GMT, the wargaming label behind the rich historical strategy of Twilight Struggle, Commands & Colors: Ancients and the COIN series, is heading in an unexpected direction with its next game.
Mystery Wizard is GMT’s first foray into the realm of fantasy, swapping soldiers for sorcerers duelling with magic over a hex-grid island.
The six-player game features eight playable characters with asymmetric powers who must use their unique talents to loot a central tower and transport two ‘mysteries’ back to their starting village, making the gameplay similar to a capture-the-flag-style race.
As well as dealing with their opponents, the wizards will encounter quests and events as they explore the island, potentially earning better equipment and increasing their roster of spells.
The gameplay is card-driven, with players able to cast spells both on their turn and during opponents’ actions to evade attacks. They can also combine spells to create even more powerful enchantments.
Mystery Wizard will hew closer to the complexity and play time of wargames on the lighter end of the scale, playing out over 45 minutes to an hour and a half.
Behind the design are newcomers Zachary Eberhart, Aiden Guiffre and Jackson Warley, who were joined by Falling Sky co-creator Andrew Ruhnke to develop and polish the project.
Mystery Wizard is currently part of GMT’s P500 programme, which requires a minimum number of pre-orders to progress it to a full release.