The Gods of the universe are losing their power, some even fading away.
A battle must take place over humanities souls but the gods know that war will lead to all their destruction. There’s only one solution.
A battle of the bands.
The Lords of Rock is a rock and roll concert of Godly proportions. The prize for the best band? Our souls.
Setting up and playing The Lords of Rock is pretty simple. Each player first chooses a Pantheon. Once they do they take one of the two lead Gods, then fill out their band with three more Gods. Each God has various skills: Guitar, Vocals, Bass, or Drums.
One the players have their bands set up they each take 4 Venues from the shuffled Venue deck and a hand of seven Set List cards. The first player to take their turn is the Anchor Band and plays the first Venue from their hand. Players now take turns playing Set List cards to match the required skills on the Venue, or to decrease another player’s skills for the turn. The Venue is scored once every player has passed.
To find out which player won the Souls on the Venue they add up the relevant skills from their band with the Set List cards they played. The player who has the highest score wins the Venue and the Souls Stones listed on it. Play continues until a certain number of Venues (determined by the number of players) are played. The player with the most Soul Stones at the end of the game is the victor.
Want to check out the full rules? You can do that here.
The Lords of Rock is mostly cards, being a card game. There’s also some Soul Stones that are the pretty standard plastic gems seen so often in games lately.
The artwork on the cards is where the game really impresses. Each God is wonderfully illustrated in an epic rock fashion. The Venue Cards follow suit. The Set List cards are a bit bland and are more utilitarian than anything else.
Overall the production quality is a step above good. Nothing amazing here, but by no means flimsy or cheap.
I had backed The Lords of Rock on Kickstarter because I loved the idea Gods rocking out for the souls of mankind. The art looked amazing, and the wonderful puns on the Set List cards made caused me to giggle a bit too much. The game looked like it oozed theme and there was no way I could pass it up.
After receiving the game and playing it I’m still happy I backed it, but I felt like the game was a bit too simple to really keep my attention. A lot of the game depends on the luck of the draw with Set List cards, though setting up your band well does help. However, I found several times where I just didn’t have a good set of Venue cards to play, or good Set List cards to play on the current Venue. There are rules for refreshing your hand of both types of cards, but there didn’t seem to be enough opportunity to do so.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the game. I just think I hyped it up in my mind too much before it arrived. It’s a step above a filler game but doesn’t quite reach that next level for me. It also feels a bit too long with a full compliment of players.
Again, that’s just me. I’d read the rules for yourself and see if this is one that snags your interest. Unfortunately, I think this one won’t be getting much play in my house.
Media personality Rob Kalajian has been a staple in the board game world for many years. As a former writer for Purple Pawn and the owner of A Pawn’s Perspective, Rob focuses on board game reviews, events, and news. A self-proclaimed geek, Rob loves all things toys and games and even helps raise his four kids in his spare time.