Released in 2019, Call to Adventure is a card-drafting game that is as instantly captivating as it is delightfully simple. Now, fans of Brandon Sanderson’s epic series The Stormlight Archive will be thrilled to discover that Call to Adventure has landed on Roshar! Players can choose from the deck of Roshar’s most famous and infamous, building a whole story for themselves. From adding to their origin story to developing their motivation, players can explore the vivid and violent home of the Knights Radiant and their Spren.
Call of the Storm
Players start out by taking a player mat and are dealt two of each type of card. These cards represent the character’s Origin, Motivation, and Destiny, and are placed in the greyed-out spaces on the mat once chosen. Players then draw a hero card and three experience tokens. The Character cards allow players to use certain runes, which are needed to attempt challenges. This speedy set up compliments the play-time of 30–60 minutes. Players can always enjoy a quick game, whether they’re locking horns for dominance of the Shattered Plains or joining forces to best Odium.
Thanks to the use of the runes, the cards are mostly self-explanatory and straight forward. If players do get a little lost, there are explanations for icons in the included rule book. While this makes the cards seem a little daunting at first, they really aren’t difficult to understand. This also extends the levity of gameplay as before you know it, you’ll be activating all sorts of cards left right and centre.
By the Heralds…
Unsurprisingly, the gameplay itself is rather simple. Players then take turns attempting challenges or gaining traits by casting runes. Successful attempts augment their Character cards, adding to the pool of runes they may use in future. The runes themselves set this game apart from the pack. With more colour and variety than just a simple dice roll, there’s something more to runes that I just can’t explain. When I attempt a challenge, I feel I’m more involved than if I were to just throw a die. The physical quality of the runes is also to be commended. To the touch, they feel as though they were carved stone and are just great fun to use.
After players attempt a challenge, that card they attempt is replaced. This mechanism really shows off what is, in my humble opinion, the game’s hottest aspect: the art. Each card is adorned with exquisite designs and depictions of the beauty of Roshar. From axehounds to chasmfiends, all of Roshar is captured perfectly. Every time a card is drawn, I find myself holding my breath, not because I necessarily need certain cards, but I am constantly captivated.
As gameplay develops, more and more cards are revealed and there is not a single disappointment among them. Even the simplest cards are instantly recognisable and are what make this game so enjoyable. This artwork is Call to Adventure: The Stormlight Archive’s biggest seller to Sanderson fans. While the gameplay is great fun, it’s the artwork I keep returning for as I always want to see what the cards hold.
What on Roshar?
This is where Call to Adventure comes into its own. I keep finding myself drawn back to this game, and when I do play, I’m never disappointed. This is, however, not because of the gameplay, or the short set up; it’s because of the art. Call to Adventure is all about creating a story for yourself, so when coupled with stellar artwork of Sanderson’s most famous series, this game really knocks it out the park. The gameplay is designed to really show off the cards and runes, which are the real stars of the show.
There is a charming balance between the components and the game itself. Neither one outshines the other, they work together in harmony to show off their best features. It is a slight shame that the player mats and rune tray feel a bit flimsy, especially when compared to the quality of the art, cards, and runes themselves. These do feel a little disappointing when compared to the other components, especially as they are both in constant use. However, both are fit for purpose and don’t detract from the playing experience.
Call to Adventure: The Stormlight Archive also packs a co-op mode, and this is where the hero and antihero cards are most useful. This mode works much like a normal game only this incorporates Odium’s Adversary deck. Not only does this open the game up to co-op play, but also allows solo play and so this game really can work with anyone.
Call to Adventure: The Stormlight Archive is a great combination of an already good base game and superb themed artwork. Fans of Sanderson’s work will not be disappointed one bit by what this game has in store. Thanks to the easy-to-learn nature of the game, anyone can pick this up relatively easily and so this will be a hit at any game night. Even for those unfamiliar with the Knights Radiant. Well, this is enough wittering on from me, dive in and explore Roshar for yourself!