To start this tutorial off I want to make it well known that this tutorial is a basic walk-through of the game’s mechanics. There are minor details I will skip to keep the tutorial short. The purpose of this overview is to give a better understanding of the game’s mechanics to anyone who has never played it and wants to learn more. I do highly recommend the game for those who want to play a quick short session with friends to pass the time laughing at the absurdity of the game’s spells.
Now that the foreword is out of the way, it is time to start teaching you the basics. Wiz War is a battle between four wizards, Blue, Green, Red, and Yellow. Each wizard is essentially the same, and has access to the same spells which I will explain more in-depth later. The goal of each wizard is to get 2 points. These points can be gained by either bringing two treasures back to his or her starting location, killing two wizards or a mix between the two. The map itself is made of four boards that are randomly placed, so each game will be set up slightly different.
The board set-up
After the board is set up the spell deck is then made. The game supplies several different schools of magic. You have “White and Black Cantrip” which is just a standard selection of cards, the black cantrip is saved for optional rules while the white cantrip is always made into the deck. Then the players agree to three more schools of magic consisting of “Alchemy: The creation of items,” “Conjuring: Creation of inanimate objects,” “Elemental: Power of the four elements,” “Mentalism: Manipulation of the mind,” “Mutation: Transformation of the body,” and “Thamaturgy: The oldest school focused in energy.” These six schools of magic are all very varied from Alchemy giving the ability of wizards to create different gemstones to boost their stats to Mutation, which allows a wizard to transform.
From top to bottom(bottom left symbol of card): “White Cantrip,” “Conjuring,” “Elemental,” and “Mutation.”
From top to bottom(bottom left symbol of card): “Alchemy,” “Mentalism,” “Thaumaturgy,” and “Black Cantrip.”
With the deck made, each player is given their starting five cards and decides on who will be the first player. Once the first player is decided upon, the game begins. Each player’s turn consists of three phases, the “Time Passes” removing any expired spells, then “Move and Cast” the main actions of the wizard, and finally “Discard and Draw” Where the wizard receives new cards, ending their turn.
Before detailing each phase, it is important to understand the different types of magic cards. You have five card types, “Attack Spell,” “Counter Spell,” “Energy,” “Item,” and “Neutral Spell.” The Attack spell does exactly as it says it does which is attack other wizards or objects; the negative to this spell type is you can only cast one, once per turn. The counter spell is used to cancel the effects of other spells as well it is the only card type you can play on other player turns to cancel their cards. Energy is used for three reasons, to boost a spell’s strength, allow a temporary spell to last longer, and boost your movement. Items, which you can equip, and use for different reasons such as a sword to boost melee attack. Finally, neutral spells which do a multitude of things, a common spell type used by all wizards to affect their surroundings such as creating walls and traps.
From top to bottom(Left symbol of card): “Neutral Spell,” “Energy,” “Item,” “Attack Spell,” “Counter Spell,” and the final is a combination of two.
To add on to the different spell types you also have spells that last for a set number of time. You have an instant which vanishes after it is used. Temporary which lasts by default one turn but you can add energy to it when you play it to make it last longer. Then finally a permanent which lasts forever. Even though temporary and permanent spells are useful they have a negative effect of taking up space in your hand. Your hand has a max size of seven cards, but with each temporary and permanent you have to maintain those spells which takes up one space in your hand for each spell.
From top to bottom(bottom right symbol): “Permanent,” “Instant,” “Temporary.”
Returning to the three phases in a turn, the first and third is the easiest to understand. The time passes phase is where you remove a single energy from a temporary spell to show how much longer it will last. You also remove one stun marker placed on you by offensive spells/traps. With a stun marker removed for the rest of the turn you are forced to either move or attack but not both. As for the discard and draw phase this is where you can draw up to two cards without passing your max hand as well the player can discard any number of cards he would like to make room with his max hand of seven.
Now for the moving and casting phase. Wizards can move up to three spaces but can boost their movement with one energy card, allowing wizards to transverse the labyrinth quickly. During their movement, a wizard can stop at any time and cast spells as long as the spells are legal of course. Besides the spell types of cards there is another identifier for cards and that is “Target Range Icons.” These icons tell the player how to cast the card. There are four “Target Range Icons,” you have “Castor”, “Adjacent,” “Line of Sight (LOS),” and “anywhere symbol.” For caster the wizard targets himself, adjacent to nearby spaces, line of sight which draws a line from the wizard to his or her target, and finally the anywhere symbol that affects any space on the board. With this knowledge of range icons, a player casts his spell while moving to his final destination. Then ends his turn and the next player does his or her action. Until two points are achieved by a wizard.
From top to bottom(Top right symbol of card): “Castor,” “Adjacent,” “LOS”, “Anywhere.”
With these basics, you can better understand the game, I do highly suggest though if you wish to play the game or learn more about it to please follow the links below or search around for walkthroughs on the internet. I did skip many different small details in the game that can come up while playing, but I hope this basic overview has gotten you interested to look into the game and I do recommend the game highly for a great way to pass the time.
A few different example of cards.
For anyone who is interested in reading the full manual or seeing more information about Wiz War, the version I am using is the Fantasy Flight’s reprint.
The link to the game’s website: http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_minisite.asp?eidm=177
The link to the manual: http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/ffg_content/wiz-war/WizWar_Rulebook%20v1-12%20low.pdf