Many of you are stuck at home with bored kids by this point, but here at Chez Rahn, it’s just us and a labrador who thinks that work-from-home-week is the most amazing thing ever. So today I want to tell you about a 2 player game called One Deck Dungeon. My husband and I really like to play games, but most things are really designed to work best with 4 players, so it’s a challenge to find one that’s really fun with two.
In One Deck Dungeon, you and your partner are exploring a dungeon. It’s a collaborative game, which means either the players win or the game wins, you aren’t playing against each other (which can also be awesome if your partner is a competitive sort.) One each turn you explore a room by opening one of four doors (flipping over the card). You will either find a monster or a trap which you have to defeat (or dodge) in order to move on.
Each character has a pool of dice to roll in order to defeat your obstacle. The dice have one of 4 different colors and each character gets different ones. One quirky thing I like about this game is that the game designers decided to make all of the characters be girls. So the Paladin, Rogue, Warrior, Archer and Mage are all female. It doesn’t change anything about the way you play the game, but I love it.
The monster or trap has some specific dice rolls you need in order to defeat it. For this monster, you need to fill up each of the colored boxes with dice totalling or exceeding the number in the box. We’ve already placed a 6+4 of pink to make 10 (which was the number on this box) and I am about the place the blue 3 on the blue 3 box.
We won’t quite be able to defeat this “Shadow” on our own without consequences. We’ll be able to fill the other blue boxes with the two blue 5 dice, but we don’t have a yellow 5 to be able to fill that yellow box. That means one of us will take some damage unless we can find a way to make the yellow dice we need. There are lots of ways to do that. You can trade in two colored dice to make a black dice. Black is like a wild color. Each character also has special abilities to add to a dice roll, re-roll, change the color, or get an extra dice. You get those special abilities by defeating the obstacles; for every one you defeat you get either an extra dice to roll or a special power to use for the rest of the game.
You will play through three levels of the dungeon which gets harder and harder and then for your final battle you will face a boss monster, which can be different for each game you play. The whole game goes quickly; according to the box it’s 30 minutes per game. I think once you’ve learned it that could be true, but your first few will take a little longer. It is recommended for ages 14+, which I think is maybe a little high but that will depend a lot on the young person you are playing with. There are lots of things to look at, especially when you are trying to figure out how on earth you are going to make that last yellow 5 you need to defeat the monster, but it is cooperative, so you are working together for everything. The whole game fits in a box smaller than a paperback book, but it will be different every time and there is a sequel that you can combine with this one to make even more variations.
Links to One Deck Dungeon and One Deck Dungeon: Forest of Shadows are here in my Amazon List so you can find it easily. Please check your favorite local games store too and support a small business if you can. The Source in Minneapolis will pull and have things waiting for you so you can just pop in and pick it up.