TSUKUYUMI – Full Moon Down is a strategy board game which dispenses with any luck or coincidence and thus especially challenges the tactical abilities of its three to five players.
The modular board represents the barren floor of the Pacific Ocean, which surrounds the stranded moon. Up to 40 hexagonal area tiles can be arranged around the moon area. These area tiles can bring (additional) victory points, but can also contain modification symbols such as the impassable or radioactive symbols. The goal of the game is to gain victory points by conquering and holding as many area tiles as possible.
The centrepiece of TSUKUYUMI – Full Moon Down are the diverse but balanced factions.
Every player selects a faction at the beginning of the game which has its own specific units and abilities. However, it is not only the player’s faction choice, but also the faction choice of the opponents which will affect gameplay. Which abilities will you have to counter? Will you have to defend yourself against many agile units, or against strong giants? How much space do you have on the board to spread out? The faction constellation significantly affects the game, and it is essential to adapt your strategy. A play which virtually guarantees success in one game can be hopeless in another. As a player, you should never rely solely on the stats and abilities of your faction.
Every one of the factions has their own advantages, but at the same time, will have to persist against the strengths of their opponents and face them with a clever strategy.
The choice of factions also affects the game itself. Aside from their specific abilities, factions also come with their own missions and goals, which they have to fulfil in the course of the game. While missions can only be completed by the faction itself, goals can be fulfilled by all players, which will bring in additional victory points.
Depending on the faction, there are also variations on the general rules and other ways to generate victory points. The Fireborn are a powerful group of dragons, but there are only a few of them left. Instead of conquering as many area tiles as possible, the Fireborn also have the option to attack and destroy the opponents’ homezones, which will give them an additional 4 victory points. Should an opponent manage to destroy one of the dragons, then they will also be awarded a victory point.
Other factions such as the Lords of the Lost Sea can generate additional victory points by using special attack cards.
Aside from the enemy factions, the player must also keep Tsukuyumi and his minions in check. Whoever conquers the moon and holds it until the end of the round will also be awarded an additional victory point.
The different play styles offered by each faction are displayed in numerous test games:
Depending on the challenges of the individual game, players can always find other possible combinations for their abilities, and can use them at different opportunities to use their opponents’ weaknesses.
This way, the player can decide how to characterise his faction, and gives life to their stats and special abilities on the game table.