The Tiny Epic series, by Gamelyn Games, offer an epic adventure in a tiny box. They have released a host of these games with themes ranging from Westerns to Space, Fantasy quests to Kingdom defence. They are also known for their ITEMeeples where players can collect items and physically attach them to thier meeple. The next in the series is Tiny Epic Zombies.
Tiny Epic Zombies was successfully funded on Kickstarter in February 2018 and is due to be delivered to backers in September/October 2018. But in the already saturated Zombie market does Tiny Epic Zombies offer anything above what is already out there. Read on to find out what I think of the game and why I backed it.
Tiny Epic Zombies offers the same big box game in a small package that all the other Tiny Epic games offer. There has been an outbreak at a shopping mall (Echo Ridge) and almost everyone has died. Only a few survivors remain. In Tiny Epic Zombies there are a total of five different play modes; Co-operative with AI zombies, co-operative vs a zombie player, competitive with AI zombies, competitive vs. zombie player and solo.
There are a number of scenarios to play out that must be completed to win the game, unless you are the Zombie player, in-which case you just need to kill all other players. There are 14 different player cards in the base game (the Deluxe Version has another four) that have special abilities and the game is played out with nine different rooms within the shopping mall.
The base game also contains 12 different weapons (incl. a crowbar, chainsaw, shotgun, pistol, axe and baseball bat) (Deluxe Version contains two more, bazooka and katana), two vehicles that the ITEMeeples can ride in (motorbike and police car), wooden zombies, item cards and various other tokens and pieces for the scenarios. There is a lot of components packed in to the game.
Turns are quick and super simple. Each player will move three times. Based on where a player moves, additional actions can happen. If a player moves in to a room with a Zombie you have to fight it. If there is a Zombie in the adjacent room you can spend ammo to shoot it. If there are any items in the room it can be searched to hopefully discover something useful such as weapons, provisions, scenario specific items or even more Zombies. After a player has had their turn more zombies spawn.
One of the interesting features of Tiny Epic Zombies with respect health and ammo is that they are opposite ends of the same track. So, a player can start off with zero wounds and nine ammo. As a player receives a wound or spends ammo the markers are moved along the track (one wound moves the marker one space right, one ammo moves the marker one space left). If these markers ever cross the player is toast and turns in to a zombie. There are other characters that a player can become but if too many characters die they lose the game and the zombies win. For the players to win the scenario specific requirements must be met.
Thoughts on Tiny Epic Zombies
Gamelyn Games always amaze me with how they can pack so much punch in to such a small box. For someone that doesn't have a dedicated games room or storage space, small boxes are a huge draw. Anything in a small box with lots of game inside is very attractive. I personally don't own any zombie games. Shocker I know, especially with the amount of Zombie titles on the market. But I am super excited about this one.
It feels like an episode of Walking Dead. Scavenging around for items to complete a scenario, picking up weapons to fight of the invading zombie horde, with more and more zombies coming at you from every direction. It looks great, the gameplay is simple and streamlined. The different characters and special abilities add replay-ability and the different scenarios add even more.
The different play modes are great and means that it can be played in many different ways again and again without it becoming stale. The component quality looks outstanding with the wooden zombies, vehicles, ITEMeeples and weapons all adding to the overall look and aesthetics of the game.
This was an instant back on Kickstarter for me and I can't wait till October, when it is scheduled to be delivered. Hopefully it will live up to my expectations. So far other Tiny Epic games have so I have no reason to think this one will disappoint.