— SPOILER ALERT BEGINS HERE —
IF YOU HAVE NOT PLAYED THE MAY EPISODE OF PANDEMIC LEGACY YET, DO NOT READ THIS BLOG UNTIL YOU DO. PLENTY OF INFORMATION ABOUT THAT THE MAY EPISODE IS REVEALED HERE.
— SPOILER ALERT ENDS HERE —
Recap: In the first FOUR months, the disease in Asia (i.e. the red cubes) mutated into the non-treatable and incurable COdA virus. In April the virus further mutated into the COdA-403c virus and the afflicted became the Faded, with ground zero for the new mutation in Ho Chi Minh City. We suffered a crushing defeat in our first attempt at the May episode as Moscow melted down, while the Blue and Yellow viruses spread like wildfire across the Americas and Africa. Outbreaks came at lightning speed and we lost due to the too many outbreaks rule.
May Part Dos Setup
The initial draw of 9 infected cities was fairly neutral: 2 Faded cities, 4 Black, 2 Blue and 1 BSNL-419 (Yellow). We started with a permanent base in Lima so we only needed to put up 5 more. We looked at the board and seeing very few Blue and BSNL-419 cubes, we thought that we could quickly eradicate at least one disease (BSNL-419 is the easiest for us to conquer given our advantages–see the board) so we were going to try for that optional mission. Also, given our military base in Lima and the relative lack of cubes in Africa and North Africa, we thought it would probably be easier to put a military base in all six regions (another optional mission) than quarantine 7 Faded cities (the optional mission that we were not going to try for, unless something made us change our minds mid-game).
Lee was not available, so we were going to give it a go with only 3 players. We passed out the cards (after choosing and putting in our funded events) and we had a very favorable draw. Neal drew two yellow cards and Stew and Bob each drew at least one event.
Player Choices: So we decided to start at our research station in Kolkata and take the following characters (in game turn order):
Neal: Scientist (needs only 4 cards to cure a disease)
Stew: Medic (can treat all cubes in a city, also has the upgrade to treat nearby cities)
Bob: Researcher (can share cards with other players easily)
The Researcher and the Scientist are “Family members” and if they start their turn with each other, the active player gets an additional action.
We used our Win Bonus from April to remove one of the Faded from Sydney (it can be hard to see the Faded in photos–bad Z-Man Games, bad!–but there are three Faded there) and we started the game.
The Scientist and the Researcher stayed near each other, passing cards to the Scientist and removing a few cubes along the way toward the Americas (mainly by flying to the CDC in Atlanta). The Medic headed into the Faded territory and dropped a military base in Ho Chi Minh City.
Within a few turns, the Scientist cured BSNL-419 and began working on curing Black as the Researcher seemed to get a bunch of Black cards. Fortunately, the first Epidemic card took a long time to arrive and in Lagos, not really near other problem spots on the globe. The Researcher used Resilient Population Card to remove Lagos from the Infection Deck so it couldn’t be drawn ever again this game (so Lagos couldn’t directly outbreak). The Medic drew the Remote Outpost event and used it to drop a military base in Bangkok. Note, that the Panic Level (Bangkok was at a 2, “Rioting”) does not effect the placement of military bases, only research stations, so our play was perfectly legit.
The Scientist then cured Black and subsequently Blue. We needed to finish the game by completing the two optional missions (eradicate a disease and place 6 military bases). We already had three military bases (permanent in Lima, and temporary in Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok) so the Researcher and Scientist moved to the appropriate cities and used cards in their hand to put military bases in London and Atlanta. The Medic started to make his way toward North America where he was going to clean up the Blue cubes.
It was that last military base that was a problem. Nobody had a single card in hand for the African region! We actually were worried that we would fail (two epidemic cards had been drawn and the third was near) just because of bad luck drawing cards! We contemplated briefly the thought of trying to quarantine 7 Faded cities. But without the Colonel, Quarantine Specialist, etc, in play, we probably were going to find that a tough haul.
Anyway, our worries were unfounded as the Scientist (brown pawn) drew the Lagos card, moved to Nigeria and put down a military base. On the very next turn the Medic treated the last Blue cubes in London and Atlanta and the game was over in sweet victory!
Here is a photo of how the game ended:
For our two upgrades we chose the following: a permanent military base at ground zero for the Faded, Ho Chi Minh City, and the Common Structure upgrade to the Blue virus. We also finally got around to naming the Black virus (which we had previously eradicated) as Sprague and the newly eradicated Blue virus as Fischer-Titus (a joke from Neal’s RN wife).
We moved our Funded Event total down to 4 (boo!) and now we are ready for June.