Thursday, 13 December 2018

New Battles and Beasts for Connected Game - Beast of Balance


We were an early adopter of Beast of Balance when we backed their crowdfunding campaign in 2016 The company, Sensible Object continuously developing the game by adding more game pieces and new gameplay strategies.

Beasts of Balance hasn't been out to play for a while in our family, so my boys were keen to try out the new beasts and gameplay modes. The connected game is a fab choice for family board game nights! I love the new flamingo and unicorn beasts.

Disclaimer: We have been sent some add-on packs and Battle Cards for the purpose of this review. As always your opinion is our own.


Read our previous review of Beasts of Balance here. You can also read the Beginner's Guide on the Beast of Balance website.

What's New?

New Beasts

Sensible Object, the creators of Beast of Balance have a lot of fun creating new beasts for the game. If you're a design fan, you'll appreciate the care taken to create both the physical characters and their digital counterparts. Even the animations are thoughtfully designed.

Since we got the game there has been a number of new beasts released. Our favourites are the latest! The Unicorn known as Fancyprance is a legendary beast. It's like the Omnibeasts and you start the game using this beast with 30 points. The other new legendary beasts include Moby Brick: The Space Whale and Hotbelly: The Hangry Dragon (my youngest son really liked the sound of this one, because he can relate to that 'hangry' feeling!)



We also received 3 additional 'normal' beasts. The Flamingo (6 points), Anglerfish (6 points) and Chameleon (6 points).


The beauty of Beasts of Balance is that you can create new beasts in the app by crossing and migrating* them (see our previous review for more details).

*Remember to migrate a specific beast you need to wait for the firefly to be over the beast on the screen before you scan the migrate item.




Battle Mode and Battle Cards

Battle Mode is a new way of playing Beasts of Balance, where up to 3 players can play against each other to gain the most points before the tower of balancing beasts is knocked over.

You use all the pieces, and new battle cards in the Battle Mode. Some pieces like the migrate change function, so that in battle mode you can steal an opponent's beast and add it to your collection.



We still have more to explore in Battle Mode, but it definitely adds an exciting element to the game. My boys were much more engaged with the game in Battle Mode and enjoyed discovering gameplay as they tried out different battle cards.

It's worth noting that you can play Battle Mode without the battle cards or legendary beasts. So if you just have the simple Beasts of Balance game you can still enjoy competitive game play.

There is a tutorial available in the app, but we think the best way to learn this game is to just play it and make new discoveries as you go.

Challenges

Challenges is another new feature in the app. It's a cool way to use the game to do different things. My boys particularly enjoyed this feature and was keen to put their skills to the test.

Currently, there is one challenge in the app - Balance 6 beasts blindfolded!

My boys spent ages finding 6 beasts that would fit easily together and practiced balancing them without the blindfold. Strategic thinking is a key element of the Beasts of Balance game, especially in Battle Mode.

One of my boys was fixed on the idea of working out the order in which the beasts had to be placed so that none will go extinct. He then carefully ordered the beasts in front of him. The blindfold came on and the challenge started! It took a few tries, and the boys took turns to complete the challenge.

Tip: Make sure the sound is on, it helps you know when you have scanned your beast!

Here's their attempts:



Competitive (Battle) vs Collaborative (Co-Op) Gameplay

The Beast of Balance game has received a new lease of life in our family with the addition of Battle Mode. The ability to play different modes, however makes it really accessible for families with different aged children.

When my kids where younger they really enjoyed playing board games where we worked together to achieve the goal. Now that they are older, competitive play provides an opportunity to learn useful skills for life!

My one son likes competitive play because of the addition of the battle cards and he is also very competitive. The other prefered collaborative play because he enjoyed others helping and working as a team (plus he said he always lost in battle mode!).

Verdict



We give Beasts of Balance a huge thumbs up from Tech Age Kids. It's a wonderful mix of design, technology, logical thinking and physical play! The game is engaging and fun to play across a wide range of ages, making it a perfect game for family game nights.

The Battle Mode may be frustrating though when you are two adults and two kids. Only 3 players in this mode. You could take turns, make teams or opt to play Co-Op Mode. The Challenges are definitely fun for the family game night!

Although the game is more expensive than a standard board game, you get your money's worth. The app is brilliant and constantly updated. Over time, you can also add more beasts and battle cards.



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