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It's a gruelling medieval battle... and you're in command!
Two mighty armies clash. You call the shots. Decide your strategy. Plot your secret battle formations. Select your basic warriors. Then customize your forces by adding warriors with special fighting abilities... like Heavy Infantry, Mercenaries and Peasants. And when you're ready... Attack!
Will you defeat your enemy with Battle-axes? Or Arrows? Or will your troops panic and retreat? Outwit and out-fight your opponent's army and capture his King, and you win Lionheart... the customizable game of medieval warfare!
I've been trying to get my wife to share my love of wargames for years. This is truely the game for the task. I started by teaching her chess, and Panzer General(tried anyways), but with these games, with a solid strategic effort on my part, there was no chance for her to win. But with Lionheart, she can beat me even against my best efforts. She enjoys the different pieces, and the complexity they bring to the game. But best of all, our games can be quite short and not bore her to death like our hour-long chess duels. After a few months, I went out and bought 3 more sets and created a Mega-Battle on our dining room table, complete with updated rules and terrain. For the first time I saw her sit down and concentrate over a drawn-out campaign strategy with the focus of a General.
My Dad picked up this game at a yard sale, a rare and wonderful treasure ! My 12 year old son and I
have had many pleasurable hours with this one.
We like to leave the 'dead' on the field as it adds to the game for us. Of course we do sound
effects and mingle in snippets from Braveheart and
Monty Python's Holy grail for good measure.
It reminds me of playing Statego when I was a kid,
its a bit like chess as well. We really like it,
the soldiers are grim and reasonably accurate with
armor and weapons. We need to get another one so we can double up all our units for some serious carnage !
I bought this game for 5 Euros in Germany and I was surprized to find that is much fun to play. It comes into 2 versions (ligth and not so light). It is actually a chess-risk hybrid since every type of piece (King, knights, archers, soldiers plus farmers, warriors, mercenaries) has its own qualities, but dice rolling decides each battle. Basic strategy can be developed. As a conclusion, it's an easy to play, catchy battle game for 2 players.
Lionheart has a lot going for it and deserves a better reputation. Aesthetically, it is very pleasing to look at and easily piques the interest of potential new gamers. It is easy to learn, yet provides plenty of depth for armchair tacticians.
The true beauty of the game is the ease with which variant/ optional/ house rules can be created to mold the game to your liking. I have added terrain (forest, lake, hill) and even combined two games (by cutting a little off of both boards) to create a mega-battle (four actions per turn; no unit may use more than two actions).
I recommend these changes:
I have played this game over a hundred times and never grow tired of it. If you are looking for a simple battle game (and don't mind an abstract bent) that is fun to play, yet rewards sound tactics and strategy, this is for you.
Lionheart, by itself, is a very good game to introduce new gamers of any age to wargaming. There are some flaws that experienced wargamers will gripe at, but--all in all--it is a very good starter game. Also, with a couple of tweaks, wargamers can take this game up a notch to add flanking rules and add actions to increase the speed of play.
As for myself, I have purchased 4 sets and have added to the rules to play a very enjoyable tabletop game using 3D terrain.
I like this game. My son is 8, and while enthusiastic about chess, isn't really up to it. Lionheart offers something of the same look and feel (and opportunities for careful calculation of moves and countermoves), but adds strong elements of luck (die rolls to resolve combat), sudden moves that can reverse the course of battle, and the ability to vary the number of figures per stand to handicap. Together, these make for a thoughful and exciting game even between players at very differnt levels.
And, I must add, while the game is hardly an accurate recreation of Medieval battles, the mechanics do create something of the 'feel' of them, what with the role of luck, sudden thrusts, limited power of command, and an element of the individual duel when your king is forced to fight.
Lionheart by Parker brothers is basically a very small miniatures battle. The components are silver and gold colored plastic pieces representing Knights, Footmen, Archers, etc. Each army is identical.
Combat is simple, with the merit that you can play the game quickly. Special dice are included in the game, that you need to apply stickers to.
While this game has some charm, it does not offer enough pieces to simulate a large battle. The small scope of the game makes it handy for introducing miniatures to newbies, but it fails to deliver anything for the experienced gamer/miniature player.
I bought this game 2 years ago from Toys R Us for $10 and after playing it, I didn't think that it was worth the $10. Given the current retail price you are better off buying any number of other games that not only play better, but have better quality components.
The quality of the components is typical American, which means cheap plastic. It takes quite a while to put together all the pieces out of the box and the pieces have a hard time holding together. You can glue some of it, but not into the bases since it is a customizeable game. It is not easy to get the pieces in and out of the bases without disturbing the other pieces.
The gameplay is mediocre at best. Once you get basic strategy down, it's really a game of luck of the dice.
It's hard to articulate exactly what's wrong with this game, but it has to do with the fact that most of the pieces move slowly, so bold moves are rare and hard to execute. Additionally, the opponent's developing maneuvers are seen coming from a long way away, but to counter those maneuvers, a player has to forestall his or her own attacks. This is dull. The knights move quickly, but have so much more movement than the other pieces that they don't seem to be in the same game at all. The cumbersome movement of most pieces means that the lumbering battles don't really take on their own identity--they more or less feel the same, except for the particular way in which the opponent's king is killed. Most of the victory is just out-attritioning the other player. It's all kind of a malaise thing.
The one bright spot is that, sometimes, funny things happen, usually when unlucky dice rolls mess someone up.
I am not a fan of this game. Either I didn't get something, or this game is terrible. The archers are WAY to powerful and this game has a balance problem. The quality of the pieces is poor, this game is clearly designed for kids.
This is a poor attempt at a strategy game. Buy a german board game, before it's too late.