Kamigami Battles is a deckbuilding game published by Japanime Games. It reimagines the gods and mythological features in various pantheons as anime characters, and gives players the opportunity to duke it out in a battle royale. Every set and expansion features a different pantheon, so today we are going to rank the expansions based on how fun and creative they are.
Until Rise of the Old Ones comes out later this year, there are only two standalone sets for Kamigami Battles. This makes them much easier to rank, especially because of big the gap in quality is between the two.
2. Battle of the Nine Realms
Battle of the Nine Realms certainly isn’t a bad game, but it struggles to compare to River of Souls. The Greek and Norse mythologies are always interesting, but the card effects that go with them just aren’t as diverse as some might want them to be. The art is also a bit blurry compared to every other set, making Battle of the Nine Realms a bit inferior. It might be because this is the very first set in the series, but Battle of the Nine Realms falls short of River of Souls in just about every way. It’s great when mixed with River of Souls and the other expansions, so it’s not a complete dud. This is a fun game, but just not as great when players realize what else is out there in the series.
1. River of Souls
River of Souls is the best of the two base games in Kamigami Battles and it isn’t really close. A great variety of gods, gorgeous artwork, and fun warriors make this the best way to enjoy Kamigami Battles. If one is into the series’ fanservice, this set includes some of the best of the series. If anyone digs Egyptian mythology as much as I do, River of Souls can’t really fail. The only downsides are the balance and the way some gods and temples synergize. With the right combination, a player can have an absolutely broken setup that simply isn’t fun to play with. Still, these occurrences are rare, making River of Souls a good time.
Kamigami Battles expansions aren’t known for completely mixing up the gameplay. Instead, the inject a little life into the experience by giving players new gods, warriors, and disciples. A few of the sets have some unique cards that really change up the experience. None of these feel like must-buys, but they sure do a lot for keeping Kamigami Battles and giving it more replayability.
There isn’t anything particularly wrong with Warriors of the Dawn as an expansion, but it doesn’t do as much as the rest of the expansions. Warriors of the Dawn focuses on Japanese mythology, and while the cards and their respective arts are neat, I didn’t feel like the game really added too much to the experience. A few cards take advantage of some Warriors of the Dawn does nail two things: Flexible warrior cards and a neat new disciple in Ashigaru. Ashigaru is the first disciple that can actually deal damage, changing the way that players approach the game. It’s a great way to add some chip damage to the experience, giving more incentive for players to add defensive disciples to their deck. Warriors of the Dawn also doesn’t have nearly as much fanservice as the other sets, giving it more broad appeal than the other expansions.
Children of Danu doesn’t do much in terms of gameplay, but it does come with tons of gimmicks that may or may not appeal to players. This expansion really leans on the series’ Reveal effects, something that are quite frankly, underutilized. There is a lot more luck and variability in Children of Danu, but in an expansion with cards like Leprachaun and Bannan Sidhe, that makes a lot of sense. Children of Danu is easily the most cohesive expansion when it comes to combining gameplay with mythology. It just doesn’t have much more going for it which frankly, is okay for an expansion.
If anyone wanted more men in Kamigami Battles, Avatars of Cosmic Fire is the set for you. Sure, it’s still full of many curvy gods and warriors, but it also has some burly men. The art is great in this set, and the clever effects that play on mythological tales make this a great expansion thematically. Two of the god cards have some unique react abilities, including one that redirects targets. It also has some neat but niche warrior cards that can be incredibly useful or duds, depending on the opponent’s actions. It’s an expansion with tons of potential in the right hands, making this one of the best expansions players can buy.
Court of the Emperor is the latest Kamigami Battles expansion, and it does just about everything right. Most of the cards are incredibly flexible and are usually aggressive, making the game feel much more interactive. On top of that, most of the cards that attack other players have added effects built in if they build damage. In Court of the Emperor, players can enjoy being aggressive while also finding tons of strategy in attacking with the right card for every situation. It’s full of interactive gods too, rounding out the best Kamigami Battles expansion to date.
None of these sets are “bad,” so regardless of where they sit on the list, if a certain pantheon really appeals to you, you should enjoy it. Every expansion has its merits and cool cards to play around with. They also mix well with each other, giving more incentive to add these sets to your table.
Which Kamigami Battles sets are your favorite?