I’ve played my fair share of board games, but so far none of the ones in the App Store have captured my interest – they either make me want to play a physical version more or they just aren’t fun when they’re translated onto an iPhone or iPod Touch. Wizard Hex is the first board game app that has fascinated me and kept me playing. Why? Perhaps because it’s one that does not have a physical version – it’s completely unique to the App Store (for now). Or maybe it’s because of the beautiful artwork and effects. Another factor could be that it comes from a quality indie developer. Whatever the reason is, Wizard Hex is an engaging board game that is sure to delight.
Wizard Hex, like all board games, is all about the gameplay. It’s meant to be more of a social experience; to gather your friends or family around to spend some time together. If you don’t have a physical partner, no worries – you can also play against the AI on one of three difficulty levels to challenge yourself. However, Wizard Hex was a game that is meant to be played with other people as it provides a more engaging experience.
Wizard Hex can be played with between two to six people, and each of them will play as an element – fire, water, wind, earth, ice, or lightning. Each element has its own “side” of the board, hence the hexagonal setup, and the goal is to have as many tokens of your own element on the board once everyone runs out of their tokens or once the board has been filled. Adjacent elements are allies, and cannot be attacked. If your tokens are tied with another player’s, then whoever has more allied tokens on the board wins. Non-adjacent elements can attach each other, which will result in both tokens “dying” and being taken off the board. Elements can be made more powerful by stacking multiple tokens of that element on top of each other to make it have extra durability when attacked. Bronze is the starting token color, and once a token is stacked it becomes silver and gives that token an extra “life,” and if another token is stacked then that token becomes un-attackable. However, gold tokens can go down in value when attacking, so they are not invincible. All of these individual rules and nuances of the game work together to create a fun and enjoyable game that can be played in a quick game or for hours on end.
The graphics in Wizard Hex are extremely detailed and look realistic enough to almost be a physical board game. It can be seen that a lot of care and attention has been put into the background and other art in-game; they are simply beautiful and make the game experience all the greater because of it.
There are many different set-ups and scenarios that can happen in Wizard Hex, the most interesting of which is an “adjacent game.” In an adjacent game, you and another opponent are right next to each other, so you are allies and can control each others’ pieces, but you are also enemies since both of you want to win. This leads to the necessity of using interesting and unorthodox strategies to win the game.
It’s hard to explain exactly what Wizard Hex is all about, but it is in my honest opinion that it is a triple-A quality board game that should have a physical counterpart so that everyone can enjoy it. Overall, Wizard Hex comes highly recommended.
Here’s a video (courtesy of the developer’s YouTube channel) so you can get a better idea of what the game is like: