Day 24: Game On … Continued

Epidemic card from Pandemic. This is bad.

Epidemic card from Pandemic. This is bad.

As I wrote here, I received my copy of Pandemic last night and was excited to play. This weekend turned out to be busier than I thought, but I finally played a few solo games tonight. I love the game mechanics; the sequence of actions is pretty straightforward and there aren’t dice to roll or huge charts to consult during each turn. I’m looking forward to seeing how it plays out as it was designed, as a 2-4 player cooperative game.

I’m enjoying Pandemic so much that I’m in full-on geek mode right now, shopping for appropriately themed accessories to hold the game pieces (great idea, Tabletop!) or “Zombie Outbreak Response Team” shirts to wear while playing. Currently, I have no plans to enroll in medical school to learn how to fight infectious diseases … yet.

Day 23: Game On

Pandemic Game Board

Pandemic Game Board

Two days ago I did something I hadn’t done in eons: I bought a board game. As my wife and I were about to finish the first half of season five of The Walking Dead, we wondered how we would get our zombie fix until the new episodes were released. Although I enjoyed Dead Trigger and hadn’t downloaded Dead Trigger 2 yet, they’re still first-person shooter games that don’t offer  multi-player modes. We had fun playing Zombie Dice with our niece and nephew, but were looking for something a bit more challenging. A quick Google search offered plenty of zombie-related fun and we settled on the board game Pandemic.

While not exactly a zombie game, Pandemic’s theme is pre-zombie apocalypse: you and your team are trying to prevent infectious diseases from spreading and killing off the Earth’s population. You travel around the world, treating diseases and trying to discover a cure before it’s too late. The diseases aren’t named, but in our games one of them is definitely a strain of Zombie-itis.

What interested me the most is Pandemic’s cooperative game-play: two to four players play together, trying to beat the game. You share resources and do what’s best for the team, instead of trying to out-maneuver or out-wit your opponents. There are no advantages to withholding resources or trying to sabotage a teammate. There are various ways to lose, but only one way to win: cure all the diseases. It’s only possible if your team works well together.

Last night I watched the Pandemic episode of Tabletop, Wil Wheaton’s Youtube gaming show, trying to get a feel for the game. I also watched the instructional video on the Pandemic website and with these two videos, I felt like I had a good grasp of the rules and game play.

During a meeting this afternoon, I received the Amazon notification that the game had arrived. Yes! When I got home, I tore open the package, checked to make sure the game was complete, reviewed the rules, and set up the board.

It’s time to save the world.