You and your fellow band of adventurers have been ambushed whilst venturing in to the darkness searching for riches and glory. Everyone has been killed, you have suffered a fatal wound, lost all your possessions and been left for dead. The only thing on your mind is survival and escape. You have nothing apart from your determination and your unbroken spirit. You must survive. Craft weapons, search for resources and use your skills, but beware, monsters are hunting you and time is a valuable commodity. Run out of time and you will be ambushed.
Unbroken is a one-player 20-30 minute survival game. It is quick to learn, easy to play but totally brutal.
Unbroken is played with one of four different characters, each with their own special skills and abilities. There are six different monsters at level one, two, three and four. Each monster level increases in difficulty, with the aim of the game being to defeat a level four monster and escape the dungeon.
There is a stack of random encounter cards which can give players resources but cost time, skill cards that grant your character new skills to perform and condition cards which negatively affect your character. The resources in the game include effort (small, medium and large), cunning, food, wood, metal, treasure and the most important time.
Resources are spent performing actions such as:
- Scouting (reveals the next monster).
- Focusing (converting four small effort in to medium effort).
- Planning (converting two medium effort in to large effort).
- Orienteering (lets you take two extra encounter cards during exploration).
- Craft (if you have the available resources you can craft a weapon).
Be wary though, spending too much time can result in you being ambushed by the monster that is hunting you, resulting in dire consequences. Players can also explore by drawing two encounter cards from the deck. Resolve their effects to gain resources or use them to rest and gain time.
Once a player is ready they can encounter the enemy. They can choose to fight it or trick it. Resolving fights is performed by spending effort to perform actions with your selected weapon or bare hands. If the monster is defeated the player gains the detailed resources and a new skill card. A new round begins and the next level monster begins hunting you.
Initial Thoughts on Unbroken
Unbroken is a quick-playing solo survival game that has been funded through Kickstarter. When the game first came on to my radar I initially didn’t back it. I was a bit unsure if I would play a solo game. I like the social aspect of board gaming, meeting up with other players and sitting down to play something.
After reading more about Unbroken and watching a few prototype reviews I was hooked. The gameplay was super smooth, yet the decisions were tough. The push your luck element of spending a bit more effort or time to do another action was tense. Who knows what encounter you might face next or which monster will appear (assuming you have not scouted).
The combat works well with the monsters attacking based on a dice roll. Depending on the monster and the attack you could lose time, effort, resources, or miss your next attack. The extra effort spent on the last turn could make the difference between success and defeat.
I have recently received the print and play as part of my pledge on Kickstarter and I am very pleased I backed it. I have played Unbroken several times now and been horribly and brutally killed by various monsters including a cave bear, a bugbear and a minotaur. Probably the best, most intense and enjoyably brutal 30 minutes I have had with a stack of cards.
The artwork fits perfectly with the theme of the game and looks amazing. The replay-ability is high with one out of the four different characters played each game, only one out of the six monsters will be selected at each level (total of four for each play-through), seven different weapons available to be crafted, 24 skill cards, 10 condition cards and 88 encounter cards.
I am looking forward to receiving my copy towards the end of 2018, until then I will happily stick with the print and play copy.