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Your Move: Story War

Way back in March when I was at the PAX Gaming Festival in Boston, I got a chance to play several amazing games before they were ready for store shelves. One of those games, Story War, is finally available.

When you look at the cards, with the large colorful artwork and lines of text, you may be reminded of games like Magic: The Gathering. However, Story War shares much more in common with games like Apples to Apples, Cards Against Humanity or even Once Upon A Time, which I’ve talked about here before.

In Story War, everyone has a hand of cards, and one player acts as the Judge. The Judge plays a location card – this is the venue for the battle. These could be a Pirate Cove, Jack’s Beanstalk or even a Sky Palace.

The rest of the players, divided into teams, will each secretly choose a card from their own hands. These cards are generally monsters or other mythical creatures. The goal, of course, is to defeat the other team’s creatures. But unlike other competitive card games, these cards don’t have any numbers or statistics on them. The cards are only as strong as your argument to the judge that Dracula and King Midas could beat the Rat King and a Kraken in a fight on top of a volcano, or whichever combination of cards you get.

Once both teams have given the Judge their final arguments, he or she chooses the winning team, and everyone on that team gets a point. For the next round, the teams are shuffled, so nobody gets an unfair advantage.

Story War also comes with a number of blank cards. If you’re incensed that the game doesn’t have a Mothra card, or that your battle can’t take place on the Empire State Building, all you need to do is pick up a Sharpie and doodle away.

This game is incredibly fun. I lost hours playing Story War at PAX, instantly making new friends. It’s easy to bond quickly with someone who is helping you try to convince complete strangers that obviously a Unicorn could take out a Werewolf. Because of his rainbow magic. Obviously. Come on. Rainbow magic.

Story War can be purchased online at DFTBA.com.

Samuel McConnell is a games enthusiast who has been playing games in one form or another since 1991. He was born in northern Maine but quickly transplanted to Wichita.