Second Look - Boardgame reviews in depth. Check out that cat.Another deckbuilding game, this time by White Wizard Games. Star Realms follows the same formula of many deckbuilders out there. Use resources to buy more cards and beef up your deck. Where it differs is that you’re directly trying to take out your opponent using Spaceships and Bases, while also protecting yourself with Bases and Outposts. It feels like a step up from a game like Ascension, yet comes in a smaller package and packs a bit more punch.

My 9-year-old son and I sat down with the base game and its 4 expansions. This gave us some extra Spaceships and Bases, along with Heroes and Events, two new types of Trade cards added in from the Crisis sets. The game ramps up extremely quickly, and it’s not long before each player is dealing out huge amounts of damage while also trying to minimize similar amounts of damage from the other player. It’s very important to get Bases and Outposts out there to protect yourself. Take 50 damage to yourself and it’s game over, man. Game over.

starrealmsEverything from the look and feel of the cards to the quick playtime just rubbed me the right way. The fact that the base set comes in a single deckbox that can be tossed into a bag is an added bonus. We opened the game, read the rules, and were already a few turns in before 5 minutes was up.

Now I’m not going to go so far and say it’s my favorite deckbuilder.  Demonslayer still holds that title…for now. That may change seeing as Star Realms will probably get a lot more play due to its portability and ease of setup. The Android app of the game has certainly already overshadowed Ascension on my phone.

My son has already asked to play again, and I have a feeling that we’ll be getting at least a few more games in before the weekend is up. I’m already eagerly awaiting more expansions to come out so I can get my Spaceship fix.

I can’t recommend this game strongly enough. It’s a sure winner, and one of the best games I’ve played so far this year.

A copy of Star Realms and its expansions where provided free for review by White Wizard Games.