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Mansions of Madness» Forums » General

Subject: Should I buy this game? rss

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Henry Akeley
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Hello Everyone,

I have always had an infatuation with the horror game genre and absolutely love anything Cthulhu. Curiously enough the only Cthulhu oriented game I own is the Call of Cthulhu RPG (no Cthulhu board games).

With Mansions of Madness 2nd edition announced I see that the clock is now ticking for the "good" (1st) edition's availability. I say good because I hate using an app to play a board game and secondly I like one vs many games. I have a co-op horror board game (Kingdom Death: Monster) and love it to pieces. Secondly, my group seems to enjoy the one vs many dynamic what with Fury of Dracula (3rd edition) and SW: Imperial Assault.

Now that that has all been established onto the meat of this post. I really really want to buy MoM. I do. It sounds so perfect and really great. Its rating on BGG isn't bad (7.8 I believe), and I have read some of the reviews already posted on here by fellow BGGers. What I would like to do is list out major complaints about the game, my response to them, and how you all would council me.

1. The game takes way too long to set up.
1A. My answer: My current favorite horror oriented game (Kingdom Death: Monster) is a nightmare to set up. I mean probably 30-45 minutes. So many fiddly pieces and decks of cards. So this doesn't sound a huge issue for me.
1B. My question to you: For anyone who owns both MoM and KD:M is the set up time comparable? The set up for Kingdom Death is not for the weak of heart.

2. The scenarios vary from great to broken.
2A. My answer: To start with my group seems to like games that have stories in them. Thats part of the beauty of Kingdom Death. I read a great review this morning on here that was in depth about each scenario. The fact that 1 was rated horrible/broken and one was meh; leaving 3 that were good to great out of 5 is a little gut wrenching. Is Cursed Classroom (or whatever its called) really that bad? I really try to find the good in any game/game scenario I play. I want to believe it is NOT broken and a decent scenario.
2B. My question to you: Can someone either confirm or deny that 2 out of 5 scenarios in the base game are really that bad?

3. The expansions: Great to meh.
3A. My answer: What is said online here is that the Call of the Wild expansion is amazing, Forbidden Alchemy is meh, and the PoD expansions are all garbage. If this is all true then I suspect I will only buy Call of the Wild and maybe the least bad PoD expansion.
3B. My question to you: Do these expansions deserve their reputations? Why? In what way do they help/fix the game? Are they absolutely necessary to enjoy the game (like how Doom the boardgame's expansion really helps the marines a bunch)?

That is all I can think of for now. Thank you for reading and replying to this wall of text.
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Chris J Davis
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1: Yep - 30-45 minutes is about right for this game.

2: Unfortunately, yes - Classroom Curses is boring as shite, and Green Eyed Boy is almost (if not actually) unwinnable for the investigators. One setup of Blood Ties is also practically unwinnable for the investigators.

3: Call of the Wild *is* amazing; once I had that expansion I never played any of the other scenarios ever again (really). It adds NPCs to the game, which were really needed to bring the storytelling aspect to full fruition. Each scenario is also completely unique, unlike the base game scenarios which are all a bit samey (find clue, follow its instructions to the next clue, rinse, repeat). Forbidden Alchemy is fine. Some of the PoDs are good, but just make sure you buy them in reverse order of release.
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Henry Akeley
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Sad to hear about the latter 2 scenarios in the base game being legitimately bad. Man that really drops my enthusiasm for the game a bit.
 
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mortego
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Buy it! You won't regret it!
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Chris J Davis
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killerjoe1962 wrote:
Buy it! You won't regret it!


I agree. MoM 1st Ed is still a great game. And if you buy the CotW expansion, you'll still have 7.6 great scenarios that are still hugely replayable (plus a couple of crap ones you can play once and then forget about).
 
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Jarek W
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1. I don't know KD:M, but setup of MoM is taking a while. Good practice is to divide the work between the people. Map is by default set by the investigators, but since Keeper Actions are face up, they can be prepared by the too. Also separating mythos cards can be done by them.

2. The scenarios in the base game are on different levels depending not only on the scenario #, but also on the Keeper's choices.
For a couple of plays we still had fun though, so don't be biased.
There's also a full conversion file for base scenarios, which I recommend to apply after you're familiar with the scenarios as they are. Especially "The Green Eyed Boy" receives a boost regarding gameplay options and paranoia.

3. TCotW adds many good mechanics, one at a time, it's a great experience. FA has some nuances, theme and it's generally a good buy. On PoD's check the Yellow Sign and the House of Fears, as they offer unique gameplay. The other may be skipped, but still, they add some content, so it'll be up to you.

Full co-op in 2nd ed. is a bummer for me. I wish they just reprint the game but add the app to take care of the Keeper actions as an option.
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Steven McKinney
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I am hoping they reprint soon found the base set at barns and noble for its base price, and Call of the Wild at a local game store for its original price. Now its off to search for the last big expansion and see if I have any luck.

For what it is worth, after playing it by myself in a trial run, it seemed to go over pretty well with my niece and nephew (both under 12. I imagine playing a few more games I might become a decent keeper.

If you are into thematic games, this one would be hard to beat.
 
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Chris J Davis
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fizolof wrote:

There's also a full conversion file for base scenarios, which I recommend to apply after you're familiar with the scenarios as they are. Especially "The Green Eyed Boy" receives a boost regarding gameplay options and paranoia.


Where could one find that? whistle
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Henry Akeley
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I just remembered another crucial question; it would seem that at least in Forbidden Alchemy some of the maps call for both sides of one double sided tile. Is this a problem with the base game or Call of the Wild? Has this been fixed in future printings?
 
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J P
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Yes, this was fixed in later printings. It was actually fixed years ago. And only Forbidden Alchemy had that problem. Call of the Wild had no major errors and is considered by many to be the best of the three.
 
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Alexander Steinbach
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1. I don't own KD:M. The setup time of MoM is about 30 minutes. I would advise to do this in advance of your players arriving to play.

2. I do not agree that any scenario is broken beyond repair. Yes, I agree some are great and others are not. Classroom curses is a typical example of this. There is nothing broken about the scenario at all. It's just boring. But you can still play it once and be done with it.

Green Eyed Boy needs some setup, sure. The easy fix is to extend the game length (add an extra time token to the last 2 event cards).

The other scenarios are basically great as is (except for scenario 3B, which is the only one that is arguable broken beyond repair) or need relatively small alterations to balance out. Check
https://www.boardgamegeek.com/filepage/92877/mansions-base-s...
for the minimal fixes to the base game scenarios.

Alternatively, all scenarios of the base game are overhauled and can be found here:
https://www.boardgamegeek.com/filepage/74620/mansions-madnes...

Next, there are several excellent fan-made scenarios (some way better than the official ones!) that can be freely downloaded from bgg. Again, check out the files-section for interesting scenarios: https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/83330/mansions-madne...

3. The general opinion is that the later an expansion was released the better it is. CotW is excellent. Forbidden Alchemy is merely ok. Regarding the PoD scenarios, the Laboratory is excellent, and the yellow sign and house of fears is good. All others are average at best. See below for a ranking of scenarios:

salty53 wrote:

A Cry For Help [CotW] - Top Tier
A Matter of Trust [CotW]
The Mind's Veil [CotW]
The Yellow Sign [POD]
The Dunwich Horror [CotW] - Great Tier
Blood Ties [Base]
The Fall of House Lynch [Base]
House of Fears [POD]
Yellow Matter [FA] - Good Tier
The Stars Aligned [CotW]
The Inner Sanctum [Base]
`Til Death Do Us Part [POD] - "Meh" Tier
Lost in Time and Space [FA]
Season of the Witch [POD]
Return of the Reanimator [FA] - Bad Tier
The Green-Eyed Boy [Base]
Classroom Curses [Base]
The Silver Tablet [POD] - Silver Tablet Tier



Long story short: MoM needs some effort to get it to work. It is not streamlined at all. In all likelihood, the 2nd edition will fix all this. But with all of its flaws, MoM is a brilliant game worth every penny of it.
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Matěj Jan Morávek
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I was going to write almost exactly what Vardaine wrote, so i will just support him:-).

Do not underestimate the fan-made scenarios.

The setup time can be worked on with efficient storage solutions (look around here, I use dedicated envelopes with scenario specific items which helps a lot).

I don't think the Green-eyed boy is THAT bad, if the Keeper is willing to let the investigators have some fun and acts more like GM in D&D... But that is up to everyones personal taste (and many many many discussions here and there;-)). The same goes for Blood Ties Zombie-Assembly-line objective.
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Ryan Stripling
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Personally, I wouldn't get it unless you could get CotW as well. That expansion is so good, and it really improves upon most things that were wonky with the base game.

I won't try to convince you about playing with an app, but I did play 2nd ed at gen con (well demoed it) and thought it fit the gameplay of MoM perfectly. So if you get a chance at some point, try it out.

-ryanjamal
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Sergei Chavo
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Vardaine wrote:

salty53 wrote:

A Cry For Help [CotW] - Top Tier
A Matter of Trust [CotW]
The Mind's Veil [CotW]
The Yellow Sign [POD]
The Dunwich Horror [CotW] - Great Tier
Blood Ties [Base]
The Fall of House Lynch [Base]
House of Fears [POD]
Yellow Matter [FA] - Good Tier
The Stars Aligned [CotW]
The Inner Sanctum [Base]
`Til Death Do Us Part [POD] - "Meh" Tier
Lost in Time and Space [FA]
Season of the Witch [POD]
Return of the Reanimator [FA] - Bad Tier
The Green-Eyed Boy [Base]
Classroom Curses [Base]
The Silver Tablet [POD] - Silver Tablet Tier

Why A Matter of Trust is rated so high, according to what i read it contains just some very basic staff for coop play and the goal of the mission "just survive" seems very generic.
 
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