I first raved about the boardgame Neuroshima Hex back in 2009. It’s a tactical game of tile placement and warfare set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, designed by Michal Oracz and published by Portal Games. Since then, my attention gravitated more towards 51st State and The New Era, card games set in the same universe.
Michael Oracz also designed Theseus, which I like a lot. Portal games released a new army for These us recently, and as a result it got some recent play. But it also reminded me of Neuroshima Hex, and the fact that I hadn’t played it in ages. (I also got a little boost in interest from other sources.)
Suddenly I wanted to not only play NH again, I wanted to go all in on it. Since discovering it, multiple extra armies were released. I had dreams of inviting folks over for a Neuroshima Hex battle royale tournament featuring all the armies. In addition to the armies, a new edition of the game had come out with little change except the artwork. I went back and forth on whether or not to get it when I eventually realized that I was just trying to find a reason to do so, so I did it. And now I have the new version.
I like the new design a lot. The artwork is a little more dynamic, and the icons that tell you what things do “pop” a little more. It comes with cool things for tracking the hit points on your base, but in use they’re not great, and we just used the track on the board.
Last night Matt, Mike K, and I cracked into the new version. This is the first time I’d played since December of 2010 (not counting plays on the iPad app, of which there weren’t many). I was the Outpost, Mike was Moloch, and Matt was the Hegemony.
That’s my (green) base and Commando being menaced by Mike’s (red) Clown and Matt’s (yellow) Hacksaw Pirate (I don’t know what that guy is really called.)
I had forgotten how much fun this game is. We slugged back and forth, making each other angry and trying to get each person to attack the other guy instead of ourselves. “Don’t kill that guy of mine, Mike! He’s doing damage to Matt! Killing him would just help Matt out!”
The first game ended in a draw between Matt and Mike. I think I wasn’t too far behind. We had a blast, so we immediately played again.
Same armies. That bastard on the left with the 2 and 1 on it did a crapload of damage to me before Matt got rid of it. And the annoying blocker in front of him is keeping my Commando on the right from blowing it to hell. I was knocked down 10 points before anyone else had lost even two.
But this move from Mike:
That’s him dropping an air strike on ALL OF MY GUYS. I was at ten points, probably less by then, and did I need this? I DID NOT. I’m so livid the image isn’t even in focus, I’m shaking with rage.
The good news is, I at least stayed in the game to the bitter end despite these skylarkings. I predictably lost, along with Matt. Mike had been rewarded for his violent and frankly anti-social behavior with victory, and I fear it will only encourage such actions in the future.
It had been far too long, and I’m super glad to have Neuroshima Hex back on my table again.