Monday, November 14, 2016

Commissioned {TOS Review}

My kids and I love to play board games! I jumped at the chance to review "Commissioned" from Chara Games. Chara Games produces entertaining board games and card games with a Christian theme for teenagers and adults.
"Commissioned" is a cooperative-style board game for 2-6 players. It is historically-based - the games covers the first 150 years of church history. The game is played in rounds: Arm, Live, and Mature. Each player will choose an apostle to play as: Paul, Peter, Barnabas, Andrew, Thomas and John. The goal of the game is to grow the church, collect books of the New Testament and overcome trials and persecution. There are 5 scenarios to play with, 2 difficulty levels, and a 1-versus-all variation to the game.

When I first opened the game box, I was shocked at how many pieces were included and used in each game! Here is what is included in the game box:
  • 1 double-sided game board
  • 5 double-sided scenario cards
  • 6 unique player boards
  • 96 faith cards
  • 27 trial cards
  • 4 wooden "Missionary Meeples"
  • 75 wooden church member cubes
  • 1 wooden elder's staff
  • 6 wooden player pawns {they match the player boards}
  • 30 double-sided "stop" tokens
  • 5 double-sided "extinguished" tokens
  • 1 "Converted City" leader's token
  • 1 Roman Legion token
  • 1 8-sided die
  • 1 rule book
  • 1 theme appendix
Whew! Quite a bit of components! I immediately read through the 12-page rule book and was thoroughly confused. I read it aloud to my kids and tried to play a mock game while reading the rules, but I could tell I was doing something wrong. I went to the Chara Games website and watched the "Official How to Play" video, which helped immensely! It was a 24 minute video, but I highly suggest watching it first so you don't get discouraged.

I'm not going to go over all of the rules because not only would it take a long time, but it's really hard to explain all of the steps to the game. I will give a basic overview of how to play and how to win "Commissioned".

The first thing to do is choose a "scenario" card. First time players should choose the "Acts of the Apostles" card, as it is the easiest scenario to play with. The scenario card will tell you which side of the game board you will be playing on and where to place the pieces.
Next, you will choose an apostle to play as {each player chooses one}. You will receive the matching apostle playing board, pawn, and six Faith cards.

Then you will set the board up with the correct cards, tokens, and other pieces. Select an elder to start the game, and begin!

There are many different rules and parts to this game. The basic phases are Arm, Live and Mature. The first player takes the Elder Staff and begins the phases. I'll briefly explain these below.

ARM: You will draw six faith cards to use.

LIVE: There are 5 parts to this phase.
  1. Trials: you will draw a trial card and follow the instructions
  2. Pray: you place two faith cards face down on your apostle board, and then roll the die for further instructions
  3. Share: turn your faith cards over, and the elder chooses two cards to use in this phase
  4. Move: you will choose two moves - fellowship moves or mission moves
  5. Grow: you will add church members to each church that has three or more population
MATURE: After completing the Live phase the required amount of times, you will use the 2 Faith cards left in your hands to purchase more Faith cards. The Faith cards have a value of 1, 2, 3, or 4.

You will then pass the Elder Staff to the next player, and repeat the phases. You  play until the scenario card "victory conditions" are met {meaning you win the game}, 5 churches are extinguished, or the last Trial card is drawn. If the "victory conditions" are not met, or the churches are extinguished, you lose the game.

I played "Commissioned" with my 11-year old son, Eli. Eli loves board games, so I knew he would have a blast with this one. We watched the "how-to" video together so we could talk about the rules while we played. At first, we kind of fumbled our way through the phases. It didn't take long before we were playing confidently! We may have gotten a few things mixed up or wrong, but we had a good time together. It took us almost an hour, but we did complete the "victory conditions", therefore winning the game!

This game is a lot of fun, but I wouldn't play with a child younger than 10 as the rules are confusing and the game is long. Chara Games also has a new card game called "Three Seeds", which is a 30-45 minute, 2-4 player, light-strategic game. I'm sure it will be fantastic just like "Commissioned".

See what the other Crew members had to say about "Commissioned".

Commissioned {Chara Games}


  1. Great review! We loved it too! We've played quite a few strategy games before so my kids are used to complicated rules. We enjoy playing Commissioned and Three Seeds as a family with our 7 and 9 year olds!

  2. Our family also enjoyed Commissioned. My 7 year old enjoyed it most of all! Definitely harder for the younger ones but she still had fun. Great job describing the game. - Lori

  3. Yes the video was so much help!! Loved the Christian theme