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Are you ready for Neuroshima Hex: The Gathering? Witchcraft gives a pair of players their own army of ten wizards, each of which can attack in some combination of compass points and each of which has one or more types of magical attacks.
The 4x6 gameboard has four altars placed on it -- altars which each have their special ability -- then players take turns placing eight wizards on the board, orienting them as desired to threaten an opponent's pieces. Players take turns making one move from three possibilities:
- Casting a spell on an enemy wizard
- Casting a spell on an altar
- Using the special ability of particular wizards
Spells come in three flavors, and allow you to target an enemy wizard in your line of sight, assuming that wizard has no shield to thwart your attack. If you hit an enemy, you remove it from the board, flip it to reveal your color, then place it on one of your existing tokens. A wizard receives an exhaustion token after casting a spell, but overlaying that tile with a captured wizard effectively gives you a refreshed wizard ready to strike again.
Hit an altar with your spell, and you can bring new pieces onto the board, remove exhaustion tokens, set up shields, or move and rotate your wizards, who normally stand still as stone. Altars can be destroyed by the barbarian or activated in pairs by the priest. Two other special characters allow you to swap stacks of pieces under your control or scatter the pieces of a stack. You receive one of these special characters each game, in addition to a prophet that provides one-time exhaustion relief and movement.
Your goal is straight out of Kris Burm's TZAAR: Capture and convert all of the enemy wizards, or prevent the opponent from casting a spell on his turn, either by protecting your forces with shields or moving them out of harm's way. In either case, you'll win the game.
Witchcraft seems tailor-made for expansions and new pieces once players get the hang of wizard-jockeying...
Description written by W. Eric Martin and used with permission of BoardgameNews.com