GEN CON ’18: Hands On With KICK-ASS
Kick-Ass was something of an anomaly when it originally released in 2008. Mark Millar was guaranteed a movie deal before he had even finished the first run of his now famous comic series. The movie was well received by critics and audiences alike, everything seemed to be looking up for the franchise. Millar had a sequel in the works for both the comic and movie, however, the pressure to deliver was on. Kick-Ass 2 failed to replicate what fans loved so much about the first.
The heart of Kick-Ass was largely missing as Millar tried to make good on delivering a dark middle chapter, relishing in these moments of disgusting dreary violence and forgetting that we also like to see Dave’s awkward humor and warmth from seeing these heroes outside of their costumes. Thankfully we have a board game from CMON that just happens to find that balance in its own moment to moment gameplay!
Kick-Ass is still unreleased up to this point, CMON is shooting for a date later this year, but the game definitely feels like a complete package. Players will take on the role of characters like Kick-Ass, Hit-Girl, Big Daddy, or many others. Up to four players can take part in this co-operative experience. Players will be dealt a hand of 5 cards that are either blue for free-time, and red for attacking.
Players will have to clear out different districts in New York and defeat minions around the city completing events. Players will be able to use cash buy new items to roll more dice for attacking the ever-spawning minions or bribe police to clear out districts they might not be able to move to in one turn. On top of the money, players will also have to manage their happiness and social media followings. The more a player fights, their happiness will go down so it’s important to let your hero relax by going to the library or park to unwind.
However, if more than 3 minions are in one spot, a player cannot use the function that spot confers. Social media is also important as the more influential your hero is, citizens will stand up to knock minions out of their districts. You’ll have to work as a team to complete 3 events such as rescuing injured people and delivering them to the hospital or downing mini-bosses such as Eddie Lomas from the first book. Once those 3 events are done and the players have successfully prevented minions from moving in on City Hall in the center, the game moves into its end phases by introducing a final boss.
The final Boss can be Red-Mist, Mother Russia or a host of other characters from the books and each carries a special trait and massive health meter. Players will first have to expend movement cards to find out where the villain is hiding first, then chip away at their massive health meter in order to down the boss. My play session ended with the easiest boss encounter where we had to just kill Red-Mist, but other scenarios might have villains spawn in massive waves or steal an item away that you’ve relied on for the whole game.
All in all, this was a very fun game that despite its seemingly complex nature, wasn’t too hard to wrap my head around in the space of a 45-minute play session. Most sessions will be around the one hour mark. A representative from CMON also said that players may expect to see the new Kick-Ass, Patience Lee, in a future expansion down the road, but also stressed that the game hasn’t been released yet so don’t expect this for a while.
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Colin Regan133 Posts
Colin is a freelance writer for DFTG with previous bylines at other media outlets such as Twinfinite.