I recently published a review on a fantastic war game designed by famed game designer Richard Borg. That game i called Abaddon. It was published back in 2012 by Toy Vault.
Over the past few days I have talked to several gamers that all agree on one thing, Abaddon is an overlooked game designed by one of the best in the business.
On Tuesday November 15th Toy Vault will start it’s next Kickstarter project with an expansion for Abaddon called Shattered Command. This new project will modify a few of the rules from the base set. Shattered Command will also include eight new missions, two Command Bunker tiles, twenty Command Bunker Program cards, six Program Enhancement markers, two Five Point Bonus round markers, two Player Aids, thirty-two Upgrade markers, four new Lock-On Relay pieces, twenty-four extra Power Crystals, & sixteen additional Terrain Tiles.
The first things players will encounter will be a few changes to how the phases of the game are played out. After the Lock-On Relay Piece is played, players will play Pre-Acvitvation Dice Program cards.
Players will then move onto the Roll Activation Dice phase. After Command & Weapon System rolls are resolved, players will move onto another new phase; Post-Activation Dice Program Cards.
Players will then continue to do as they did in the base set.
Another rule that has been modified is how many activation dice are to be rolled. In the base game players were to roll five activation dice. With the new expansion this has changed to four dice. This makes the game much more tactical. The Command command on the activation dice may now be traded in to draw two Weapon System cards instead of the one that could be drawn in the base game.
The Weapon System command on the activation dice can now be used to not only draw a Weapon System card like before, but it could also be traded in the draw a Command Bunker Program card if a Command Bunker had already been deployed.
The new Command Bunkers are the front line Command Centers that will help coordinate & assist the tactical ground units. When a Command Bunker is placed on the battlefield the player with the Command Bunker will place six of their Power Crystals in that bunker. If players are playing teams, then one player will have control of the Command Bunker.
Command Bunkers will be able to engage in battle. Command Bunkers block Line-of-Sight during battle. In battle Command Bunkers will use a D10. Command Bunkers cannot initiate combat, but they can respond like all the other units. Unlike the other units the Command Bunkers may respond to multiple attacks. Command Bunkers may give a critical hit but may not receive one.
Shattered Command also adds a point system to Abaddon. This allows players to build a force of units based on points. Not only does this affect the units being played but will also affect the new Equipment Upgrades.
Equipment upgrades are also a new component in the Shattered Command expansion. The Equipment Upgrades are optional to a game.
When using Equipment Upgrades without the point system, players will be limited to fifteen points to use when purchasing the upgrades. When the new point system is being used, players are not limited to points being spent.
Lastly new rules for terrain will be used with the Shattered Command expansion. Terrain will now be placed flat onto a sector when indicated instead of standing up. In the original base game of Abaddon, units could not move through, land on, or fire through terrain. In Shattered Command players will now follow some new rules that change the aspect of the battlefield.
Forest terrain can now be moved onto. When a unit moves through a forest sector, that unit must stop & cannot battle that turn. When a unit moves out of a forest they will use a D6 for that turn, the same thing will be applied to a unit when attacking a unit inside a forest.
When a unit moves into a village they must stop. Infantry & Recon Links may perform combat in a village. If a unit is a village takes damage from a Weapon System card, then it will ignore any additional damage done by the Weapon System card.
Same movement rules pertain to the city terrain like the others. Units that move into a city sector may not perform close combat. Units in a city may not be targeted by ranged attacks, Smart Bombs, or Long Range Bombardments. Units in a city will use a D6 for combat while Infantry will use their regular die.
So Shattered Command changes a few things for the better, in my opinion. I like how Shattered Command makes the game that much more of a tactical game. Shattered Command turns Abaddon into a game where players can create their own force of to take into battle.
I’m not sure if I care for the new terrain rules. I don’t agree to the fact that a unit should have to stop after moving into a city, village, or forest. I do like how these new rules force large units to use battle with a lower die value instead of their own higher value die.
I’m loving the Command Bunker that is being added in. This will be a force to contend with when it comes to a serious tactical game. Command Bunkers may not be able to move, but they will definitely be able to deal a good amount of damage if a player can force their opponent to stand in open range of their bunker.
I do think that the addition of the program cards is a pretty smart idea. This will allow players more choices before & after their activation roll. Especially now since one of those activation dice is removed from the game.
The addition of Equipment Upgrades is also a great idea. This allows the players to further their strategy with better weapons & equipment. Who doesn’t want to give a mech unit jump rockets?
All-in-all this is going to be a very valuable expansion for Abaddon. This adds more depth to an already awesome strategy game. Using the missions given with the base or with Shattered Command will be fun, but when it comes to using the new point system players can really get into creating their own army.
Shattered Command Kickstarter starter on November 15th: Shattered Command
Get ready to command your units from a bunker & game on!
(All components pictured are all prototypes.)
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