NevermoreEdgar Allan Poe’s most notable dark poem features a raven that haunts and taunts a distraught man that is lamenting the loss of his beloved. Why does this raven repeat only one word, “Nevermore”? Even Poe’s protagonist wonders the same and resolves that the bird’s previous “unhappy master” must have taught it to him.

However, that isn’t necessarily the story. Perhaps Poe’s raven was once a man, taken over by evil and forced to walk the earth in this new form. You can live this version of The Raven through Smirk & Dagger’s Nevermore.

This casual card-drafting game pits players against each other as each one tries to cause the other to fall and turn into a raven. Players attempt to win by using their given suit to attack, heal, acquire Light or Shadow magic, and score victory points.

Starting with a five-card hand, each player must immediately give three to the player on their left. Then, two cards are passed. Then, one. Once each hand has been drafted, the players use what is left to finish the round.

Instead of being eliminated from the game, players that lose their health to zero turn into ravens. Then, a new adventure begins. The ravens can attack other players, trying to turn them as well. Or, they can focus on trying to regain their humanity, which could help them win the game after all.

The game includes:

  • 60 Main Deck cards
  • 25 Light Magick cards
  • 25 Shadow Magick cards
  • 60 Wood cubes
  • 13 Tokens
  • 1 Direction marker

Nevermore supports three to six players ages 14 and up and takes about 45 to 60 minutes to play. The game is scheduled to launch this July for a retail price of $29.95.

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