Quarriors is a must-buy tabletop game for 2011 and may very well be the best game released this calendar year.
Quarriors, published by WizKids, creates its own subdivision of the deck building game genre by doing it with dice as the major mechanic and using cards to randomize the board and as a reference tool.
Mike Elliott, who designed the game with Eric Lange, explained, “The deck building mechanic came first. We basically started with the idea of ‘Where could we go with the deck building mechanic?’ and hit on the idea of dice as an interesting extension.”
Interesting hardly does it justice. Players try to summon creatures to the board in one turn and keep them alive until the beginning of the next to score glory points, which are the means to winning the game. There are three types of basic dice and then the rest of the 130 dice in the game comes in the form of spells and creatures.
Those dice come from an area called The Wilds, a common locale in the center of the table from which all plays may capture the Quarry (dice). The dice are paid for with Quiddity. Quarriors, Quarry, Quiddity? The names carry a distinctive feel.
How much thought went into the deal? “Quite a bit actually - while we thought about a "serious" name, when the game kept coming in under 30 minutes and the playtesters kept saying this game is all about fun and how unusual it felt playing it, we wanted to embrace that rather than trying to be another non-descript fantasy designator,” said Bryan Kinsella, Vice President and Producer of the game. “Quiddity (the resource that is used in the game to purchase and power quarry) is an existing word that means the essence of the thing – and since you use dice to capture dice - well we had our name and it could also be shortened to "quid" by the players. Also - the 'Q' words are not really used that often - and most creatures have names like deathdealer, ooze and ghost, so it's not in your face during game play.”