As an adult, I truly enjoy Ascension. There are several versions of this deck-building game but the version I tried with my kiddos is Storm of Souls. I usually try to provide a link to where you can purchase it but that version is very difficult to get right now.
The other variations of Ascension likely follow similar gameplay. The one other variation that I have played involves some card evolutions that are fairly difficult for me to keep track of as an adult; let alone with my two young questers.
Basic overview of gameplay
For this game you get 5 cards in your hand to start out with and 5 in your deck. You can use strength to beat monsters and crystals to purchase cards that can aid you in your journey. You count up total “honor” points at the end of the game based on the points allotted to the cards you collect combined with the honor crystals you accumulate throughout gameplay.
When you are familiar with how to play it can take as little as 25 minutes to play a full game but with my 7 year old it was about an hour each game. Gameplay ends when the honor crystals run out so this game can be easily modified by using fewer of those at the beginning so that you can have a quicker play.
Good for the 4 year old?
Not really. He played on my “team” and likes drawing the cards for me but the concept is too advanced for his age group. I did let him play with the extra “honor” crystals and that seemed to placate him a bit but those pieces can be easy to lose.
Good for the 7 year old?
YES! My 7 year old really loves this game although he needs a little work on strategy (I won every time we played) but a couple of times the score was really close so he is getting the hang of chaining the cards to increase their benefit. Reading is really important in this game because each card has writing on it to tell you what benefit you get from playing the card, so it is good practice for this age group. My 7-year-old is pretty competitive so he likes to strategize how to best me (but he has yet to do so… muahahaha).
I would recommend this for ages 6+ based on reading ability and/or concept of strategy. There are different categories of cards that can chain together to give the player an advantage (or disadvantage) so as long as the child is old enough to understand that concept of strategy, you could always read the cards to them.
The one thing that I do want to provide a parental warning on is the art. There are some monsters and the art looks really cool, but can be scary for kids, especially younger kids. This game is fun to play with just 2 players and does not need any modifications to do so, which is nice. In addition, you can easily make the game shorter with using fewer “honor” crystals, making it a good option for game night.
Have you played Ascension: Storm of Souls? What did you think?