Hi everyone and welcome to the first review of Malifaux 2nd Edition, in this first review I will look at the book, the arsenal decks and the Gencon exclusive Miss Step.
But first a thank you to Dawn McCormack, Jon Mickelburgh and everyone else involved in getting the mass gencon order over to Britain. This has let me get this review done now as well as getting the book into my hands 4 weeks earlier than last year which I am very much appreciative of.
I'm sure all of us who benefited from this thank you for the time and effort you all put into this logistical nightmare.
The Book itselfM2E book 1 is larger than 1st edition book 1 by 72 pages, it is broken down like all of the other books into sections by faction starting with the Guild. They showcase all of the rules and upgrades for each of the models
RulesThe rules are the same as we have seen previously in the M2E Open Beta, we have normal and story encounters as well as refined rules for the core of the game, I cant imagine playing 1st edition now I have played 2nd edition for so long
FluffThe fluff expands further on from the last few books, in particular we find out more on the fates of Sonnia Criid after Cherufe's emergence and Perdita after being at the Ground Zero of the 'Event'..
As well as more interactions between the various factions internally as we see Molly, Seamus and McMourning well Sebastian interacting for the Ressers. Lilith, Barbarous, Candy and Pandora for the Neverborn, Levi, Tara and the Viktorias for the Outcasts, Rasputina and Ramos for the Arcanists, and Misaki, Lynch, Mei and Yan-Lo for the Ten Thunders. Finally in the Gremlin fluff 'Swamp Thang' Zoraida, Somer, Ophelia, Brewmaster and Bert seemingly arming for war as a great Green Fist to save the Bayou from the oncoming storm.
Things seem to be coming to a crescendo, in the guild fluff we learn 12 names of the 13 Tyrants, the great and powerful entities behind a lot of the powers in Malifaux.
Nytmare, Obliteration, Plague, December, Gorgon, Shez'uul, Fortune, The Dragons, Despair, Meridion, Witness and Cherufe these are the great powers we will undoubtedly hear more of in the future fluff of Malifaux. We have already heard of a great number of these but undoubtedly there is much more to be revealed.
ArtworkThe artwork in the book is largely the artwork for the new models, however it is all crisp and clear against the light beige background. There are also a few snippets of future models, like the performer and mannequin and Tuco which I hope is a reflection on how the eventual new plastic models will look. I'd have liked to see some new and different artwork, but as I can imagine with time constraints and all they have made the most of the artwork they had, and it is for the most part all excellent.
I do like the cover despite dome early reservations, it is dark and foreboding, and features a well liked model available to all, with tons of character, one which surprisingly I still don't own (I will be rectifying this for my Viktoria's crew).
Overall ThoughtsOverall I like the book, it covers everything we need to play the game, the story encounters in particular give us a great range of scenarios to play with. I also like the scheme changes in general, as we all often had set schemes that we would prefer and chose more than any of the others. The changes to poison and burning work better too as the poison is now slow acting as it should be and the burning is the intense all damage at once again as I would expect in reality. The changes to use Soulstone mean the masters aren't as invincible as they could be with a full cache and a decent hand in 1st edition.
The new artwork is good and reflects the models very, very well I just look forward to seeing more of these artworks come to life in the flesh well plastic.
My only disappointment was not seeing rules for all of the plastics we currently have, I know there is limited space in the books but we are missing the Depleted, Willie the Demolitionist, Bert Jebsen, Gracie, Wong, Vanessa, Ama no Zako, Mr Graves, Mr Tannen, Pathfinder, Riflemen, Traps, and the Yan Lo and McCabes box are all missing, I know we only have a couple of months until the Open Beta of Book 2, but I want to play with all of my shiny models, I just have to have patience for the 2 months of waiting, this will be nothing like the Ravening Hoards days of Warhammer Fantasy in the days of yore, well 5th-6th edition, between that and the Annual 2002 I had many years without a decent army book for my Wood Elves but I digress.
The arsenal Boxes contain all of the stat cards and upgrade cards for each of their relative factions for the models represented in book 1.
I like these new cards, however they do have their pros and cons however.
- They fit standard size card protectors and deck boxes, before I had to acquire specialist covers at great expense as I found the ones I had laminated had become weakened after a couple of years, I can get these at my LGS rather than trawling sites like amazon.
- Good value for the cards themselves compared to before 50+ cards for $8 compared to 50c each when ordering individual cards before.
- Crisp clear cards, all with shiny new artwork reflecting the forthcoming models as well as little details like the overlapping photos and paper on the cards.
- Small size means like the book 2 cards for the complex masters, it could be difficult to read if you have trouble with your eyesight, though I find with my glasses on I can read them crystal clear.
- Sometimes you may need all of the arsenal decks to cover all of your options, I know I will need all bar the Gremlin deck so 12 in all (including next years wave 2) just to use my current models, so not expensive in themselves but more the additional costs of protectors and boxes for me.
- Not enough of some of the cards, yet. I know I have 7 death marshalls soon to be 10, and only 6 cards when I pick up the New Justice box, while I doubt I'll ever use more than 3 or 4 the option to buy individual cards in the future would be good for those odd occasions.
Miss Step is this years Gencon exclusive miniature, she is a female version of Howard 'Hank' Langston an Arcanist Enforcer who I plan to run with my Mei Feng lead Rail Crew hence why the model you see below is on a Railway themed base.
Her box was an efficient use of the sprue, she went together very nicely and fairly quickly. My only downside was that she doesn't fit too easily on a 50mm base, I would have liked her legs to raise her higher in the design so you could fit all 4 legs onto the base for stability, although being as she is plastic and not metal, this isn't the problem that it could have been.
I get a Borg feel from her, so I will do something fairly Borg-ish in my paint scheme, something utilitarian and basic, but with greying withered skin, but you will see that in the future.
So that's Malifaux 2.0s rulebook. More coming soon.