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Adam Mitchell
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As anyone interested enough to click on my profile can discover, I very rarely review games. I think the last one I reviewed was Shards of the Throne, the expansion for Twilight Imperium, Third Edition. That was and is an absolutely fantastic expansion, so when the weeks continued to pass by without a review for it appearing here on Boardgamegeek, I finally decided that it was up to me to write it myself. The same impetus motivated me here, since Trederra is a truly great expansion for the Shadows of Brimstone game.

One of the few yet persistent complaints I have read about SoB is that once your Heroes get to third or fourth level, the game ceases to be sufficiently challenging. Trederra addresses that problem in a very big way.

Simply put, Trederra is FAR more dangerous than any Other World! Being an active warzone, it is heavily patrolled by multiple armed forces. This is represented in the game by partrol markers, one of which you get every time you fail the Hold Back the Darkness roll. When you gain a patrol marker in this manner, you must roll for discovery: You roll two dice, and if the result is less than the number of Heroes plus the current number of patrol markers you've accumulated, then discard all patrol markers and you are Ambushed by a Trederran Threat card!

Let me give you an idea of just how dangerous Trederran Threat cards are. Our two Level Five Heroes, a US Marshal and Gunslinger, found a Trederran Battle Group Threat card on the first tile they moved onto. We had to face a Mutant Lieutenant, two Z-4 Grenadiers, two Mutants (we were facing the Royal Foundry) and four Legionnaires! Now granted this is the worst of the Trederran Medium Threat cards and several things went wrong for us, admittedly, but this collection of Enemies still burned up our Revive token, KO'ed the Marshal and forced the Gunslinger to flee! Our first enemy encounter of the Mission, and the Medium Trederran Threat we faced DEFEATED ussurprise! Aside from perhaps the Young Adult Swamp Raptor, I can't think of another Medium Threat in the game which could have beaten us like that!

A brief description of the types of Trederran soldiers would probably be appropriate here. The Legionnaires have a number of shots equal to the Posse's highest Hero Level with four Damage, so they're pretty frightening. Additionally, you have to roll individually for each Legionnaire at the start of their activation. On a six, that Legionnaire targets a random Hero with a free Shatter Grenade attack! Shatter Grenades do a mere d3 explosive damage to everyone in the space and adjacent to it, but they also bestow a Stunned marker on each person, which lowers that model's Defense by 1. You get to roll a die at the beginning of each round and on a roll of four or better you can discard a Stunned marker. You only get a -1 Defense no matter how many Stunned markers you have, but think for a moment about just how devastating a -1 to your Hero's Defense can be, especially in a place where the lead is flying as fast and furiously as in Trederra.

Then there are the Z-4 Grenadiers, heavily armored troopers immune to Critical Hits, Explosives and Stunned markers! They're also heavily contaminated by Dark Stone, meaning any Hero who starts an activation adjacent to them takes two Corruption hits. They advance to make powerful combat attacks, but they are slow-moving and at the end of each round when they haven't yet reached an enemy they toss a Thermal Charge, an explosive which causes 2d6 wounds to the person in whose space it lands!

Those soldiers who have lost their minds to multiple mutations become savage Mutants, fit only to be herded towards the enemy lines. Mutants have no defense, but they do have a lot of Health, a huge number of combat dice, Endurance 4 (meaning no hit can do more than 4 damage to them), Dark Stone Radiation 1, heal one Wound at the start of each round for every corruption icon on their space and any adjacent spaces, and lastly they have the benefit of Frenzy, doing three Combat Hits for each six they roll!

Finally we come to the Trederran Lieutenants, the most formidable members of the Trederran armed forces. So far we've only faced one, and that was the one who defeated us. Lieutenants are all Tough and they all get to draw one of the five Master Forged Wargear cards. Our Mutant Lieutenant got a Void Sabre, an Excalibur-like blade which gave him +2 Combat, and made every Combat Hit roll of a six do +2 damage while bypassing the target's Defense and Armorsurprise!

Furthermore, there are three types of Lieutenants: Mutant, Battle and Communications, and from the intriguing special benefits Mutant Lieutenants get, I'm willing to say that each kind of Lieutenant is very different.

The type of Lieutenant is also important because each round, on die roll of 3+ or better, a Lieutenant gives an Order from the ten card Trederran Order deck. The Lieutenant you're facing dictates which orders he can give. I have reason to suspect that the Mutant Lieutenant gives the weakest Orders, but even those were still very powerful! For example, the one we faced gave the "Take Cover" order, which gave all Trederran Soldiers a 5+ Cover save that round!

Even the mere SPIDERS on Trederra are more lethal than on any Other World! Trench Spiders have Burrowing, which lets them move through other models and gives them a 5+ Cover save, even from Combat Hits! They also have Scavenging, which gives them an additional point of damage per Hit for each Corruption point the victim possesses! Of course on Trederra few creatures other than the Trederrans can hope to survive, so the Trench Spiders and the mighty Engorged Slashers are limited to one Trederran Threat card each.

And let's not skip over the environment itself! Aside from the already mentioned patrol mechanic, Trederra has radiation icons on many of the board spaces. Anyone who starts a round in such a space or passes through it during his move takes one Corruption hit. There are also pieces of Cover on many board sections, which both sides can use to shield themselves during battle, and which further add to the tactical nature of battles in Trederra.

At least one poster has asked if Trederra increases the tactical aspect of the game. I can unreservedly say that yes, it does. Cover provides for tactical maneuvering, while the radiation icons force you to weigh your movements carefully. You have to make choices about which type of soldiers to target first. Is is more strategically advantageous to make the Lieutenant your primary target, despite his Toughness and high Health? Should you concentrate on taking out the normal Legionnaires first or pour fire into the Weapons of War team veterans manning the Dark Stone Laser Destroyer? Is the charging Mutant or advancing Z-4 Grenadier the greater threat? If you're fighting in the middle of a minefield (which can most certainly happen; the Minefield is a truly awesome Trederran Encounter card!) should I stay back instead of rushing to get adjacent to my enemies and hopefully forcing them to Combat me instead of firing at me?

The Trederran Encounter cards are extremely dangerous, the Minefield card serving as a sterling example. The expansion comes with around thirty minefield tokens, which show a pile of dirt on one side and either nothing or a skull and crossbones on the other. When you encounter the card you mix up the tokens and place them all face down on the spaces of your current map tile. Every space you move into you have to make a Luck 5+ check (which you can add to by spending one Movement point per extra die you want to roll; the slower and more carefully you move, the less chance of setting off a mine!) or flip over the token you're on. If it's nothing, all is well; if not, you take d6 explosive damage, as does everyone adjacent to you, then you have to roll for each adjacent token to see if the explosion set it off as wellsurprise!

I think FFP has done an incredible job of making it truly seem like you're venturing onto a planet in the middle of a centuries long war! Moreover, they've done an equally impressive job of portraying how thoroughly Dark Stone poisoned this world is! Between the area of contamination on the board, a large percentage of your Enemies emitting Dark Stone Radiation, and Trederran Encounter cards those venturing into Trederra can expect to mutate early and often, much more frequently than in any Other World. I think the number of mutation-related deaths among Heroes is going to take a sharp spike upward for Posses who use this expansion.

Another feature: Trederra has its own Battlefield Scavenge deck for those who want to scavenge on this world. Though I got hit hard by drawing one particular card twice, it does seem more forgiving than the standard Scavenge deck and thus makes the idea of Scavenging considerably more tempting.

One of the very best aspects of this expansion, for me, is the sheer and incredible VARIETY it offers! Each Trederran force you encounter will be aligned with one of the six major Trederran nations, each of which offers different and distinguishing abilities for their troops. There are three distinct types of Lieutenants, with five possibilities for Master-Forged Wargear for them to possess, and each one is able to give a selection of ten different and powerful Order cards. There's also eight different Weapons of War cards, the special and effective weapons which Trederran Legionnaires can possess (Naturally such powerful items are only given to Trederran veterans, meaning they are Tough and have double the Health of normal Legionnaires)! And of course all of this is in addition to the normal Threat and Encounter cards for this most excellent of Other Worlds! Trederra truly is a Deluxe Other World.

Which isn't to say it is entirely without flaws. Granted, there is a lot to remember, so you have to make sure your mind is sharp and ready when you're doing a Trederran Mission. Also, there are mask air hoses and carbine straps among the models which are attached to sprues. It's a VERY bad idea to attach such thin portions of the model to sprues and as a result I have several broken hoses and straps on my models. Not a huge thing, but annoying.

I would also caution those with newbie Heroes from venturing into Trederra at all! As has hopefully come across clearly in this review, Trederra is an extremely challenging Other World and much more suited to Heroes Level Five or higher than lower level posses.

And I think that about does it. Please feel free to post here if you have any additional questions.
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Ken H.
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Great review! I can't wait to play this.
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Scott Everts
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"Nobody gets me. I'm the wind, baby!" - Tom Servo
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Very informative! Thanks. The expansion sounds amazing. Quite a step up from Cynder. I hope Blasted Lands and Derelict Spaceship are as well fleshed out.
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Matteo B.
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All right. Then, fine. The title is "Cheese Song". Eh-hem. Hn... Here I go:
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Pizza mozzarella~ ♪ Pizza mozzarella~ ♪ Rella Rella Rella Rella~ ♪ Rella Rella Rella Rella~ ♪ Rella Rella Rella Rella~ ♪ Pizza mozzarella~ ♪
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Thanks for this review Adam, very interesting
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Steve de Vries
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Great review! With every new expansion, big or small(The Flesh Stalker gotta be my favorite at the moment), FFP raise their own bar. Trederra is no exception. This means that expectations for Blasted Wasted & Derelict Ship will be insanely high!

We encountered the minefield once, it was hilarious! I do hope they continue this difficulty trend with Forbidden Fortress as well!
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Rob Keetlaer
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Great review, and a lot of fun to read. This gives me a good picture of this expansion. I'm looking forward to the Wave 2 "little" package to arrive on my doorstep. This expansion might get some early attention from me!

Just one minor point/question:
Solan wrote:
(...) Our two Level Five Heroes, a US Marshal and Indian Scout, (...) Medium Trederran Threat (...)
Why a Medium Threat for two Heroes? Usually it is a Low Threat for one or two.
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Adam Mitchell
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RobKeet wrote:
Great review, and a lot of fun to read. This gives me a good picture of this expansion. I'm looking forward to the Wave 2 "little" package to arrive on my doorstep. This expansion might get some early attention from me!

Just one minor point/question:
Solan wrote:
(...) Our two Level Five Heroes, a US Marshal and Indian Scout, (...) Medium Trederran Threat (...)
Why a Medium Threat for two Heroes? Usually it is a Low Threat for one or two.


Thanks! I would definitely recommend giving Trederra early attention; the world deserves it.

To answer your question, we found at Level Three that facing Low and High Threats had simply become too easy; it wasn't even a challenge for us anymore. So we switched to Medium and Epic Threats, and that has worked out much better. I highly recommend switching Threat levels for any two Hero posse who is finding the going insufficiently challenging.
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J M
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Just yesterday our level 6/5 posse of Lawman and Preacher had to flee like cowardly dogs from the Konfederacy army. That army spawns D6-3 new legionnaires every turn, and they were all going on initiative 9 thanks to the Comms Lieutenant.

We'd managed to knock down the Lt's 27 hit points (he gets a 5+ save on every hit with his Shimmer Shield, and he rolled 5s and 6s against all seven of my hits on one turn) and had only two legionnaires left when we were ambushed due to the patrol markers. Looking at the four Brutal Mutants' EIGHT combat and TWENTY hit points each (not counting the additional legionnaires) we called it, after already having used up our revive token.

"Ok, roll 24 armour dice" is a thing when playing in Trederra.
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Adria D
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AceAceBaby wrote:
"Ok, roll 24 armour dice" is a thing when playing in Trederra.

So is "roll 72 armor dice."



Brutal Elite Legionnaires, level 8 posse.

Shots: 8 each x 3 targeting Mongo = 24
Damage per shot+ 4 + 2 (faction) + 1 (Darkness card) + 2 (Elite ability) = 9

After Defense (and Grit!), 72 wounds (8 hits) were heading Mongo's way. After armor (and Grit!), he took 27 wounds.

The two hero posse survived the fight, thanks in large part to the Marshal's Badge - they wiped out more than half the room (6 Legionnaires + 3 Z4 Grenadiers) after that first volley from the Legionnaires.
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Ken H.
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Wow!

I need more dice....
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Adam Mitchell
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Rubric wrote:
Wow!

I need more dice....


You're also gonna need a bigger gun . . .
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Adam Mitchell
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One important thing I realize I forgot to mention in my review: the rulebook states that you draw a Trederran Nation card the first time in each game that you encounter an Enemy with the keyword "Trederra". The Trederran Raiders have that keyword, so it is now possible to fight Raiders from all of the Trederran Nations, not just the Union (whose soldiers have no distinguishing features).
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Max Caine
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One thing Solan forgot to mention is the missions. As with the core sets and Cynder, the missions are part mines (2), and part Otherworld (4). However, unlike Cynder and the Core sets, ALL the mines-specific missions are Trederran themed, which is very welcome. Furthermore, other than the obligatory "let's go to the otherworld" mission the Trederran-specific missions start you in Trederra, so there's no fiff-faffing about finding a gate. I sincerely hope that Blasted Wastes and Derelict Ship follow this as the missions are a definite step up for SoB.
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