Arena: the Contest is a turn-based tactical miniature combat boardgame for 1-8 players of all experience levels, featuring a Player x Player team competition, and a Cooperative dungeon crawler (with solo mode and Epic Campaign).
Our Expansion Box adds a new level of replayability with 12 extra Heroes of six different Combat Roles, multiplying the number of teams you can assemble tenfold.
Immersion can also reach a new upgraded level with minis that represent tiles such as dungeon walls and doors. They come in sufficient number to assemble all of our cooperative scenarios.
The Elder Dragon
This is not just another artbook. With 200 full-color pages, our hardcover book contains all 115 pieces of art made for the game, and you will also get to know a lot about the World of Tanares, created specially for Arena: the Contest.
From historical legends to contemporary culture, there are many interesting things to learn about the world before your epic game campaign. You will also learn about each of our heroes' stories, with commentaries on character design and background/concept images and sketches.
Harun's got the only ability you execute before the match even begins: you may choose what Combat Role he is to perform! Your Team could use a Healer? Needing another melee fighter? No problem!
Add just a little bit to your Deluxe Pledge and take home two KS-Exclusive Heroes of the 7th Combat Role, the KS-Exclusive Hydra, the 200-page full color Art & World of Arena hardcover book, and the gigantic Elder Dragon.
Ascaran, the Archangel, and Vanarus, the Demon, are two special Kickstarter-Exclusive Heroes from a seventh Combat Role, the Bruiser, that is not currently present in the Core Box or Expansion Box.
The Hydra is a Kickstarter-Exclusive ~90x120x85mm miniature (3-inch base diameter). It comes with a special one-shot Boss Fight cooperative quest, to be played after the events that end the Epic Campaign.
Community Quests are missions with special objectives. These objectives are not related to how much money the project raised.
That's right! You don't have to patiently wait for more people to back the project. There's ALWAYS something YOU can do to unlock more content.
Arena: the Contest is a turn-based tactical miniature combat boardgame for 1-8 players of all tabletop experience levels, featuring two game modes: a Player versus Player team competition, and a Cooperative dungeon crawler.
Flexible player counts directly impacts how much time a board game spends on tabletops. We designed Arena with that in mind, to increase the value in the box.
You can play Arena by yourself (solo mode), 1v1 (each player controls an entire team), with small or large groups, up to a max of 4v4 (each player controlling a Hero). One or two friends from your regular party can't show up or must leave early? Not a problem. You can only meet with your fellow gamers once every quarter? Arena will never have to wait for the perfect player-count setting.
Matches are dynamic and fast-paced. Even though positioning is important, you will find that not much time can be spent manouvering pieces around.
The difference between shortest and longest duration times lie on how defensive teams are, and how much teammates decide to debate their strategies and actions.
Arena's PvP design has a cool feature: You play while the table is prepared! Your entire set-up time consists of removing components from the box.
Everything else (choosing which Heroes will fight, what their initial positioning is, how the scenario will be configured) impacts future gameplay, being therefore subject to rules. You will learn more about pre-match procedures below.
Coop Mode takes a bit longer to set up, because it requires more components, you must play against specific enemies on a specific mapped-out scenario, and you must learn the quest's features and what your objectives are.
In PvP Game Mode, take the place of one or more Heroes and fight to death in the Arena.
Victory condition: all heroes in the opposing team are dead.
If you want to read the raw rules before scrolling down the page, here they are:
You do not need to read the Rulebook before playing your first match. This short document provides you with the game's essential rules, with which you can immediately start playing. While you play, specific situations and doubts may arise. At this point, you should consult the Rulebook.
Your official, complete, and main source of game rules. It is very extensive, because we designed it as a reference material: play the game first, as it is very easy to learn and understand. When in doubt, consult the appropriate section of the Rulebook.
1. Building an Arena. Customization.
The game starts by defining the scenario where the battle will take place. In PvP, you may choose any of the two sides of the game board.
The Board represents the Arena (PvP) or Dungeons (Coop) where fights take place. Since Arena has two game modes, it was only fitting that we had two boards in one. On one side, you will find a pre-assembled Arena, ideal if you want to start your PvP matches super fast.
Flip the board to find an empty Arena. Use this side to assemble the Coop Mode's dungeons, or to set up a custom Arena for a PvP match.
Using dozens of tiles, you can assemble over a trillion different scenarios, each with interesting and unique strategical nuances that only expert players can quickly identify.
2. Drafting / Teambuilding
After assembling the Arena, comes the selection of Heroes. Teams roll a die and the winner picks any hero in the pool. As soon as a hero is picked, it becomes unavailable to the opposing team. Teams alternate picks.
Your aim is to select heroes who synergize well with both teams and the scenario, because you'd be removing a good option from your opponent, while creating the potential for strong combos yourself.
Heroes are the combatants a player controls; the main characters of the game. Take a look, below, at the components that make what we call a "Herokit":
The Heropad is a board with all relevant information about a specific Hero. Its back contains the Hero's name, artwork, and one of his/her signature sentences...
...while the front side contains the Hero's Stats (HP, Defense, Movement, Basic Attack), Combat Role, Passive Power, and a short description of their attacks, while repeating the Hero's name and artwork.
Attack Card - All Heroes have two Primary and two Special Attacks, all of them unique. For each of these attacks (also found in the Heropad), there is a card to explain what they do.
Attack Cards are practical (you can pass it around the table, if any other player wants to double-check what the attack does), and useful (E.g.: if your attack Cursed an enemy, you can place the corresponding card over this Hero's Pad, thus tracking the Curse and its duration).
Miniatures - All Heroes in the game have their own carefully-crafted figure, distinguishing them from all other combatants on the board.
Hero miniatures have 1-inch diameter bases, and are ~40mm tall (28mm scale). All miniatures in this project come preassembled and will be made of PVC plastic mixed with ABS, a resistant material that allows us to mantain a high-level of detail.
Hero Token - Around the Board, there's a numbered track where you place tokens to track the combatants' HP (in the Coop Mode, you will also use it to track Experience Points and, sometimes, the passage of time).
Tokens' colors are determined by the Hero's Combat Role. There's a black border on one side and a white border on the other, allowing quick distinction between Heroes that share the same combat role but fight for opposing Teams.
3. Positioning Heroes. Turn-based game.
After you have assembled the Arena and your team, it's time to deploy heroes on the battlefield, and, with that, Turn Order is determined (the first hero to be positioned will be the first to act, and so on).
Action develops in turns. Teams ALWAYS alternate turns (even if one of the Teams has more living heroes).
In your turn, your Hero can make a Move Action and a Prime Action. You may spend your Prime Action to:
- Move (yes, a second time);
- Make an attack;
- Perform a Heroic Action;
There are different types of attacks. Let's take a closer look at Attack Cards:
Above you see the difference between Primary (silver border) and Special (gold border) attacks. The second is much more powerful, but you can only make it once in the match - By the way, "Trample" is the attack that Morlogh makes in our Kickstarter video, did you watch it?
The top of the card shows target conditions: how many squares away you can be when you strike (E.g.: 1 square), and who you can strike (E.g.: 1 enemy);
Benefits/Drawbacks describe a special feature of the attack and its execution (E.g.: the ability to move before or after your strike - without spending a Move Action!);
STRIKE is the roll of a twenty-sided die. It HITS when you roll a number that matches or exceeds your target's Defense Stat. If your strike HITS, you get to apply damage and effects. If it MISSES, you apply residual damage (all described in the Attack Card).
Arena's combat is not about luck; it's about STRATEGICAL MANIPULATION OF ODDS. This can be done through:
- Elements of the scenario (E.g.: Altars allow you to roll twice and use the best result);
- Positioning (E.g.: Isolated ranged Heroes can Focus and become more likely to hit their targets);
- Attacks (E.g.: some Effects apply Conditions that decrease a Hero's Defense);
- Decisions (E.g.: Making a powerful attack more likely to miss, or a weaker attack more likely to hit);
- Efficient use of resources (E.g.: Performing Special Attacks and Heroic Actions at the right time); and more.
If your team performs a Special Action (Special Attack or Heroic Action) this turn, it becomes unavailable to your team's next hero.
You will feel the urge to perform special actions every turn, but hold your horses! The next hero on your team might have a suboptimal turn if you do.
In Cooperative Mode, you will play Quests (Missions or Boss Fights) against automated enemies, either by yourself (solo mode) or with a group of friends.
Missions - Accomplish its Primary Objective;
Boss Fights - Kill the Boss.
Special cards determine your enemies' actions. They are randomly drawn, meaning you will have a hard time predicting what they are going to do.
Quests follow the same combat rules of PvP, with some exceptions regarding the behavior of foes.
Missions bring forth a new way to play the game, where it is not all about killing enemies. Check some examples below:
Quests were designed to be difficult to beat, and are a great way to check your level of proficiency in the game. Beginners will probably lose (even if not trying to accomplish all objectives), while experts should be able to accomplish all objectives, though it will be really tough to end the quest with all the party's heroes alive.
Boss Fights are the ultimate challenge in Cooperative Mode. With tons of HP, devastating attacks, and a 5-phase round, each of your turns and decisions will matter.
Much like Heroes, Bosses also have trays that compile stats and powers for you to consult during fights.
You can also play quests sequentially, following an immersive and branching background story driven by our Campaign Tome and Campaign Cards.
The narrative develops in-between quests. Before and after each quest, you may find items, pieces of information, and situations that will drive the story forward.
Campaign Cards are in a numbered deck you MUST NOT shuffle or read ahead of time. The situations they present are often related to the information you acquire after beating a quest.
Many situations are not random, your options are tough to choose, and possible consequences should be debated with your party, because they are important and lasting.
Quests in the Epic Campaign get increasingly tougher. Making good choices and accomplishing secondary objectives is important, because you earn XP that may be spent on items, such as the ones below:
Level UP Cards are a minor (but relevant) and permanent boost to one of the Heroes in your team. Will you strengthen a weakness, or boost a Stat that is already strong?
Artifacts belong to the team. A specific Hero equips one before the match begins. They get unequipped only when they die (becoming available for other Heroes to grab it from the ground), or when the match ends. There are several artifacts with different effects and power levels for you to choose.
Scrolls also belong to the team, and function as a special ability that get instantaneously resolved, and must be carefully played at the optimal moment, because they don't produce lasting effects. Artifacts and scrolls are also optional additions to PvP matches.
HEROES: A Closer Look
Heroes are the main characters of the game, regardless of game mode. They all have unique attacks, a reason for fighting in the Arena, and a rich background story. Get to know a bit about some of their characteristics and fighting styles in the below sample:
Click on the quotes to read/watch the full preview:
Risks and challenges
The game is complete (Artworks, Design, Sculpts, Components). The only time to be spent on the game after the Campaign ends is finishing the booklets (Quest Guide/Campaign Tome/Rulebook).
We will manufacture the games with a specialized chinese factory who's made dozens of other board games with no delays.
Though we have tried to get all bases covered, there's no guarantee everything will run smoothly. That's why we have given a wide margin to the games' delivery (May 2019).
- By pledging to this project, you acknowledge that the final look, components, and content of the rewards (and the project) are subject to change and may differ substantially from what is presented in this Kickstarter project page. This is not a pre-order. You also acknowledge that throughout this campaign page there are some pictures of actual product. These are mere prototypes. None of them represent rewards of this campaign.
- For additional copies of a box or add-on, simply add the appropriate sum to your pledge. You will later be able to specify your rewards in our pledge manager. Please check this update to see how to do that: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dragorigames/arena-the-contest-tabletop-miniatures-board-game/posts/2163271
- The "available add-ons" mentioned in the Full Pledge window are the "Heroes & Dungeons Expansion Box", the "Elder Dragon", and the "Art & World of Arena". The Full Pledge DOES NOT INCLUDE the "Dice & Sleeves" and the "Two Double-sided Game Boards". Please check this KS Update for the list of add-ons: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dragorigames/arena-the-contest-tabletop-miniatures-board-game/posts/2171885
- After 30 days from the delivery date to your door, we will not accept complaints related to the game box contents (missing components, damaged components, etc.).
- After 6 months from the shipment date, we will not accept complaints related to the shipment of items (damaged package, lost or missing contents, etc.).
- After 12 months from the shipment date, we will not accept any complaints related to this campaign. Our customer service will, however (of course), be available for questions, replacement of parts and other standard practices.
COLLECTOR PLEDGE TERMS:
- Dragori Games, Inc. has the right to refuse, without justification, any character name submitted. Names we will summarily refuse include, but are not limited to, trademarks (Batman, Pepsi), offensive or suggestive language, or simply names that will harm the narrative or cannot fit the theme/universe (Rainbow Lollipop, Pluto is a Planet, etc.). If we refuse a name provided, we will give the backer a second chance, to submit a list of new names.
- The same refusal can happen, though with fewer restrictions, to names submitted for the Rulebook dedication and website thank-you page.
- If Collector Pledge backers do not answer our last survey call regarding some rewards, these will be forfeited, as there can be no delays in manufacturing the game while we wait for a character name or Rulebook dedicatory name to be sent.
- Dragori Games, Inc. is under no obligation to mantain the same website address, or even to mantain any website, for any period of time. However, for as long as Dragori Games administers a website, there will be a thank-you page dedicated to Collector Pledge backers.
- Painted miniatures will be delivered after the rest of the rewards. Dragori Games, Inc. does not guarantee the final result or quality of the painting job, nor does it guarantee that it will be equal, or very similar, to any picture or image presented in this campaign page or elsewhere.
- If all Collector Pledge rewards offered are purchased during the campaign, returning the money pledged in this level after the campaign ends is at the sole discretion of Dragori Games, Inc after studying the case at hand. This is to prevent a single person from getting all limited slots available and then cancelling everything afterwards, preventing, by an act of bad faith, other backers from having access to these rewards.
- If all Collector Pledge rewards offered are purchased during the campaign, Dragori Games, Inc. holds the right to open a new limited Collector Pledge with a slightly different name (E.g.: "Collector Pledge 2") and fewer rewards (E.g.: minus the "Name a character" reward, and/or others). By pledging to this second/third pledge, the backer acknowledges these fewer rewards and the fact there may be discrepancies between what has been advertised for a Collector Pledge and what in fact he/she will get.
- The matches with the designers will happen remotely, on Tabletopia, Tabletop Simulator, or any other platform of the designers' choice. The backers acknowledge that the game does not have to be fully imported to such platform.
- The designers will contact all Collector Pledge backers and provide a list of times and dates when the matches can happen. Based on responses, backers will be divided in teams and the matches will be confirmed. After confirmation, if a backer cannot connect or show up for the match, it's at the designers' sole discretion to postpone or set a new date with such absent backer.
- Dragori Games, Inc. is not responsible for the presence of all designers in the virtual room at the same time and for the entire duration of the match. If they disconnect or become absent for such a period that the game cannot be played, a new date will be scheduled.
- An order can be canceled and fully refunded before the end of the campaign by clicking on the applicable button on Kickstarter.
- Regarding the payments made through Kickstarter:
• You can get a full refund without any conditions within 14 days after the end of the Kickstarter campaign.
• You can get 85% refund without any conditions from the 15th day after the end of the Kickstarter campaign to the day the first ship with Arena: the Contest content departs from China. The start of the shipping date will be announced in a Kickstarter update.
- Regarding payments made through the Pledge Manager:
• You can get a full refund without any conditions within 14 days after the payment, not 14 days after the Pledge Manager closes.
• You can get a 85% refund without any conditions from the 15th day after the payment to the day the first ship with Arena: the Contest content departs from China. The start of the shipping date will be announced in a Kickstarter update.
- The refunds are made by default in USD through Kickstarter and the Pledge Manager. Transaction fees may be applied by the transaction operator (normally Stripe). If the refund through Kickstarter or the Pledge Manager is not possible (for instance if the debit/credit card expired, or because of the use of a virtual card, or for any other reason), the refund will be made with a bank wire. Additional bank fees may apply depending on the bank and the country.
- It’s ultimately your responsibility to respond to our post-campaign survey to claim your rewards and to give us information about your shipping address and add-on choices. If you ignore our last call email for more than 4 weeks we will consider your pledge a donation and we won’t be able to ship you a reward.
- If the game fails to arrive because of your mistake (wrong address, recipient absent, failure to pick up at courier/postal warehouse, etc.), any additional shipping/warehousing cost for us to re-send/re-deliver your game will be your responsibility. This also includes the costs associated with returning the game. If after investigation it becomes clear that the error was on our part, we will resend your package at our expense.
- If the package is lost, destroyed or damaged, the carrier will be held solely responsible. Any customer claim to the carrier needs to be made at the time of delivery, not later. If the package seems damaged, please ask the postal carrier to make you a receipt "accepted with reserve".
- Please note that we will not reship any game without first investigating what happened to the first shipment.
- If your game arrives with missing or damaged components, provide us with proof and we will substitute them once we have verified the damage.
- If you live outside of the countries specified as "friendly", customs taxes may be added. Please check your country's rules and regulations as this aspect will not be our responsibility.
- We regret we are unable to ship to PO Boxes, and to following countries: Cuba, Iran, Burma (Myanmar), Sudan, North Korea and Syria. We can add more countries to this list at a later date.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)