If movies have taught me anything, it’s that when giant monsters (Kaiju to those in the know) move from The Land of The Rising Sun and make their way Stateside the result is a disappointment that neither Matthew Broderick nor Ken Watanabe can save us from.
Imagine my joy then to tell you that the opposite is true of the recent revamp of the much loved King Of Tokyo.
King Of New York makes KoT feel like a bit like a practice run in the build up to this. Not to take anything away from the original which is still a masterfully designed game and for those looking for a faster paced, easy to set up table-top experience, KoT is still the go to game for me. But where they really nailed the core gameplay with KoT, KoNY then builds layers of complexity on top.
There are now multiple board regions allowing for more than one player to be “King” at any given time. Also new to the game is the Military presence that can build over time giving another reason for players to keep moving.
There are a host of new ways to gain victory points and new gear/ability cards, some of which can be significant game changers. For example the “Superstar Card” affords its holder points every turn based on their dice rolls forcing other players to reconsider their rolls in an attempt to steal the card (as in KoT players can choose to reroll dice a set number of times to suit their strategy). Also new to the game are buildings that can be destroyed to reap various rewards such as victory points or energy (again used as currency). But doing so attracts the attention of the military to that district thus leaving less safe zones as the game progresses.
To sum it up King Of New York is not a simple re-skin, nor does it replace your King Of Tokyo set. To me they fill different holes and this latest release is a new game built on tried and tested mechanics for those seeking more depth.
King Of New York and King Of Tokyo are both available now.