Arctic Scavengers Game Review

“Arctic Scavengers” is a deck building game from Rio Grande Games. Within the framework players are trying to survive in the post apocalyptic world of 2097. Most of humanity has not survived the new ice-age, but you will, if you can accrue useful members to your tribe and scavenge your way to victory.

Arctic Scavengers tabletop game review - Gameapalooza Australian tabletop game news and reivewsArctic Scavengers, the one with the cool woman on the box.

Setup & Gameplay
Gameplay and setup are simple enough, each player starts with a hand of cards (some refugees, spear, shovel, brawler and scavengers), shuffle those and draw the top five cards to get your starting hand. Other cards are laid out on the table, including mercenaries, junkyard (for resources) and contested resources. There’s a handy card telling players what to do on a turn, it’s all very straight forward and if you’ve ever played a deck-building game before, there’s really nothing overly strange here.

Actions consist of taking more card(s), digging (searching the junkyard), trying to recruit / gain new members to your tribe and lastly trashing useless cards. The cards in the game are clearly marked with nice art taking up the main area, but handy icons on the left with the stats you’ll use in game, the bottom part of the card contains additional information if any. That’s a loose look at the rules of the game, because this is a review, not a gameplay how-to, for the sake of the review it’s easy in the grand scheme of gaming.

All of the decisions in “Arctic Scavengers” can be interesting because each of them is dependent on how good your deck actually is. Sure you might have some good tribe members, but are they well equipped? Can they be equipped? Maybe you have some useful tools, but no one to actually use them. It probably sounds slightly confusing in writing, but honestly, it’s really straight-forward and the cards clearly show what each person and / or item does / is capable of.

Arctic Scavengers game cards Australian tabletop game news and reivewsArctic Scavengers deck builder – The art on the cards is pretty sweet.

Players can do particular actions dependent on the cards in their hand with the overall idea to try and strengthen your own standing within the freezing world. Send out members of your group to do certain objectives (be it scavenging, hunting for food, gaining more members, taking part in skirmishes with other players), all whilst trying to stay safe from other tribes, also wanting to do the same. Of course as with most post apocalyptic settings, gaining more people means needing more resources, example, you may need to pay a mercenary with food. You can even gain structures, thus giving you bonuses or special rules.

“Arctic Scavengers” win condition is simple enough, the bigger your survivor base at the end of the game, the better your chance of winning. So essentially you want a lot of people. Having said that, some people are worth more than others in game (terrible though that is).

Arctic Scavengers deck builder game review Gameapalooza Australian tabletop game news and reviewsMore of the lovely cards in Arctic Scavengers (and expansion).

Gameapalooza House Rules
None this time, just play it as it.

1-5 Players
Ages: 13+
Setup Time: A few minutes
Play Time: 30-60 minutes

Game Build Quality
There’s not a whole lot to “Arctic Recon” and expansions in the form of HQ & Recon. Nice sturdy box, good rule booklet and a few small card decks. Loads of room for expansion in the box.

Overall
Overall “Arctic Scavengers” is a nice deck builder. Is it the best deck-builder you’re ever going to play? No. Of course if you’re looking for a deck-builder that happens to be set on a post apocalyptic frozen earth, we guess you’re in luck. If you’re looking for a great deck-builder that has expansions available we’d say go for “Dominion” over this, not because this is bad, you can probably tell from the review we liked the look and feel of it, it just isn’t the be all and end all. Try before you buy.

[author] [authorimage timthumb=’off’]/content/images/2016/02/gameapalooza-micro-review-icon-sm.gif[/authorimage] [authorinfo]Micro Review – Arctic Scavengers is a nice little deck-builder, but it’s not the best deck builder out there. We’d opt for Dominion over this one, but if you like the cold, definitely worth a try before you buy.
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