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Warfighter: The Tactical Special Forces Card Game» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Vlad's review of Warfighter rss

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Vladimir Lehotai
Slovakia
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A disclaimer at the beginning: this is only about the base game as it is, I'm not taking any further expansions into consideration.


Warfighter: The Tactical Special Forces Card Game is a quick card game for 1-6 players set in the modern warfare on a squad level. Let's look at it one thing at a time.

Components:

After opening the game box, you'll see that you got a plenty of tokens in two sheets. Their quality is good and you won't have any problems getting them out of the sheets, because they get out of there almost by themselves. Some tokens are for expansions (like Flashbang grenades), so if you want only the base game, they'll be unusable for you. Someone may not like it, but I personally don't care. Of course, YMMV.

The play mat (called Tactical Display Sheet) is well-arranged, you have the setup, turn and attack summaries at your disposal as well as a time counter. Good for the first few games if you need a reminder, later it is purely optional. The only thing that could be better is the material itself. Don't get me wrong, the paper looks sturdy, but it is a far cry from the cardboard play mat from Thunderbolt-Apache Leader (also a DVG game).

The bullet dice are a nice idea, but you could use a dice mat or something, because they may roll off the table as has sometimes happened to me. If you don't want to use them, feel free to use normal d6 and d10 dice.

The soldier miniatures are okay. Sure, they're nothing spectacular but personally, I don't mind them.

Cards are nice and thick, there is no need to sleeve them, but I myself plan to do so, it will make shuffling easier for me. The card art ranges from good (the 3D renders used on hostile cards, weapons or equipment) to really great (the photos of real soldiers). And man, the photos are a really nice touch, I love them. Cards contain all the informations you may need, except for keywords like Ranged or Stealth), but you can find those in the rulebook on pages 26 and 27.

Rules:

If you go by the rulebook during your first play, you'll get a good idea about the game. The rules are quite simple, though some terms could have been explained better, like Suppression's effects, but if you as a rule of thumb won't try to read too much into it, you'll be fine. On the other hand the rulebook could use some better organisation. Maybe I am spoiled by FFG's new approach to rulebooks (one rulebook to guide you through your first play and explain the basics and one rules reference guide for explanation of game terms, keywords and other stuff you might need), but I find it vastly superior to one rulebook solution. No big deal, though.

Gameplay:


After choosing the region, mission and objective, you're ready to choose your team and equipment based on the resource points noted on the mission card. Soldiers are the most important, because they're there to do the work. Each of them has a points cost, health, cover and so on. After players choose their soldiers, you may get some non-player soldiers (who are fully equipped already) or squad soldiers, who don't have any equipment per se, but they are being treated as the enemy soldiers are - via the attack chart noted on their cards. In solo game consider using at least two player soldiers, because each provides a hand of cards, which means more options for you.

Then it is time to purchase weapons, equipment and skills. Weapons and equipment have a loadout cost and each player soldier has a loadout limit (that may be affected by the mission card), so there is only so much a soldier can carry. Always take the objective into consideration, because if you have to, say, destroy a building that is vulnerable only to explosives (which makes sense) and you didn't bring any, then you're screwed. Also soldier's equipment and skills define his role. A point of note is that while the equipment, weapon and skill cards are in limited quantities, the players are not limited by them, so four players can each have for example a M4A1 Carbine. It is weird and not that much convenient. Anyways, I know about Dan Verssen's plans to remedy this in an upcoming expansion, but see the disclaimer at the very beginning.

When all the soldiers are equipped, it's time to rock and roll!
Each player draws a number of action cards equal to his soldier's health. During the Soldier turn, each soldier can take usually two actions (some soldiers have 3 actions) out of the following: attack, move, reload, discard and draw (action cards from the hand), remove 1 Suppress or play a location card, if it is noted on it as a part of the cost. Luckily you can choose the order in which to execute them, so you can act as a real team.

Combat is really simple, just choose a weapon you have, choose a firing mode (if it has any) and an enemy within range you're about to shoot. Roll a d6 and a number of d10s depending on the fire mode you chose to see the result. The d6 die is used to determine if you have defeated enemy's cover and the d10 di(c)e determine whether you have actually hit something. Depending on the dice results, it may be a miss, a suppress or a hit. And that's it. It is simpler that it sounds.

Players as a team may play one location card each round and that is how you advance. After you play a location, spawn the hostiles on it based on its hostile value. Each location has an entrance cost you have to pay each time you enter it (with action cards). A nice touch is that some enemies, like Snipers, may increase the location's entrance cost, representing the fact that it is much harder to enter a properly guarded location. Each round there may come the enemy reinforcements. Again, it makes sense since you are in a hostile territory.

During the hostile turn, enemies move and/or attack your soldiers. They range from a simple gunmen to rocket teams to a leader. Stronger enemies are really troublesome. Rocket team may hit you for up to 4 wounds, which is really bad. A friend's soldier ate a rocket like that and he was glad he survived the mission. Leader on the other hand breaks suppression on his subordinates or calls for reinforcements, again something that makes sense.
If you complete the mission objective, you've won. If your soldiers are all downed or if the time runs out, you lose.

Final thoughts:
I really like this game. two gamer and one non-gamer friends understood the rules quite quickly and they have enjoyed it as well. Many things in the game make sense from both the story perspective and from the common sense. There are some things people may object to, like the tokens usable only if you own an expansion, or only one Stealth weapon (again, the Stealth expansion adds more of them). Simplicity of its mechanics are really nice.
I definitely recommend this game.

edit: a few typos here and there
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Dan Verssen
United States
Glendora
California
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Great write-up! Thank you!
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Eric T
United States
Villa Park
Illinois
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Thank you Vlad and Dan, I agree with the review and also the Suppression rules....still not sure I understand them.

Only played one game though, more to come.
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Roy Morgan
United States
Elyria
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ET11 wrote:
Thank you Vlad and Dan, I agree with the review and also the Suppression rules....still not sure I understand them.

Only played one game though, more to come.



I agree!
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