Fallen Land is table top game that promises a lot; strategy, role playing and card building. At first I will admit I was a bit skeptical of how this would pan out as often I have been promised something on Kickstarter, only for it to be a let-down. The game reminds me of GMT’s games, the way it looks and that was something that got me excited as I love all their games.
Fallen Land is set in a post-apocalyptic America where the world has gone mad. The game offers a sandbox experience where each game will be different from the last. It plays 2-5 players and takes around one hour per player.
What's in the box?
The box that Fallen Land comes in is medium size (think Roll Player or Formula D) but the weight is something to behold. The sheer amount of content really surprised me. Lots of tokens and chit punch-boards (of great quality and easy to press out), more cards than a deck-builder, a decent sized board and player boards that represent your faction you will play as.
The rule book is in depth and may be one of the thickest ones I have seen (43 pages) but the way it's laid out is good. Fallen Land is not an easy game to play or learn due to the amount it offers to players, the rule book really does make it as easy as possible though.
Another plus is that this game comes with enough baggies to store everything in, something I wish more games did.
Playing Fallen Land
For anyone who has read any of my other reviews, you will know that I normally give a detailed overview of how to set the game up and how it plays. For Fallen Land this would simply be a wall of text that would bore the readers. This is due to how in-depth this game is but once you have set up and played a few times the game becomes very straightforward.
Below are just some of the highlights of Fallen Land:
- You have 10 different factions to choose from, they all have different back stories, starting locations and perks that will make each time you play a different experience.
- The player mats represent your town and this is where all resources and characters will be placed along with spoils cards (things you acquire along the way). The main bulk of the game will revolve around this area.
- Towns can be upgraded in a few different ways, like defence and technology, which will help you in your quest of survival. One key element that will take place in the town are auctions between players this really adds player interaction as you haggle to get the best price for goods.
- Character cards are your faction’s hero/s if you like. These characters form your party and perform actions like missions and combat against other players. The amount of depth on each card is amazing and they all have different skills weapons and more.
On a turn, you will make deals at the auction house, attack other players, complete missions, treat the injured and more. Turns are all relatively quick but that depends on how much interaction takes place (haggling at auction can be time consuming if you don’t want to play ball).
I was hoping for a good game in Fallen Land, one that I could play at all player counts and get enjoyment from. Reading the box disappointed me slightly as its one hour per player (more if you have newbies playing) and this would restrict me in when I could play it, or so I thought.
The game is fun and even though it’s really in depth, the fun factor makes the time fly by. There are always decisions to be made and even on other player's turns you are kept involved and engaged. The play time is not an issue at all and if a player or two knows the rules, playtime for experienced gamers can come in slightly under that time. I disliked a popular game I reviewed due to play time and got some fan backlash a few months back as the play time of the game was around one hour per player. The fact that this keeps enjoyment at a constant is great as this could have easily been a downfall.
At no point in this article have I mentioned artwork this is because it’s not amazing (I hadn’t even thought about talking about art until I got to this point). The board is bland to say the least as is the box, BUT the card art and player mats really do fit the theme and the more you play Fallen Land the more you appreciate its simple comic style approach.
The game can have as much or as little backstabbing as you want. Having 10 factions means the game will get a lot of play time and never feel stale. On BGG it's described as a sandbox experience and I would have to agree with that. The game will be different every time you play from your town to the enemies you face.
I was truly surprised by Fallen Land and it’s been one of the most enjoyable reviews I have had to do. I have not explained how some things work and I simply do not have room to give an overview of everything as there is just too much but below are just some of the things you will do or see in this game:
- Movement of your Party
- Resources and more.
What I will say is if this game had Fallout on the box then the gameplay would fit the theme perfectly. Everything you do feels thematic and as you read more of the flavour text you get immersed into the world. I would go as far to say that it feels like a campaign/legacy game without the ‘destroying your game’ bit.
There are also planned expansions for Fallen Land which means more options to the already huge array available to players.