Originally Posted at http://gameswithtwo.blogspot.com/2012/10/going-after-man-rev...
Expansion number two for Revolver has hit the streets. This second expansion came out the same time as the first one, but gives you some new mechanics and adds onto one of the mechanics that is introduced in the first expansion. So, what does this new expansion add? How does it change the game? Is it worth adding to your Revolver set? Let's go after the man in "Revolver 1.2 Hunt the Man Down".
First of all, if you haven't read our review of Revolver or Revolver 1.1 Ambush on Gunshot Trail, I would encourage to take a look at those. They should fill in some of the gaps about the game play that we discuss in this review. The second expansion for Revolver adds another 30 cards to the game as well as some new tokens. 26 of the 30 cards are used to further customize your deck via the new deck construction mechanic that was found in the 1.1 expansion. There is also another ambush card, and the remaining 3 cards are used for a new battlefield, San Manzanillo Prison. This location is an optional location for the Colty Gang player. If he decides to go to this battlefield, it triggers a special San Manzanillo Prison battle. Each player gets to draw cards and then they each take turns playing firepower cards. If the McReady player (good guys) wins, he gets to kill two gang members. If the Colty player (bad guys) win the battle, he gets another member for his gang. After the battle, all the cards are discarded and play continues as normal.
This new battlefield gives a break to the regular flow of the game. I think it's good break though. Almost like when you are watching a movie that has a couple of story lines going on at once, and then they converge on each other. Revolver 1.2 gives this feel. You are watching this battle between Colty and McReady, and then Colty take a detour to free a member of his gang. I can picture one of those old west prisons that are in the movies, and the theme really comes through.
The new prison element to Revolver is an interesting one. I believe that it makes for some interesting decisions that could be game changing. However, it really depends on your strategy and where you are hurting. If you are Colty and you are hurting for cards, this could be a great way to get some more. You get to draw six cards at the beginning of this battle, while McReady only gets to draw 3. This is an advantage for Colty. If you don't mind losing the the 2 gang members or taking the gunshots (get five and your dead), this could be a good option. If you actually want to free your gang member from prison, this can be helpful, since you add another gang member. If you are low on men already, this may help you survive just long enough to escape. Finally, you can try to get your opponent to burn some of their good cards. Especially since they are immune to other cards, such as ones that allow you to move cards from previous battlefields. However, sometimes the play is to skip the prison altogether. In our game, Mrs. Games with Two wanted to skip the prison, as she was trying to win via the Mexican border (I talked her into playing this time anyway though and it really didn't do her any favors).
That brings us to the main part of this expansion, more cards to customize your decks. We both felt that these new cards were better than the ones from expansion 1.1. They give you some more options and allow for a customized strategy. Mrs. Games with Two went for the Mexican Border strategy. Since neither of us had really tried to do that before, I got rid of almost all the cards that allowed me to add tokens to the border, and therefore she won easily. I love the ability to customize your decks to fit your strategy and it will be interesting to see what decks we see in the future and how they allow for even further customization.
One new item that I thought was a little pointless was the shot tokens. The new mechanic allows for shot tokens to be put on Mr. Colty. If it ever hits 5 tokens, he automatically loses. However, there are only 7 cards/events that even put these tokens on Colty with half of them being Colty gang cards, And the Colty gang has another card that allows you to remove one of these shot tokens. It just seemed to me that the Colty player would only use a couple of these to insure he cannot lose in this fashion, thus rendering these cards less powerful (which is what Mrs. GwT opted to do in this game). I understand you don't want to make it too easy, but right now it seems that it can be too easily negated. I could see where in a future expansion more of these types of cards are added, to make a more viable portion of the game, but right now it doesn't seem to add very much to it.
The other thing that I didn't like was that this is a "build on" expansion. The rules state that you need to have expansion 1.1 in order to play the prison module portion. I wish that the two expansions were mutually exclusive, but unfortunately they are not. I get that the expansions build upon each other, and that they tell a story, but I wish that you could play one without having to own both. Just my opinion, and something to be aware of when you are purchasing these. Buy 1.1 first, and then purchase 1.2, or just buy them both at the same time, either way works.
This is another good expansion for Revolver. I think the prison adds a level of strategy to the game that wasn't there before. Which is good, especially for those who felt that "the game was playing them." The new level adds some complexity that may not work well with new players, but Revolver veterans should enjoy this added feature. Although the prison adds to the game, the bulk of this expansion is found in the new cards. Mrs. Games with Two and I agreed that these are some of the best cards, so far. Finally, I am interested to see how the third expansion works with the first two sets, and I am excited to see what else they add. I am not sure if new mechanics to the game are necessary at this point, but more customization of the decks would be welcomed.
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