What is it?
A pretty quick all-inclusive deck builder where players compete against each other using simple mechanics of buying or attacking.
What do you get?
Star Realms comes with all the cards necessary to play and there are several expansions to enhance and randomise the game. It’s just a card game so there are no other components. The price is reasonable and reflective of that.
How does it work?
Everyone starts with the same opening cards and you gradually buy and attack each other constantly discarding your hand. The interesting point comes when you refresh your discard pile it will contain the newly acquired cards. Gradually everyone will have very different decks. Most cards have reactions and factions too; if you play the same faction as a reaction then a bonus will apply too. You play all the cards in your hand and you are never limited to how many you can play.
Is it any good?
Star Realms is a really fun end of night type game. I’ve really enjoyed it as the game night swan song as games don’t necessarily last that long. It’s an easy game to customise with additional players too as the rules are as simple as you can get, with the hook being your randomised hand of cards and how well you built your deck.
It’s honestly that simple. I’ve played Star Realms 4 player several times and it never gets boring. The idea of a 2 player game is a little off putting but maybe it’s decent for a 1v1 lunchbreak or whatever.
If there are just two of you I think there are better games out there that fill that hole, Boss Monster or One Deck Dungeon for example, but Star Realms is very neat and easy to learn. The theme is pretty generic which is a shame as Hero Realms probably lends itself to a wider audience.
Of the two Realm games, I prefer Star Realms because the expansions are a bit more wild and fun. Odd saying that when fantasy is my preferred genre too!