Take the Basic Principal of a deck builder, throw in the wild swings of Magic: the Gathering, Set the whole thing in space. Star Realms from White Wizard games is an exercise in restraint when developing a game. Everything you need to lose a weekend with your friends comes in a conveniently priced tuck box. Like most deck builders you start with a ten card deck that allows you to hit your opponent or buy one of the six cards available in the trade row. As your deck gets bigger you can start to take wild swings at your opponent. The first player whose life reaches or surpasses zero loses.
The game is, for all purposes, too simple. The theme is lost after the first round and while you can dig for it, it’s usually not worth it. Other than that, it is the most incredible game I have ever played. The only reason it doesn’t break the top five is due to the fact that the theme is completely lost. That is not necessarily a detriment to the game itself. A simple to learn and even easier to teach deck builder, Star Realms takes concepts from all of the major Deck builders available and streamlines them for ease of access and over all play. The app for Iphones and Android devices makes the book keeping easy to understand and execute. The balance is what I think I love the most about this game. No card seems out of place.
The Gambit expansions offers abilities to each player to be used either as a one shot or throughout the game. It also provides the unaligned Merc Cruiser and Bosses for solo or Co-op Play. Gambit was part of the Kickstarter campaign and was made available due to fan outcry. If you pay more than ten dollars for it you Might be disappointed.
The Crisis expansion offers four packs of cards that include more ships and bases as well as two new mechanics to the game Events and heroes. Heroes go into play in front of you and can be trashed during your turn to gain the ally ability of their faction. Events get shuffled into the main deck and resolve when they are drawn up to the trade row. All in all the crisis expansion offers an interesting change of pace for players that have been playing Star Realms since release and are starting to get tired of it.
With two expansions available that both offer an intense new style of play Star Realms has a very bright future on my table. If you need any more reason to go out and own this game, Katie loves it. That should tell you all that you need to know.
Final Score: 9.2/10