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Mythic Battles: Pantheon» Forums » Sessions

Subject: My Mythic Battles Pantheon experience(s) rss

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Greetings, fellows!

I just noticed there are no gaming sessions available in english, so i'll share my experience with this awesome game!

I had the chance to discover the game when the "Mythic Tour" (the team behind the game went around France explaining the game, showing its amzing art & minis (first resin, then plastic versions) teasing us with maps, new units, rules updates... and of course actually playing it) came to my town not once, but twice - in several months span - so i have lots of information to share.
About the rules, and / or Gameplay.

Feel free to ask questions if needed, i'll try my best to be as precise as possible when answering

First of all, a quick background check.
Disclaimer: i don't know the exact details of the game's back story, so i'll use what i was told / remember, which might lead to some mistakes / changes in the final version

The Greek Gods lived their usual godly life, bickering one with another, turning humans who defied them to monsters, inspiring heroes to do heroic stuff, seducing humans whom they wanted to have good times with...
And then, the Titans rose again.
The Titans... who ruled the world even before the Gods did. Who gave birth to several of the first Gods (among which Zeus, Hades, Poseidon, Hera, who were Cronus' children. Cronus knew he'd fall because of his children thanks to a prophecy, and thus ate each of them as Rhea, his wife, gave birth to them. Until she managed to save Zeus by replacin him with a stone wrapped in swaddling clothes (stone known as Omphalos) and hiding him. Allowing, in short, the prophecy to be fulfilled after Zeus used an emetic given by Gaia to make Cronus disgorge the previously devoured infants. Together, after an epic battle and thanks to an alliance with Cyclopses, magical items & more, they managed to imprison him in Tartarus)
The Titans escaped from their inescapable Prison.
And weren't really looking for amends, or peace.

Thus, another Titanic War began.
It was apocalyptic. Almost a lost cause, with many Gods falling, and them only barely managing to overcome their enemy at a deer cost: Their divine essence. Oh, and the world as we know it.

The survivors were stripped of their immortality, of a large share of their powers (though they still were waaaay beyond mortals, hoeres, or monsters).
Also, the forces that were released upon the world went even beyond it, affecting Hades' Domain, the River Styx, mortality itself...

Fallen Monsters roamed what was left of the world once again. Thankfully for what was left of the world, many Champions also left Elysium or the hells they were supposed to spend eternity in.

And then, the remainig gods discovered that their fallen counterparts, and perhaps their own lost essence had taken shape in stones, scattered throughout the world. That they coud absorb said essence to regain what was lost. And thus an edge over the other Gods. And perhaps, by gaining enough power, might they be the new ruler of the other Gods, of what remained of the Pantheon.

Which lead them to gather forces, heroes, monster, troops to work under their Sigil, alongside with them, in an all-out race (allbeit a violent one, since competitors might be killed)for the stones. Which were named Omphalos, in memorandum of what allowed the Gods to rule in the first place.

I'll end this post here, as it is long enough, before i get to the meaty part : the game itself


edit: i'll be away for the week-end, i'll post the remaining parts when i'm back.
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I'll make the rules section a short one, since i already posted them while waiting for this post to be approved.
So just follow the link in case you missed them:

https://boardgamegeek.com/article/24068046#24068046

I'll follow this short one with some actual (lengthy) session reports,i hope you're ready for large wall of texts
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As i typed in the opening post, i was lucky enough to have the Mythic Team demonstrate the game in my area not once but twice in the span of a few months. Considering this, i'll focus slightly more on the second time since it's more recent, thus easier to remember (^^) with updated rules etc. But i'll still mention some of the games i played before that for those reaaaally curious

The first game i played [on the "second coming"] was set on the Tarturus map (which was brand new at the time).
The specifics of the map are cages in which "human" minis can come and go through, but larger creatures (monsters, Gods...) have to enter / exit through an actual door, those cages being meant to imprison such creatures (though currently unused).
The map is also divided by massive chains that run through it. Anyone can move across them, but units without the "climbing" trait will have to end their turn doing that.
Both those specific "landscapes" have a great tactical impact on the battles' outcomes, so don't treat them lightly (especially if your opponent doesn't.

It was a 2v2 game, me and my fellow God respectively picked Zeus & Ares, facing Athena & Hades.
I sadly didn't take notes, so considering i played several (many) games that week-end, in order to avoid mixing things or badly recalling, i'll avoid describing the complete armies. I'll focus, however, on the game's most impactful events (mainly focusing on me for, again, memory reasons ).

Since i'd played 5-ish games already during the first session, i decide to try something new, and keep my God (Zeus) out of the map for a while. I'll bring in Cerberus, and Medusa, both on the left side of the map (to help you visualize, there was a chain running across vertically, separating the map (not exactly) in half)



This photo doesn't come from my actual game, but it'll help you get a feel of it. I'll have to ask you to be imaginative here: me & Hades were on the right side of the picture, with our opposition facing us (obviously). You can see the larger chain in the middle that is harder to get across.

In the meantime, my teammate deploys Achilles and Spartans, soon to be followed by Ares on the other part of the map. He places his troops close to Omphalos, & with our placements, we basically control the map's center.
Our opponents have deployed many more troops, but they are all standing in their starting area, at the back of the map (or left, on the picture above).

Hades decides to make the first really offensive move by burning the fur of his traitor dog and Medusa's snake skin using his H*llfire. Resulting in both my troops being slightly wounded... but more than that, a response on my part. Medusa closes in and uses her petrifying stare on the God of the Underworld, turning him to stone (for a while).

A chain of reaction leads to Medusa's demise (which i had anticipated, weighing costs) right after she dared lay eyes on a God, especially to hurt him.Cerberus will also take some more hits.

Meanwhile, Ares is frantically running around, absorbing 2 stones (in different turns of course), using the diversion i provided.
On the left, the fight intensifies. I decide to bring Zeus in in order to fry some uglies' heads (and perhaps more ^^)... except... Cerberus is LARGE... quite large... and stands in the way, blocking line of sight (with extra "help" from the landscape). I don't have any activation cards for the hound, and using Art of War cards would, at this stage of the game, be too much of a cost to do that in my opinion, since i need those to actually throw lightning at my enemies (Hades is such a juicy target, being a statue).
So i decide to take the chained hits like a man (well, a h*llhound) thrown by Athena's units and her superior strategy (one of her powers allows the activation of THREE units in a turn, which will all target Cerberus... plus she sends her owl at him, to, annoyingly (and efficiently) pecking him).

Because of that, our team improvises a B plan: since Cerberus is stuck in a trench warfare (they hit him good, but not enough, while he blocks everybody at his location), we'll try to discreetly make it last while Ares will change his name to Hermes and will turn to a marathoner.
Worst case scenario: Cerberus will fall, which would still allow me to throw lightning at its slayerS (lightning bolt is a 9 die AOE) - to be fair, i was wishing for the hound's death at this stage, even though i'd later realize how key him being alive was... but... i was in a "i wanna shoot lightning" state of mind ^^)

Thus, Ares absorbs three gems by himself, while i move Zeus in a position allowing him to shoot on his next action, but, more importantly (and missed by our opponents), in range of another troop that will pick up the fourth Omphalos we needed, bring it up to Zeus, allowing him to assimilate it for the win!

Beyond winning, what was truly both unexpected and amazing was the absolutely INSANE combat rolls initiated by the God of War, Ares: a grand total of 0 for his WHOLE army ^^
We discussed this, and i asked if he didn't slightly feel frustrated by that, but no, he was in fact delighted to have used him in an unexpected way, and loved the sneakiness of our strategy.
And well, grabbing a win made it taste even better


.........


Slightly later in the afternoon, Benoit challenges me to a 1v1 game, again on the Tartarus map, since that table was available.
I immediately jump on the occasion: getting to play with the game's author isn't such a common thing. Plus, it was on a format i hadn't tried in either instances of Lille's Tour (except for shorter, introduction games). So yep, yep, yep, bring it on!

Our 12 points draft ended as such (not in that order, there were some synergy and counter picks)
On Benoit's side: Zeus, the Centaurs, Achilles, Cerberus, Atalanta, and the H*llhounds
For myself, Hades (the remaining God i'd yet to discover among the four starters), the Hydra, Odysseus, Heracles and the Amazons

The game starts pretty slow. our troops being closer to our respective right side. We are slowly securing Omphalos, closing to the center, but without really exposing our troops.
One absorb each.
[small cut as the game progresses in a standstill]
Heracles and Hades are still to the right of the center chain, Odysseus stands in the cage to the left with the Hydra, holding an Omphalos (since there were 4 on that side of the map, i HAD to place troops to prevent Benoit from simply absorbing 4 stones against my 3 and lead to my loss).

Zeus decides to bolt those impudent mortals, and, if unsurprisingly, Odysseus is thrown (projected) through the cage's bars, i am much, much more surprised by the landing place: by himself, facing Zeus, and with his troops right behind him. Gulp... (Odysseus is not much of a fighter, he is much more useful to do sneaky stuff with troops / manage your hand). This a a journey he won't make back home :'(
The Hydra will be moved, too, but in a way i didn't expect either.
Since it's a monster, it can ONLY enter / get out through the door, even when forced.
Door that happens to be on MY side of the map. Meaning the multi headed monstrosity will easily be able to take the position back. Which sparkles a plan in my mind...

I have absorbed all 3 Omphalos on (my) the right side, Zeus is behind by one, but a third is pretty much secured, i wan't be able to prevent Benoit from getting it.
Meaning, the only one left, the one we WILL fight for (unless someone manages to kill the opposing God) is the one in the cage. And, from that point on, i'll drive Benoit crazy.

The Hydra goes back in the cage, and attacks both Zeus & Cerberus from it. And... regenerates (it does so after each of its activation). Then does it again on my next turn, while Benoit moves the rest of his troops closer. Odysseus, still alive, uses that opportunity to make his last stand, and wounds Zeus before being killed (the same fate will happen to Cerberus).
At this point of the game, my draw deck is getting pretty thin (5 cards). I still haven't seen a SINGLE Amazon card, meaning they are among the rest), and i'm STARVING for Art of War cards. Hades' passive ability will help sustain that as the game progresses (each time a unit dies, he regenerates and draws, whoever controlled it), and so does Odysseus' death, as well as the Omphalos i absorbed (they can be used as if they were Art of War cards)
I need to buy some time. Hades just assimilated his 3rd stone, and Heracles isn't really good at climbing. However... he excelles at being a pain for his opponent. I have him jump over the chain, into the zone Achilles' in with others. Being a "blocker" Herc has to be taken care of. He was thrown back behind the chain, but spent an action to come back and prevent Benoit's reinforcements from moving towards the Hydra.
I knew the half god would end up dying at some point... but his passive, forcing some enemy dice to be rerolled when he is targeted, plus his good stats were really effective in the "buy time" area.
Moreover, his demise would mean more cards drawn, muhahahhahaa.

Through the game, i'll end up drawing all my deck TWICE (almost 3 three times), always managing to cycle things that would allow me to harass Zeus, keeping him really low health (though alive :'(). In order to have him survive, Benoit was forced to "recall" his centaurs time and time again to the God (they are protectors (unsure of the english name for the trait)) and use absorbed Omphalos to keep him alive, draining his Art of War cards like crazy, in spite of the Zillion Athena has access to & the huge hands he had because of me drawing my whole deck several times.
Thus, Benoit was really, really efficient (annoying ^^) at staying alive, but his offense was really diminished.

At some point, i'll end up getting Hades close to the melee, but not IN it. First, to keep on wounding Zeus and force Benoit's defensive plays, but my real plan was to have the lord of the Underworld slightly raise his toga, and run like a madman towards the cage where the hydra still was.
The monster then got out, holding the precious stone, which left a single turn to Benoit to take care of either it or Hades, both being almost full thanks to their regenerative abilities.
Which was not enough for him (in spite of a valiant and violent effort ^^)

To be fair, i've been REALLY lucky on the final turns (after i finished drawing my deck for the second time). Although i was playing to force Benoit into spending Art of War cards, if he had drawn an extra or two in a given turn, this could have turned for the worst for me. Basically, denying him the offense was the winning move, but it was pretty draw dependent (if he could have activated more units / used powers... the positioning would have been completely different, and thus the consequences)

Another lucky draw was me picking Hades, solely because he was the one i hadn't played with, so far (meaning that i could have played any other one, while he was perfect for how the game developed).
In a long lasting game, his regeneration is really, REALLY potent if you don't allow your opponent to hit you hard enough. Other gods have little to no option in healing (basically, absorbing Omphalos), thus, they only get weaker as the game progresses, while Hades can still hit hard after enduring hits (which makes up for his stats, not as good as Ares or Zeus')

Another stroke of luck was the "Hydra cage"). Had the door been on Benoit's side, the game would have been completely different.
...But hey, i was facing the game's author... i needed that to make it fair

Anyway, to give a "review":
that was by FAR my favourite game, all formats or games included.

On a short game, it is really REALLY hard to come back if a player figures something out before the other (for example, that movement is KEY, hi Ares, whom i thought was perhaps TOO good when one needs to absorb 2 stones (especially since, being Ares, he can still change his game plan to "bash the other's face" if needed))
I'm not speaking of a player knowing the game opposing a newbie, just a click in one player's game, that can make the short game TOO short.

2v2 is amazing! The fact you have to play with a partner, their strategies, that you have to face THEIR actions' consequences (and sometimes stare at them in shock ^^) is excellent. The game is dynamic, the ending often abruptly quick, but intense as the Underworld... It's all good.

But the 1v1 mode.... with its 12 drafting points, long term plan possibilities (since there's less chaos, uncertainty than when THREE players have a go before yourself), the option to go through your draw without it meaning the end of the game (again, 3 people with a full hand, especially two opponents, is tough to face. You CAN use that option, but unless you have a HUGE lead on the board, you're going to get hurt (as in, your team) hard).
Plus, actually WANTING to draw as much as i could instead of trying NOT to do it unless forced really felt different. Of course, your opponent still benefits from you being card hungry. It IS dangerous. But then again, only ONE opponents benefits that ^^
The game was also (slightly) longer than a 4 player game, which was a plus to me - that is easily explained because, when a players attacks a target, after an opponent's turn, the partner can aim the same thing. Making victory through killing much easier, especially if somebody plays recklessly.
It is much easier to chain resource hungry turns that will have a meaningful (if not decisive) impact on the game. 2v2 favours aggressive gameplay (again, not reckless ^^) while 1v1 is more balanced between positionning & offense - that is MY humble opinion, of course
And since i'm a planner (no, that doesn't mean APer ^^), i'm more keen on a more strategical game.

Now let's be clear: i REALLY enjoy the 4 player game. It's just that 1v1 is even better... I'll let you guess what happened in my pants upon realizing that ()

Between this, and the amazing minis we'll get by pledging (excluding SG, which will add even more <3 factor), i'll be there to try to snatch an EB for sure ^^

expect many edits for typos, adding forgotten words and so on
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pierre-alexandre vigor
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great review ! thank you
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