Pandemic Legacy

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Pandemic Legacy

Postby ConMan » Mon Feb 08, 2016 11:32 pm UTC

Given how much discussion of the game has occurred in the Gaming Fleeting Thoughts thread, maybe it's worth its own discussion.

Of course, as a courtesy, if you're going to be discussing spoilers then please put them in an appropriate spoiler tag with the month marked.

For those looking at this thread out of curiousity, Pandemic Legacy Season 1 is a board game that takes the original design of Pandemic - a co-operative game where players take the role of CDC members trying to find cures to four deadly diseases that are spreading across the world - and adds an additional Legacy mechanic where there is a persistent campaign across twelve in-game months. As the game progresses, stickers are added to the board and character cards, new components are brought in, some components are destroyed, and a plot unfolds. It became the #1 ranked board game on BoardGameGeek soon after release, and stayed there despite a bunch of people who didn't like it trying to organise a campaign to give it the lowest possible score.

Also, note that the game already comes with the subtitle "Season 1". Co-designers Matt Leacock and Rob Davieau have both talked about how they're currently designing Season 2, and if all goes well it will be released some time next year. It will be a standalone game, although the plot may reference some of the events of the first. And despite not having finished Season 1 yet, I am excited (although I have no idea what we'll do with our copy of Season 1 since it's quite a big box to be sitting around for nostalgia purposes).
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:48 pm UTC

We were talking about how all the small pieces would be useful for filler parts in other games. In our game one person has been pretty consistently playing the medic and wants the medic's character card at the end of the game.

We have another group of friends who play it in the open board game night I go to and it's so strange to see their board because it's so different from ours. They're pretty much in the same spot (we finished August, they're somewhere around there), but their board looks like a completely different world.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:12 pm UTC

I'm only playing twice a month, so it's going to be a while before I finish - should play May this weekend - the other people at the open gaming group I play it at with a copy will be playing April. At the end of March, our two boards were fairly similar - 6 panic each, several research stations - the differences come from their having lost their first attempt at January, and having more eradication unlocks on their diseases (my game has only eradicated red in the un-game I played as April #3 so it remains un-named) - April really did a number on my board - something like 14 panic added over two games, a number of rioting cities, and a minor >spoiler< leak. Still no scars though (unlike the other game, where the Medic got caught in their January disaster) - the second April game ended Epidemics two turns running, with the fallout from the second hitting a newly created chain twice, which would have led to an outbreak in an occupied city except the other end of the chain used up enough cubes to end the game just before the scarring outbreak would have happened...

I do know pretty much every spoiler there is going (so I've been quiet about long-term implications of certain things).

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Feb 09, 2016 5:05 pm UTC

Asia was...basically hosed in my game. We cheerfully embraced quarantines, etc to limit the damage, but some cities fell, and just became nightmare deathtraps. The later games had a strong race element to them, for sure. The US and what not was basically a gimmie area, and we eradicated that color(blue, if memory serves) in basically every single game. Once you dial up all the improvements for a given disease, it's just a really low investment thing to pull off.

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Tue Feb 09, 2016 5:26 pm UTC

I guess we're doing pretty well compared to others. I think our highest panic level in a city is maybe 3, and that's only in one or two cities. So far (eight months) we only lost three games, and I think we only lost April as a whole month.
Minor spoilers (up to August):
Spoiler:
We have seven permanent military bases and three research stations. Only one character has scars and those were intentional (with that new ability) because we figured we won't need them anymore. Our Coda is black and it only outbreaked to yellow and even those cities are roadblocked now. Red and yellow have almost three disease upgrades, blue has one or two...
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Tue Feb 09, 2016 7:38 pm UTC

Spoilers to end of April:
Spoiler:
We have black COdA and eradicated blue in January, February and March, and Yellow in February. January upgrades were level 1 (Cure anywhere) for Blue and permanent research station in Hong Kong, then February we got Blue 2 (Cure anytime) and Istanbul got a permanent research station. March, the Medic got Local Connections (Treat neighbour 1/turn) and Veteran (join the military). The Scientist got Co-Workers with our Generalist and Rivals with Quarantine, while Ops is Family of Quarantine

Both games in April, we played the same team - Quarantine, Ops, Scientist, Medic - first game, Istanbul was one of the starting 3-cube cities, but we kept it Quarantined for a while - eventually the Quarantine fell and Milan and St Petersburg joined the Faded. City Zero is Mumbai. That game fell apart when Beijing and Shanghai got hit in either the same Infection step or consecutive ones and both went from nothing to riots in almost no time. The actual death-blow was struck by Faded outbreaks when we had the final cure in hand. Ops got Local Pressure (Quarantine neighbours from a Military Base) and we made a military base in Kolkata permanent.

Second game, things were again almost in hand when we got second and third Epidemics on consecutive turns, leaving Bogota and Sao Paolo both at 3 cubes and both in the top 3 of the Infection Deck with no Events to save us. Ops was in Mexico City with 2 cubes. Luckily for him, we had three other yellow cubes already out somewhere so by outbreaking Buenos Aires before Mexico City and needing one more cube than was available, the game ended just before he would have got scarred. San Francisco and Jakarta got permanent military bases out of the deal.

I played a third April game for fun (not making any permanent changes) with the same team, starting with 3 Faded in Istanbul, which then spent the entire game quarantined, 5 red cubes in Jakarta and Ho Chi Minh City, 3 yellow in Khartoum, and scattered other cubes (and a lone Faded in Riyadh). Medic started and cleared his way down to Jakarta, then Quarantine Shuttled to Istanbul, dropped a marker, and moved down to Khartoum to place another marker (Family Member bonus action). Scientist, with 2 yellows in hand, Kinshasa in Ops' hand, and Johannesburg in Quarantine's, spent the entire turn moving to Johannesburg (shuttle to Istanbul and walk). Ops shuttled to Istanbul, setup a Military Base, discarded a black card to move to Kinshasa, and built a Research Station. About now, an Epidemic hit and Lagos got 3 cubes and Collapsed when redrawn. Medic recleared Jakarta, moved to Kinshasa via Istanbul (Military and regular Shuttles) and treated Lagos. I forget the exact details of the next few turns, but Quarantine handed off Johannesburg and the Scientist moved to Kinshasa, took the fourth yellow and cured it. Ops built a military base in Kinshasa before moving to deal with some problems in red territory, and the Medic visited Khartoum, Lagos (discarding a spare yellow), Sao Paolo and Bogota to clear the last 9 yellow cubes and eradicate it. Ops passed through Istanbul a couple of times to lay down precautionary quarantines in between dealing with red infections, Quarantine ended up in the US when blue cards started turning up, joined by the Scientist after curing Red. Osaka took an outbreak that I could have prevented, but only by risking worse elsewhere, and the Medic took a walk that cleaned up most of it. With 5 cards left in the player deck, including an Epidemic, and only a cure for Blue needed to win, Quarantine had 4 blues and a couple of others in hand, the Scientist was in Washington holding it, but Quarantine wasn't going to get another turn to come collect it. The Scientist discarded Washington to fly to Jakarta, Quarantine used Rivals to pick it up, and then the Scientist used their remaining actions to finish eradicating red for the first time. I had a Forecast in hand, so played that to set up a red/yellow infection draw after the Epidemic failed to appear, Ops moved to South America and built a Military Base in Bogota to give me that objective as well, and then Quarantine cashed in the 5 blues out of turn to end the game with only 2 outbreaks, 2 diseases eradicated, and military bases in all 6 regions.

Sadly, it doesn't count, so I don't get to name red, don't get to upgrade it or yellow, and don't get to use the April win bonus...

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Wed Feb 10, 2016 4:41 am UTC

I just finished the campaign last night. Final score 663/1000 (yes, there's a scoring mechanic at the end to judge your progress). This is one of the greatest boardgames of my life.

Spoilers for everything:
Spoiler:
Man, we fucked up Asia *real bad* (our CODA was red). Half of it is fallen, most of the rest is collapsing. It was a damn good thing we had some funding in December so we could airlift the immunologist in, or else we'd have been literally incapable of *entering* some parts of it. Three red cards to enter a roadblocked fallen city is *harsh as hell*. As it was, we still had to just do a "gentle loss" in early Dec, because we knew there was no way to get all of CODA immunized in a single game. That meant an easy win in late Dec, luckily.


Has anyone had to open Box 8 yet? We finished without it and opened it up afterwards, and it was... interesting. ^_^

Some power combos we discovered, minor spoilers for, hmm, I guess up to April:

Spoiler:
Medic with Pilot (free movement all over the board) and Remote Treatment (fucking DUH). Good LORD, he saved our asses over and over again with this. It got a little difficult late game, as you can't fly into rioting+ cities with Pilot, but whenever our Medic player (my wife) got hold of a Parachute it was still quite nice.

Researcher + Scientist with the Coworkers relationship. This basically just doubles the Scientist's hand limit and card gain. It's *ridic* for early disease curing, if you can spare the slots (though midgame you're probably needing more military so this goes by the wayside).

Quarantine Specialist + Local Pressure (can quarantine adjacent if in a military base) + 2 or 3 military bases in the CODA region. No need to waste time moving! The QS can keep the entire fucking place locked down no problem with this, with an occasional Remote Quarantine when necessary.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby ConMan » Wed Feb 10, 2016 5:14 am UTC

Xanthir wrote:Some power combos we discovered, minor spoilers for, hmm, I guess up to April:

Spoiler:
Medic with Pilot (free movement all over the board) and Remote Treatment (fucking DUH). Good LORD, he saved our asses over and over again with this. It got a little difficult late game, as you can't fly into rioting+ cities with Pilot, but whenever our Medic player (my wife) got hold of a Parachute it was still quite nice.

Researcher + Scientist with the Coworkers relationship. This basically just doubles the Scientist's hand limit and card gain. It's *ridic* for early disease curing, if you can spare the slots (though midgame you're probably needing more military so this goes by the wayside).

Quarantine Specialist + Local Pressure (can quarantine adjacent if in a military base) + 2 or 3 military bases in the CODA region. No need to waste time moving! The QS can keep the entire fucking place locked down no problem with this, with an occasional Remote Quarantine when necessary.

Spoiler:
Our coworker Researcher-Scientist is our definite power-pair, which did look a bit shaky for a while since the Scientist got caught with a couple of scars, but she's now quite Grizzled and so as long as she stays away from the faded she's fine. To add to that, she's rivals with the Operations Expert, so whenever he discards a card to go from a base to wherever, she can scoop it right up. And he's also got Local Pressure so he can drop a base, quarantine it, quarantine an adjacent city and still have an action left over.

Actually the rivals relationship was amazingly good for us a couple of times - one game we managed to play our lonely two funding cards about three times each; in another, our scientist needed one more card for a cure, which the OpEx had, but we couldn't see a way to get it to her. Until she needed to discard a card for other reasons, and whoops! Operations Expert discarded two cards to pick it up, and so good old Scientist discarded two of *her* cards to grab one that he'd just discarded, enough to make that final cure.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Wed Feb 10, 2016 7:15 am UTC

ConMan wrote:Actually the rivals relationship was amazingly good for us a couple of times - one game we managed to play our lonely two funding cards about three times each; in another, our scientist needed one more card for a cure, which the OpEx had, but we couldn't see a way to get it to her. Until she needed to discard a card for other reasons, and whoops! Operations Expert discarded two cards to pick it up, and so good old Scientist discarded two of *her* cards to grab one that he'd just discarded, enough to make that final cure.[/spoiler]


Spoiler:
Yeah, Rivals is definitely the best relationship, hands down. Almost every game with Rivals in it has had some really useful card-trading as a result.

We also had one of those "re-use the same funded event 3 times" games, and it was *amazing*. ^_^
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby pseudoidiot » Wed Feb 10, 2016 1:44 pm UTC

Xanthir wrote:I just finished the campaign last night. Final score 663/1000 (yes, there's a scoring mechanic at the end to judge your progress). This is one of the greatest boardgames of my life.
That's about what we finished with.

Also, no one is mentioning what is obviously the most important part of the game: what are you naming your eradicated diseases?

This is what we had:
Yellow: Bovine Papillomavirus (BPV)
Red: Reptilia Chlamydia
Blue: Ursa Syphilis

Our favorite combo was the Researcher and Generalist as co-workers. Then the generalist had a couple hand limit upgrades and I forget what else.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Wed Feb 10, 2016 1:44 pm UTC

I'm not convinced by Pilot on Medic - Dispatcher seems like a better candidate for it, though I guess spreading out the upgrades ends up with four upgraded characters and a new guy with a useful power all competing to not be the one left on the bench. There's something to be said for loading the Generalist up with the better upgrades - she's not so great out of the box, but with 4 upgrades on top of her extra action and whatever relationships do (since this paragraph is outside spoilers) she's going to be pretty handy.

Spoilery combos (through April):

Spoiler:
The Quarantine Specialist gets less benefit from Local Pressure than anyone else since she gets a superior version once on her turn as one of her character abilities - if you're only dedicating one character to Quarantine each game, and you're committed to always bringing her whenever you're worried about Quarantines; if you're prepared to share responsibility for Quarantine between two characters, or want more flexibility in who to bring when Quarantine's on your priority list, then giving Local Pressure to anyone else is a better choice. Ops has particular synergy with Local Pressure, letting him quarantine a neighbouring city for two actions with no other requirements - or spend his turn quarantining his current city and two neighbours.


Endgame spoiler for Xanthir:

Spoiler:
Did you clear out the military, and did you need Team Bravo? And how do you feel about getting points for eliminating all military bases?

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby pseudoidiot » Wed Feb 10, 2016 1:50 pm UTC

Oh, and amusing story for box 8.

Playing through I totally failed at reading so instead of opening *door* 8. I opened up *box* 8. I remember being confused at the time, but I was so focused on there being something numbered 8 and wanting to know what was in the box, that we ended up opening that instead. Didn't realize the mistake until the very end of the game when door 8, which

Spoiler:
Lets you build permanent road blocks. And it was too late to make any use of it at that point.


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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Wed Feb 10, 2016 2:01 pm UTC

Fuck September.

September spoilers:
Spoiler:
We were doing really well! I suppose we still are doing very well - we completed all of our searches on the games they were introduced, we had a military base in each region... Our starting layout was not so fun for Sep (two triple-cities in the coda area) but we were managing it. Then we found the soldier and lost our colonel. Could have been worse - we have coworkers between researcher and quarantine specialist, and we also had our medic, but it still means we lost the medic-colonel rivalry which was pretty great. Our colonel was doing very well too. Blech. But, we still won it. The plot twist was really surprising, actually.


October spoilers:
Spoiler:
Brought our operations expert out of retirement (we let him have two scars since we were like "We're not going to need more structures yay!"). We did OK, but we don't have any vaccination plants. At least we're starting to bring down the coda-region's military bases. I think we're doing very well so far. Gave our operations expert an extra scar slot as an end-game upgrade, and hopefully next round we'll start vaccinating cities. We also gave our researcher the "can fly between any structures" upgrade and now she's practically a military character as well, and since she can just give all her cards to the quarantine specialist from wherever, she's free to move around and do other stuff.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Wed Feb 10, 2016 2:03 pm UTC

pseudoidiot wrote:Didn't realize the mistake until the very end of the game when door 8, which

Meh, we didn't really use that ability much.
Spoiler:
We had one outbreak of faded into a different region so we used roadblocks to disconnect that city from the rest of the untainted region. It's proven useful, but permanent structures, character upgrades, and eradication bonuses proved more useful.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Wed Feb 10, 2016 11:18 pm UTC

Zohar:
Spoiler:
On the other hand, we used permanent roadblocks a *lot*. Our CODA was red, so we sealed the red/black boundary, which was great. Our Beijing and Seoul both ended up having bad times and falling around September iirc, so we sealed them both off completely so we could ignore them for the rest of the game. And then we had a handful of other permanent roadblocks scattered thruout red just to reduce the impact of outbreaks and reduce the chance of big chain-outbreaks killing us, since we lost our Quarantine and Colonel to scars and our Soldier to betrayal, so we had basically no way left to kill any CODA. :/


rmsgrey:
Yeah, Pilot on Dispatcher would have been pretty useful too, but Dispatcher is already so good at flinging people around (especially if you've placed buildings well) that it's not a huge thing. That said, I might go for that next campaign - we wanted to put more upgrades on Medic several times, but weren't able to.

I really wish we'd started playing Generalist early, as she seems like she'd be pretty great if you stack some good upgrades on her. We skipped her the first few games, and then started getting into trouble and couldn't afford to play someone without anything special on them, so she never actually saw play the entire time. :/

And of course, disease names:
Blue: Disco Fever
Yellow: Ass Full o'Bees
Black: DIABEETUS

pseudoidiot: ...so all your diseases come from fucking animals?
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Feb 11, 2016 12:44 am UTC

Xanthir wrote:we wanted to put more upgrades on Medic several times, but weren't able to.


Strictly speaking, you could have - you're allowed to overwrite character upgrades (but not pretty much anything else), though it would have meant being one upgrade down the rest of the campaign...

One of the things to contemplate for a second run (if you do one) is which characters you want to end up playing with most, and what stickers you want them to have. With the benefit of foresight, you can plan your build and work towards it rather than stumbling into one...

Or you can call it quits and wait for Season 2 to come out, which is also perfectly reasonable.

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby ConMan » Thu Feb 11, 2016 3:14 am UTC

We would've been using our generalist more, but she was the only person to take a scar in the very first game and we were somewhat paranoid of using her after that. She's made a reappearance, though, now that "having a scar" is practically par for the course.

Also, our diseases:
Red: Tsundere
Yellow: Kuudere
Black: Yandere

Assuming we get a chance to name blue, it shall be Deredere.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Thu Feb 11, 2016 5:55 am UTC

Wife's already ordered another copy, so we'll play a 2p campaign ourselves. I'm curious how that will go! I suspect we'll play the Generalist, though there's something in me that wants to just go with the Researcher/Scientist Coworkers combo as much as possible.

December spoilers:
Spoiler:
Also, I don't *think* we were cheating, but you can still use Binoculars on the final Search, right? It's a weird search, but it's still a Search, and each Binoc should still let you jump past two things? We used it to get a really nice 5-point search action off, with my turn spent carefully handing off two cards to the medic who then applied Binocs to one of them and then blew all 7 cards (3 pairs, + binocs on the 7th) to complete the search and win the game for us.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby pseudoidiot » Thu Feb 11, 2016 1:31 pm UTC

Xanthir wrote:pseudoidiot: ...so all your diseases come from fucking animals?
I can neither confirm nor deny...


Xanthir wrote:December spoilers:
Spoiler:
Also, I don't *think* we were cheating, but you can still use Binoculars on the final Search, right? It's a weird search, but it's still a Search, and each Binoc should still let you jump past two things? We used it to get a really nice 5-point search action off, with my turn spent carefully handing off two cards to the medic who then applied Binocs to one of them and then blew all 7 cards (3 pairs, + binocs on the 7th) to complete the search and win the game for us.
Spoiler:
Yeah, we treated as a regular search and being able to use binoculars. I honestly can't imagine being successful at the last search *without* any binoculars.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Thu Feb 11, 2016 2:05 pm UTC

Oh, something we only realized now and wish we would have known - you can put more than one structure in the same city. We kept placing our military bases a city away from our research stations to easily move around, but it turns out that's not needed.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Thu Feb 11, 2016 6:33 pm UTC

I read the rules as explicitly saying the opposite?!? I'll check them again when I get home.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Thu Feb 11, 2016 7:00 pm UTC

It seems the rules say "one of each structure type" or something like that. BGG seems very certain you can put more than one structure type in a given city.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby ConMan » Thu Feb 11, 2016 10:22 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:It seems the rules say "one of each structure type" or something like that. BGG seems very certain you can put more than one structure type in a given city.

... Huh. Well, it wouldn't be the first thing we got wrong.

Anyone else screw up the order of setup because of the layout of that page? We were a few games in before realising we got to see all the initial infection locations before setting up the player deck, characters, etc.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Fri Feb 12, 2016 1:36 am UTC

YES. It was midway thru the campaign before we realized the order is basically "whatever is maximally beneficial for you"
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Fri Feb 12, 2016 1:50 am UTC

Xanthir wrote:YES. It was midway thru the campaign before we realized the order is basically "whatever is maximally beneficial for you"


Not quite - in an ideal situation, you'd get to choose turn order after getting cards and choose characters to give you the best possible start rather than, say, starting with the one character who can't shuttle in to a hot spot and defuse it (and then drawing the first epidemic...), but, yeah, unlike the default assumption for co-op games (that things happen in the worst possible way) the PL setup gives you a pretty good start (probably necessary considering the risk of scars, etc)

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Sat Feb 13, 2016 5:56 am UTC

We've decided that in our next, 2p campaign, two of our diseases will be named "too many puppies" and "not enough puppies".

The third is probably gonna be Ebolaids or something.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Thu Feb 18, 2016 5:01 am UTC

We won! Woo! Lost first November very early, won second November. Then we lost the first December but late December was very easy for us.

Spoilers for entire game:
Spoiler:
We managed to complete the search in the first game, and we only had two cities left to vaccinate in our second game, so that was super easy. We didn't notice the binoculars until we already finished the game. Would have been nice, we were almost screwed.

Total score 773. We were very pleased. I don't really like the "destroy all bases" score - there's no gameplay reason to get rid of bases. As long as you destroy the bases in the coda regions (which we did), the rest are just very helpful. All other scoring was for stuff you actively wanted to accomplish or avoid - you want cities not to panic, you want to win games early (in theory at least), etc.

I think we had a very good run, especially considering it was 4-player. I'm actually surprised the score doesn't reflect that somehow, that you get some bonus points depending on number of players, but I suppose that would mean 2-player campaigns wouldn't be able to get the max score that 4-player campaigns could.


Overall it was super fun and I would recommend it to everyone.

I wonder what's the easiest way to play. I suspect it's lose all early games, win all late games. It means you get lots of end-game upgrades and you still get the win bonus for the previous month. On the other hand, that's bound to result in higher panic in many cities.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Thu Feb 18, 2016 5:35 am UTC

Zohar wrote:I wonder what's the easiest way to play. I suspect it's lose all early games, win all late games. It means you get lots of end-game upgrades and you still get the win bonus for the previous month. On the other hand, that's bound to result in higher panic in many cities.

Yeah, "failling gracefully" is very difficult, particularly earlier in the campaign. You're likely to drive some cities to panic quickly.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Feb 18, 2016 5:41 pm UTC

If you focus on outbreak suppression, you can often lose with minimal panic - though it does risk the second game of the month just clobbering you.

Some games, you just lose because the cards were against you - so playing for tactical losses is a good way to lose the occasional month altogether.

One of the few things I'd want to change about the game so far is the funding floor - not having any funded event cards feels like a punishment for doing well since it means that at least some of the cool things coming out of the Legacy Deck aren't ever available for you unless you lose sometimes. Having a floor of 1 would at least let you make use of some of the shiny toys...

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Thu Feb 18, 2016 6:40 pm UTC

None of them felt super shiny that we said "We must use these". I mean obviously some stuff is great, but we fared reasonably well without them, and it's a good mechanism to balance the game, I thought. We should have used more equipment end-game upgrades though. We hardly used any equipment throughout our game, because it always seemed less useful than the actual character actions.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:16 pm UTC

It's still a bad thing when you look at the back of the next card, and go "oh, it's just another event we can't use" rather than "Oooh, it's an event! I wonder if it'll be useful?"...

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Xanthir » Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:30 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:If you focus on outbreak suppression, you can often lose with minimal panic - though it does risk the second game of the month just clobbering you.

Some games, you just lose because the cards were against you - so playing for tactical losses is a good way to lose the occasional month altogether.

Yeah, if you aim for losing by running out of cards, you can probably do it reasonably gracefully. But also, yeah, we lost a game in Oct or Nov at the second epidemic, just because of some *terrible* card luck.

One of the few things I'd want to change about the game so far is the funding floor - not having any funded event cards feels like a punishment for doing well since it means that at least some of the cool things coming out of the Legacy Deck aren't ever available for you unless you lose sometimes. Having a floor of 1 would at least let you make use of some of the shiny toys...

Yeah, I kinda agree, it sucks having *zero* funded events, but I think it's an important balance mechanic to make sure you lose about 6 games. We had 4 zero-funding games and lost 3 of them, but had 7 two-funding games and lost 4 of them. (We had one loss with four funding - May/June was a shitshow.) Funded events really make a huge difference in your win %, even with only 2.

Having only one funded event would probably wouldn't mess with the win % too much, but it also has a good chance of not even coming out. Just sticking with the +2/-2 formula is simple and delivers approximately the same experience. But I wouldn't fault you for houseruling that you still get 1.

Zohar wrote:None of them felt super shiny that we said "We must use these". I mean obviously some stuff is great, but we fared reasonably well without them, and it's a good mechanism to balance the game, I thought. We should have used more equipment end-game upgrades though. We hardly used any equipment throughout our game, because it always seemed less useful than the actual character actions.

We *never* upgraded equipment at end-game; it felt like a huge waste of your end-game bonus since you can just make equipment *during* the game for a single action. There was always some turn with a wasted action during the game that could be spent making equipment if we wanted it for the future, and we actively made equipment for use in the current game regularly.

Spoiler:
Not that it helped us - those fucking grenade belts REFUSED to show up once we lost all our COdA-killing characters, or they'd only turn up in the Medic's hands, when they were obviously busy being *anywhere else in the world* dealing with the treatable diseases. But other equipment did show up and be useful regularly, like the one that can treat any disease, or riot suits and parachutes.


rmsgrey wrote:It's still a bad thing when you look at the back of the next card, and go "oh, it's just another event we can't use" rather than "Oooh, it's an event! I wonder if it'll be useful?"...

Man, how often did you end up with zero funding?
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:35 pm UTC

Xanthir wrote:
rmsgrey wrote:It's still a bad thing when you look at the back of the next card, and go "oh, it's just another event we can't use" rather than "Oooh, it's an event! I wonder if it'll be useful?"...

Man, how often did you end up with zero funding?


I'm still playing - June is next up - so, so far it's only been 2 of 6 games with 0 funding (March and early April) - we lost both April games, but have won everything else.

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Thu Feb 18, 2016 9:37 pm UTC

We ended up losing 5 games, and we only lost early December because we kinda said "fuck it" once we completed one of the harder (and permanent) objectives. Most of our games were with zero funding, and a lot of them weren't too difficult.

As for equipment as end-game - we pretty much only did that in Nov/Dec - we kinda ran out of better stuff to do (didn't have awesome character upgrades, figured it would be nice to have some of the new equipment). And while creating equipment isn't too hard in-game, you have to be in a specific structure to do so.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby faranim » Mon Mar 14, 2016 6:46 pm UTC

We're in the middle of June now.

We lost twice in January due to various bad luck (I believe one was simply running out of time).
We lost both times in May. One of those losses was just a bad shuffle (all of the Red player cards were at the bottom of the deck, so we were unable to coordinate getting them into someone's hand to find a cure before the deck ran out). The other one was due to the new rule added in May.
Spoiler:
After drawing player cards, a single CoDA cube appeared in most/all of our CoDA cities. 2 Epidemics pulled CoDA cities from the bottom of the Infection deck, causing instant outbreaks (since the city already had 1 figure) followed by even more outbreaks after the shuffle.

We lost our first attempt in June due to a bad starting setup. 2 Blue cities started with 3 cubes, Epidemic on turn 1 was yet another blue city from the bottom of the infection deck, and then of course we drew 2 blue cities after the initial shuffle, so we had 6 or 7 outbreaks at the end of turn 1. We did manage to build some equipment and I think a military base before we lost.

It is nice that you get game-end upgrades even when you lose, so the loss still helps you win the next time you play.

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Mon Mar 14, 2016 11:07 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:
Xanthir wrote:
rmsgrey wrote:It's still a bad thing when you look at the back of the next card, and go "oh, it's just another event we can't use" rather than "Oooh, it's an event! I wonder if it'll be useful?"...

Man, how often did you end up with zero funding?


I'm still playing - June is next up - so, so far it's only been 2 of 6 games with 0 funding (March and early April) - we lost both April games, but have won everything else.


June went with no outbreaks, every objective completed, and finally naming red (now known as ReV-B3m - a kudo to anyone who can explain why :) ), thanks partly to One Quiet Night in a spoiler combo. We went with a positive mutation for Yellow (also eradicated that game), and a permanent structure rather than upgrading red.

July went to the wire - the final Epidemic shuffled about 8 infect cards; with 4 previous Outbreaks, there were 4 cities at 3 markers, all in those top cards - and black was swarming with 2-marker cities, so there was scope for a nasty chain off just 2 black cities - we got through the infect step with only 1 outbreak, and got the 5th blue card to the Medic who, since it was Easy to Sequence, promptly found the final cure and won the game.

Spoilery July details:

Spoiler:
We'd started the month with an objective already complete thanks to making the 6th military base permanent in June, and took a team of Medic, Quarantine Specialist, Colonel, and Soldier (John Smith, Helva, Fury, and Zack Fair respectively - again, kudos to anyone who can explain the names) - Colonel and Soldier being Coworkers and Rivals respectively with the Medic. We started in Istanbul (research center/military base) with equipment on the black card in the Soldier's hand form the June Win Bonus, and the Soldier spent his first two turns discarding and redrawing that card to Search there (with a handy Quarantine Marker) to complete the Search. The Colonel spent a lot of time dodging around COdA territory, never quite committing for fear of scars, but removing the odd figure here and there, while the Medic and Quarantine Specialist ran around treating things, remote-quarantining COdA, and trying to assemble cures. The Soldier got caught in an Outbreak and took the scar that makes finding cures harder. For game-end upgrades, we gave the Colonel both Pilot and Paramilitary Escort, so he should be better at both dealing with Faded and passing cards to his coworker next game. During the game, we made a few more pieces of equipment when we had spare actions in a suitable location.


So early August will be our fourth 0-Funding game, with the two April games still our only losses (putting us at 6-2 so far). And yes, I know what's coming, but we need to get there first, and I'm letting other people (who don't know) make most of the long-term decisions rather than trying to steer them.

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby 3fj » Wed Mar 16, 2016 3:47 pm UTC

Been playing this 2-player and I'm surprised how well it holds up. Found the balance a little too easy so far, but given where we are, I think we've suddenly been dropped in the deep end.

June? Possibly May? spoilers:
Spoiler:
Yellow is mutated to CodA, and are now "Faders". Faders spawn on our cards too and it's starting to become a nightmare.
Black, Blue and Red can be cured anywhere and doesn't take a turn
Black is called "The Black Death". I think we have another named disease but I can't remember.

We've just unlocked road blocks and the General. I have the feeling he's going to die soon.
The worst cities are still a 3. I don't suspect that's going to be true for much longer.

We've got Research bases across the globe, and are now working on military bases. We've been flipping between Scientist/Researcher and Generalist/Construction pairs with relationships.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby Zohar » Wed Mar 16, 2016 4:12 pm UTC

A couple of non-spoilery suggestions:
1. I suspect playing with four characters (each of your controlling two characters) provides a bit more flexibility. Although Pandemic is generally harder with more players, having extra characters lets you use relationships and special powers more. Personally I think it's more interesting as well since you get to experience more of the mechanics. You should also consider that if any of your characters die (get a 3rd scar for instance), then whoever plays that character will have to get rid of their hand and use a civilian for the remainder of that specific game. Having one civilian and three special characters is much better than 1 civilian and 1 special character.
2. Remember the "can be cured without a turn" also means it doesn't need to be anyone turn. Meaning, let's say you receive the final card you needed to cure at the end of your turn, you can immediately cure it. If another character, on their turn, gives you the final card, you can immediately cure that disease as well, even though it's another player's turn. It's an official rule, but an easy to miss rule.
3. Another small thing we didn't notice until we were REALLY far into our game (minor spoilers for May I believe? Where you are in the game, anyway):
Spoiler:
You're allowed to place more than one type of structure in a city. So, a city can have both a research station as well as a military base, and they can be permanent ones too.
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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby rmsgrey » Wed Mar 16, 2016 6:54 pm UTC

3fj wrote:Been playing this 2-player and I'm surprised how well it holds up. Found the balance a little too easy so far, but given where we are, I think we've suddenly been dropped in the deep end.

June? Possibly May? spoilers:
Spoiler:
Yellow is mutated to CodA, and are now "Faders". Faders spawn on our cards too and it's starting to become a nightmare.
Black, Blue and Red can be cured anywhere and doesn't take a turn
Black is called "The Black Death". I think we have another named disease but I can't remember.

We've just unlocked road blocks and the General. I have the feeling he's going to die soon.
The worst cities are still a 3. I don't suspect that's going to be true for much longer.

We've got Research bases across the globe, and are now working on military bases. We've been flipping between Scientist/Researcher and Generalist/Construction pairs with relationships.

If your diseases are upgraded, they should also be named - you're only allowed to upgrade diseases at the end of a game in which they'd been eradicated, and the first time you eradicate a disease you're supposed to name it.

Your spoilers come from May - June brings its own new developments. Minor May spoiler correction:

Spoiler:
The officer unlocked in May is the Colonel, not the General

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Re: Pandemic Legacy

Postby 3fj » Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:21 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:A couple of non-spoilery suggestions:
1. I suspect playing with four characters (each of your controlling two characters) provides a bit more flexibility. Although Pandemic is generally harder with more players, having extra characters lets you use relationships and special powers more. Personally I think it's more interesting as well since you get to experience more of the mechanics. You should also consider that if any of your characters die (get a 3rd scar for instance), then whoever plays that character will have to get rid of their hand and use a civilian for the remainder of that specific game. Having one civilian and three special characters is much better than 1 civilian and 1 special character.
2. Remember the "can be cured without a turn" also means it doesn't need to be anyone turn. Meaning, let's say you receive the final card you needed to cure at the end of your turn, you can immediately cure it. If another character, on their turn, gives you the final card, you can immediately cure that disease as well, even though it's another player's turn. It's an official rule, but an easy to miss rule.
3. Another small thing we didn't notice until we were REALLY far into our game (minor spoilers for May I believe? Where you are in the game, anyway):
Spoiler:
You're allowed to place more than one type of structure in a city. So, a city can have both a research station as well as a military base, and they can be permanent ones too.


1. I'm playing with someone who doesn't have an extensive background in boardgames and has a (self confessed) attention deficit when it comes to too many mechanics. I think introducing them to playing as two players could lead to some issues, so I've been keeping it to a character each and trying to alleviate it by making sure we include the character swap event. I'm gonna float the idea, as I think this is the time for it, but I'm a little wary of doing it at the same time we're drip-feeding more mechanics in over time.
2. Awesome.
3. I did it without thinking about it! Glad it's intended.

rmsgrey wrote:If your diseases are upgraded, they should also be named - you're only allowed to upgrade diseases at the end of a game in which they'd been eradicated, and the first time you eradicate a disease you're supposed to name it.

Oops. I guess that's why we're finding it easier. On the other hand I don't think it breaks anything too badly saying you have to choose those upgrades over any others. Besides, we only broke the rule for one of them.

Suggestion for the rest of you, if you haven't already finished: Play this somewhere with a fireplace. Destroying the cards by burning them has a much cooler air of finality over tearing them up and throwing them in the bin. What hooked my SO was burning the month-start reward cause we lost a month. She loves the altering the game stuff, but didn't get the throwing things away bit until:

"OK, we lost this month so we have to burn this card with the foil on it"
"But I want to see what's under it!"
"Well then we should have cured the diseases faster. Now it goes in the fire. Here, you do it"
Genuine conflict on her face, before she eventually throws it in the fire
"Oh my god. I think if you'd thrown that in the bin I might have gone and fished it out to scratch it. What was it?"
"We'll never know"
disappointing noises
"OK, we definitely have to play another RIGHT NOW."
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