GKR Heavy Hitters – The Board Game
GKR Heavy Hitters is a board game for 1 to 4 players. The basic scenario takes us to a post-apocalyptic dystopian future. Large cities lie in ruins. In these ruined cities, salvage rights are battled over by four different corporate-sponsored factions using giant robots. It is a media spectacle. The game allows players to pick a faction and take their robots into battle to compete for salvage, achievements, fame, and glory.
GKR Heavy Hitters Unboxing
Let the GKR Heavy Hitters unboxing begin! (More on gameplay below.) Our GKR unboxing video shows lots of clear close-ups of the robots and other detailed game pieces. Weta Workshop made some beautiful robot miniatures for this tabletop game – take a look.
The Game Box
On the cover you can see here King Wolf, one of the four giant robots, called Heavy Hitters, in the game. The back of the box shows the basic game components and the setup at the start of a game.
GKR – the Game Pieces
Here you can see all the base-game robot miniatures in their clear plastic tray. Underneath are the game board, cardboard buildings, player mats, and achievement track.
Below is a close-up of the Heavy Hitter figurines. These not-so-small miniatures are about 3 1/2″ to 5″ tall. And, yes, the paint schemes are awesome!
Game Play – an Intro
Sign up for a faction. Choose a pilot, and get ready to throw yourself into a full-on robot showdown.
In the world of GKR, each corporate faction has four color-coded robots: one large Heavy Hitter and three smaller support unit robots. The Heavy Hitters are piloted by celebrity pilots with different skills. With the Kickstarter version, there are also four small mercenary robots which can be hired one-at-a-time by the different factions.
In the board game, players pick a faction with its associated robots, and then select one unique pilot from a pool of eight. Each player is supplied with a faction deck of 25 cards, from which they draw 6 cards for a hand. The cards supply: deployment capability, attacks, defense, and extra movements. Each player uses their robots toward two goals: destroy the other opponents’ robots and tag buildings to establish salvage claims. Each turn consists of five phases: deploy, move, attack, tag, and reset. When a Heavy Hitter takes damage, the amount of damage becomes the number of cards a player loses from their hand or faction deck. The lost cards are sent to the damage deck. When a player sustains damage to where he/she has no more cards in his/her hand or in the faction deck or on the board, then his/her Heavy Hitter is destroyed along with its support robots. Players also try to tag buildings with their robots. When a player gets four tags on a building, that building is destroyed and that player gets to claim salvage rights for his/her faction.
The game can end in three ways. 1.) All opposing Heavy Hitters are destroyed until only one remains. The last Heavy Hitter standing is the winner. 2.) Alternatively, after the first Heavy Hitter is destroyed, the game ends. The player with the highest point total wins. 3.) The first player able to destroy and claim salvage on four buildings is the winner.
GKR was developed by Weta Workshop in conjunction with Cryptozoic Games. They ran a Kickstarter campaign in 2017 where they raised almost 1 million dollars.
The Kickstarter versions of the game include a number of stretch goals beyond the base game: additional cards, foil cards, additional robot figurines, pilot figurines (for the Pilot’s Edition), special dice, terrain tiles, additional branded buildings, and a backside alternative terrain for the game board. Backers could also purchase special add-ons: unpainted Heavy Hitters figurines with the Painter’s Edition, extra robot decals, plastic buildings plus top ornaments and upgraded tags with the Wasteland Expansion, extra colored Faction Themed Dice in a Hapsi Cola can, and a special robot figurine The Big Little Buddy.
Let the Games Begin …
Yes, we have played it! And we loved it.
The game play is a straight-forward smack down. No complex resource management to ponder here.
Each turn you get some energy. You start with your faction stack of 25 cards, and draw a hand of 6 cards that give you options for each turn. Burn up energy to move your HH robot and use your cards. Cards give you your attacks. You can attack other robots in direct line-of-sight or ones that are partially obscured. Robots totally blocked by buildings cannot be attacked. Unless…. A Heavy Hitter can attack another blocked Heavy Hitter if the attacker has a support robot with direct line-of-sight on the defender; this is called spotting. Attacks involve dice rolls which mediate damage, and add an element of luck. As the game goes along, you get achievements for certain actions, and move along an achievement track. Movement on the achievement track gives you bonuses. You also get sponsor cards for tagging buildings. Sponsor cards give you one-time special abilities that can be extremely handy and troublesome to your opponents.
We played with elements from the Wasteland Expansion: plastic buildings, building toppers, and sentry guns. We also employed the mercenary mechs from the Kickstarter stretch goals, though you can’t see them here. The sentry guns were used to great effectiveness and annoyance.
All in all, a great time was had by all players!
More GKR fun:
GKR: Heavy Hitters forum on Boardgamegeek.com, with discussion and more GKR videos.
There are more GKR Heavy Hitters unboxing videos out there on Youtube. Go check them out!