I wear my Halloween costume all year round!
Before the game
We drew 3 Sao Paolos in our initial 9 infection cards, and we had only put two starting supply cubes there.
Then there was a first-turn epidemic. Lagos came up from the bottom, when we had just been planning to go there and build a research station. And of course we drew it again in the infect phase, plus Sao Paolo again. That made for three plague cubes before the second turn.
As you can imagine, the game went very quickly. We lost after the tenth turn (i.e., halfway through Round 3). Denver is Forsaken. We had been in a good position to recon London—Samson the Laborer had the needed four cards in hand, even after building the required Supply Depot—but he didn’t get to his fourth turn.
Population changes: Denver down to 0, Istanbul down to 3, Cairo up to 3, London up to 3.
We had considered restoring Denver from its Forsaken state with a game-end upgrade, but then we learned about the infestation—that wasn’t about to go away even if the city were “restored”. So we used our four points to give Super Samson the Outrider ability (#4 for him—so he can now do the Recon action with one fewer card) and to bring LA up from 1 to 2. We didn’t have enough Production Units to keep either of our newly-built Supply Stations in London or Lagos—maybe next time we should focus on quicker improvements with long-term effects, like establishing supply lines. But I’m not sure there was really anything we could have done to save this game, and the initial plague in Sao Paolo discouraged us from going there.
Final game board
I really hope he isn't a traitor
We’ve given up on starting with supply cubes in the havens, though I think this is a bit counterproductive—I want to be able to grab them and take them where needed, but I lost the debate on this one. The initial setup was much more promising than last time, with no plague cubes starting on the board.
Our first accomplishment was the establishment of supply lines to Lima and Santiago. Then Ma‘arifah travelled to Stormhaven, a previously lost haven in the Pacific off the coast of Lima.
Well, that changes everything.
First, more supply cubes! The future is suddenly looking so much brighter. And we haven’t even started inoculating yet. Just the Portable Antiviral Lab that Ma‘arifah picked up in Stormhaven was extremely helpful, making it easy to get the supplies she needed to chart a sea lane from Stormhaven to Los Angeles and establish a supply line to Bogotá, connecting it to the grid.
We had five incidents over the course of the game, nothing too serious. I wouldn’t say it was an easy game, but it was definitely manageable and it didn’t take us too long to finish building our Supply Centers after we’d accomplished the other two objectives. It’s nice that our priorities and win conditions actually line up again.
For our game end upgrades, we chose a permanent Supply Center in Lagos and population increases for Lima, Buenos Aires, and SF. Those last two had plague cubes on them at the end of the game, so we were just cancelling out their decline from 2 down to 1. Thanks to our Supply Centers, we also increased the population of the following cities: Cairo (4), Lagos (4), New York (3), and Sao Paolo (6). The Supply Center and plague cube in Istanbul cancelled each other out.
I’m hoping that we’ll be able to build more permanent Supply Centers in the future, but even if not, I’m still happy with the decision to place our third one on Lagos. Now that we’ve reached the haven in the Pacific, our top priority is to move east, completing recon missions in London, Cairo, and Lagos. So it makes sense to facilitate that as much as possible.
I’m definitely feeling much more optimistic now. After a brutal Early April, it feels like we’re finally back on track. Sao Paolo is recovering and there's hope that the rest of the world will eventually follow.
I’m hoping that we’ll be able to build more permanent Supply Centers in the future, but even if not, I’m still happy with the decision to place our third one on Lagos.
The starting contents of the box includes 9 supply centres, so I reckon that will become an option! I guess you could build extras before completing other objectives, but three seems unlikely.