I've just bought the Alien base set (haven't had the chance to play it yet) but I was curious how Firefly compares to Aliens and Predator. While I'm gladly expecting anyone to chime in, I'd appreciate especially the thoughts of those who have played all of them. Which one do you like the most? Why? Which one feels the most replayable, the most challenging or the most entertaining?
Oh, and one more thing..,Please, no discussions about the artwork...There are plenty of threads for that.
I've played and own all 3. Legendary alien is my favorite because I enjoy the theme and artwork the most.
Objectively, legendary firefly might be the best of the bunch both mechanically and from a replayability standpoint. It's not a revolutionary improvement over alien or predator but certain changes such as the inevitable card forcing a definitive end to the game therein shortening some games that could go on too long or adding the ship which can take damage and give you ongoing abilities both improve the system overall.
That said, the artwork in firefly is hit and miss which is a big sticking point for many. I felt the art was top notch in Alien and predator. Another main difference between the games is that predator has a competitive mode. This reduces the replayability of the coop game but improves it if you want to play that mode. I would rather play other deckbuilders for competitive play so that isn't a draw for me.
I say firefly is the most replayable because I think it has a more natural way to mix and match scenarios and characters whereas alien and predator feel tied to playing the set movie with their respective objective decks and characters. It's a personal preference not to stray outside the predefined scenarios in alien and predator. But keep in mind that predator only has 2 movies worth of objectives vs 4 for alien.
As far as difficulty goes, they can all be pretty tough. I've played alien the most and firefly the least, but depending on your player count, I would say predator is the toughest. It's really tough to tell. There isn't a huge difficulty difference between the three in my opinion.
The last thing I'll leave you with is that each game has something unique to it that may help sway your decision. For example, I love the idea of having a chestburster go into your deck after you are impregnated by a facehugger and you know it's going to rip out of your chest sooner than later and kill you. Predator has the competitive mode and it has a neat twist where you can "get to the choppa" to escape a scenario which is a partial victory rather than having to kill the predator. And firefly has a campaign mode of sorts and includes the ship and midgame upgrades which is neat.
You really can't go wrong with any of them. And I think the short answer is choose which theme you like most.