Friday, September 28, 2007

Swarm of the Marro

Thanks to Frank Branham's frank review (frank review, get it? he he... hey, these are the jokes, people!), I decided to go ahead & pick up the newest addition to Heroscape, Swarm of the Marro. As evidenced by earlier posts here, here & here, I'm a pretty big fan of Heroscape, as is Braeden. (Let me clarify - for those of you who speak HS, I own 2 RotV, 1 SofM, 2 RttFF, 2 VW, 1 TT, 1 FotA, all of the regular figures (+ some extra Drones, Vipers, Snipers, Orcs & Romans), and all of the special figures (except Sir Hawthorne & the Master)... I'm not sure if "pretty big fan" really covers it, do you?!)

We began playing the campaign last night - the first scenario is a really straightforward "midnight run" kind of deal, with the Marro player trying to kill off one of the three heroes (Raelin, Drake, or the new elf) before they can reach the other end of a long, narrow board. Braeden managed to get the elf down to a single wound before Drake sliced & diced his warriors for the win.

The second scenario - a "kill or be killed" brawl - ended with Braeden's Marro chewing up both Shiori (who he had surrounded at the beginning of the scenario) and Raelin (who I moved too close to the action.) Braeden won the scenario... and the campaign, since I didn't have enough heroes to continue.

Here's a quickie "Mark's reaction" list to the new set:
  • terrain: the swamp water is cool (it's water you can walk on) & there's plenty of it, but otherwise there isn't much terrain - only 2 of the large boards. And there's 8 water hexes... but they aren't sparkly like all my other water hexes. (I do have a crazy idea: what if those hexes are "deep water" and you can't land on 'em?!)
  • the Marro Hive: an incredibly detailed piece of terrain that also has some serious game properties - nifty! It spawns more Marro... so "it must be killed." (He he he...)
  • heroes & squads: they're all new to the game, except for the souped-up versions of Sgt. Drake (he has a gun) and Raelin (her power is weaker but has a larger range & she has whirlwind attack). Most of the powers of the new units are interesting, too. There are 6 Marro squads (Stingers, Drudges & Nagrubs), one freaky Marro Giant, the aforementioned souped-up heroes, a new Soulborg (Major Q10), a new elf (w/a pet baby dragon), and Shiori, a ninja.
  • scenarios: except for the campaign scenarios, they don't look like anything special... a lot of that has to do with the limited amount of terrain
  • glyphs: there are 7-8 new glyphs, all of which do some crazy stuff. (There's even a pit trap - I feel like I'm playing D&D.)
  • other stuff: the game comes with 4 sets of order markers (in swamp green this time), 12 dice (combined attack/defense dice like in the Crest sets), and a baggie full of plastic markers.
My overall reaction: I think it's a great expansion to the Heroscape system. Like Frank said in his review, in some ways it'll make the game much easier to introduce new players to... but if I was just starting out, I'd much rather have the 1st master set. (Actually, having both sets would be a really cool way to start.)

Later today, Braeden & I plan on playing a scenario with the Hive... ooooo. (I'll let you know what happens.)

The picture is from Boardgamegeek... "gollum" does really nice work, eh?!

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