She sat at the tables of the library until it was dark outside. Nothing really ever happened at the Elementary College. But tonight, a strange hum woke her up from her drowsiness. She looked around. The library was still empty. She got up and followed the mysterious hum to the school’s long and cold corridors. Usually bursting with students during the day, tonight they were deserted and drafty.
It was coming from the secret library located in the school’s basement. She and all the apprentices had been explicitly forbidden to enter it. The forbidden library contained The Big Book of Madness, a tome never to be opened by young aspiring magicians for its strength was more than their neophyte minds could bear. Of course, she didn’t remember that from class and took this mystical sound as a sign to enter the library and find the fearsome book.
It was resting on a wooden desk in the middle of the room. She lifted the cover and in a burst of light, it appeared to come to life… She realized her mistake, but it was too late.
In The Big Book of Madness, you take on the role of student magicians who have imprudently opened an ancient grimoire that imprisons powerful monsters. You must quickly learn the best spells in the library around you, dominate the elements, and get away! Beware, the mere sight of some of these horrid creatures may well drive you to madness!
In this cooperative board game, the goal is to reseal the pages of the book, one by one, and vanquish the final boss, all without going completely mad. Players will get to choose among four kinds of magicians, water, fire, earth or air. There are two magicians of each element, which means you will want to discuss which combination of the four elements will lead you to victory!
The game’s theme borrows from different universes and brings together the school of magicians and the four elements. It creates its own world and offers players the possibility to further personalize their gameplay with 3 different play modes, normal where you use the normal rules, terror in which a madness card is included in each player’s stack and nightmare in which… well we’ll leave this one a surprise for you…
The Big Book of Madness’ graphics are simply sublime and the players will immediately dive into the world of magicians, spells and monsters. While there is a lot going on in this game, it comes with 3 levels of difficulty in order to accommodate shorter games and younger players. It is for 2-5 players which makes it ideal for game nights with friends or with the family!
The tension in each game is intoxicating and each win is so rewarding, it will keep you reaching for the box to play again, and again. An expansion to the game adds a Vth Element to the mix to spice up your gameplay.
So, will you prevail or fall into madness?
A game by Maxime Rambourg
Illustrated by Naiade
For players 14 years old and up
Expansion: The Big Book of Madness: The Vth Element
MSRP: $ 41.99 / Expansion $ 19.99