Monday , May 27 2024

Card Game Review: ‘Munchkin South Park’ from theop and Steve Jackson

Munchkin South Park from usaopoly and Steve Jackson Games takes the time-tested dungeon-crawling card game to a place of friendly faces and humble folks without temptation.

People have been playing Munchkin on countless tabletops since the original debuted in 2001, having fun while making fun of roleplaying gamers who focus more on “winning” than other aspects of play. Like any good satire, the parody honors Munchkins as much as it lampoons them, giving players a chance to charge through dungeons and power-up for bigger and bigger fights.

Now they can battle monsters like Grandma Stotch and the fearsome ManBearPig.

In Munchkin South Park, players head on down to fourth Grade, each choosing a New Kid character card. These serve as level counters, starting at Level 1, and initially have no differences.

As the game goes, characters will become tricked out with classes, bonuses, allies, and gear to make them unique and, most importantly, more powerful.

Kyle in the Pile, Cartman in the Cards

Each of these gains come directly from the South Park universe, such as allies of Stan, Kyle, Kenny, and Cartman, each with unique powers. Stan allows for additional allies, while Kyle enables players to take cards mid-combat. Kenny aids in escaping, and Cartman draws bonus treasure when other players suffer losses.

The first player in Munchkin South Park to reach Level 10 wins, so of course that is all that matters. While there are a few Treasure cards that allow for instant leveling or trading gear for a new level, the main way to gain levels is by winning combat against monsters.

Each turn, the player draws from the Door deck to reveal a monster, a new class, a debilitating curse, a location with bonuses, or a specialty card. If the player draws a monster, they immediately fight it by comparing the character’s level and any bonuses with the monster’s level.

Bad South Park Stuff

If the character’s level is equal to or higher, they win. If the character’s level is lower, they suffer “bad stuff” such as discarding gear or, in the case of losing to Mr. Garrison, instant death. Other players can interfere by playing curses or even joining the fight.

As with Munchkins in TTRPGs, the real fun of the game is maximizing bonuses and minimizing losses. Each card comes with situational extra rules, such as the Hall Monitor Sash, giving an extra +2 bonus if the player is a Detectives class.

Players will need to read and strategize carefully to make the most of their options by stacking them. Still, carefully laid plans can instantly go awry with a simple bad draw or, more likely, sabotage from a so-called friend.

Munchkin South Park is a card game for three to six players aged 17 and up. It’s filled with South Park references that will make any fan giggle with glee. Even Memberberries make an appearance, adding more power to the monsters as a one-shot annoyance. Players can seek out their favorite equipment like Kyle’s nunchucks or Cartman’s wizard hat.

As a further bonus to play, Munchkin games are all based on the same system, meaning the cards can be traded between versions for the greatest Munchkin of all.

About Jeff Provine

Jeff Provine is a Composition professor, novelist, cartoonist, and traveler of three continents. His latest book is a collection of local ghost legends, Campus Ghosts of Norman, Oklahoma.

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