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BANG! Gold Rush» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Is gold rush worth your gold? rss

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Michael
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BANG! Gold Rush is the 2011 expansion to the popular spaghetti western card game BANG!. There have been several expansions to the game, but a lot of them have been turn-offs to many players, most notably BANG! Wild West Show. So the question is for Bang fans is; Is BANG! Gold Rush worth getting?

What do you get?
8 character cards, 24 equipment cards, 30 gold nuggets, 1 rulebook, 1 role card. The cards are of equal quality to past bang cards. The gold nuggets are a bit interesting. They are opaque gold plastic, and very unusually shaped. They won't roll of the table and are easy to grasp, so that's good. You also get a card holder in the box which is nice. You can use it as a draw and discard pile holder, or not at all.


New Characters:
The new character are all 4 bullets strength and their abilities mainly have to do with the new gold mechanism, which makes sense. The problem with the characters were that they are widely varied in strength. Dutch Will, at the start of his turn, draws 2 cards, discards 1, and takes 1 gold nugget. This is alright at best. A lot of times you'd much rather have 2 cards than one card and 1 gold nugget, but you don't get the option. Jacky Murieta can discard 2 gold nuggets to shoot an extra bang. This seems pretty weak, and unlikely that you would use it more than once per game. Now Don Bell on the other hand is the most overpowered character I've seen. At the end of his turn, he draws, if he gets a heart or a diamond, he gets a full extra turn. This is unbelievably good, and would be so even if he was reduced to 3 bullets.

In my experience Bang is not a game of perfect balance to begin with. Some characters are a little better than others, and that's fine. You can't expect it to be perfectly balanced, and the variety adds to the fun. However, this great of an unbalance can ruin the fun. It's not fun to start the game off way behind just because of character drawing.

Gold and Equipment
The gold mechanic works fairly simply. You gain a gold every time you cause a player to lose a life. This makes Indians and Gatling super powerful in large games, but other than that it works out fine. You can also discard a beer to gain a gold during your turn. Certain characters can get gold in other ways. The equipment deck is shuffled and the top three cards are revealed and available for purchase for a price listed in the bottom right of the card. There are brown bordered cards, and black bordered cards. Brown borders are played instantly. Black cards go in front of you like blue cards. They cannot be effected by other game cards like Panic. Instead if you want to remove one from an opponent, you have to pay the cost of that card, plus one, to the bank.

The equipment is pretty well done in my opinion. Some pretty neat effects. Pickaxe, cost 4, lets you draw one additional card each time you enter phase 1. Calumet, cost 3, says that cards played against you that are diamonds have no effect. Gun Belt, cost 2, makes your hand size have a permanent maximum size of 8.

Shadow Gunslinger
This variant lets players who die remain relavent. This is nice because getting out early of a big game can be annoying. What happens is this; when you die, you lose everything and are removed from the game for distance reasoning. When it comes to what would have been your turn, you enter the game once more and draw 2 cards. After your turn is over, you die once more, losing all your cards you havent played. So you're still in the game, but it's hard to do much. For instance if you draw a gun and a beer, you basically still miss your turn. You have the same goal as before you died and are considered a shadow player. Your presence has no effect on winning conditions.
The only exception is the renegade, who can no longer win. They say he's just supposed to go for which ever side is losing, but realistically the renegade is just going to shoot whoever he wants. That's what renegades do.

So is it worth it?
Probably not. I will say I liked Gold Rush a lot better than Wild West Show, but at the same time you have to be pretty hardcore into Bang to enjoy it. And even if you are into Bang that much, you may not want to complicate it that much more. It runs $10-$15 and you get 33 cards and some plastic bits. I really enjoy the gold mechanic, but for a lot of people Bang is fun for the simplicity. The nice thing is, is that Gold Rush adds some more decision making to the game, so if your group sees Bang! at the table a great deal, and is looking to make it a bit deeper, then this might be a good buy.
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Stephen Groves
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Thanks for the review. Your point about past expansions is dead on and I was wondering if this was any good. Unfortunately, your review still has me sitting on the fence as to whether to purchase or not. I'd like to add more to the game, as I have played it several times, but one of its strengths is its simplicity.
 
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J Cale
Canada
Edmonton
Alberta
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Yog-Sothoth knows the gate. Yog-Sothoth is the gate. Yog-Sothoth is the key and guardian of the gate. Past, present, future, all are one in Yog-Sothoth. He knows where the Old Ones broke through of old, and where They shall break through again.
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I see no need for additional expansions now that The Bullet is out. There is enough game in there to last years. Thanks for the review.
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Geo
Greece
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I was also on the fence about this, but it seems it is not worth the money. It costs 22€ here which is too much!
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Maligno Cattiveri
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I'd say it depends. $10-$15 is not that much and the equipment is neat. I'll say they could have included better quality gold pieces, though. Some orange plastic bits... look as cheap as the Sceriffo star in The Bullet!. Metal would have been a better choice (for both), even if it increased the cost a little bit.

As for the expansion, you have to be a hardcore Bang! player to enjoy it. It's good that it adds strategy to the game (buying equipment) and that it rewards the player who hurts other players (more gold = better opportunities).
The Shadow-Gunslinger variant is still weak. Players who are out end up deciding whose team wins the game... Imagine I'm a Vice and I had played very badly. No problem! I can still reappear every turn, Bang! some Fuorileggi and then disappear in the shadows. Invincible... That really stinks, we've only played with it 5 or 6 times before realizing it's much more interesting to sit back and let the people alive play.
However there are overpowered cards that take the balance out of the game: Calumet (Apache Kid's ability), Rhum (recovering up to 4 lives) and the character Don Bell (playing an additional turn very often).

In the rest of Europe, to order it from Italy costs 17EUR + shipping costs (that can be more than 20). 37 EUR to US$ is almost 49 DOLLARS!!!!!! That clearly isn't worth your gold.
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David Lee
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I consider myself a hardcore Bang! fan (I actually liked WWS a lot), but after looking at the characters and the equipment mechanics I just couldn't bring myself to fork up the cash.
 
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Bubba Franks
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I just have a quick question. Can somebody explain how Rhum works? I am wondering why people think this is overpowered but I can't find an explanation of the card.
 
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Grarrrg Grarrrgowski
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Bubba Lovin wrote:
I just have a quick question. Can somebody explain how Rhum works? I am wondering why people think this is overpowered but I can't find an explanation of the card.


Rhum/Rum can be bought for 3 Gold Nuggets (1 Gold/1 Life/1 are all roughly equal cost-wise).
You "Draw!" 4 cards. For every different suit you gain a life.

So if you are REALLY UNlucky, you'll flip "heart, heart, heart, heart" and gain 1 life. In general, you'll gain around 3 life.

It's fairly costed, especially considering you 'might' only gain 1 or 2 life, and that few characters would be able to gain 4 life anyway (a 4 Life character w/Sheriff, or 2 of the Char's from Wild West show).

But I think most people have a problem with the SIZE of the effect. Similar to why many people hate Dynamite. It's a (potentially) LARGE life swing from just 1 card.
 
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Michael
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Well look at it this way, you can buy a shot for 1 gold, which allows you to give anyone a life, including you. Statistically, buying 3 separate shots is a better bang for your gold than rhum, but it all depends on whats available.

I find Rhum to be fairly underpowered compared to a lot of the stuff they sell. Because really, most of the time you are not going to have 3 lives to gain, and when you do, there is no guarantee that it will hit.

The chance of gaining one life is the same as gaining 4 lives and it is equal to 1/64.
 
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Grarrrg Grarrrgowski
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Cost is not the most important factor when it comes to Rhum. The cards available for purchase are random, so while a Shot has a 1-cost/1-life payout, you can NOT count on being able to buy one, your only option may be Rhum. And even if you have 3 max life (can ONLY gain 2 life from Rhum), you may have to buy it just to stay in the game.

mylittlepwny wrote:
The chance of gaining one life is the same as gaining 4 lives and it is equal to 1/64.


Actually, the odds are closer to:
You draw 4 cards, each has 4 possible results:
4^4 = 256

1 life: 4/256 > 1/64
2 life: 84/256 > 21/64
3 life: 144/256 > 36/64 > 9/16
4 life: 24/256 > 6/64 > 3/32

Which gives an average life gain of 2.73
If you adjust for Characters who can only gain 3 life Max (the majority), this becomes 2.64.
And for those who can only gain 2 life max, 1.98

*Statistical disclaimer*
The above numbers assume an infinite deck, with infinite of each suit. In a real game there are only 20 cards of each suit > 80 total (30 & 120 w/Dodge City), and since some cards will be in hand/play then the deck is smaller, with a (likely) uneven distribution of Suits.
Additionally, the odds of drawing a 'heart' go down each time I draw a 'heart' as there is now 1 less in the deck.
That being said, the odds are still valid in general, and provide a rough idea of the likelihood of any given resutlt.
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Henrique Tomio
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I bought the game and the rules of this game unbalances Bang even more, so I've been house ruling this one in the contrary, the player who gets shot gain a gold, this balances the game for me, the sheriff will think alot before unloading his gun on someone that he doesn't even know who it is. Of course the game last a little longer with this rule, and thematically it makes no sense, but man, it really solved my major problem with Bang.
 
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