Sunday, August 14, 2016

Playing from the Grotesque to the Cute...Kickin' up dust in Arcadia Quest..

I sat down today with my friends Jeff, Jim and CB to play two very different looking games today: Zombicide: Black Plague and Arcadia Quest.

I won't elaborate too much on Zombicide: Black Plague as I've talked about it elsewhere extensively (as discussed here).

Last time, I played Thrud the Barbarian..

This time, I was "Klom.."

Klom looks like he was drawn in a very European French style that you see sometimes with their comic books... For some reason, he reminds me of a medieval rat-catcher or the hunchbank of Notre Dame..  

Klom, along with everyone else, bashed his way swarming the Zombie hordes..

Klom even got to fight the Abomination Rat at the end alone as he was the only one with enough muscle to stop him, with his Super Strength ability..

As I said, I won't elaborate too much, as I 've covered this game elsewhere more extensively.

The Abomination Rat, like the other Abominations, is hideously grotesque..

Ugly to look at true.. However, we went from playing two games immersed in this stuff, to something far, far, lighthearted but equally entertaining... Arcadia Quest, also by Coolminiornot..

This game's esthetic is the opposite of grotesque..

It is well.. cute.

The four of us actually played Arcadia Quest before, about a year and a half to two years ago and even somehow miraculously kept our campaign information.

The game is very, very Chibi style, which I am torn between..

Part of me finds these minis "cute" as I said..

My three guys's names (in blue) even have cartoon names.. Zazu, Bearlee and Diva. 

The other players had equally "cute" minis.. I found this guy on Jeff's team with the mohawk funny..

The wizard on Jim's team looks equally zany and made me smile.

 Even the Orc sculpts are "cute.."

Cute, yes, but at the same time, I cringe when I see Chibi style minis.. Our tabletop gaming industry has been fighting for decades against the stigma of adults playing with "toy soldiers" and these ridiculous Chibi minis - though cute- are not helping giving the right impression, in my view. I've ranted about the Chibi style before (as discussed here).

Anyways, we picked up where we left off from two years ago in the campaign, brought myself and everyone else up to speed and got our equipment that we recorded correctly placed.

Zazu has his teleporting cloak and "nova bolts"

Bearlee's trusty rusty blade will have to make do..

and Diva, had a skullcrusher warhammer that was going to knock the other player's characters and Orcs down to size.

We played a scenario about destroying gems and such, and there was lots of the usual running around attacking each other and trying to get the scenario goals..

I won't elaborate as it's hard to take this game seriously because of the sculpts styles and that characters (no doubt aligned with the theme) don't die but are regenerated..  And yet at the same time, the game mechanics are easy but also tense and enjoyable.. A strange mix for a game..

The knives were out for this game as it seemed we were trying to gut each other more than we did going after the orcs.

Racking up the Orc bodies..

Here, my guy in blue, attacks and kills Jim's guy in green...

I am subsequently awarded for the kill to Green...

We were going after each other in this Chibi-style game and seemed more cut-throat than the earlier Zombicide Black Plague for some reason.. The sculpts in Black Plague are realistic and ugly, but we were goody-goody cooperative there, while the sculpts in Arcardia Quest looked goody-goody, but gameplay was anything but.

I found it ironic that my softdrink motto "Kickin' Up Dust" aptly described the Arcadia gameplay..

Anyways, CB won the scenario, and we counted our gold, treasure, equipment and curses that we will carryforward to the next scenario that we will play..

Zazu for instance, as he "died"in the scenario, inherited "aquaphobia" for the next scenario..

With my 11 gold that I got for killing Orcs and other player's characters, as well as treasure, I purchased further equipment for next time.

Jim recorded my ending equipment for next time, whenever that will be.. Could be years away, or weeks, but my team blue is ready..

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