Gloomhaven Character: Beast Tyrant (Spoilers)

We had a lot of new characters pop up last night, all three of us ended up retiring characters yesterday. This isn’t a character that I’ve played, but it is a character that I believe made it all the way to level 9.

Beast Tyrant

Image Source: Cephalofair Games

This was a interesting character to watch played and seemed like an interesting character to play. The main focus is this bear companion/summons that you have with you. It acts on it’s own turn as a summons but also then can be given commands on your turn, so in some ways you are controlling two characters. Mainly, though, you are swapping out at least one of your actions to give commands to the bear instead, because they can do more damage than you.

One thing this meant for the character was that they didn’t end up moving around all that much. When you can have the bear, who has a lot of hit points, tanking for the party, you don’t have to move much in combats where you wanted to kill everything. That helped with the other characters being played, the Soothsinger and Elementalist who weren’t able to be tanks. However, it, at times, made it hard on missions because our goal would be the make it to a certain point and instead of being able to just have the bear attack and not move, the Beast Tyrant had to do the moving and that cut down on our combat, and the Beast Tyrant didn’t move in large chunks and sometimes would have to be aided in their moving, which they could do for themselves, or the Soothsinger could help them with.

However, the bears damage and ability to tank really make this an interesting and strong character. It is also nice that, since the bear is going on your turn, you could have them heal from the cards being added to the modifier deck. Now, the bear, like any summons couldn’t open doors so the Elementalist or Soothsinger often had to be up front with the bear, or near the front, but with the Elementalist needing to be around for damage, that generally worked out just fine. It is also harder to get loot or treasures, because summons can’t pick up those things, and even though the bear was around all the time unlike a normal summons, they followed the same rules.

Image Source: Cephalofair Games

Like I’ve said before, the Beast Tyrant is about tanking with the bear, so they weren’t very support focused. However, they did have a trick or two up their sleeves. The most important one being a one time use card that allows you to swap positions of two figures on the board. This allowed us to short cut a scenario that would have been difficult to run with our shorter distance moving characters, we were able to place someone within a turn of the goal. But beyond that, I don’t think there were any heavy support cards. That card also made it easier for the Beast Tyrant to get out when they were moving slowly through the make it to “Point B” missions.

Overall, this seemed like an interesting character to play, especially for me who has been primarily a support class character with first the Tinkerer, then Soothsinger, and now the Bonesaw (which I’ll write about after I’ve played a couple more times). It seems like the Beast Tyrant is a step up in complexity from your standard tank characters with the picking your actions and your hand that could focus more on yourself or on the bear but the bear always seems like the better option to go.

Complexity: Medium
Combat: High
Support: Low

Does controlling a bear sound cool to you? Do you normally play a tank type character or does this seem to combat focused?


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