Abstract: This first deck of cards for my new custom expansion is now ready. This expansion is called "Pandemic: End Day". It has some pretty wild new things for the game, and some additional cards like the ones found in Pandemic: Threat Level Six". Some of these new cards are designed to be used with On The Brink.
What's in the new deck?
There are 8 city cards that are now Hot Zones. When using this expansion, replace the regular cards with the Hot Zone cards. You should also be playing with the either the Mutation Challenge or the Bio-Terrorist challenge, AND the Virulent Strain challenge.
As soon as a player draws one of these cards from the Player Deck, you must follow its instructions. You add a purple cube to that city, AND a cube of the Virulent strain. This means these Hot Zone cities can potentially have 3 (or even more) different colored cubes in them. What makes them especially evil is that a 4th cube of ANY color will cause an outbreak in these cities (in the color of the 4th cube). You have to take special care to stay on top of treating these cities.
To help you deal with the Hot Zones, it's recommended that you add in the 4 WHO cards (these do NOT replace the city cards that also correspond to these cities). The WHO cards are wild cards that can count as any of the basic 4 colors of diseases for finding a cure- but, you have to build a research station in that city first (hence keeping the normal versions of those cities in the deck). This also gives you 4 more cards in your deck, which buys you a tiny bit more time, if you aren't also adding in rebalancing elements like Crisis cards, or more difficult or additional Epidemics.
Speaking of more difficult Epidemics, I have included 2 different special (and especially horrible) ones that are simply called Pandemics. These cards will turns things from bad to worse right away. I don't know if I can really advise you to have both in a game, but the really wonderful thing about the game Pandemic is how easy it is to adjust the difficulty level. If 5 Epidemics is getting too easy, trying replacing one with a Pandemic card.
One of the methods for adjusting difficulty is starting the game by dealing in some Inception cards (previously called Start cards). There are 16 Inception cards in Pandemic: End Day. 12 are Response cards. The Response cards give you more options and one-shot abilities. You'll need them to deal with the really difficult challenges. You don't have to use them, but they do count as part of your hand limit. However, there are 4 Inception cards that give you a handicap. These are called Cessation cards. Cessation cards also count as part of your hand, and you can't just chuck them when you have more than 7 cards. You also MUST play them whenever possible.Offsetting the Inception cards even more is the addition of 2 special Epidemic cards called Delayed Response. One of them is painful for the players, but the other is potentially helpful. Deal them both into the game, replacing 2 normal Epidemic cards.
Uninspected Research Station
Included in this deck is a special Epidemic card for Scott Di Bartolo's nifty Safety Inspection variant. I've already played with it a couple of times, and it's a hoot. I have several small white Monopoly houses I ordered online that replaced my giant Pandemic Research Stations, and I have some marked with a red dot, and it's a great variant. I have some more of the variant cards from Threat Level Six, lie 2 more New Strain Epidemics, 2 more Classification cards, 8 more Global Parameters, 1 more Special Event, 3 more Crisis cards, 3 new custom Virulent Strain Epidemic cards, an additional Travel Voucher and a new Mutation Event card.
The second deck will contain another 54 cards, and I'm hoping to have that
ready in the next week or so (BoardGameGeek,
Title: Pandemic - End Day (Custom Variant, Deck 2)
Abstract: As promised, the second deck for Pandemic: End Day is finally ready. Some of these cards are meant for use with Pandemic: On The Brink, but the rest can be used without that expansion.
What's in the Deck?
20 Roles and 9 new roles (Virologist, Sympathizer, General, Pilot, Crisis Manager, Hematologist, Pantologist, and Terrorist).
The Terrorist is a team mate for the Bio-Terrorist (used for 2 against 2 game). The Terrorist takes a turn in sequence like a normal player (as opposed to the Bio-Terrorist who goes after every player). The Bio-Terrorist does not, however, get to go after the Terrorist's turn.
The Terrorist is a trouble maker. He gets a card on his turn to add to his hand. He can use the card for travel, and that's it. But, if he's holding it, the other players can't use it. The Terrorist can only hold 5 cards and can NOT hold Special Event cards. When the Terrorist discards, it is always to the bottom of the player deck. Additionally, at the end of his turn, the Terrorist draws 2 cards but places 1 on the bottom of the deck (the other goes into his hand, if possible). The Terrorist also help the Bio-Terrorist to sabotage Research Stations. Normally the BT must be in the city, but on his turn, he can perform this action if the Terrorist is in the city. That is one of the main functions of the Terrorist.
Counter-balancing that a little is the fact that the Terrorist can't enter a city with another player's pawn (too much security around our heroic scientists). Likewise, no other player (including the Bio-Terrorist) can enter a city with the Terrorist (too dangerous). If the Terrorist inadvertently enters a city with the BT, he is spotted immediately. If he ends his turn in the city the BT, then the Bio-Terrorist is captured (place his pawn on his own card). Alternate versions of all the official Pandemic roles. I have a few ways to incorporating these alternate roles (2 new Global Parameters refer to them), they can also just be used for a change of pace.
12 Severity Index Cards
These are cards that get shuffled into the Infection Deck to (you guessed it) make the game even harder. However, a couple of these cards can also make the game easier, so it's just one more way to adjust the challenge. When one comes up, it goes into the discard pile and gets shuffled back to the top of the deck after an Epidemic.
12 Research Station Cards
I picked up a dozen colored houses just like the ones in Pandemic from for very cheap, and as a result I made a set of special Research Station cards. When you build a station, draw a card at random to see what kind of station you ended up with (most give you extra abilities, but some are risky). You can also draw one for the Station in Atlanta at the start of the game, or simply assign it the "Standard Station" card, which has no abilities.
The Zombie Challenge
The craziest new thing in Pandemic: End Day is the Zombie Challenge. Every time we play Pandemic, someone says "we need to add zombies to this some way". So, that's what I've done. The Zombie Challenge is a little like the Bio-Terrorist challenge, in that it pits one player against the others.
Like the BT, the Zombie player goes after each other player. He only gets 2 actions per turn, and can only do each one of them once (so he can't move 2 cities away, for instance). The Zombie Challenge uses the purple cubes and can't be combined with the BT or Mutation challenges. The Zombie player starts the game with 3 purple cubes in his personal supply, and is placed in a random city (from the Infection deck after initial infection- and this card is discarded as well). The Zombie player slowly moves around the board, and either places one of his limited supply of purple cubes in a city, draws another cube to add to his supply, or draws an infection card.
The Zombie player can do a few things with Infection cards, once he accumulates enough. With 2 cards, he can move his pawn to another location on the board, with restrictions. One of the Infection cards must either be a city with a purple cube in it, which is the one he can move his pawn to, or must be the city he is in, in which case he can move anywhere. The other card doesn't matter, but both are discarded.
3 Infection Cards
With 3 Infection cards of the same color, the Zombie player can "Overrun a Research Station" in a city where his pawn is (removing it from the game), or "Infect another player". That player sets aside his or her role card and gets one of the three different Infect role cards. Once infected, that player only has 2 actions per turn. He or she remains infected until their pawn is at a Research Station AND another player's pawn is there as well (to help administer an antidote). To make matters worse for that player, they can only be cured at a Research Station in a city that has its colored diseased cured. For example, if Jeff is Infected, he must get to the Research Station in Kinshasa, since the Yellow disease is the only that is cured. On top of which, once he starts moving, he can't enter any city with a purple cube, or else he is eliminated from the game.
Zombie Event Cards
Mixed into the Player deck are 6 Zombie Event cards. 5 make things worse for the players, but the other is a helper card. Players do not need to find a cure for the purple disease to win. Just the normal 4 cures. The purple cubes, however, are wild, and once on the board they count as all 4 colors. Thus, if a city has 2 blue cubes and purple, and either a blue or purple cube are added, it outbreaks in blue. Note, even if a city has 2 purple and 1 blue and a purple is added, it outbreaks in blue. So far in the test games, it's been pretty close. The Zombie player is very slow at the start, and the other players easily avoid him. But they don't know what cards he's hold, and suddenly he can spring some sudden horrors on the players.
Still, I recognize that this is a pretty crazy variant for Pandemic, and won't be everyone's cup o tea. I hope people will give it a try, because I'd love more feedback on it- I'm open to suggestions as always (BoardGameGeek,2012).