Latest posts by Seth Ryals-Fernandes (see all)
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- $19 for Base Game
- Set Collection/Take That
- Science/History Theme
STEM: EPIC HEROES OF SCIENCE!
Stem: Epic Heroes is a score attack set collection game, self-described as having some “take-that” elements. I have to say this is not the kind of game that will appease you if you are looking for a game that is going to take you hours and hours, and is extremely complicated. After reading the rules it is clear that the game is relatively simple. That being said, they don’t give very many example cards, so it is hard to see where a lot of the nuance would be without being able to look at a few of the individual cards.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of the rules and basic game functions I do want to mention a few things about the Kickstarter. While I have a few things that I think make the game seem a little generic gameplay-wise, the Kickstarter in my opinion is well-written and feels very authentic and honest. They don’t try to make the game seem like it has infinite strategic depth, which is something I see a lot looking at Kickstarters for new games, especially by younger companies. Hologrin Studios, the developer, says “…easily picked up by new players, while providing a light layer of strategy for seasoned players,”. By my estimation this is a very honest and accurate representation of what you are buying. The other thing I really appreciate is the fact that they don’t try to obfuscate the main mechanics of the game. A lot of game developers don’t use terms that we know as boardgamers, often in an attempt to make their game sound like it has some new mechanic that they invented. Hologrin even describes their game as “…based around competitive set collection with some take that elements,”.
Stem: Epic Heroes’ Potential Place in Your Board Game Collection
Stem: Epic Heroes’ base game play revolves around there being 5 different types of heroes. Those heroes can be either Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, or Polymath. The goal of the game is to go through the 5 steps of the scientific method, using a hero of the corresponding type for each step. Each step having multiple cards of each type that allow you to finish that step of the scientific method. After the first player finishes, the round then continues until it comes back to the player who finished the last step of the method first. Players then add up their scores and whoever has the most points wins.
The real meat of the game revolves around using cards called Enhancement cards to boost your score on each step. Enhancement cards also have a type associated and can only be used to augment steps that are finished with the corresponding type. Each turn a player can either finish a step, adding all the Enhancements they can to that step, or use one enhancement from their hand to improve an already completed step. There are also multiple opportunities to discard and draw new cards throughout your turn, but those can be found in the rules if you are interested in the specifics.
If you’ve played card games like this before you can probably already tell that there isn’t anything mind boggling or super unique in this game. But if you are looking for a quick game to play with that friend who always shows up early to board game night, or with a significant other, or even your kids, I think Stem: Epic Heroes could fill that hole in your board game collection.