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Star Realms Deck Building Game

Star Realms Deck Building Game

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Product Description

Star Realms Deck Building Game

Star Realms is a spaceship combat deck-building game by Magic Hall of Famers Darwin Kastle and Rob Dougherty (Ascension Co-founder).   Star Realms is a fast paced deck-building card game of outer space combat. It combines the fun of a deck-building game with the interactivity of Trading Card Game style combat. As you play, you make use of Trade to acquire new Ships and Bases from the cards being turned face up in the Trade Row from the Trade Deck. You use the Ships and Bases you acquire to either generate more Trade or to generate Combat to attack your opponent and their bases. When you reduce your opponent’s score (called Authority) to zero, you win!   The game consists of: 

  • One 80 card Trade Deck
  • Two 10 card Personal Decks, consisting of two Vipers and eight Scouts each
  • 10 Explorer cards
  • 18 double-sided Authority cards for keeping score
  • One Rules Sheet
  • Each of the cards in the 80 card Trade Deck is a Ship or a Base belonging to one of four factions: The Trade Federation, The Blobs, The Star Empire or The Machine Cult.

  Trade Federation: In the far future, the more traditional governing bodies of the human race have been replaced with corporate leadership. The earth and its surrounding colonies are ruled by a group of corporations called the Trade Federation. The Federation’s policies are focused around trade and growth, but especially in profit and prosperity for those at the top of the corporate ladder. While they prefer to deal with other star realms using trade and diplomacy, they have a large defense branch dedicated to protecting the Federation’s trade and other interests.   The Blobs: These mysterious creatures are the first alien life forms encountered by the human race. Most of the initial encounters consisted of human colonies being completely obliterated. On the few occasions that a Blob ship has been recovered somewhat intact, the only biological remains found inside have consisted of a gelatinous mass, thus leading to the moniker, “The Blobs”. While for several years all encounters between humanity and the Blobs have been extremely violent, there is currently some limited trade between various Blob factions and some of the more daring human traders.The Blobs are best at generating massive amounts of Combat and at removing undesirable cards from the Trade Row.   Star Empire: The Star Empire consists primarily of former colonies of the Trade Federation. These colonies were on the outer edges of the Federation. Not only did they feel used by the corporations, but they felt the Federation failed to give them adequate protection from the Blobs. As a result, one ambitious colonial governor was able to unite several colonies into an independent empire under his control, one with a strong military, both for warding off the Blobs and for discouraging the Federation from trying to reclaim their lost colonies. The Star Empire is a combat oriented faction that draws lots of cards and makes the opponent discard cards.   Machine Cult: A cluster of industrial mining worlds were completely cut off from the Trade Federation by the Blobs. With the threat of annihilation by the Blobs always looming and no contact with the rest of human space, these worlds were forced to take drastic measures. Soon a cult of technology arose, focused on using advanced technology, robotics and computerization to create strong defenses and a powerful military that belied their relatively small population. Since their leaders believed their salvation lay in technology, technology soon became their god and their religion. The Machine Cult gains most of its power from being able to remove undesirable cards from your deck and from having a large number of Bases designed to defend your Authority from attack.   Playing star Realms:   When you play Star Realms, you will be able to acquire and use Ships and Bases of any and all of the four factions. Many cards have powerful Ally abilities that reward you for using Ships and Bases of the same faction together, however.   As you acquire cards using Trade, you put them into your discard pile, to be later shuffled into your personal deck. When you draw Ships, you do what they say and they get placed into your discard pile at the end of your turn. When you draw a Base, you play it face up in front of you and may use its abilities once every turn. In addition to Combat being the way you reduce your opponent’s Authority to zero and win the game, it’s also useful for destroying your opponent’s Bases. Some Bases are designated as Outposts. Your opponent’s Outposts must be destroyed before you can use Combat to attack your opponent’s Authority directly.   Star Realms is easy to learn, especially if you’re familiar with deck-building games, but it’s a game that takes time to master. Each time you play, the game is filled with various strategic decision points. Should I take the best card for me or the best card for my opponent? Should I focus on taking cards of a particular faction or on taking the best card available? Should I be focusing on acquiring more Trade or more Combat? Should I attack my opponent’s Base or their Authority? These are just some of the many choices you’ll be faced with. New players needn’t agonize over these choices just to play, but as they become more advanced players, they will find this depth of strategy leads to great replayability.  

  • Players 2
  • Playing time 20 minutes
  • Ages 12+

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Customer Reviews

by Graham on November 4th 2019

What a great game. Star Realms is a straightforward and engaging deck building game for 2 players. You start with a very simple hand and as you progress through the game you gradually trade your cards for more powerful cards with which you can attack your opponent. The artwork is beautiful and the action comes thick and fast. This game can be played with 4 players if you buy a second deck. I would highly recommend this game it is a lot of fun in a small box. For this price it's a bargain and no brainer.

by Nejc on February 21st 2018

I love the sci-fi setting of the game and how simple it is. Very good for dueling or for solo with expansions.

by Silvestar on May 6th 2017

Friend was totally right to recommend this one - all that I want from a deck builder, no more, no less. Fast, balanced, never felt that the luck of the draw influenced play to much (especially since you are never going to play only one game in a session :-) Very very nice artwork, although frequently overlooked in the bustle of play. Various strategies possible and competent. Of course, as any small card game, wears out after some playing if you don't add expansions.

by Federico on April 29th 2017

Arguably, on of the best deckbuilders out there, this pack lets to challenge a friend to see who can be the best galactic kingdom builder. If you want to add 2 more players, just add another pack to the mix, the gameplay is balanced that way. Try to specialize in your options to get bonuses from each card and benefit the most from every one.

by Ryan on May 1st 2016

I LOVE this game So So much! Basically, Star realms is a deck building game, that means that you'll start with a very weak deck of cards, and you'll buy and add new cards to your deck as you play. The game plays fast, has a very good mixture of luck and Strategy(Lots of thought, but luck plays a role as well!) and has that "Oh just one more game!" vibe to it, - at a very low price point. The game says that you'l need two copies to play 4 players, but Instead of getting 2 copies of this, consider getting Star realms: Colony wars. Which(Combined with this version) Lets you play 4 players, and gets you loads of new cards!(Altough you wont find anything drastically different) Saying that, while I've played even an 8 player game of star realms which is lots of fun, the more players you add, the more luck and less thought the game becomes, so in my opinion, defiantly best played with 2 players.

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