Getting Started with Adventure Tactics: Domianne’s Tower

December 26, 2020 | Sessions | 4 comments

Start a campaign filled with adventures, choices, and evolving characters in Adventure Tactics: Domianne’s Tower.

It arrived! Just before Christmas, a giant box containing Adventure Tactics: Domianne’s Tower showed up. I spent a little time over the last few days getting it all punched and organized. With all sorts of possible characters and a fairly simple combat system, this campaign-style adventure had all the makings of a fun time. To the table!

Spoiler Alert

This is a campaign-style game with different chapters and story paths to work through. The following entry contains information about scenarios 1 and 5. Although I try not to give away too much, please be aware that you’ll see some battle and outcome details. These are the starting scenarios, yet still, know what’s ahead and feel free to skip if desired!

Game Overview

Game Name: Adventure Tactics: Domianne’s Tower
Publication Year:
2020
Designer:
Nicholas Yu
Artists:
 A. Bereza, M. Cofer, D. Cowals, J. Croft, and 5 More
Publisher: Letiman Games
Solo Mode: Included in the Base Game (Cooperative)

With over 800 cards, tons of standees, and much more, this is a very packed sort of game! However, it also bills itself as relatively light on rules. The most intriguing system for me is  leveling up through different classes. So much to do within the world and campaign!

Taking a Look at the Many Included Components with Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower
R

First Play

December 25, 2020

Complexity

3

Latest Play

January 3, 2021

Expansions

2

Setup Time

10 Minutes

Lifetime Plays

12

Play Time

40 Minutes

:

High Score

N/A

1

Game Area

54" x 32"

;

Low Score

N/A

Starting Characters

There are 5 individual character boards with their own nice miniatures. Additionally, there are 5 starting classes.

Each character is depicted as belonging to a certain class, though there are no restrictions! As a character gains levels, the choice in class becomes more important.

Elite classes have certain requirements, like 2 levels in cleric. Others are more complex, requiring 1 level in each of the starting classes. The decisions are very intriguing!

Due to my table space, I decided to go with 3 of the 5 available characters, which is the minimum party size.

Learning About the Characters at the Start of Act 1 in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Elwyn the Wizard

Meet Elwyn! As I mentioned, even though he’s depicted as a wizard, I could have started him off as an archer, cleric, fighter, or rogue. But I wanted a wizard, so there he was!

Even though there are 5 individual starting classes that can be chosen once, this is far from restrictive. I already had some elite classes in mind for Elwyn to work towards.

The class card is simple: It indicates the type of die to use for a basic attack in the upper left. Easy to locate!

It also shows the range and movement at a glance. No need to go searching for that information!

Choosing Elwyn and the Wizard Class in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Quill the Cleric

Another character I couldn’t pass by was Quill. Once again, she wasn’t locked into being a cleric, though I liked having some matching artwork to start with.

The player boards are rather nice with reminders, areas for cards, and a recessed place for tracking health. At the same time, the warping is the worst I’ve ever seen.

Summaries of the icons are provided at the bottom. There aren’t too many, thankfully, and the rules make sense.

In effect, a character grows over time with a carefully crafted deck and extra perks or bonuses.

A Very Kind and Helpful Sort of Character with Quill the Cleric in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Roberta the Fighter

Rounding out my party was Roberta! She looked pretty formidable and had some interesting options as a fighter.

One more important part of the character board is the class feature. A single card may be placed here prior to each encounter, though a character might possess many.

These act as additional options, though they’re never persistent. Some are discarded into the deck, while others, such as Roberta’s here, are removed from the encounter.

Deciding when to use a class feature seemed like a vital choice. But I was all set to finally jump into the fray!

Getting Ready for Anything with Roberta the Fighter in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Setting Up the Map

Hurray for the first scenario! I haven’t played a lot of tactical, skirmish games… And Gloomhaven actually fell completely flat for me. Still, I saw potential here!

The map tiles were easy enough to set up with the locations of the heroes and enemies. Simple and fast.

Another element that attracted me to this game was the initiative system, which is randomized every round. Rotten luck to start with… Double enemy turns!

I hoped this would simply make them close the distance and put my heroes in a good position to strike first.

Taking a Look at the Full Battlefield in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Planning for Success

The difficulty level is something I only alluded to in terms of simple rules, but there are ways to make the experience a little more challenging without added effort.

Each scenario includes an objective, which is required to succeed, along with a bonus objective.

Completing the bonus is like an added degree of success, often with better rewards. However, it adds extra work and typically creates a new sort of challenge.

I could either go straight for Rigby, or risk leaving him alone to clear the battlefield first. No guts, no glory. Ha ha!

Considering the Bonus Objective for the First Scenario in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Rigby’s Grand Entrance

Sure enough, the double enemy turn brought the goblins right up to the heroes. Rigby himself confronted Roberta!

With a simple roll of the die, the battle began. Damage typically comes from these various dice, each of which has unique probabilities and maximum values.

I was also very happy with the boss’s deck of cards. Just 10 provided the script for Rigby and all of his minions.

There were a few small mistakes I noticed, like how the names of the minions didn’t match up in the campaign guide and Rigby’s cards. But it was still easy to figure out.

The Start of the Fight Against Rigby in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Fireball Them All!

As I started to work through the available actions, Elwyn appeared to be in a great position. Each turn involves up to 2 actions, making each one vitally important to the battle.

The wizard didn’t hesitate to cast his very powerful fireball spell on Rigby and a nearby goblin!

I used a marker to show which square Elwyn targeted. This was a distance of 2 away from him, and the area of effect meant that it would affect everyone at a distance of 1.

With a roll of the blue die, 4 damage landed on the pair! Elwyn was rather pleased with the singed hair effect.

Elwyn's Control of Fire for a Good Amount of Damage in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Thoughtful Healing

Quill’s role still saw her right there among the fray, dealing damage and drawing attention. Yet as the battle wore on, the goblins proved to be rather strong.

Roberta wanted nothing more than to defeat Rigby, though she knew he had to be the last to fall.

Her hot-headedness saw her take a considerable amount of damage. Teetering on the edge of being knocked out, Quill arrived to provide plenty of assistance.

Note the red “X” near the middle of this card. It was set aside, so Quill’s healing abilities were slightly diminshed.

Helpful Healing at the Right Moment from Quill in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

A Wild Goblin Chase

As soon as he caught onto their plan, Rigby sent up a signal flare to call for reinforcements. They arrived swiftly while he maneuvered himself to attack Quill.

I was only lucky that the party kept away from him! Whenever he was supposed to use his special smash ability, no one was within range. Smart. Or lucky? Ha!

Some goblins fell, though my low-level party was starting to falter. It wasn’t easy to find the perfect card options.

Actually, the majority of their decks consisted of basic attacks and basic moves at this point in the campaign.

An All-In Attack from Rigby and the Goblins in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Now You See Me…

Elwyn had an interesting card in his deck that allowed him to change positions with another hero. This teleportation trick was actually quite nice, and totally unexpected!

Another bonus? The star in the middle of the card meant it was a free action, so he had 2 more chances to act.

At this point, I loved the system. I felt challenged with all of the options, but far from overwhelmed. Plus it wasn’t easy. Plenty of time had passed as I slowly progressed!

That’s what I often miss with skirmish games: The feeling of progression and learning. I had both now, plus fun!

Elwyn's Jump Across the Battlefield in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Now You Don’t

Oh, Elwyn! His magical stunt helped get the party through to the next round, though he was quite winded.

His class feature allowed him to reduce the damage taken by the next attack by a minimum of 2. All Rigby needed to do was not draw the card that allowed him to use smash…

No! Alright. I could weather this. Now all he needed was to roll poorly on the blue die. Anything but the value 5 side.

And so Elwyn was knocked out. This wasn’t the end, though. Heroes don’t die, and revive potions allow battles to continue. But what a terrible time for the wizard!

Rigby's Success at Knocking Out Elwyn in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Roberta to the Rescue

Fighting from the sidelines for many rounds, Roberta was still seething with contempt for Rigby. When she saw Elwyn fall to the ground, it was time for action!

Actually, on a side note, it really was… All of the other goblins had been defeated. Only Rigby remained.

First, Roberta charged in with plenty of movement to get into position behind Rigby. Still laughing over his success over Elwyn, he didn’t know what was behind him.

A swift basic attack, and Roberta defeated the first boss of the campaign! Elwyn woozily got back on his feet.

Roberta's Charge to Rescue Elwyn and Defeat Rigby in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

The Campaign Guide

All of the information I needed for this scenario existed in the campaign guide. I had a few complaints about the small font and color choices, but it was very helpful!

I had everything I needed at a glance. Each enemy’s health was tracked simply. I could have removed the tokens upon defeat, though it was satisfying to leave those piles!

No spoilers about the rewards, although I was quite pleased. The story was also interesting and I forged on.

At this point, all of the heroes leveled up. So many choices! This might have been my favorite part of the campaign.

All of the Useful Information in the Campaign Guide of Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Deciding Exactly How to Level Up

In some games that offer choices when leveling up, I feel utterly lost and gloss over the decisions, hoping for the best. With this class-based system, it’s difficult to make the wrong decision, unless multiple characters somehow go after the same elite class. Once a character has leveled up in an elite class, it’s locked off to everyone else.

All heroes top off at 10 levels, and every class may only ever go up to level 5. It’s possible to specialize in just a few classes or go for variety and versatility with multiple classes. Elwyn gained the first level in fighter so he might not get knocked out again! Quill focused and became a level 2 cleric, while Roberta learned long-distance fighting with archery.

A Special Delivery

As the next scenario began, the story picked up with strange happenings with the goblins. Quill found herself the recipient of a precious piece of cargo!

Actually, any of the heroes could become the child-bearer. It was even possible to hand off the baby with an action.

Everyone needed to make it far across the open expanse to complete the bonus objective. I had a pretty good plan in place and it all looked to be going well for a long time.

The party made it over halfway across the map and was certain to reach safety without breaking a sweat.

An Unusual Discovery Amongst the Goblins in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

The Wraith’s Wrath

Despite my wise moves to avoid the wraiths and spread out damage, their attacks were ruthless! The black die was the most unpredictable and could do 6 damage at once.

During an early round, 3 wraiths managed to land attacks. Every time, they did 6 damage! Of course there was no cooperation on the luck side when 1 damage was possible.

I watched Quill crumple as the Wraith stole the baby and defeated the party. Should I have done things differently?

Most likely, yes. I never handed off the baby, so the wraiths were always focused on Quill. Bad planning!

A Fallen Character and Lost Baby in Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

Session Overview

Play Number: 1 and 2
Expansion: Adventure Tactics Hero Pack 1
Solo Mode: Included in the Base Game (Cooperative)
Play Details: Scenarios 2 and 5 with Elwyn, Quill & Roberta
Outcome: 1 Win and 1 Loss

Even though I technically failed, it was nice to see the story move forward. This also makes me think that there will be some fun with playing through the campaign again one day! I had an absolutely wonderful time playing through this and watching the characters start to develop. It will be interesting to see where this goes!

The Continuing Adventure Even in Failure with Adventure Tactics: Domianne's Tower

%

10 Plays

Affordability

Price & Value

8

Functionality

Challenges & Mechanics

10

Originality

Design & Theme

6

Quality

Components & Rules

6

Reusability

Achievement & Enjoyment

10

Variability

Distinctness & Randomness

9

+ Pros (Positives)

  • All of the classes offer something different, and deciding how to level up provides a multitude of options.
  • The system is relatively straightforward and easy to understand without feeling overly simplistic or boring.
  • Although it’s difficult to judge a campaign early on, the story seems interesting with plenty of action and choices.
  • Each character starts off with a unique class and develops to work towards meeting an elite class’s requirements.
  • Battles are easy to run with a simple sequence, leaving most of the play time towards planning out each action.
  • Randomized initiative order opens up unexpected rounds and can aid in determining when to attack or move.

– Cons (Negatives)

  • The box insert is too small to fit all the cards and it feels like the storage system should have been much better.
  • Component quality is somewhat sub-par with chipped map tiles and cards, along with terribly warped boards.
  • Text in the campaign guide is small or dark on a dark background in some places, and there are several typos.
  • Keeping track of 3 heroes can be a lot, and maximum hit points require constant checking when healing.

More Adventure Tactics

Explore related posts about Adventure Tactics: Domianne’s Tower!

Victory Conditions

Complete the Scenario

  • Overall Goal Progress 42% 42%
  • Campaign Progress 100% 100%

Goals and Milestones

R

Complete scenario 1 with the bonus objective.

R

Complete scenario 33 with the bonus objective.

R

Complete scenario 36 with the bonus objective.

R

Complete scenario 40 with the bonus objective.

R

Complete scenario 42 with the bonus objective.

Q

Complete scenario 5 with the bonus objective.

Q

Complete scenario 10 with the bonus objective.

Q

Complete scenario 17 with the bonus objective.

Q

Complete scenario 18 with the bonus objective.

Q

Complete scenario 24 with the bonus objective.

Q

Complete scenario 26 with the bonus objective.

Q

Complete scenario 29 with the bonus objective.

Continue the Conversation

What do you think of Adventure Tactics: Domianne’s Tower? Is there a class you enjoy the most? I already advanced Quill up to become a bishop. Roberta is on her way to becoming a champion, while Elwyn has a few options. Not only am I loving the character class system, but the campaign is quite intriguing! I’ll be onto the next battle scenario soon!

4 Comments

  1. Components of my game are all fine. Nothing is warping or beding. Also I was able to fit all cards back to their trays.

    Only thing I don’t like about this game: I wasn’t able yet to find time to play it…

    Reply
    • I hope you get a chance to play soon, Jens! With the dividers and prior to creating characters, all of my cards were too snug for me to comfortably fit. It gets solved right after putting together a few starting decks, but it was a little frustrating to go through when I was still in the midst of punching and organizing.

      Still, the complaints I have are mainly cosmetic and minor. Definitely an excellent game!

      Reply
  2. Speaking as an occasional pyrotechnician with a long beard, respec’ to Elwyn for combining something that size with a taste for fireballs. 🙂

    Reply
    • Ha ha! This is very true. So far, no damage has befallen that splendid beard. Actually, the fireball card shows him holding it as far away as possible… Seems about right! I hope you have the same luck and skills as Elwyn with protecting your own beard, Roger!

      Reply

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