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Subject: Recommended Expansions to buy rss

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Dan P
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Florida
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Hi BGG Smash-up forum! I'm fairly new to Smash-up. Playing for about a month. Absolutely love this game for its combos and strategy. I bought the Pretty, Awesome level, and Sci-fi expansions. Which other expansions do you guys recommend? If you'd like, pros and cons for each expansion would help immensely. Thank you and happy breaking bases!
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Timo Onken
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Varel
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First: Welcome to BGG

So there are actually only Cthulhu and Monster Smash left for you to get(and the BGB for the Geeks). If you already have three expansions I don't see any problem in getting the other two (three)
Reviews and recommendations for the expansions are easy to find in the Smash Up Forums ^^
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Liam Jackson
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Hey Dan!

It sounds like you already have what many consider to be the best expansions.

Monster Smash is a solid one. It introduces a new mechanic (power counters- they give an ongoing +1 power to the minion they are on) which is very straightforward and easy to get into.

1 faction plays regular minions and gives them power counters for additional strength
1 faction's power comes almost exclusively from counters (eg a 0 power minion with 2 counters played on it) and can move the counters around for strategic plays
1 faction destroys weaker minions to gain counters
1 faction doesn't use counters at all

In terms of their power level, 1/4 (Vampires) seem quite weak compared to the Smash Up standard, but the rest are all very competitive!

The Obligatory Cthulhu Set is definitely the most controversial. It introduces a new mechanic called Madness. The Madness deck is an separate deck of identical actions that when brought into your hand/deck/discard, will give you -1VP and the end of the game for every 2 you have. You can spend your allotted action on your turn to remove it from your deck (to avoid the penalty) or play it to draw 2 cards (but keep it your discard where it can count against you).

1 faction specializes in giving opponents Madness.
2 factions gain strong abilities by willingly drawing Madness (and 1 of those 2 can also get rid of madness easier).
1 faction has practically no interaction with Madness.

For some reason, a lot of players believe that you can only play this expansion when everyone has at least 1 Madness deck. In my experience, I don't find this to be true. As stated above, only 1/4 decks (and a single card in another deck) use Madness to interfere with your opponents. If that faction (Elder Things) is absent from the game, players have complete control over how much they want their combos to interact with the Madness mechanic. In addition, some non Cthulhu factions are actually very good at playing with Madness because they have additional actions (eg Wizards, Faries)

The individual factions they tend to be on the more complicated side. Some of the cards don't intuitively seem useful until you play around with the deck a bit. If you enjoy some of the more complicated decks (eg Ghosts, Cats, Time Travellers) you'll appreciate the cool combos these decks are capable of.

The Madness itself adds an additional layer of risk/reward which makes the game a bit more interesting. Balancing the benefits of the abilities that make you take Madness to use versus spending your valuable action plays to remove it leads to some difficult choices.

In terms of power level, once again 1/4 (Innsmouth) is incredibly weak (more a gimmick in my opinion), 1/4 (Elder Things) is incredibly strong, and the other 2 are both very solid factions.


I hope that description wasn't too long. I like to elaborate on the Cthulhu set because I feel it gets critiqued a bit unfairly. Also as a size note, I have no knowledge of the Cthulhu mythos, so I judge them solely in their Smash Up capacity.


Overall my recommendation would be to get both! Each expansions adds some new strategy and combo potential to the game. Enjoy!
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Sachin Daniels
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SnideBorwell wrote:
Hey Dan!

It sounds like you already have what many consider to be the best expansions.

Monster Smash is a solid one. It introduces a new mechanic (power counters- they give an ongoing +1 power to the minion they are on) which is very straightforward and easy to get into.

1 faction plays regular minions and gives them power counters for additional strength
1 faction's power comes almost exclusively from counters (eg a 0 power minion with 2 counters played on it) and can move the counters around for strategic plays
1 faction destroys weaker minions to gain counters
1 faction doesn't use counters at all

In terms of their power level, 1/4 (Vampires) seem quite weak compared to the Smash Up standard, but the rest are all very competitive!

The Obligatory Cthulhu Set is definitely the most controversial. It introduces a new mechanic called Madness. The Madness deck is an separate deck of identical actions that when brought into your hand/deck/discard, will give you -1VP and the end of the game for every 2 you have. You can spend your allotted action on your turn to remove it from your deck (to avoid the penalty) or play it to draw 2 cards (but keep it your discard where it can count against you).

1 faction specializes in giving opponents Madness.
2 factions gain strong abilities by willingly drawing Madness (and 1 of those 2 can also get rid of madness easier).
1 faction has practically no interaction with Madness.

For some reason, a lot of players believe that you can only play this expansion when everyone has at least 1 Madness deck. In my experience, I don't find this to be true. As stated above, only 1/4 decks (and a single card in another deck) use Madness to interfere with your opponents. If that faction (Elder Things) is absent from the game, players have complete control over how much they want their combos to interact with the Madness mechanic. In addition, some non Cthulhu factions are actually very good at playing with Madness because they have additional actions (eg Wizards, Faries)

The individual factions they tend to be on the more complicated side. Some of the cards don't intuitively seem useful until you play around with the deck a bit. If you enjoy some of the more complicated decks (eg Ghosts, Cats, Time Travellers) you'll appreciate the cool combos these decks are capable of.

The Madness itself adds an additional layer of risk/reward which makes the game a bit more interesting. Balancing the benefits of the abilities that make you take Madness to use versus spending your valuable action plays to remove it leads to some difficult choices.

In terms of power level, once again 1/4 (Innsmouth) is incredibly weak (more a gimmick in my opinion), 1/4 (Elder Things) is incredibly strong, and the other 2 are both very solid factions.


I hope that description wasn't too long. I like to elaborate on the Cthulhu set because I feel it gets critiqued a bit unfairly. Also as a size note, I have no knowledge of the Cthulhu mythos, so I judge them solely in their Smash Up capacity.


Overall my recommendation would be to get both! Each expansions adds some new strategy and combo potential to the game. Enjoy!


Well articulated and great info. I for one don't even think that one faction is all too weak. It may be a difficult faction to play with, but some of the actions allow you to recycle your powerful minions, and you can manipulate your deck with cycling and shuffling. A rather complex faction that rivals ghosts for a great faction that is so complex, players tend to think it is weak.
 
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David Hicks
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Would agree with 1st responder. I own all of them, I am actually a playtester for AEG. The only I would consider if I had to drop one would be Cthulu. Not my favorite.
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Sanguine
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Basically reiterating what's already been mentioned, but I feel the same way. All of the expansions are great. I own them all as well, but if there was any of them that I would (and do) hesitate to play with, it'd be the Cthulhu set.

The reason for it mainly is because of the madness mechanic. It can substantially increase the time and occasionally add some confusion to a game. I personally still enjoy playing with the set, but most of the time, the friends that I play with would rather not. Just something to think about.

Otherwise, you can't really go wrong with any of the other expansions.

Hope that helps.
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Daniel Matteo
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SnideBorwell wrote:
Hey Dan!

It sounds like you already have what many consider to be the best expansions.

Monster Smash is a solid one. It introduces a new mechanic (power counters- they give an ongoing +1 power to the minion they are on) which is very straightforward and easy to get into.

1 faction plays regular minions and gives them power counters for additional strength
1 faction's power comes almost exclusively from counters (eg a 0 power minion with 2 counters played on it) and can move the counters around for strategic plays
1 faction destroys weaker minions to gain counters
1 faction doesn't use counters at all

In terms of their power level, 1/4 (Vampires) seem quite weak compared to the Smash Up standard, but the rest are all very competitive!

The Obligatory Cthulhu Set is definitely the most controversial. It introduces a new mechanic called Madness. The Madness deck is an separate deck of identical actions that when brought into your hand/deck/discard, will give you -1VP and the end of the game for every 2 you have. You can spend your allotted action on your turn to remove it from your deck (to avoid the penalty) or play it to draw 2 cards (but keep it your discard where it can count against you).

1 faction specializes in giving opponents Madness.
2 factions gain strong abilities by willingly drawing Madness (and 1 of those 2 can also get rid of madness easier).
1 faction has practically no interaction with Madness.

For some reason, a lot of players believe that you can only play this expansion when everyone has at least 1 Madness deck. In my experience, I don't find this to be true. As stated above, only 1/4 decks (and a single card in another deck) use Madness to interfere with your opponents. If that faction (Elder Things) is absent from the game, players have complete control over how much they want their combos to interact with the Madness mechanic. In addition, some non Cthulhu factions are actually very good at playing with Madness because they have additional actions (eg Wizards, Faries)

The individual factions they tend to be on the more complicated side. Some of the cards don't intuitively seem useful until you play around with the deck a bit. If you enjoy some of the more complicated decks (eg Ghosts, Cats, Time Travellers) you'll appreciate the cool combos these decks are capable of.

The Madness itself adds an additional layer of risk/reward which makes the game a bit more interesting. Balancing the benefits of the abilities that make you take Madness to use versus spending your valuable action plays to remove it leads to some difficult choices.

In terms of power level, once again 1/4 (Innsmouth) is incredibly weak (more a gimmick in my opinion), 1/4 (Elder Things) is incredibly strong, and the other 2 are both very solid factions.


I hope that description wasn't too long. I like to elaborate on the Cthulhu set because I feel it gets critiqued a bit unfairly. Also as a size note, I have no knowledge of the Cthulhu mythos, so I judge them solely in their Smash Up capacity.


Overall my recommendation would be to get both! Each expansions adds some new strategy and combo potential to the game. Enjoy!


I'll agree with you on that! It's really the Elder Things faction that makes the madness get out of hand. Otherwise it's very manageable & has lots of interesting applications. It also has some of the best bases in the game (Mountains of Madness anyone?)

& DEFINITELY get Monster Smash, even if just for the Werewolves. They're my favorite individual faction, and the rest of the expansion is pretty solid too.

I also totally recommend the Big Geeky Box, if you don't have it yet.
 
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Adastra
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I actually have the same question - but I want to limit myself to only 2 out of all the expansions that are available. From what I've read here, I'm already disinclined to the Cthulhu Expansion. So right now, I'm undecided between these:

* Awesome Level 9000
* Monster Smash
* Science Fiction Double Feature

Which two out of these three would you recommend?
 
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Daniel Matteo
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raevynn wrote:
I actually have the same question - but I want to limit myself to only 2 out of all the expansions that are available. From what I've read here, I'm already disinclined to the Cthulhu Expansion. So right now, I'm undecided between these:

* Awesome Level 9000
* Monster Smash
* Science Fiction Double Feature

Which two out of these three would you recommend?


Definitely Awesome Level 9000 as one of them. The next is up to personal preference, as they're both equally good. Look at the factions that come with each & go with what sounds more fun.
 
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Johny D
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raevynn wrote:
I actually have the same question - but I want to limit myself to only 2 out of all the expansions that are available. From what I've read here, I'm already disinclined to the Cthulhu Expansion. So right now, I'm undecided between these:

* Awesome Level 9000
* Monster Smash
* Science Fiction Double Feature

Which two out of these three would you recommend?


I would say Pretty pretty SU works better with just the basic game and Awesome level 9000. Science Fiction doesn't bring too much for the table and in terms of interesting combos (it is more like a filler expansion) while Monster Smash creates the possibilities for some fun and interesting pairings when you have Pretty pretty. My favorite by far is kitties - vampires (not the best combo, but very very fun to play).

I would stay away from the Big geeky box (at least for new) and keep a look on the upcoming expansion (Muchking SU) and its insert.
 
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Liam Davis
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Woking
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I now own all of the expansions apart from Cthulu, as other people have alluded to. I actually just got the Big Geeky Box delivered a few days ago, quite looking forward to filling it up with Munchkin Smash Up when it releases...

But as for which 2 expansions to get, my vote would go to Monster Smash and Pretty Pretty.

Awesome Level 9000 is fairly great, but I don't think it brings quite enough newness if you're limiting yourself to 2. Steampunks are fantastic though...

Sci-Fi Double Feature I got just after Pretty Pretty, and expected to think it was better. Certainly the theme gave me high hopes, but in practice I just don't find them to be quite as great to play with (aside from Cyborg Apes, those guys are great).

Pretty Pretty, on the other hand, I think does bring some really great new ideas, particularly the Princesses 'only 5 minions, all power 5' deck. And Monster Smash for the Power Counters, which opens up new strategies even with your original decks.

Don't get me wrong, I love them all, but if you're ONLY looking to get two I'd go for those ones. And someone has to offer an opinion that doesn't include AL9000!

(if we are going by only your list of 3 though, Monster Smash and AL9000, for sure. Sci-Fi is good, but not innovative enough)
 
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