters on around the same period.

    Let us know how it plays.


    Top notch work, Marcellus! I’ll watch an unboxing video from you any day.

    Pleasant voice (including near perfect English)
    Well “written” and organized perfectly.
    Great camera work
    Lovely mix of NAT sound and voice over.


    I got this game as well, but I have not had time to play it yet. My kitchen counter was quite a scene the day it came in. I wasted no time at all giving every piece the hot water treatment.

    Like you, I was very surprised by the feel of the cards. They’re so soft in hand.

    Universal Head

    That was a very high quality unboxing video MW – entertaining, succinct, and well-filmed. And your English is just about perfect.

    Nice little game. I liked the thick cardboard (especially those cards, looks like they’re matt celloglazed which isn’t cheap) and the divider and artwork inside the box is a nice touch. Good quality all round.

    Thanks for sharing mate. The members of EOG are starting to put my own efforts to shame, I’ll have to lift my game (if you’ll excuse the pun!)

    Oh, and love the reverse wrapping touch at the end.


    Thanks a lot for the feedback WonderSlug and UH! Glad you like it.

    After playing the game i can tell you a little about it.

    It’s a fun and fast race to eight victory points, although some turns might take some time of planning due to the toll mechanic (basically discard cards to do anything from activating a figure to moving etc.). While it is strategic at it’s chess core, there is too much randomness and luck to really call this a strategy game imo. The main reason being that you have to play the corresponding unit card to activate a unit and use it. So for example if you plan everything out and secure your pieces with a queen, chess-style, those pieces might not be secure at all because you don’t have the queen card anymore and thus can’t do anything with it (except a few spell cards). Once discarded it takes several turns until you reshuffle your deck and have a chance to draw the right cards again. The system works, but it creates a pretty chaotic game where you use each turn to do the best things with just the stuff you got in your hands right now.

    Sadly there really are balance issues and it seems that not enough play testing was done. It’s mainly one spell card though (and you could just take it out or end up not having it, since each game you draw random unit and spell cards to form your deck). With the rules and cards as they are, there are certain combos of cards or said one spell card which allow you to take a ridiculous amount of enemy units (especially in a four-player game). So even if you carefully place your figures and slowly capture the capitol to score points, your opponent could wipe nearly all of it in one turn (or even win the game). Even worse because there is no way you can foresee anything (especially with lots of cards in hand). You don’t know what cards your opponent has in his hand, which units he can move, what crazy combos he’ll land. There are spell cards which allow you to fly a unit to any square, take others without moving, take for free, take from your (otherwise) secure baseline, move your units, freeze your units or even just add one victory point quickly to win the game and so on…I guess you get the drill.

    But once you accept that this is a crazy and fast game in which everything can happen and nothing is secure it is actually quite fun. It just isn’t the deep strategic game i expected it to be.

    It looks like most likely there will be updated rules at some point or even a version 2.0 with some changes in the future.


    Thanks for the review. You have a lot of great insight into the game, which I still have not played yet.


    Marcellus, thanks for an entertaining and informative unboxing. Very well done. Your voice is clear and easy to understand and your camera work pickups up all the components well.

    The box looks to be about the size of a shoe box ?
    The production values of the the game itself appear to be very high. The thick player boards and cardstock give a lush impression of the game. The figures seems quite characterful for a board game too.

    Sounds as though its play like a Fluxxx version of chess ?

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