«Claustrophobia» review

Claustrophobia

Being locked in dark catacombs or dungeons is not very pleasant… Especially, when you’re struggling of claustrophobia and there are demon crowds around you! Your tactics and strategy will help you to get out of this!

«Claustrophobia» was designed in 2009 by «Asmodee» game studio. Main designer of this board game is a guy called Croc. He is famous French game designer like «Age of Gods», «Conan» and etc.

Illustrations were made by the team of artists which consists of Bertrand Benoit, Aleksi Briclot, Stéphane Gantiez. These talented gentlemen are famous for such games as Alkemy, Bubble Talk, Infinity and many others.

Inside the Box

  • Contents:
    • Rulebook (includes 6 scenarios)
    • Seventeen pre-painted miniatures:
      • Redeemer
      • Two Condemned Brutes
      • Two Condemned Blades for Hire
      • Demon
      • Eleven Troglodytes
    • Thirty six Tunnel and Room tiles
    • twelve black 6-sided dice
  • Additional Components for the Human Player:
    • Five Reference cards for the Humans
    • Five black plastic card stands
    • Twenty five red plastic Damage pegs
    • Six Gift cards
    • Six Object cards
    • Fifteen Advantage cards
    • Courage token
    • Blessing token
  • Additional Components for the Demon Player:
    • Board of Destiny
    • Seven Reference cards for the Demons
    • Sixteen Event cards
    • Twenty Threat Point tokens
    • Ten Wound tokens
    • Three Hole in the Ground tokens
    • Two Tough Troglodyte tokens
  • Additional Scenario Specific Components:
    • Four Treasure tokens
    • Three Seal of Protection tokens
    • black 10-sided die

Gameplay

«Claustrophobia» can be played with several scenarios which you can find in the rulebook. Player who chooses the human characters attempts to complete tasks like escape the catacombs, close a portal and etc., but the demons must stop them. The conditions can be different in each of the scenarios. Moreover, human players are stronger then demons, but they are outnumbered. That makes the gameplay much exciting and captivating! Which side would you choose?

Claustrophobia - Game in Progress

Rules

To speak about the rules, it is pretty clear to get along with them. Let’s take a look at the basic phases and stages in this game.

So, each turn is divided into 4 phases which must be completed in following order:

Claustrophobia - Gameplay

Initiative Phase

During this phase, the Human player determines the statistics of warriors for the current round. The player rolls as many Action Dice (six-sided) as they have active warriors. Then the player must select a die for each warrior and place it on that warrior’s Reference card in the space which is marked for this.

Human Player’s Action Phase

Claustrophobia - Battle

During this phase, each of the Human warriors will be able to perform their actions. The Human player must activate their warriors one at a time. Each warrior must have finished their activation before the next warrior can be activated.

Threat Phase

The Demon player rolls 3 Dice of Destiny (six-sided), and positions them in the Destiny square or squares of their choice, following any restrictions that may apply and immediately applies the relevant effects to the chosen Destiny squares.

Demon Player’s Action Phase

The Demon player’s Action phase is identical to the Human player’s Action phase except for one thing – the Demon player’s warriors can’t explore any new openings.

It’s worth mentioning that the victory conditions can be varied because it depends on the chosen scenario.

P.S. – you can download the PDF version of manual to make sure you know how to play following this link

Claustrophobia - Redeemer Miniature

Expansion Packs

Claustrophobia: De Profundis

Claustrophobia De Profundis

This expansion has some new components:

  • Fifty five card deck with new abilities for the Brother Redeemer,
  • Demons,
  • Events,
  • Objects;
  • New room tiles;
  • Twelve new scenarios.

Also, the hand size for demon player is reduced to three (due to new powerful event cards).

Buy “Claustrophobia: De Profundis” on Amazon

Claustrophobia: Furor Sanguinis

Claustrophobia Furor Sanguinis

This expansion has 6 new scenarios and components which includes

  • Painted miniature;
  • Three new room tiles;
  • Squamata board;
  • Sheet of tokens;
  • Five squamata dice;
  • Rulebook with 6 scenarios.

Buy “Claustrophobia: Furor Sanguinis” on Amazon

Similar games

Claustrophobia vs Space Hulk

Space Hulk

Both games have “preset” scenarios. You are each given the type/number of unit you will have and their starting equipment. The differences are that most of the maps in Claustrophobia change (similar to Carcassonne) since the tiles are shuffled each game. Also, there are some random items given to the humans so that their forces are not exactly the same each time the scenario is run.

In SH you have the ability to stand guard and cover corridors (Overwatch) and can protect more valuable characters by sacrificing weaker ones.

In Claustrophobia there’s not as much analysis paralysis going on. Some luck will influence your decisions (especially later on). You cards let you spring surprises on your opponent.

Claustrophobia vs D&D: Castle Ravenloft

Dungeons and Dragons - Castle Ravenloft

Ravenloft comes with 13 scenarios; Claustrophobia comes with 6. There are already numerous Claustrophobia scenarios up at the publisher’s web site, and I’m sure the same will soon be true for Castle Ravenloft, if it is not already. The Claustrophobia scenarios feel to me like they have more play, because playing the humans and playing the monsters provide entirely different experiences, whereas in Ravenloft you do essentially the same thing but with different characters. The greater variance of the Claustrophobia tiles also tends to generate a wider range of problems to face when repeating scenarios. When I got Claustrophobia board game, I played the first scenario six times before trying the second. I can’t imagine doing that with the first Ravenloft scenario. In truth, this shouldn’t be an area that drives anyone’s decision. Scenarios are a plus factor for both games.

Erratas

Rulebook, page 8

Abilities printed in red can only be selected once per Threat phase.

Rulebook, page 15

A warrior with this Talent can prevent one or more enemies from leaving the tile that they are currently on (except for the Hole in the Ground tile).

Event Card, “Critical Hit”, last sentence

A warrior of your choice loses the Talent Bodyguard during the following Demon Players Action phase.

If you find errors feel free to correct them.

Claustrophobia - Undeground Tunnels

Solo Play

Claustrophobia is not really meant to play solo, but you can just play both sides and it won’t be difficult because of good balance between Humans and Demons. There is no any hidden info to play solo, so you can carry out solitaire easily.

Claustrophobia - Waiting for the Attack

Game scenarios

Separated

There were no sign of fear when the heroes were returning. They were too many of them to be attacked but they’ve been trapped and the big wall has separated them. They will have to survive this at all costs!

Victory conditions

The Human player wins if he will bring both his groups to the end of the tunnel.

Claustrophobia - Heroes

F.A.Q.

Q: How many dice the Demons roll?

A: Demon players roll 3 dice.

Q: What about the actions the Demons can carry out during the turn?

A: They are almost identical. Consult the rules.

Q: What should I know about victory conditions?

A: They are different in every scenario.

Q: What talents the characters have?

A: Elusive, Impressive, Bodyguard, Frantic, Blessed.

Youtube

Conclusion

This game is made for the bravest ones! Prove yourself as a leader and fearless warrior! Buy this game on Amazon! Also, you probably want to wait for a reprint version but nobody knows when it will hit the stores.