Fighter-Tac game review by Gamer's University

The following is a review of the Fighter-Tac Game by Gamer’s University Games.

Fighter-Tac

Endymian
Game Rating: rating
5 out of 5 Stars
Fighter-Tac by War Chamber Games

2 Players
~60 Minutes
Ages 12+
OVERVIEW
Fighter-Tac is a strategy collectible card game for two players focused on combat between two interstellar Battle-Carriers and their respective fleets. Each player is permitted a 65 card deck, and each deck’s composition is restricted by certain rules pertaining to faction and quantities of identical cards. Any collectible card game player should feel right at home with this one.
RULEBOOK
The rules are clear, concise, and elegant. There is an adequate amount of visual examples and the layout is very nice. Extremely little is left unclear and the combat example at the end handles the rest. I am a huge rules stickler, and this rulebook is an excellent benchmark for other gamers who don’t have quite as much experience writing instructional or technical documentation. You should have no trouble learning how to play this game.


STARTUP

Startup was a little rocky at the beginning but quickly fell into place. The most difficult part was having to refer back to the Phases of a turn to know what happened next. We pretty much had to do this for our entire first game; it wasn’t that the phases felt out-of-order or unintuitive, but rather that there was just a lot going on and memorizing each step and sub-step is going to take time for anyone…some games are like that. A little phase cheat-sheet rules card would be a big help. We also needed to frequently revisit the Zone-Layout diagram to show which cards went where and the respective quantity limitations of those cards, but, there are playmats that are available that do this for you if you’re willing to spend a little extra coin…they look pretty cool to boot.
ART
The art used in Fighter-Tac isn’t going to blow you away but it’s pretty damn good. The ships themselves appear a bit flat and sometimes lack character but what matters most is that it’s clean and does its job without adding a lot of garbage. It’s no better or worse than what I probably could have done myself with the tools I have so I applaud the use of resources to make everything look as good as it does without hiring a professional designer. The icons are intuitive and easy to memorize, and I just really, really, like the card layout. The game just feels polished, and I like that…a lot.
WHAT COULD BE BETTER?
Having just said what I did about the card layout, there is one little thing I would change. Being a long-time CCG player I am not particularly used to the actual name of the card being in the center of the card and having the card type instead appear at the top.  I can understand why it might have been done, but that is really a personal preference.
There was also a minor concern we had with the advantage of the first-player. There didn’t seem to be any rules regarding a restriction on the first-player’s actions (e.g. no attacking on the first turn, or whoever goes first doesn’t get to draw) which can give the player who goes first a distinct advantage is they have a good enough draw on the first turn to launch an attack (which we found was entirely possible, likely even.) And also the Tactical Points extra-card-draw is a good reward for being out in front, but it seems to help ensure that whoever takes the lead stays in the lead, and that might be a balance issue.
FINAL WORD
In conclusion, this is a fantastic game that more people should be exposed to. It is elegant and I think it could find a solid market if it were brought to mass production.  The starter Flight-Decks and additional Tactical-Packs are a great sales model in general, not just for TGC. A starter deck is gonna run you about $15.00 ($6 for a ~16 card booster), and when you add shipping, that can make for a little bit of expensive purchase with the average starter deck of a TCG still floating around $10.00 depending on where you shop, but I don’t think anyone who seriously wanted a space-combat card game would really regret the purchase.
In my opinion, the play mats are crucial for new players to learn the game and really add a lot to the games presentation. If I saw this game demoed with the playmats, I would be a lot more interested in seeing what it was about. A bundle of a couple decks plus playmats for a small discount might be a great way to get people “in the door” so-to-speak.
It might also be cool (and here’s me just rambling now) to have playmats that actually represented specific types of Battle-Carriers and begin giving them unique stats for more advanced play.
This game stands up on its own and has a lot of room to grow and expand. I’m excited to have played it, and I’d be interested to see where this one goes.  Great work!
[The Author has graciously donated a copy of his game, ‘Fighter-Tac’ for the purposes of this review. Thank you very much! We had a lot of fun, and I appreciate your patience during the review process! If anyone else would like to have his or her game reviewed and advertised for free on http://www.gamersuniversity.com, please feel free to send me a message on TheGameCrafter or email me!]

 


-Endymian

http://www.gamersuniversity.com

Coming Soon: Alchemy: The Magnum Opus
Also Available:
Werewolf in Town – Ichi – Game of Dragons – Poopsock! The MMORPG Addict Card Game
On Hold: Kingdom Wars, Mage Towers
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