01 May 2012

Strange Aeons: Morbid Adventures expansion review

Strange Aeons Morbid Adventures is the third expansion book released by Uncle Mike’s Worldwide. As the title implies it is something completely different from the ”Shocking tales of madness and mayhem” books released so far.

 Morbid adventures is first and foremost a scenario book, it also includes Lurker profiles from the previous books as well allowing players who missed out on the now out of print book to catch up on a little. As this is something of a special release compared to the other books, let’s talk what’s included and what’s not for those who already have the previous books and for those who may only have the core rulebook.

Morbid adventures includes all the Lurker profiles from the previous SToM&M expansions as well as the Lurker profiles in the core rulebook. They are listed alphabetically rather than grouped into categories such as ”undead”  or ”humanoid” this time around. It doesn’t however include any of the new Special Agents from previous books, neither does it include any of the special weapons, animal and agent promotion rules from SToM&M vol1 or the lost world campaign, mob rules or any FAQ from SToM&M vol.2.

What it does include are the regular extra weapons and special ammunition found in SToM&M vol1. The main attraction of this book would first and foremost be the collection of scenarios.  Morbid Adventures includes the scenarios from the core rulebook as well as the scenarios included in SToM&M vol.1. Some of these scenarios have ”variant” options which add one or two twists to how they usually play, these variants are optional so you may play with them or just play the vanilla scenario. To mention one variant, Escape into danger now includes the reverse situations where a single Lurker model has to escape off table and the Threshold team forming the hunting party trying to contain the evil on the table location.

However this book also includes a LOT of completely new scenarios to add to those already features in the previous books. These are quest scenarios and are categorized according to their cost of 1-3 map pieces. Having read them I can say that they are well written and very thematic as the quest scenarios should be.  Some of the new scenarios add new special scenario bound Lurker profiles and some add additional Threshold team members that are specific for a particular scenario.  There are a few scenarios that instantly popped out from the rest and which I will really have to try out next time I play Strange Aeons, one of these are called “Specimen hunt” and is about capturing a Live Lurker with a netgun and sedatives and then try to drag it off table while being chased by remaining Lurkers.

Another thing that is really cool and completely new is the “Necronomicon spell list”. These are 6 new spells, all very powerful – but they come at a steep price if you fail your resolve while attempting to cast them. The power of the Necronomicon simply starts corrupting a character that uses these spells with the appearance of black marks.  The corruption will increase between each game and your character will either end up turning to the evil side and join the Lurkers – or you will have to find a way to redeem your character with brave and noble deeds (outlined in the rules). Another thing about the Necronomicon spells are that they are only found on rare occasions if you complete special quest scenarios, so they are not linked to the regular scrolls you may find in the treasure phase. The spells from the Necronomicon however don’t need to be translated or require any special skill to be used –as such all your Threhsold agents can cast these spells. If you don’t want to risk corruption you can trade in your recovered Necronomicon spells in exchange for quicker advancement (linked to the promotions in SToM&M vol.1).

So that’s pretty much what’s included in Morbid Adventures. I would say that if you missed out on SToM&M vol 1 and 2 this book is pretty much a “must have” as it includes a lot of completely new Lurker profiles and scenarios. For people who already have any of the SToM&M books it may still be interesting to get for the 12 new scenarios and the Necronomicon rules.

The paper quality of this book is similar to SToM&M vol.2, glossy pages. It’s also spiral bound just like the core rulebook. And as it includes all regular weapon profiles from all 3 previous books, as well as all the Lurkers from previous books it makes for easy and quick reference. Out of all expansion books I would rate this one the highest for the simple reason that you get a great amount of content for your dollar. Beside the core rulebook, this expansion is really packed with stuff and feels a lot more substantial.The book itself is 50 pages.

You can get Morbid Adventures straight from Uncle Mike’s Worldwide, or Kulturkommissariatet in Sweden.

To keep up with the news for Strange Aeons check out their blog http://strange-aeons.ca/sa/



7 comments:

  1. Thanks for the review mate - its gone to the top of my list!

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  2. Thanks for the review; it's worth mentioning that it can be bought in the UK from Mike at Black Hat Miniatures - that's where I got my copy from.

    Doug

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  3. Thanks for the info Doug, I often get emails about "where can you buy this in Europe".
    Glad Black Hat picked up the Uncle Mike's stuff as the shipping cost directly from Canada to Europe is quite steep.

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  4. Well thats something else fot my to get list, good review.

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  5. Found your blog searching reviews of the Arkham Horror board game. Great stuff, excellent blog!!

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  6. @King in Yellow,
    Thanks! :-)

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  7. I was a bit disappointed to discover that this book doesn't actually have all the Lurker profiles from SToM&M 1 & 2. There are no dinosaurs or prehistoric creatures/peoples from SToM&M 2!

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