January 2, 2014
Shadow Of Omega
So how did the Gamemaster spend his Christmas Eve this year? Oh, really in no particularly special way. I hung out with friends, exchanged and received a few gifts, and saved all of Gaia from the awakening of Omega, the Lord of Infinity and End of All Things. How did I do this, you ask? With a rather fun little card game called Anima: Shadow of Omega.
The Anima card game is a non-collectable card game brought to us by Fantasy Flight Games and exists as the first of three sets, the other two being Anima: Beyond Good and Evil and Anima: Twilight of the Gods, that combine to make one of more enjoyable card games I have ever played. In this game you play as an adventurer trying to prevent the end of all things. You explore new areas, recruit new adventurers into your party, join various factions, and face against terrible monsters all as you undertake your quest to stop the Lord of Infinity from emerging from the Lord of Infinity from rising. Interestingly enough, this game is cooperative/competitive. It can be played by two to six players with each player having their own quests they need to fulfill, all the while trying to prevent that same atrocity that you are. In this way, you want them to succeed but you do not want them to succeed first. This is a game in which only one player can win, but everyone can loose.
Anima: Shadow of Omega and its expansions are a part of the same story as my all time favorite role-playing game, Anima: Beyond Fantasy. The card game, while clearly different, allows for a much greater spanning look at the world of Gaia that my characters in the table-top game inhabit. Many aspects of the card game are like a tabletop game. You form a party, go on quests, fight monsters, collect treasure, and more. All in all, the game is incredibly fun.
It does, however, have its share of flaws. While it thankfully lacks the translation errors of Anima: Beyond Fantasy, its rules are not always the most clearly defined, which can cause some conflicts between players in the game, there are certain rules that are fairly easy to exploit if you draw the right cards (I am looking at you Ninja + Assassination), and the game makes it very hard for other players to catch up once one player pulls out ahead. Even so, these complaints aside, the game is incredibly fun and even somewhat immersive, which is something rarely seen in a card game – at least for me.
If ever you are given the opportunity, I urge you to try this one out. It only takes about an hour or so to play and is a lot of fun. I hope you all enjoy a happy and safe new-years and, as always, I wish you all good gaming.
Image Credit: Fantasy Flight Games