Kharnage is a fast and fun fighting game in a fantasy world in which you are the warchief of the mighty humans, the strong (and alcoholic) dwarves, the amazing horde of goblins, or the ferocious orcs (and their giant!). Your goal in Kharnage is to take control of the strategically essential, astoundingly beautiful, envy of all other nations: a hill. Yes, it’s just a hill. It is a nice hill. It may have a very commanding view of the surroundings, or it may not. You won’t know until you get up there! To do so, you’re going to have to drive off the armies of the other players by simply causing as much mayhem and bloodshed as possible.
Item Code: ASMKHR01
Releases March 2017
After players have chosen their Kharnage armies, set the hill card in the center of the table and play the 0 command card matching your faction on your edge of the hill. Other players will do the same, and you’ll all play your initial units based on how many reinforcement icons appear on your command cards. Red reinforcement icons indicate that units should be played straight off the top of your deck, so each deployment will be a surprise.
Your army consists of three ranks: the front line, the middle line, and the rear line. Each unit card will indicate into which of those three lines it should be placed, and when opponents attack your army, they’ll have to kill off your farther-forward lines before they can move their way to the back of your army.
After the initial setup of the 0 commands, you’ll play one of the command cards from your hand face down, and once each player has done the same, you’ll all reveal them. The player who played the card with the lowest initiative number will play first, and turns will follow in ascending order of initiative numbers.
On your turn, you’ll follow the instructions of the command card you played, with the most frequent actions being playing more reinforcements and attacking. To reinforce, you’ll create a stack of units from your reinforcements deck equal to the number of unit cards indicated by your command, and then you’ll play them one at a time. If any of your reinforcement icons were black instead of red, you’ll play your general card from your hand instead of one from your deck, and if the icon was half-black and half-red, you’ll be able to choose.
After playing your reinforcements into their indicated ranks, your command card will probably have you attack. If your command has a melee icon, you’ll add up all the melee attacks of your units in play and assign that much damage to an opponent’s army—you can also halve the damage, rounded up, and deal that much to each of two opponents’ armies. Damage has to be assigned to the front line before any can be assigned to the middle line, and so on. As unit cards take damage equal to their health, they’re given to the player dealing the damage for later scoring. A ranged attack icon works the same way, but you’ll count up the ranged attack icons of your units instead.
If you wipe out all of a player’s units, you can declare, “KHARNAGE!” and thunk the table. Doing so allows you to claim one Kharnage token, and each player who doesn’t respond by yelling, “YEAH!” must lose one Kharnage token.
The round ends after all the players have resolved their command cards, and then different values of Skull tokens are distributed to the players based on who killed the most enemy units that round. After four rounds, players combine their Skull and Kharnage tokens, and whoever has the most is the winner.
Because of the turn system and the way command cards work, there is a massive ebb and flow of gameplay as players grow their armies to massive proportions through recruitment, destroy enemies’ contingents, and then are decimated on following players’ turns. This makes the initiative values on the command cards very important because you have to find the balance between trying to have some troops left at the end of the round, making sure to strike a time when enemies will have enough troops to kill so you can collect the most and earn Skulls, and attacking at a time when you’ll be able to completely destroy someone’s army and declare, “KHARNAGE!”
Kharnage is a quick-playing, wild roller coaster of a game, full of brutal enemies, crazy combat, and wild swings.