A Monster of a Card Game

A Monster of a Card Game

Disclosure

If you haven’t figured it out by now, we love playing games. Over the past couple of years we’ve turned off the XBox and become turned on to board games. From our Thrift Treasure series of games we find at local thrift stores to brand new releases of games you won’t find on the shelves of your local big-box retailer. Last summer we told you about a game that hadn’t even been made yet, Alpha Bandits! Today I’m going to introduce you to one that we also got a sneak preview of and it has finally hit the shelves – DiaMonsters.

You may remember IDW Games from our 2014 Gift Guide: 10 Games Under $29 and their latest mega-hit, Machi Koro. We intend on getting you a full run-down of Machi Koro once we get our hands on the just-issued Harbor expansion, but right now I’m focused on collecting monsters. Specifically, monsters with diamonds!

There isn't many things better than playing a brand new game. Even better is getting your hands on a prototype before the actual game is released! Check out DiaMonsters by IDW Games! - SahmReviews.comWe’ve been playing DiaMonsters for a good couple of months now. Not only at home and at our Friday board game meetup, but also have taken it on two trips to play in the hotel. It’s a quick game, usually only running 10 minutes or so, but every session plays a little differently.

As you can see, this copy has no bells nor whistles – it didn’t even include a box! We received this prototype set well before the actual game hit the shelves right before Christmas. But unlike some prototypes, this one was already polished and ready to play.

There isn't many things better than playing a brand new game. Even better is getting your hands on a prototype before the actual game is released! Check out DiaMonsters by IDW Games! - SahmReviews.comIf the art and design remind you of Machi Koro, it is for good reason. DiaMonsters is from the same designer and artist. But that’s where the similarity ends. In Machi Koro you’re building a city. In DiaMonsters you are capturing monsters (and diamonds).

The deck is comprised of only five different cards. Each monster is represented by a number in the upper left corner and a number of diamonds in the lower right. One monster (named “San”) has no diamonds (#3), while “Shi” (#4) represents losing two diamonds.

There isn't many things better than playing a brand new game. Even better is getting your hands on a prototype before the actual game is released! Check out DiaMonsters by IDW Games! - SahmReviews.comEach player (up to 6) starts with a hand of five cards, one of each monster. The rest are put in a draw stack in the middle of the table. One monster is turned over, and that is the card you fight for. Each player selects a card from their hand and sets it in front of them and everyone discloses their cards at the same time. This is a modified version of one of my favorite card games, War.

Any cards that tie (the 3’s in the photo above) cancel each other out and are returned to the players’ hands. Of the cards that remain, the highest wins. EXCEPT if a one is played – 1’s beat 5’s. It’s a full round of rock-paper-scissors with five numbers.

There isn't many things better than playing a brand new game. Even better is getting your hands on a prototype before the actual game is released! Check out DiaMonsters by IDW Games! - SahmReviews.comYour captured monster, along with the one you used to capture him are laid in front of you in your monster collection. Everyone then draws new cards to replenish their hands up to five cards and the next round begins with the overturn of a new monster to fight over. The object of the game is to capture either three of one type of monster or a total of 5 diamonds (less any that are subtracted by capturing “Shi” (#4) cards.

The current box description puts this game at 20 minutes, but we never encountered a round that long. And while rated for ages 8 and up, it can easily be enjoyed by younger children who have an older sibling or parent to explain it to them.

With a suggested retail price of under $15, this is a no-brainer if you want a card game with interesting artwork that is easy to learn, appealing to many ages and won’t break the bank. IDW Games always has many things in the works, so be sure to check out their timelines on both Twitter and Facebook. Let them know you’d love to see more previews of their games (and toys) on SahmReviews by dropping them an email!

There isn't many things better than playing a brand new game. Even better is getting your hands on a prototype before the actual game is released! Check out DiaMonsters by IDW Games! - SahmReviews.com

What’s your favorite non-traditional card game?

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Scott

About Scott

A former manufacturing executive, Scott now balances his family life with ownership and backend administration of websites such as SahmReviews.com, GiftCardCollector.com and a number of other online properties. He also is an occasional writer and full-time board game fanatic.

13 comments on «A Monster of a Card Game»

  1. I really enjoy card games. I like that this one is so affordable. Sounds like something we need to check out.

  2. Card games can be so fun. I think my all time favorite is Uno.

  3. Michele says:

    I think this one would be enjoyed by me and several of my friends. I like that you collect DIAMONDS (although in real life I prefer Sapphires!)

  4. Amy Desrosiers says:

    My kids are scared of monsters, but I *think* these would be the exception. They have enough silliness in them to make this game fun.

  5. tammileetips says:

    I love the graphics on the cards!! Sounds like a fun game to play.

  6. michelle h says:

    This looks so fun! We have a different monster game that my kids LOVE to play-we’ll have to watch for this one.

  7. Dede says:

    It’s nice that the round doesn’t last the full 20 minutes. Sometimes we just need a quick game to play before heading out for the day!

  8. Debbie Denny says:

    This sounds awesome. You find the neatest games.

  9. William Wilson says:

    This is a great idea. I have a 5 year old girl who’s an avid card player – UNO, Old Maid, Go Fish, etc. This would be a great addition.

  10. This is such a cute card game. I love all of the goofy monster characters.

  11. Looks like such a fun card game for kids! Thanks for sharing your review 🙂

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