It has been a long time since the trend of collectible miniature board games has stopped. There was D&D Miniatures Game, Mage Knight, Star Wars, and many others. Nowadays, only Heroclix is still active. However, that doesn’t mean that there were not made any, which were really awesome both for their quality and their gameplay. World of Warcraft: Miniature Game falls into that category.
World of Warcraft: Miniature Game, is a tactical battle miniature game that was released in 2008. After deciding how many characters their party will have (2,3 or 5), each player chooses a faction (Alliance, Horde, or Monsters) and builds a party from that faction's characters. Each character has a class (druid, hunter, paladin, priest, warlock, etc.) and apart from characters' stat cards, players have to pick 2 action cards (which are extra abilities like heal, or attacks) for each character. The goal is to collect victory points (VP) up to your team's VP total, and players achieve that by killing enemy players' characters (4 points per kill) or by holding a VP location square (1 point per adjacent character).
Each round consists of 10 turns counted by a master clock, and each miniature has its own U-base, a detachable base that shows the miniature's health and personal clock. Whenever a character performs an action he has to pay that action's cost (add the amount to its personal clock), meaning that the character will play again when his personal clock matches the master clock. For example, if a character performs a 3-cost action on turn 2, he will play again on turn 5. The decision of when to act and what action to perform is the most important part of the game, and players have to decide wisely in order to win.
Since the game offers various classes and many different action cards, the character combinations are many, leading to different strategies and keeping each game unique and fresh.
Nowadays, board games are becoming more "heavy", with lots of components and complex rules. As a result, setting up the board game and explaining it to your company takes a lot of time. The biggest difference that World of Warcraft: Miniature Game has from other similar miniature games and most board games in general, is that it is significantly quick to set-up, learn and play. Its rules are simple and easy to understand and a normal game (3v3) could take less than an hour. 2v2 games could last even less than 20 minutes.
In addition, the game is pretty customizable. For example, in spite of the fact that the game is for 2-4 players, players could create a 6-player free-for-all or 3v3 team game, with each player controlling 1 character. Another option could be to create 1v1 battles by adding more action cards to each character. Also, miniatures are pre-painted, something which is a huge plus since most miniature board games come out with unpainted ones.
One major problem the game has is its availability. Since it was released back in 2008, it is out-of-print which means that it is not available in board game stores. What is more, it was a collectible miniatures board game: each booster contained 3 random miniatures. On the other hand, that does not mean that people cannot find it. On websites like eBay or Amazon, the game's Boosters, Starters, and Deluxe starters can be found sealed. Also, people can find single miniatures and boards at very low prices in order to increase their collection, since the game is not that popular.
In conclusion, Warcraft: Miniature Game is a fantastic board game that should be owned by anyone, Warcraft fan, or not. Its fast gameplay, easy-to-learn rules, and customization make it significantly accessible to both casual and hardcore gamers. It is a downright fun experience, that passes to players the desire of playing unstoppably.