CRON ISLAND - BOARD GAME REVIEW
When first seeing Cron island a year ago, I was immediately intrigued and a little perplexed by the wonderfully colourful and vibrant board. While I never got the chance to play it at the time, the passion and enthusiasm of it’s creators drew me further in, and I made it my mission to get my hands on it. I finally got my wish half a year later and it was definitely worth the wait. Cron Island is an excellent blend of game styles that all combine to make an exciting and hugely enjoyable game to play with friends.
This is the hardest bit to pin down to a specific style. This is what makes Cron Island unique. While you might initially move around the board in a slightly linear manner like monopoly, the game throws you into varying situations which are all enjoyably different. From working together on heists, to battling monsters and each other, down to desperately trying to make enough money to buy yourself that elusive Lamborghini. (Damn you lambo!) The variety really adds to the fun that can be had in playing this game. My personal favourite moment was being dragged into a street fight with another player and realizing with horror that I was the underdog. All players placed money on my foe winning, and I did all I could to hold my ground. What followed was some of the most exciting and intense dice rolling I have ever enjoyed. Through my sheer lucky rolls and sly use of cards, it made for some crazy dramatic twists that left the whole table roaring in both horror and shock as dice after dice went in my favour. I gleefully watched my foe desperately make deals with the others to keep himself standing. While I (the underdog) eventually fell, I bled him dry and he never quite recovered from his arrogant mistake!
The game begins with you all starting off as level 1 heroes, and in true monopoly form, you roll your dice and move around the edge of the board. All similarities stop there. You’ll quickly reach your first junction, and you must decide. Do you stay in town? (Boooring!) Or get lured off the beaten track to the beautiful beaches (to get ambushed by wenches!) or get lost in the jungle (to do battle with King Cobra!) For a huge part of the game, you’ll all be fighting and exploring your way through the 4 inner zones of the island. Here you will quickly gain money, powerful weapons and abilities, form a crew and buy yourself healing drugs to give yourself every chance to survive the final fight – Jon Cron 3rd. Once you feel you’re powerful enough to challenge Jon Cron the 3rd for his throne as Drug Lord of the island, make your way to the middle. Don’t take too long deciding the right time to strike, as all of you are plotting to do this, and once someone is ready, it becomes a frenzied race to the middle. Go too early and you’ll find yourself waking up in hospital, nursing your wounds and facing the humiliation of watching your opponents seize the chance you squandered. Same can be said if you leave it too late and watch helplessly as someone else shoves a bazooka in Jon’s face and ends his reign (Dammit Chris! I’m still bitter!) All in all, as you level yourself up and acquire an array of powerful items, it makes for a great 2 hours that will leave you wanting more. Each time you play is different to the last and I really appreciate the replay-ability and variety in how the game goes down each time.
WHERE TO GET IT?
Well, I am excited to announce that on February 10th, Cron Island’s creators are launching their IndieGoGo campaign to the world, and I will be first in line to back it. Back it on there to grab yourself a copy. These guys are fantastic and have created a game equally great! I highly recommend you check it out and give it a whirl.
It certainly made for an excellent Edventure!