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Subject: Coming Up with the Newb-List rss

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Andrew
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Kansas City
Missouri
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I'd like to come up with a few factions that are especially helpful when teaching Smash Up and playing it for the first time. I'm thinking mostly balanced factions, that are powerful and easy to understand in order to get the hang of the set. Also, I've had a big problem where new players don't know what the heck to pick out, so they can be stuck with a bad combo or draft poorly.

I'd like to make an easy mode where it's really hard to draft poorly. I'm shooting for twelve factions so that there are a few more options than the base game.

Here's my list so far:

- Dinosaurs (In my opinion, the best deck to learn with)
- Zombies
- Robots
- Aliens
- Ninjas
- Tricksters
- Pirates (possibly a little weak, could be replaced with Bear Cavalry)
- Steampunk (replacing Wizards from the base set because Wizards lead to too much AP for new players)
- Shapeshifters (an easy mechanic to mix in)
- Mythic Horses
- Luchadors (however, they are a custom set so might not count)
- Killer Plants (or Bear Cavalry if you were to keep pirates in)

Thoughts?
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Carey Dose
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I agree with most of your list, especially the top three. I would probably trade in Princesses in for Luchas, because they are custom.

And I would probably go Mad Scientists over Tricksters, mostly because I feel like Tricksters don't feel rewarding. Where as a new player could feel pretty powerful when easily playing extra minions and adding power counters.
 
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Daniel Matteo
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This is a really good question that I've seen asked a few times.

I've made a list of easy/difficult factions/combinations to use in another thread. Here's the link to avoid a huge copy/paste: https://boardgamegeek.com/article/22453920#22453920

Hopefully that helps!
 
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Andre Oliveira
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I would remove Pirates (a bit on weak side), tricksters (same) and shapeshifters (GELF requires some knowledge, while copycat requires to know what's on the table to be used effectively, i.e. much information).

Keep in mind newbies tend to not use movement well and waste on-play abilities.

I'd add Clerics too. Maybe cats (they feel fun and powerful).
 
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Tomer Mlynarsky
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I would remove Shapeshifters and plants as they require you to know what cards you have. Basically anything that has "search your deck" is best to be left aside.

I would also remove anything with power counters on them and madness \ munchkin. They are not tough, just best to leave out if you explain the game.



If you're adding Ponies, you might as well add Kittens. Princess aren't particularly tough to play, but their 5 card only might be avoidable.
Fairies are decent I suppose.


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Carey Dose
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GrandMasterFox wrote:
I would remove Shapeshifters and plants as they require you to know what cards you have. Basically anything that has "search your deck" is best to be left aside.


I don't know. We've let new players use that search through their deck to see what they have in their deck. Sure we give them a faction overview before they pick their decks, and even let them read their cards before the game starts. But actually seeing how turns work, and then being able to rummage through your deck, reviewing your cards as you go, is a huge boon for new players.
 
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Clarince Edjure
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Definitely want to stick with the T1 factions that don't search. Similar combos to mage dinosaurs is great because it stinks when everyone else does extra things and you can't. I've also found new people do better with at least 1 faction they think sounds cool. So I will let them pick one, then give suggestions on who to pair them with.

Ninjas (without house rules) are really hard to be good with. When you don't understand timing, sneaky plays are less effective.

Faeries are great because they give extra things and easy choices.

Any from Its your fault are great starters (super hero's probably being the most difficult for that search principle) as they have many great pairings.
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Kevin González
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May I suggest Orcs as an option? They cover all the bases as far as how effects behave, whether it's Ongoing/Talent/Special/etc.

Their gameplan is also pretty easy to follow, as they have a bit of everything (destruction, protection, movement, power plays, VP gaining effects.)

Sure, they're not the sharpest tool in the shed when compared to other powerful factions, but I vouch for Orcs to be among the best factions to explain almost every possible aspect of what Smash Up is. That is usually my go to faction to explain the basics, and everybody feels comfortable following my explanations.
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