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Subject: Wyrd gone and done made themselves a right fine game, they have. rss

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Paul DeStefano
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And done the breach sprung open and ripped through the worlds. There on the far side stood Malifaux. All dust and weed and sweat wrapped in the smell of lamp oil and cracked leather. And soulstone. That’s the god damned thing of it, ain’t it? Soulstone.

Begins a new gold rush as it were, but ain’t no California people head to. It be Malifaux. Malifaux be just like here but ain’t nothing like it. Like the blind man describing the elephant. Tail like a rope, leg like a tree, trunk like a snake. All familiar bits. Now thrown together all askew to something new. Tophats. Gaslights. Cowboys. Banditos. Zombies. Things of flesh and fire and ice. Machines running on blood and steam. Muscle come one with brass and iron. Things that ain’t should be walkin, walkin.

All for the stone. Stone what powers magic. Magic be what powers everything else. See, comes the Guild, they think they can just lays claim on the breach and Malifaux and ration the stone. Ain’t nothing come along give them the right. But they come and claim it. They’d be the government, if the government weren’t straight up terrified of em. Lot of em come from south the border. The Arcanists, they be them who steep the soulstone and brew their spells. Golems, mages, what have you. They need soulstone for their little hobbies. Then there’s Ressurectionists. Ain’t nobody like them. Messin with tombs and tomes and things ought stay dead. You can figger what they need the stone for. The Neverborn - that’s mystery. Either these be things takin shapes from our nightmares, or for years untold we been havin nightmares dreamin of these there things. They’re the right natives at Malifaux, but nothing be right about them. Last there the Outcasts. They that want to get their fingers in. The hobos, the mercs, the dregs from both places. No rules, no law, just greed.

Comes these five to fight. And what a fight of such terrible noise and smoke.

Set pon the game table, the figures cut a fearsome figure indeed. One part Alice from her Wondyland, one part oh the laudanum visions of Tim Burton, one part Adams Family, one part dead rat, one part Bonanza, and a jigger full of what they be callin steampunk mixed in a chill dark comedy. Magic, bad tech, worse breath, whores, murderers, monsters, thieves, bandits and brawlers. Things ye seen a thousand times before, but never quite in this mix. A jarring jolt of familiar and not. A shot to the dark sensibility like whisky covered chocolate cherries.

Gather a crew from the teams. 5 ought do. Could be less. More fine if you got the time. Buy em in soulstone, but save some for your fancy casters. A ragged team of misfit terror. All details be in the Malifaux rule, ain’t no need for more books for your men or like. The book be a thing of fine dark beauty. Some round here say the errors be heapin high. Some, sure. A few pages done not by the best typesetting man. A few rules with minor words shifted and shimmied about in errata (downloadable on bgg or the wyrd site). Truth told, its far from terrible. The pages over run with pictures plenty and tales and tellings. Many rules you never need. For one, you only need them corpse rules if some crew brung along some necromantic scum. Salvage rules only iffn engineers raise they gangly necks. As for the ample list of abilities, no need to know. Once you hire or be facin off against some new foe, well, then look to what you might need know.

Most crews I reckon be 5 again. Master. Next in command. And a posse o minions. Minions be tricky dirt. Some get summoned. Gain and again. Some ain’t worth no effort, can’t dig no hole, can’t claim no victory. Some can’t nary touch a right man, but they mess with his mind and heart.

And there be plenty all to mess with. Each god forsaken crew member has a might stack o stats. Walkin. Runnin. Shootin. Thinkin. Yup, they be called other names, but that’s what they be. And wounds. And more abilities than you can safely shake a dead dry squirrel at. Again, I say only know the rules for who done come to the table. Ain’t no need learnin bits that ain’t never gonna happen. They just give you all them rules for when maybe you want more rabble. And don’t forget the erraty sheets for them there too. But you gets all the rules, and that’s a pretty fair shot deal.

Speakin on the deal, there’s an important one. Ain’t no dice in Malifaux. Ain’t one. But your fate be in the cards. Decks like similar to the one you find in any saloon, but all dipped in the grunge of Malifaux. The scenes be a bit on the darker tone. And clubs and heart? Nope. The crow and ram. A bit different, but not all too much. Again, like all things you find Malifaux, familiar, but not.

I go, you go. If you got more guys, you wrap them up afore we move on. Now, the rule book looks a daunt at first, but don’t be none scared. I can’t say too much times - only learn thems rules you need aright now.

All come down to some sort of fightin. Guns, spells, shovels, dirty boots or what have you. You got a number and a target. Say I got a 5. That’s my whatever. Boot throwing skill. It really don’t matter. I got a 5. Your boot dodging stand tall at 12. I flip a card off my deck. Darn things a 2. That’s as good as a dead cat at chasin rats. So I cheat. Well, its in the rules, but I cheat. I take a card from my hand. 9. 9 and 5 be bigger than 12. I win.

Don’t get my words awronged. It’s a bit more than that, but at the same time, that’s really the beating heart of all the challenges in Malifaux.

A deck of cards. A handful and a flip for high card. Sometime we both flip. Sometime one. Sometime flip a few cards, choosin what you like. Sometime them suits matter and thing, oh the things that can happen. If a card flip matches the right suit, sometimes there be some right up crazy happenins. Maybe like what others call a critical hit. Only here sometimes that means things more along the line of a disemboweling or other fine special ability. So you got to play them cards right. Know when to hold em. Know when to fold em and know when to use em to suck the last wheezed breath out of your enemy.

Cards. Yall seen em a million and a half time fore now, right? And miniatures. Well don’t that throw the darn monkey in the wrench? Rulers and decks. Ain’t nothing new. But put em together in a way ain’t been done much. An its kind of like making bread. Bread ain’t nothing like the ingredients. Egg? Ain’t no egg be found sitting in bread. But it ain’t bread without it. You see the train I’m ridin?

The crews be so small that you learn the tricks and skills pretty damn reasonable fast. This ain’t no mass combat field a thousand in an army.

This is personalities.

Tactics be choosin whether to freeze that there fella in his tracks or beat the skull out of that man a standin by that tree. Ain’t an easy choice. All and especial because you each got your goals, you each all also got some different and I mean secret goals. That’s right. Each play you got your objectives and some side jobs you might be runnin. I don’t know what side jobs you might be runnin, so I just want to make life a general hell all round for you. Sure, beatin that skull out that man’s head seems a sharp idea, but if that other man be headin to some secret reason thing, well, now, I don’t know just what to do. Is my foe darn dumb enough to let me think out his secret points, or is he just be a slick snake telling tales?

Damned if you do and damned if you do that other thing too.

When clocks run about an hour or so, chances are the whole thing be figured. See who done killed what, who stood where and what missy lied about what man an’ pull out a winner.

There’s more than I tell, sure as funeral rain. But ain’t nuthin more I can say to get you seein that this bundle o misfit distractions is more fun than slicing the head off an undead whore. Hell, if you don’t think that’s fun, well, then maybe you best just walk on out that door, because Malifaux ain’t your kind of place, stranger.
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Johan Rising
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I 'm not sure what's going on in this game, but if it can inspire a review like this, then it must be doing something right.
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David Mitchell
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Made me buy the rulebook!
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Yoki Erdtman
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Great review Paul, that was a fantastic read. I've heard lots of great things about Malifaux, and with your forces weighing in at about five minis, I'm very tempted to buy the game and some minis.

A few questions though. Are all the factions detailed in the main rules, or do you have to buy faction (army/codex/whatever...) books separately?

Is their any customization of your forces, beyond buying the minis? That is, can I outfit them with various weapons, assign stats as I chose, or is everything "hard-coded"?
 
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Richard Johnson
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Yokiboy wrote:
A few questions though. Are all the factions detailed in the main rules, or do you have to buy faction (army/codex/whatever...) books separately?


They are all detailed in the rulebook. You also get the stat cards with the miniatures. The only warning is there is a rather hefty rules change/errata which is not reflected in either.

Yokiboy wrote:
Is their any customization of your forces, beyond buying the minis? That is, can I outfit them with various weapons, assign stats as I chose, or is everything "hard-coded"?


Everything is hard coded. It's all in how you build your band and how they interact with each other.
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Paul DeStefano
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cuzzle wrote:
Everything is hard coded. It's all in how you build your band and how they interact with each other.


The wyrd thing here is that weapons are given stats AS IF you could drop it and pick up another.

Yet there are no rules for doing so.
 
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Justin Davis
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I read in one of the Wyrd Chronicles that they created the system where the initial rules were basic, hard-coded equipment, but were planning on adding the ability to swap around equipment at a later point. Maybe in the expansion coming out at Origins? Don't know.
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Yoki Erdtman
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Ruskicowboy wrote:
I read in one of the Wyrd Chronicles that they created the system where the initial rules were basic, hard-coded equipment, but were planning on adding the ability to swap around equipment at a later point. Maybe in the expansion coming out at Origins? Don't know.

Is there a scheduled expansion, I cannot find any details about this on Wyrd's web site?

Edit: Found expansions mentioned in the Wyrd Chronicles magazine, but no dates.
 
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Paul DeStefano
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Yokiboy wrote:
Is there a scheduled expansion,


In the original rulebook, mentions are made to rules not yet available, saying they will be detailed in upcoming works.

No schedule.
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Justin Davis
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My bad...looks like GenCon. In the Wyrd forums:

http://wyrd-games.net/forum/showthread.php?t=11681&highlight...

Malifaux Rules Demos
Want a detailed demonstration of Malifaux Core Rules or the new Book 2 Rules and a 5-minute booth demo won't cut it? We've got you covered. We're providing free hour-long demos and play sessions throughout the convention.

Malifaux - Book 2 Demo
Learn the rules of the just released Henchmen mechanics and practice with the newly-released Crews. Don't let your enemy win, take a second in command to ensure success.
Web site: http://wyrd-games.net/
Category: Non-Historical Miniatures
Rules: Malifaux (1st Edition)
Cost: $0.00
Duration: 01:00:00
Host: unknown (Wyrd Miniatures)
Age requirement: Teen (13+)
Experience requirement: Some (you’ve played once or twice)
Are materials provided: Yes
Tickets: 4 available
Thu 9:00 am - 10:00 am (NMN1009593)
Thu 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm (NMN1009595)
Fri 10:00 am - 11:00 am (NMN1009596)
Sat 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm (NMN1009598)
Sun noon - 1:00 pm (NMN1009599)
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Justin Robben
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dlminsac wrote:
Made me buy the rulebook!



I must be a damned moron...

I can't figure out how to just buy the rulebook...

So, I was going to take the plunge anyway and just buy 2 box-sets.

It still doesn't say it comes with a rulebook!?!

Where is the rulebook located, lol???

BYW, I am certainly getting:

Legion of Sorrow - Crew

Any other suggestions?
 
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Justin Robben
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Oh shoot...I just saw that figures are supplied "unpainted".

Forget that; that's my least favorite hobby...sigh...

Oh well; was a good read, Paul.
 
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Paul DeStefano
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Sorry Justin, unpainted.

And boxed sets contain no rules.
 
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Justin Robben
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Yeah, that's a shame...

I am a fool painter, so this is a deal breaker for me

Shame, as the game sounds awesome from your description and some of the stuff I paged through from their chronicles...

Again, excellent write-up, Paul. As usual...
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