Allen Chang & Alistair Kearney
Rule & Make
2 - 6
Parallel words collide in Entropy, a card game of risk and deception. The setting for Entropy is fairly deep, and a little dark. As the world around you crumbles into oblivion, somehow you escaped into the Nexus. But does that mean you’ll live? And what of the others that have also managed to temporarily escape certain destruction? Can you find all of the fragments of your world and save the universe before space-time collapses?
While players will have to engage their brains in Entropy, you can enjoy the game knowing that the fate of the universe doesn’t hang in the balance. Or does it?
Entropy is a semi-quick game for 2 to 6 players. Taking about 10 – 20 minutes per game, Entropy is a decent filler or palate cleanser between longer, meatier games. Primarily a set collection game, your goal is to be the first player to collect four fragments of your reality. These reality fragments are beautifully illustrated and when put together form a stunning panoramic display of your home-world.
Hand management, hidden information, and action selection make up the other parts of the game. Turns are fairly straightforward. Each player secretly chooses an action, and then each player simultaneously reveals their chosen actions. Next, actions are resolved in ascending numerical order. These actions determine what you’ll do for the turn. Example actions include drawing cards, revealing fragments, taking discarded fragments, swapping fragments with other players, etc. Since actions are carried out in numerical order, you’ll benefit from anticipating your opponent’s actions.
After every four rounds there is a Fracture Event. Essentially, this collects all fragments from the Nexus and reshuffles them. Then, players that have clashed at least three times will be involved in the Fracture Event. Players clash when they reveal the same numbered action on the same turn. When this happens, the clashed actions do not resolve (unless you have the Anchor). To participate in the Fracture Event, three fragments are drawn from the Nexus and placed face up. All players in the Fracture Event get to take a single fragment from their reality, if able.
Frequently, players will place fragments face down in their area, keeping the nature of the fragment’s reality hidden from others. This deduction and hidden information aspect is what makes the game fun. If one of your opponents has three fragments, but all or most of them are face down, how many are from their own reality? Combine this with Wild Fragments, which can be used as part of any reality, and the difficulty increases.
Components and Storage
The cards in Entropy are of a nice quality and have a linen finish. The artwork is superb and the panoramic illustrations really set this game apart from most others on the market. Everything fits back in the box perfectly, thanks to the molded plastic tray. Included with the game is a Nexus board, which looks nice, but isn’t a necessary component. It is a piece of cardboard for you to place the draw and discard piles. Pretty sure I don’t need a board to tell which is which, but it is nice that it is included. The rulebook is well laid out and contains illustrations and examples of play.
Entropy is a fun card game of deduction and “take that”. The artwork is topnotch and being able to accommodate up to six players is a plus. Playtime feels right and the mechanics are both fun and engaging. While Entropy does support two player only games, I recommend playing with a larger player count in order to get the most out of your gaming experience.