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Subject: BahdMufu reviews Nexus Ops rss

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Mister P
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NSW
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Introduction

This is my first review on the geek. I have been reading this site every day for a while now and decided to add my two cents. I am a gamer who loves the feeling of a 5 hour Ameritrash wargame and I have recently been turned onto the brave new world of Euro games. I game with my wife and daughters and I review with the enjoyment of the whole family in mind. I do enjoy a wide variety of games but my real love is a good wargame with models or miniatures to push about.

Overview
The description on the website here will tell you all you need to know about the plot of this one. Think about Avatar and StarCraft and you get the picture. A light wargame with plastic miniatures, dice, hexes, a simple monetary system, combat enhancing cards and cards that give you secret missions to achieve. I bought this puppy because it fills a nice hole. It has army building and combat like Axis & Allies but it is simpler, faster and is played as an all on all. I thought it would be great to play with the kids.

Gameplay
On your turn you spend Rubium tokens to build new units, then you send all your units off to explore and fight. All units move one hex but special rules allow different units to move more in given circumstances. If you have a mining unit on a Rubium Refinery they will be able to 'mine' and give you more Rubium for next turn. This is an important aspect of the game. If you neglect mining your army will shrink and you will suffer.

Combat is a single D6 for each unit and each unit attacks in order of biggest to smallest. The units require different amounts to count a successful hit and combat only goes for one round. Pretty simple stuff. Owner picks casualties.

You can download the rules at FFG so I won't say any more than that.

Stuff I liked
The four player aspect is great. Having opponents on three fronts keeps you on your toes and adds that begging, pleading and backstabbing element which some of you love (for my favourite example of this type of play see Cosmic Encounter).

One nice rule is that you can interfere with other people's combat to stop a leader from getting too far ahead. Do this by playing an Energise card for the player that is likely to lose.

When you lose a combat you get an Energise card. These give you some nice advantages in combat and as I said, can be played in other people's combats. When you end your turn controlling the Monolith you can take two Energise cards. A nice incentive to control the middle of the board.

Different units have different strengths and weaknesses and special abilities. You need to buy the units that meet your needs at any given time based on where you are, where you want to go and what you need to fight.

The most interesting aspect of this game is the Secret Missions. They say things like, cause a casualty with a human. A smart player must account for their Mission cards when planning their unit purchases and movements because these will give you precious extra Victory Points towards winning.

Victory Points?
If you attack and defeat an enemy you get a victory point card. If you achieve a Secret Mission you may get a few extra Victory Points from that. You can play to 8, 10 or 12, depending how long you want to play for. As soon as someone hits the target the game ends.

Having a dud hand of Secret Missions can cost you but you can always trade one for one Rubium (the game's cash). This can make a difference when you need something scary on the board.

Components
This is a well designed product. The miniatures are little monsters and come in some pretty pastel shades like lemon yellow and pink. The first edition had pieces that glowed under a blacklight and that turned some gamers on. I'm not fussed. This version works nicely. One complaint? My wife hates the little cards. The Secret Mission and Victory Point cards are those little ones. I'm used to little things but there you go. Some people say the board colours are too dark. I can clearly see what everything is. There are rock plains, liquifungus forests, crystal spires, lava somethings and the Monolith which can be flipped over to play the Vortex variant. These all come on modular hex based shapes (They aren't all on single hex tiles. I can't explain it any better than that).

The kids
The kids enjoy the game. They havn't figured out the need to plan according to your cards yet. They just try and make big monsters and crush. They are pretty clever though and I reckon they will become a force to be reckoned with after a few more games. I think the components help them to enjoy this game and eventually they will start to enjoy the nuances of the required tactics.

Ebb and Flow
This game is light and you won't find yourself getting too worried if your butt is being handed to you. You can come back from a bad situation. A game like Axis & Allies can suck hours of your energy and then p*** on your shoes with some horrible dice rolls at a crucial time. You may find yourself throwing dice, swearing, rage quitting etc. Not so with Nexus Ops. The pace and flavour keep this light and you should be able to manage a nice conversation while playing without too much analysis paralysis.

Bonus!
Nexus Ops comes with variants to how it plays and how you set it up. You can flip your reference cards over and all your monsters will function differently for the whole game. I haven't even gotten there yet and it is nice to know I have that option should I feel bored enough to try it.

Conclusion
This game does indeed fill that hole I hoped it would. I will never enjoy it as much as a hard slog of Axis & Allies, Horus Heresy or Shogun (Ikusa) but it is very much wargamey and the wife and kids can play too! I think I like this a bit better than Memoir 44. A nice game to play with your kids or with another couple. You can also play two-player if you need to and there are alternate set-ups for two-player variants which is great.

How much mileage you get out of this will depend on your gaming group. My wife doesn't mind the odd game of Axis & Allies etc but if you're lucky and persuasive enough you may be able to get your partner to play this with you. If your kids don't play with you then just don't feed them.
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Greg Syferd
United States
Hilliard
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Nice overview, well done!

I recently picked this up for my 9 year old and I as his first "dudes on a map" type game. He loves it and was actually able to become quite good at it after just a few plays.

It's a great intro for kids into this genre.
 
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Testy Testerson
Canada
Edmonton
Alberta
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BahdMufu wrote:
I'm used to little things but there you go.

This comment made me laugh because I have all the maturity of a 12 year old.

Quote:
If your kids don't play with you then just don't feed them.

While this one made me laugh because it was just funny.

Good review! I'm surprised by how many people discuss being able to get the wife/significant other into gaming with this. I would never have pegged it for that sort of game. Might have to pick it up to see if I can get my girly to try it out.
 
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United States
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My 9 year old daughter and 11 year old son love this game!
 
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Canada
Winnipeg
Manitoba
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I rather enjoy this game. It's a shorter game, has great components and is a dicey ameritrash that still allows for strategic play.

I liked reading your review so I tipped you some geek gold to go and buy a micro badge or two. Great first write-up. Keep it up and I'll keep reading.
 
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Mister P
Australia
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Thanks for the positive comments. I bought myself some micro-badges.
Oh yeah!

For those curious, Bahd Mufu is the name of my Greater Deamon of Khorne. Imagine saying bad mofo in a chaos tongue accent and maybe you can see where that came from. He will become my avatar when I can afford one.
 
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Matt Lee
United States
East Meadow
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Have another 5 gg towards your avatar.
 
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Christian Jorgensen
New Zealand
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Great review.

I bought a copy of the FF version last week, and I love it. The only componant that doesn't score a ten out of ten is the cards. I don't have a problem with the size, I just find them a bit on the thin side.
 
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