I am a fan of Gamelyn Games. I was excited when they released the Second Edition of Tiny Epic Defenders. This game is designed by Scott Almes. I never played the first edition so there is no history within my gameplay. I will judge this on the game alone.
The premise is that you and your friends play heroes that have to defend Aughmoore from attacking enemies. This game can be played solo with two heroes as well. Ultimately, the heroes must defend against the Epic Foe.
The Capital City must be defended or all is lost. Fortunately, it is surrounded by 6 Regions that buffers the Capital City from attacks. But your defenders have to defend the regions too. Each region and The Capital City get a threat token. When a region is attacked and not defended, its threat level rises until it reaches 3. When it gets attacked again, it is then no longer in play. Any attacks against that region raises the threat level of the Capitol City. When the threat level passes 7, the game is lost.
Each hero can repair a region or defend a region to prevent any arisen threat level at the cost of their health. Each hero and region has a unique ability.
The Turn Deck is made up of the cards for each colored IteMeeple that is playing as well as enemies. To bring up difficulty, you can add Dire Enemies which has additional abilities that harm you or the regions. But if you defend against them, you can get an artifact.
At the end of each round, another card from the Horde Deck is added to the Turn Deck to make it harder. When the Horde Deck runs out, then the Epic Foe is revealed. You must defend against the Epic Foe and move to the same regions it lands on. What is worse is that enemies will still attack and so you can have to choose between fighting the Epic Foe and bringing its health down to 0 but also defend Capitol City.
The best part of the game are the IteMeeples. These aren't wooden figures. These are plastic and have little holes so you can attach artifacts like wands and swords to them, when they defeat a Dire enemy.
The game is very fast paced and it is different in that the character turns happens when you pick up card that has the color IteMeeple you control. So you don't know when your turn will happen during the round. So this makes finding a strategy important as you need to make sure to repair the regions and also hope you land on a region that gets attacked and you can defend it.
It is very easy to learn even though setting up takes several minutes. But once you get the hang of the game, you can set this up in a couple minutes.
This game has a lot of replayability and very challenging. You can lose just as easily. I highly recommend this game.