One game that we like in our house is Disney Villainous. It flips the typical gaming narrative on its head. This time, YOU are the bad guy. And whoever can complete their unique objective first wins the game!
Each villain has a completely different goal, but everyone is simultaneously racing to try to accomplish them. It’s not a multiplayer solitaire situation though. There is some dastardly player interaction. But here again, the script is flipped. In order to mess with the other villains around the table, you play Heroes into their world to thwart their wicked plans. These white-bordered cards are from what is called the Fate deck, and they can be played whenever you take that action at a location.
Each villain has a deck of their own though, of course. These cards are what you use to progress toward your goal or to defeat the heroes at your locations. It is in your best interest to do this because the heroes cover the top half of your location and prevent you from performing those actions until they are defeated. What are the actions?
- Gain Power
- Play a Card
- Move an Item or Ally
- Move a Hero
- Discard Cards
What do most villains in the Disney universe (or any universe) mostly want? Power. In this game, Power is the main currency, and allows you to pay for cards and do other things based on which villain you play as. Some cards that you play have a special ability that requires you to “Activate” it with that action. And I mentioned how the Fate deck is comprised of the good guys that other players can play to your area to thwart you. So if you take the Fate action at your location, that lets you do that to others on your turn.
In order to defeat heroes, you must perform the Vanquish action, and compare any Allies that you’ve played to that location to the Hero that you wish to defeat. If your strength is equal to or greater than the Hero, they are vanquished and removed from your board. This then frees up the covered actions once again.
Villainous is a solid game. If you grew up watching Disney films and/or enjoy them with your kids, it enhances the experience that much more. The rule that you cannot just stay at the location where you are on your turn is a good, much-needed aspect that keeps you on the move, and makes the decision-making a bit more interesting. It is not heavy strategy. You more or less know what must be done on each turn, but the interaction of dealing with Heroes really acts as…unfortunate interruptions to your dastardly plans, amps up the tactics, and makes it feel like you are walking in the villain’s shoes a bit.
Concerning the production quality, it is excellent. Art is from the movies, but it’s like they made it look even better. I like the designs on the backs of each villain’s deck (it would honestly make great posters). The only thing that could have been better for me is if they made the cauldron a bit more solid. It just feels like cheap thin plastic.
If you like the game, I REALLY recommend the expansions that have been released. The more the merrier. Or wickeder.