Heroes of Land, Air & Sea!  Order and Chaos!! Pestilence!!! All the dang add-ons!!!  YES!

Queue up the Epic Battle music soundtrack!!

Seriously… listen to this soundtrack while you read about this game and try not to picture yourself sailing the seas of Aughmoore in search of glory! –> [Epic Battle Soundtrack]

MAP Price release!  Back to Upstart Boardgamer pricing!! 🎉👍😁

Short story long… I spoke to the good people at Gamelyn during Gen Con, and explained that I was trying to offer Upstart Boardgamer pricing on this game!  But, their Minimum Advertised Price was holding me back!  And with much ado they said, “Though SHALL pass!” No more MAP… back to better pricing! Game ON!

Now… Let’s do this!

OK everyone.  It’s time to get into this game!  From “go” I need to say that usually 4X games aren’t my favorite.  I mean, don’t get me wrong… I absolutely LOVE Scythe and I have played it more times than I can count over the years… but in general, I need a bit of unique flavor to really get into a 4X game. Again – SCYTHE! So good! And yes, I know some make the claim that it is 3X… Uh, I don’t have time to get that far into the weeds in my board gaming life. Sorry folks! 😒

ANYway, one thing I look for in a 4X game is a stable balance between the “Quiet Euro-game farmer vibe” and the “Let’s get ready to rummmmmmmble!” aspects of the game.

I believe that traditionally these two aspects are referred to as “eXploit” and “eXterminate” 😇

Anyway… for me, eXplore and eXpand are usually fairly similar when I’m comparing 4X games. I mean… how much variation can you have in the art of moving around and putting peeps on the map? Don’t get me wrong, it IS possible to add subtle twists to these aspects as well… it’s just not as common 😬 <insert caveat here about how I may not know what I’m talking about… haha>

So what about THIS game, Drew?!?!?!

Folks…  we have a State Fair Blue Ribbon winner here! 👏

Not only is it possible to dominate this game without combat if you want to go that route… but, all four of the X’s are really well done!  Plus, you’ve got all of these cardboard vehicles that physically carry your people around the board!!  And did I mention that with the expansions you can play at a SEVEN-player count without any degradation in game play!  Wahhhhhh!!




[Now mind you, this is a 4X game so although you could run for the win without combat… that is a tricky row to hoe!]

Fantastic “How to Play” by Rodney Smith

If you’ve been board gaming for more than a hot minute, you know who Rodney Smith is. If you don’t, then run… don’t walk… over to this clip for a thorough and well-produced 30 minute video that gives you everything you need to know to play this game! Straight out of Canada!! [You can find the video here]

This will be an abridged version of the standard Upstart product run-through…

Keeping in the spirit of trying to get all my darn games onto the website, I’ll be a bit briefer than usual in describing this game.  Mind you, my “brief” setting is still far more expansive than most humans. Darn you genetics!! 🙄

Each round has three phases

Action Selection

True to form with many of the Gamelyn games, action selection features prominently in Heroes. The actions available are broken down into Capital Actions and Command Actions. Each player has two action tokens and during this phase of the round each player will take one action (going around the table in clockwise fashion)… and then after everyone has completed this first action, each player will ge a second action.  But wait… there’s more!

Capital Actions can be followed by other players and Command Actions can be taken twice by bringing a serf into the mix.


If you take a Capital Action on your turn, each player will have an opportunity to follow that action by placing one of their serfs into the same action spot on their board. Of course they must have a serf available and that action slot must also be unoccupied. Still, this allows players to take more than the requisite two actions per action phase and can be very powerful in developing your strategy into the wining variety!  Anyone who has played Tiny Epic Kingdoms or Tiny Epic Galaxies is well versed in the power of “following.” 🙂

If you take a Command Action on your turn you may muster one serf into an available Command Action slot and take a second action.  Again, this can be very powerful… But, if you follow and muster too often you won’t have any serfs available for the myriad alternative ways in which they can be used (marching onto the map, constructing buildings, etc).

I won’t get into all of the actions here as I am trying to be brief… but if you watch the Rodney Smith video or scan the rules, you’ll be all set.  After I get a few more new games uploaded I will come back to this listing and get into the weeds a bit more…

Suffice to say that the action selection choices (and the decision to follow or not follow) are really juicy! There is a lot of solid tension in the decision-making arena in this game… and I LOVE it!  Of course I am biased, as I am a huge fan of Gamelyn’s games 😉 The designer does a great job of offering a plethora of options… from spell casting to marching into battle to taxing for resources and building.

Capital City… it’s what you need!

Humming away in the background of your grand strategy is the level of your Capital City. As you upgrade your Capital City (using the build action), you unlock additional abilities for your heroes and buildings, increase the number of spells you can scribe, and increase the power of your capital city in battle.

AND, upgraded Capital Cities are worth more points than undeveloped ones at game end. What’s not to love? Anyone who has played Tiny Epic Kingdoms has a pretty good idea of how this works. And, I would bet… they love it!


The second phase of each round is the collection phase.  Simply put, this is where you gain much-needed resources based on map areas that you control.

Round end – the final phase of the round… 🤔

In this phase players retrieve action tokens and serfs that were mustered or utilized to follow other players’ actions. You also adjust spells back toward “cast’able.” Basically, after you cast a scribed spell, it is unavailable for the next two rounds. And finally, you shift the First Player token one player clockwise… and you’re back at it!

Game end – when it happens you will wish you had more time.  Trust me!

The end is triggered as soon as one of the four “X” end-game conditions is met.  When this happens you finish the current round, play one final complete round, and then tally up your score!

The four end game conditions are:
  1. All Land Exploration tokens in the game have been revealed [these are placed onto the map at the beginning of the game and players must venture out into these areas in order to host a proper “reveal” party. 😉
  2. All of a players Serfs and Warriors are in play [march mightily and follow rarely and you can get all your peeps out onto the map and end this bad boy! Probably best to be in the lead first though…]
  3. All three of a players Towers are in play [balance exploration with building and try not to get decimated by invading forces and this path to end game might be yours].
  4. A player has destroyed another player’s Capital City [this is a brutal way to trigger the end game! Adding insult to injury, the player whose capital city is destroyed is out of the game for those last two rounds AND their score is set to zero! Ouch. Brian Shea… I could not play this game with you without living in constant fear of this sort of game end! Darn you, Agent of Chaos!]

Components and table presence

If you are at a gaming convention and Heroes of Land, Air & Sea is out on the table, you will immediately gravitate toward the table and simply stare – glassy eyed – at the splendor. Trust me. I do this every time I see the game and I see plenty of others doing the same.

After a few minutes of wide-eyed appreciation for the truly EPIC table presence of this game, you may – if you are of sound constitution – be able to avert your eyes ever so briefly from the endless components and cool artwork.

Mind you, this is not for the faint of heart… as you will be continually drawn back to the tremendous map, the elevated Air City from the Pestilence Expansion, and the plethora of cool air and sea ships that are loaded with minis flitting about in search of glory 😉

But if you DO avert your gaze you will immediately become aware that every player at the table has a huge grin plastered on their face! Seriously, if you go to a con and you notice this, send me an email to confirm. It WILL happen.

Every person at the table will have a subconscious grin permanently affixed to their face, as though they were just about to open what they think might be the coolest birthday EVER… at the tender age of 11. I’m not an expert in psychology but I am wagering that they are having a blast!

There is SO much goodness in these herculean boxes!

Cool bits, great artwork, freakin’ floating islands and air ships, and solid mechanics that will have you struggling to balance it all! You’ll get that wonderful feeling of wanting to do 5 things but only being able to do two… unless, of course, you follow like mad! But wait, if I follow I won’t be able to build a building this round because I’ll have no serfs left! Ahhhhhh!!

Yeah.  It’s that good. 🥰

The App!

One final note – an app has been developed that guides game play and adds in unique events at the start of each round to keep things popping! (Fans of the show Community, you know what I mean… Pop, Pop, Pop!)

The app will actually help you get the game set up and will walk you through the phases of a round. It even comes with a score calculator and first player selector… in case you don’t have the awesome Chwazi app and/or you have something against pencils and paper. Hahaha.  Seriously, if apps are your thing, you can find it here:

[Apple version is here]

[Android version is here]

The first two customers get a pack of the Gamelyn sleeves for this game!

One last note! The retail kit I picked up only came with two sleeve packs… so, the first two customers to buy one of the “all-in” bundles will get the sleeve packs! If you’re not sure if that is you – send me a note over email! I only have 3 “all-in” copies of the game… so if you see that I have 1 or fewer left, well… you missed the sleeves! Sorry!

Ages: 14+
Players: 1 – 7 (with everything in this bundle)
Play Time: 120 – 180 minutes
Designer: Scott Almes
Publisher: Gamelyn Games
At the time of this listing (AUGUST 2019) there is
at least one copy on eBay (the all-in bundle)
for $225 plus shipping.
Our Price:
$190 for the ALL-IN bundle
$155 for the BASIC bundle
Link to BGG:




Heroes of Land, Air & Sea!  Queue up the Epic Battle music soundtrack!!

Heroes of Land, Air & Sea is a 4X-style board game with miniatures that tells the epic tale of orcs vs. humans, dwarves vs. elves, battling kingdoms, and the individuals who turn the tides of war.

In the base game, players control one of these classic factions, competing to expand their kingdom into new territory. Even the greatest kingdoms begin as small townships, therefore players begin with only a basic town hall, a couple of peons, and a single warrior. From there, players must explore the territory around them, build up their work force, fortify their army, and develop their kingdom — all through careful action selection, exploitation, war, and resource management.

As players reach milestones in the development of their kingdom, they gain access to many advantages. Peons become warriors, warriors become powerful heroes, and town halls eventually become castles. Players gain access to water, and even air, vessels and creatures. Boarding these vessels and creatures with your units allows for faster travel across the vast game board and for positioning armies for powerful attacks.

War in Heroes of Land, Air & Sea features a cost/reward system carefully detailed on tactics cards from which players must secretly choose. The availability of these tactics cards depends on the units participating in the war. It is here that players wage their wits and legacy in an attempt to exterminate one another. For as we all know, “history is written by the victors”.

Heroes of Land, Air & Sea also boasts two economic systems, one being the risky acquisition and careful management of the resources (food, ore and mana), while the other is a twist on worker placement that requires the leveraging of peons to construct buildings, peons that could otherwise be exploring, expanding, exploiting, and exterminating! Finding this balance is crucial to victory!

Heroes of Land, Air & Sea: Order and Chaos

Expands Heroes of Land, Air & Sea to support 5 and 6 players. Features a game board extension, components for the 5th and 6th player and 4 additional factions: the Undead, the Lionkin, the Lizardfolk and the Goblins.

Heroes of Land, Air & Sea: Pestilence

Expands Heroes of Land, Air & Sea to support 7 players. Features a floating continent, held above the board with clear plastic stands, and a sunken continent, achieved by laying a transparent blue sheet over an existing island.

Includes 2 new factions: the Birdfolk and the Merfolk, 20 new spell cards, 24 new exploration tokens, and components for a 7th player.


Additional information
Weight N/A
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Heroes of Land Air and Sea

Basic Heroes of Land, Air and Sea Bundle – Base Game, Order and Chaos, and Pestilence! No Kickstarter add-ons, All-in Heroes of Land, Air, and Sea Bundle – Base Game, Order and Chaos, Pestilence, and all the Kickstarter bonus goodness


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