We’ve been working with the Blogger Board Game Club from Asmodee Games to review a selection of games, and the one which I had been most excited to try out is Pandemic. Pandemic is a game that’s suitable for ages 8 and up, but my husband and I decided to play it by ourselves which makes a change from just watching the TV together in the evening. We had a lot of fun with the game, and I’ll definitely make more time to play games together in future just the two of us – although I will let the older kids join in with Pandemic another time as I think they would really enjoy it too.
As humanity is gripped by four deadly viruses spreading rapidly across the globe, it’s a race againsttime for players to fly around the world treating diseases, sharing knowledge and preventing out-breaks to slow down the epidemic. The fate of humanity is in your hands!
The international award-winning Pandemic provides an exciting, cooperative game of strategy and resilience. Taking a unique role within the team, players must work together to plan their strategy, us-ing their specialists· strengths in order to conquer the fast-spreading diseases. Time is running out! If one or more diseases spread beyond recovery , humanity is doomed and all players are defeated. Players win by finding the cures for all four diseases and saving the human race from elimination! Have you got what it takes?
Pandemic is very different to other board games we’ve played before, particularly as it is a collaborative game. All players work together, and you either all win together or all loose together. Hopefully this could save some arguments when playing together with the kids!
The aim of the game is to eradicate diseases and save humanity. There are four different colour coded diseases that you need to treat as you move around the world map on the board, with possibilities of finding cures and eradicating them if you play your cards right – but at the same time, you may end up having to battle against new epidemics, outbreaks and chain reaction outbreaks
The rules are quite complex, and you do need to read the game booklet thoroughly before starting but once you’ve had a few turns in the game you soon get into the swing of it and are able to play without having to refer back to the rules too many times.
There are quite a few elements to set up before beginning play, and various different cards to keep a track of, but being slightly more complex makes the game more interesting and I think as we play it more, we will start to build up more experience and start to play it more strategically.
There are role cards which each player takes (one each) which mean that you could have a different flavour to the game each time, with different roles being in play. The role of each player gives that person a particular ability or focus, and when you work together using your roles this may help you to eradicate the diseases quicker.
In our first game, we played as the scientist and the operations expert. The colour of your pawn on the board matches your role, in case you forget or get mixed up!
On the board above, you can see the white Scientist pawn with a research facility in Atlanta, and outbreaks of the blue and yellow diseases in cities nearby. In each turn you get to make four actions, such as moving city (by different methods of transport depending on your cards), treating the diseases, building research facilities or sharing the knowledge and cards with other players. You then have to pick up two new cards, and then you have to infect more cities at the end of your turn too.
On our first try, we only just managed to win – with one card left in the deck! If you run out of player cards with diseases still left uncured, then you would lose the game, so we just made it at the last minute by airlifting our scientist into the Atlanta research base to present his cards for a cure for the blue disease, our final remaining uncured disease.
The concept of the game is thrilling and really different, and we enjoyed playing collaboratively and trying to tackle the game strategically. I will definitely play again, and would recommend to others.
Pandemic is suitable for ages 8+, 2-4 players and is available for RRP £36.99