From the moment I got a review copy of Nightmare Forest: Dead Run in the mail, I was impressed. While it wasn’t the final copy, the cards in the game were printed professionally, the custom dice and counters looked amazing, and the manual was well-printed. I didn’t stop being impressed for the whole time I played it.
I’m a big fan of “medium-light” board games, with games like guillatine and bang! in the mix. Nightmare Forest: Dead Run is one of those games that you can learn in ten minutes, play in twenty, and play again, and again, and again.
This game in general reminded me of an old school side-scrolling game. Pick up a gun, kill the bad guys, find another gun, kill more bad guys etc. It’s fast paced, fun, and energetic.
Here’s the summary from the Kickstarter:
“While out enjoying an evening in the woods around the campfire with your friends, you notice a gentle breeze stirring the dead leaves that have fallen from the trees. With a building sense of dread, you have the unsettling feeling that those leaves aren’t the only dead things stirring in this forest. It’s a long way to the road and the safety of The City; your only chance at survival is to leave the camp… at a DEAD RUN!
Nightmare Forest: Dead Run is a card and dice take on side-scroller games like Rygar, Mario or Pitfall. You are camping in a forest with your friends as a critter-filled zombie infestation strikes in the darkness.
Blinded and frantic, you blaze your own trail. Will you be the lone survivor to get back to the car and make it out alive?
As the monsters grow ever-tougher, your decisions on when to push forward, when to utilize the little gear you can get your hands on, and when to use others as critter-bait will be the difference between success or being devoured in the Nightmare Forest.”
I had a lot of fun playing this game, with risk/reward situations galore, and some good ol’ fashioned friendly backstabbing. Being able to throw your gear at your comrades to slow them down was a fun and risky maneuver. While there is a fair amount of RNG, at no time did I feel it was un-fair.
While the zombie genre is a bit overdone these days, the artists involved managed to keep this fresh, using an animal theme that worked really well. Not only did it keep the game interesting, it led to some great situations, such as getting a half-used crossbow thrown at me, causing me to get tripped up by a zombie snail.
At this point, the Kickstarter has already reached it’s funding goal, but I reccommend backing the project anyway. There are some fun stretch goals, and for only $25, it’s a great game to pick up.