The Walking Dead: All Out War Miniatures Game has been built around a solid wargaming core – the character and equipment cards provide hundreds of list-building options and many different play styles, coupled with the AI and Threat system for endless replayability. This is a nice, tight set of rules designed to engage wargamers whilst showcasing Robert Kirkman’s excellent IP.
However, The Walking Dead is not just about survivors fighting for resources, and it’s not just about the persistent threat of the walkers. It’s about the story. Every issue of the comics presents a new dilemma that Rick and his companions must face, and tough decisions that must be made to survive in the new world. This is where the expansions come in.
Each expansion takes a key story arc from the comics and represents it in game form, with a series of scenarios allowing you to play out the events. Unlike the core game, these scenarios will have lots of different victory conditions, and will rarely be a simple fight for survival against a balanced force. In fact, for the earlier parts of the story there will be no opposing force at all! It’s not until the prison that Rick’s group come across any “enemies” and so the initial scenarios will be all about surviving against the walkers, and can be played either solo, or co-op with players taking a different character each. Later scenarios, especially once the group reach Woodbury, will have two sides. The expansion book will suggest which characters to use for each part of the story, but will also have a points limit allowing you to use different characters if you want. For example, you could have a game where Jim and Amy survived the Atlanta camp and joined in the defense of the prison, or you could play out a game where Derek’s group weren’t so hostile and joined Rick at the farm.
In addition to the scenarios (and of course the new characters and equipment cards) each expansion will introduce a few new rules to add a twist to the core game. These will be a key part of the scenarios, but there is nothing to stop you using them in your regular games for a bit more excitement. For example, the Atlanta campfire adds rules for Walkers and tents being set on fire, buildings such as the farm’s barn can become spawn points for new Walkers in the middle of the board, and Woodbury will add rules for playing at night. There’s plenty to look forward to!
We’re in the middle of writing all of this up at the moment, but I will leave you with some examples of scenarios that you can play out in the expansions.
* Atlanta Camp – Rick and Glenn’s desperate journey into Atlanta to find the gun store, and the first time that they try covering their clothes in gore. This will be followed by the Walker attack on the camp, and the first two player scenario with Rick vs. Shane deep in the woods.
* Hershel’s Farm – This will start with Tyreese turning up on the way and helping the group clear out Wiltshire Estates, followed by Otis accidentally shooting Carl and Rick having to carry him through the Walker-infested countryside to the farm. Once they’re there, the group will have the contents of the barn to deal with…
* The Prison – The initial scenarios will involve clearing out various areas of the prison, until they find that they’re not alone there. Tension will reach maximum as Rick has to deal with Dexter’s rebellion, and then Michonne will turn up outside and have to fight her way to the gates. This expansion will end with the characters tooling up with riot gear and heading into the woods to search for the crashed helicopter.
* Woodbury – The expansion will start with Rick, Glenn and Michonne held captive inside the town, but Martinez appears to switch sides and help them escape. This will be followed by the raid on the national guard base, and Michonne and Tyreese infiltrating the Governor’s camp, culminating in the big battle you’ve all been waiting for, with the Governor unleashing the full force of Woodbury in order to destroy Rick’s group and take the prison.
All of the four expansions are available on The Walking Dead: All Out War Kickstarter, long before they hit retail. The Something to Fear Pledge includes the Greene Farm and Atlanta expansions for free! What are you waiting for? Pledge now!