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Review: Pandemic – Reign of Cthulhu

Greetings fellow gamers! Chock here, and I’m currently writing to you from Copenhagen, Denmark regarding my travels and a new expansion of Pandemic called Reign of Cthulhu.


As a person who will probably vote for Cthulhu in the upcoming presidential election, I became quite excited as we walked by Faraos Cigarer, a large gaming store in downtown Copenhagen and the fifth largest gaming store in the world. They happened to have a pretty sweet shop, but unfortunately, they didn’t have anyone free for me to talk to about the store in depth due to closing time, so I am unable to give you a full write up.

For Pandemic fans, Reign of Cthulhu will be familiar, however, there is an added Insanity mechanic which makes things progressively (exponentially) harder. I have only played Pandemic once, and although I’ve forgotten most of the rules, the rules from Cthulhu became pretty familiar after the first couple turns. As usual, you get four actions to move, get rid of occultists, or seal a gate. Meanwhile, you have a Shoggoth who gets to move closer to its closest gate which can cause you to lose sanity by encountering the same space as it does.

Just like with normal Pandemic, the game throws random events (which are bad) and four cultists can cause a summoning ceremony (also bad). With these events, more cultists come out, the game gets harder, Shoggoths appear, and people go insane. If all four players go insane, you lose, but a person can go insane and continue to play, they are not as effective.

Surprisingly, we won our first game out of the box, however, it was close. There is another difficulty to the game which is done by taking cards out of the deck, but we decided to do it the easy way as we were newbies. Even with having myself and my wife who were rookies to the Pandemic games and my in-laws who are well seasoned in the games, the rules were fresh albeit familiar and the game was still extremely strategic.

This is a solid game for replay-ability and can be picked up quickly after just a couple turns. I look forward to playing again as well as playing other versions of Pandemic in the future!

© 2016, Patrick Cossel. All rights reserved.

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About Patrick Cossel,

I am a journalist and gaming enthusiast.

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