Hello Peartown. I found several Season 2 threads dedicated to the pre-release hype and info surrounding PL Season 2, but nothing that really scratched the itch to talk about actually playing it as we had with Season 1. I have the itch to chat Legacy and I need a spoilers-hidden thread to do it in; will anyone join me?
First off (no spoiler here), does anyone else feel like S2 is easier than S1? We played a total of 19 S1 games meaning we had 7 losses total. We are already starting our first game in October next week and only have 3 losses so far and very rosy prospects for a solid performance in October. I felt like S1 caught my group way more off guard with shifting rules and priorities where S2 has had some changes, but we’ve largely been able to cope with them smoothly.
Are we better than we were before, or did S2 get a little easier?
We found it kind of swingy in difficulty (two player). We found something very early which alleviated some of the difficulty and completed some missions really easily due to some some lucky rolls and per mission focussed planning. However I would say this made beating the overall game trickier in the end. There were two months however where we lost completely despite feeling entirely comfortable in all the other months.
It’s similar to pandemic legacy season 1 thing where you can delay wins to help further missions (possibly).
Furthermore the progressions of the game are less tightly timed which means you can engineer nicer situations.
You finish already? We’ve been charging through at a quick pace and only a few delayed sessions have prevented us from being done already.
My group (3 of us) shotgunned the whole game over Thanksgiving weekend (US). We generally found it harder than season 1. We had several months in the middle where we were really trying to complete a certain objective that we just could not make work. We also just got destroyed by the last month. We spent at least an hour between our two December games trying to strategize how to win. After that, pulling off our strategy, and getting a few really lucky card pulls in the first round, we still were crushed.
I’m playing 3p with my wife and son. We are halfway through early December (I know… how could we possibly stop half way through the final month! But my son was tired and when he checks out, it’s time to stop).
We found the early months nail-biting, but we ended up winning most of the time… the middle and final months were less challenging in general, but we did have a few bad beats sneak up on us. I think this issue is what Quinns alluded to in his review. The designers can’t know what your board will look like, which character / abilities you’ll have, which cards are in the game, etc., so it’s hard to balance things out. If you’ve played at all, you know that some months will tell you to open XYZ door if you haven’t already… this is how they make sure everyone is minimally progressing, but sometimes we’d have done those things 2+ months earlier.
This works both ways… we encountered a few things that would have been really helpful had we done them earlier and there was nothing preventing us from doing them earlier… we just didn’t push to do them. One example that shouldn’t be a spoiler for anyone on this thread… early on you end up with 4-5 different objectives needing to complete 2 + the mandatory objective… if you prioritize Searches, you’re going to have a different experience than if you prioritize Recons. For my group, we tended toward Recons and only Searched if we had 2 search cards in player’s hands and had the other objectives complete… we didn’t want to “waste” the search cards in a loss for fear that we’d run out of them… well turns out we had slow progress in some ways as a result… but we got exposed to some of the mid/late mechanics sooner than others, so we progressed quickly there.
In the end it all sort of balances out and you end up in the same spot… but you can take very different paths to get there.
I won’t spoil in case people aren’t too far along, but I think box 6 is the most interesting and hardest to balance mechanic in the whole game. That totally messes with the gamestate from game to game and makes it really tricky to balance other mechanics because each group will interpret that mechanic differently and you could end up with wildly different games depending on how they use it.
Anyway, to wrap where I should have started… we have only lost 3 times I think… it doesn’t look too good for us right now in early December, so we’re hoping to lay some ground work to make a successful push in late December… and who knows, maybe we’ll get lucky and knock it out tomorrow!
Yeah! We finished a while back. It’s one of the few games both my partner and I have genuine full enthusiasm for (in part because it’s a game played a lot of times and it means no new rules need to be learned for the most part).
I found that box 6 added a whole bunch of busy work and management which was reallly unwelcome (it felt necessary to do because resources were tightening) and not balanced by what on paper feels like a delicious activity.
My girlfriend and I are up to November, and yeah, very swingy… We’re not feeling the deepest urges to keep diving in to play it, either. Too many uneventful months that did little but vomit large chunks of new rules at us.
There’s been one mechanic that we’ve found so counterintuitive (not sure how to add spoilers text, so stop reading here if need be!)… The idea that if you draw a Forsaken card from the Infection deck you put it in the Game End pile and draw a replacement. For some reason, despite putting notes all over the board it makes no sense to us why we’re doing it and keep forgetting.
Managing Box 6 has been interesting, but did feel more like book-keeping than anything of thematic relevance.
I love the little narrative revelation in one of the later months, but it is somewhat dependent on having played Season 1 first… Which is a shame.
Because of difficulty scheduling (and one of our players being in France for a couple of months), I’m only in March of my second play through. Given that my first time was almost two years ago (I was a play tester), I’ve forgotten almost everything, which is great!
We had what I’d call a “productive loss” (kind of like a “productive out” in baseball) last night where we were able to recon a region just before losing, mostly due to a bad starting set up and card draw. We actually felt satisfied and accomplished, and our funding level will go up for our second try at March. Hooray!
It’s sort of weird. Success in Season 1 seemed to depend on how well you played games of Pandemic, along with spotting a few really obvious good value upgrades and power combos.
Success in season 2 seems to be about how well you read the flavour text, and how well you are able to game certain elements (I’m thinking box 6 especially - if you’re a gamer and put a bit of thought into it, especially for the player deck, it’s quite straightforwards. But for more casual groups I can see them being totally baffled. There’s a few other such bits too).
Not done December yet, but have a good idea what it’s going involve, given something was basically spelled out in the flavour text back in March.
We finished Season 2 last night before one of the group moved to NYC (our Season 1 group also had someone move after the game ended, hmmm…). I feel like the game had certain phases. We lost 5 games over the year, but 4 of them were losing 2 consecutive months. I think it’s because we followed the lore and prioritized exploring South America in search of the lab and haven.
Once we got one of the lab bonuses (extra production in havens and supply centers) and searched Europe so we could move between havens and supply centers, we didn’t lose another game even though there were times we would learn our objective for the month and wonder how the heck we’re supposed to do that.
Our group liked Box 6. Frankly, after losing two months straight, we were glad when the game threw us a bone. In the months we lost, we had a really hard time keeping all the corners of the map supplied, and Box 6 allowed us inoculate and then ignore most of North America.
The other power that really changed how we played the game was the one where we could discard a card to prevent a supply cube being removed. This changed the game from efficiently moving around the board to supply cities to collectively managing our cards to prevent incidents while still using cards for whatever our goals were that month.
That’s one of my favorite parts of these legacy games: the rules have changed, now adapt your strategy. The downside, however, was that the game is somewhat on rails. There are a number of objectives where, if you don’t complete them in time, the game does it for you with a penalty.
Life’s been busy, so it’s been a year since my girlfriend stopped at the beginning of November (in the game). Since I last posted in this thread, in fact!
I wasn’t enjoying the last few games, we lost both October games and the Box 6 thing really irked me. Too many messy mechanisms and too many potential player actions. Spring cleaning is motivating a downsizing of the game collection, which means actually finish PL:S2!
Fingers crossed we have a decent time!