Game: XCOM: The Board Game - Evolution
Publisher: Fantasy Flight Games
Designer: Samuel Bailey
When I originally bought the XCOM board game, it was as a gift for Amy along with the promise that I'd play it at least once. She was a big fan of the video games and I thought that there was no way I could enjoy a board game based on a video game about defending the earth from aliens. 12 months later and we've played XCOM: The Board Game over 10 times and both class it as one of our top ten games of all time so we bought the expansion the day it was released in January this year.
The Evolution expansion adds a few different kinds of extra content to the game. The most obvious is the MEC Troopers - a new kind of troop who are specialised at every combat type. However the expansion giveth, but it also taketh away with the exalt tokens which make it more difficult to complete tasks. In addition there are extra aliens, extra science cards and extra crisis cards that reference the new content.
Unlike with other troops, you do not start the game with any MEC Troopers. Instead the 3 miniatures are placed in the central supply and you needed to rely on the scientist to use their tech to get you these powerful troops. The scientist needs to discard salvage to buy the MEC troopers so they need to make a value judgement about whether to use salvage to help them with research or to help the Squad Leader. When an action is specialised the MEC Trooper will always count as specialised as that action and has all four symbols, making them really useful where a large combination of abilities is required and there isn't that much budget to spend on assigning troops to base defence and the mission.
|The MEC Troopers - Really big, detailed minis - Hopefully Amy will paint XCOM one day...|
|Other new content for the expansion. New aliens, missions, crisis and effects that occur when you take base damage.|
I'm not sure Evolution is quite the expansion I wanted for XCOM, I might have preferred something that had more game changing aspects so that I felt like I might sometimes want to play the base game and sometimes the expansion. For extra content though it's quite a good value expansion and fits very well with the base game in terms of consistency and the fact I can fit it in the base game box. XCOM: The Board Game - Evolution expansion gets a 7/10 from the Yellow Meeple.