World of Warcraft: Miniatures (CMG) – Review

Overview

World of Warcraft, one of the most popular online games, a competitive card game, has a line of action figures which could satisfy any WOW follower and now World of Warcraft has entered into the Customizable Miniature Game (CMG) arena in which players will create groups/parties of miniatures from 3 different factions and try to pounce one another.  As you start the game, each character comes with 2 action cards, these cards give each character more options during the game. The game has turn/cool down mechanic which is measured in ticks.

The time aspect is interesting, and is growing on me with more plays. I think it’s a definite step forward from other CMGs combat systems, and allows for some very interesting planning and strategy. You can plan to have your characters all take actions on the same turn, or spread them out. Since you can also see your opponent’s miniature’s clocks, you can also plan around when they will next move. It’s very simple, though it will be better with the actual bases for the game, but makes for interesting strategy.

The map provided with the demo is a simple hex-based map. There are 3 types of special terrain; forest, hills and victory point locations.  The game has simple line of sight rules, which can quickly be resolved with the map. Overall the map is very symmetrical, and games tend to start with opposing teams on opposite sets of the map, and meeting in the middle.

The Theme
Fantasy and fast paced game, based on the incredibly popular MMO of the same name.

Learning the Game
If you have never played a CMG or you are just going to buy this because you play the online game, then the sculptors are very nice.  However,  if you have to choose this as your first miniature game to play, you might want to ask for a demo from you local comic book/game store, as there are some rules.  The manual is small, but there are steps that must be followed in order the game to make sense, but once you get the hang of the rules, then you should in prepared to lose parts of your days to this CMG.  For me, the part that I had a hard time with was the personal timer and the master clock.  After a couple of rounds though, I got the hang of it.

The Components
The dice seem a little cheap to me, and because they are not of the standard size, I wasn’t able to successfully use my dice boot.  The playing map is double sided, so you can shake things up a bit.  The character and action cards and standard sized, so getting cards sleeves will not be a problem.  The sculptors are great!  Excellent paint jobs and high quality too.

Playing the Game
I have never really played a miniature game before.  I was never rich enough to afford Warhammer and since I have a passion for online games and board games, I can see my time be sucked into this CMG.

Does the game offer replay-ability?  Hands down yes!  The rules are pretty solid and with the lineup of horde, alliance and monsters which are being offered, I can already see some interesting miniature combinations coming together.  Booster drafts are going to be just crazy!

Overall
My experience was that the game plays pretty fast.  The intro map has a play time of about 15 minutes. Setup is all about getting your minis, cards and map in place and you are ready to go. The starter provided me enough fun and I wanted more.

Good
Sculptors are high quality
Not a steep learning curve

Bad
Dice are not normal in size and forces you to roll on a table vs using a dice boot/tower, dice chasing ensues.
Cool down and master timers were difficult to grasp.

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