Sunday, November 29, 2009
Lost Worlds -- quick thoughts
Lost Worlds has been around for a very, very long time. The first books, designed by Alfred Leonardi, were published by Nova Games Designs back in 1983. So I'm definitely a Johnny-come-lately to this party. And it's funny, because I was an early fan of their other combat book game, Ace of Aces, which came out in 1980. It says more about where my interests were at the time. I was moving into a much more exclusively wargame diet around then, after having dabbled a bit in fantasy RPGs.
So it was only a year or so ago that I decided to buy a couple of Lost Worlds Books, prompted by the appearance of hobby stalwart Lou Zocchi as a character in one of the books!
For those unfamiliar with them, the combat books are a patented game play mechanic hat involves two books, one for each player, that have pictures of the opposing player's character/aircraft/dragon as viewed from the player's perspective. Players select a move and through the interaction of a key and their opponents selection end up on new pages that reflect the results of their mutual move. It's really quite clever.
The Lost Worlds books are the fantasy individual combat game using this system, and dozens of books have been published over the years by various publishers that are fully compatible with each other. There's even a Japanese Anime version.
I finally got to play a few rounds over the last few weeks, as Young General and I took a break from BattleLore. The game is easy enough that a 10-year-old can handle it fine, but there are enough decisions to make that it's satisfying no matter what your age. We're both still getting the hang of it, but our contests have been remarkable even, with nearly a 50-50 split. The game is a nice filler that plays quickly. Few battle last more than 15 minutes or so, although I expect they'll last a little longer as we get more practiced at it. Some of out fights have ended very fast.
My only regret is that it took me so long to get around to the game.