Thunderstone: Advance Towers of Ruin

The RPG genre is one of the oldest and most prominent genre board games, and, over the year, it has gained quite a following. Of course, when we talk about RPG board games, the first thing you might think of is Dungeons and Dragons (even though that’s technically a pen and paper game, but let’s not delve too much on that). However, there are plenty of board RPG games that you might be interested in. One of those is Thunderstone: Advance Towers of Ruin, and this is the game we’ll be talking about today.

Heroes and Monsters

Thunderstone is a game where you and four of your pals take on monsters in dungeons. The game has you play as a captain of an adventurous crew, and not as any particular hero yourself. The game can also be played in “singleplayer”, but we think it’s better you call in a couple of friends too to make it more fun. Each creature you slay grants you victory points, which are tallied at the end of the game to determine the “winner”.
This game is played with a deck of standard cards which are sold for other, more valuable and more useful cards. So, to speak in technical terms, this is not only a board RPG, but also a deck-building RPG. At the beginning, you draw six cards which contain heroes (regulars at first), weapons, thunderstone shards and torches, and they can be sold in the Village where you can buy other equipment, spells or heroes. After that, you’re off to the dungeon that has three levels. Each level contains one monster not necessarily placed in order of strength of difficulty, but the deeper you go the deeper the darkness is (literally). Thus, you need to have a light source, or your party will take penalty to their combined damage and won’t be able to defeat the monster.
Upon defeating the monster, you’re not only awarded victory points. Defeating a monster can grant different bonuses, from gold to increase of your attack power, but they guarantee experience. Using the experience (represented as tokens), you can level up one of your “regulars” (starting heroes) to a real hero with better stats, better attack power and even some additional bonuses and effects. However, not only your heroes have abilities – monsters have them too, and they can be heavily detrimental to your party.


In the end, Thunderstone is a really neat game for lovers of the board/pen&paper/deckbuilding RPG genre. Thunderstone: Advanced is a remaster of the old Thunderstone, with the same artwork on the back of the cards s you can mix them in with the base set. In this way, your game will gain more depth and more options for you to play with.