Ascension: Return of the Fallen - Board Game Box Shot

Ascension: Return of the Fallen

If You Want A Job Done, Sometimes You Have To Do It Yourself.

Playable as a standalone 2-player game, Return of the Fallen can also be added to the base game to play with 2-6 players.

Samael the Fallen God has returned in his true form, and is intent on obliterating your world. Will you be able to overcome monstrous obstacles and assemble a mighty army to end Samael’s reign once and for all?

Ascension: Return of the Fallen is the first expansion to the hit deck-building game from Magic the Gathering Pro Tour Champions Justin Gary, Rob Dougherty and Brian Kibler. The first expansion to Ascension features exciting new heroes, constructs, monsters and introduces the game-changing Fate mechanic.

  • All the fun of a trading card game without buying limitless packs of cards
  • Setup in minutes with no unique pregame preparation
  • Play in less than 30 minutes
  • A complete 1-2 player game
  • A 5-6 player expansion for Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer

User Reviews (12)

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8
USA
Viscount / Viscountess
Novice Reviewer
7
42 of 49 gamers found this helpful
“Several improvements to the original”

Ascension: Return of the Fallen is the first expansion to Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer that can be played with or without the base set. It offers new cards, a new mechanic, and an expanded range of players.

New Content

The expansion adds 120 new cards, 65 of which are new center row cards and the remainder allowing for additional players. Many of the new center row cards have unique and/or powerful effects that offer new strategies or interesting effects. There are also now several more ways to banish unwanted cards. As a side note, the new center row cards now have an expansion symbol on the bottom right with a rarity symbol to indicate how many times that card appears in the set, which could help when deciding what card to defeat or acquire.

The expansion introduces a new mechanic called Fate that causes a typically beneficial effect when it is placed into the center row. This mechanic is present on only a few of the cards in the set, so it is a relatively minor addition.

When played with the base set, Ascension: Return of the Fallen expands the maximum suggested player count to 6, but it can also be played on its own with a maximum of 2 players. The expansion also includes rules to play solitaire as well as rules for team-based play.

Components and Theme

The set has 120 cards and 40 plastic Honor tokens. The 40 plastic Honor tokens are of the same kind and quality as those in the base set, and, together with the 55 reprints, they make up the extra components necessary for expanding the game to 5 or 6 players. Where the components falter is card quality. The stock is noticeably thinner and weaker than the kind used for the base set, so card sleeves are advisable for frequent players.

As far as theme goes, the art remains as stylistic as it was in the base set, so I do not feel that it makes any inroads to improving the game’s theme. Where I feel that the theme benefits is in the new faction cards, which add more options that further differentiate each individual faction, which include making a Mechana Construct strategy far more feasible. Other than for the Mechana Constructs, the set makes no effort to create combos between the cards of each faction, so diversification remains the most effective strategy.

Conclusion

I enjoy this expansion and feel it improves on the base game in a number of important ways. The new cards fix the variety problems I used to encounter, and they add strategies and unique effects that breathe new life into the game. In addition to the new cards, the expansion to a maximum of 6 players, as well as the team and solitaire variants, undeniably adds further value. The card stock issue did not really impact me since I already sleeve my deckbuilding game cards, but it is something to keep in mind if you do not currently sleeve your cards. All that said, the bottom line is that if you like Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer, you will definitely enjoy this expansion.

 
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7
Master Grader
Novice Reviewer
Amateur Advisor
I'm Completely Obsessed
9
40 of 47 gamers found this helpful
“More Power!”

Return of the Fallen is a great expansion. It adds new cards to the Ascension mix without taking away from what made the original great. There are some new play mechanics but they fit so well with the flow of the game it makes it seem like they have been there the entire time.

This is a stand alone expansion, which means you can play it without the original Ascension game, but because only with 2 players. This is limiting, but not really a problem. You will probably want to mix the two sets anyway.

Pros:
-More of the same. Added some new stuff, but everything fits.
-Amazing art.

Cons:
-Small set to use as a stand alone.

Conclusion:

Ascension is a great game, and Return of the Fallen is a great expansion for it. Nothing feels out of place. The game doesn’t get changed so much that you won’t recognize it, and the new things that are added seem to be a welcome addition to most players. If you like Ascension, pick up this expansion. You will be able to support more players and get some great new cards.

 
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1
9
39 of 47 gamers found this helpful
“Great expansion/stand alone 2 player. ”

I came a bit late to the Ascension game. Learned while attending GenCon 2011 at the demo booth, I was hooked. I ended up playing several games and then playing in their tournament. When I got home, I bought Return of the Fallen.

Return of the Fallen has all the components for a 2-player game or to add 2 more players to the base set, Chronicle of the Godslayer. In addition to adding more cards to the base set, it introduces the “fate” mechanic. “Fate” triggers events when the card enters the center row. This ranges from banishing cards from the center row, gaining Mystics, or other sorts of chaos.

I’ve mainly played this as stand alone 2 player game. It plays real quick. Ideal while waiting for more people to show up. The only drawback I can see is that the card variety is limited. I hope more expansions are released soon and that the new cards interact more with each other.

 
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3
Amateur Reviewer
9
39 of 47 gamers found this helpful
“Worth getting. ”

I will come out and say it; the card stock issue annoys the **** out of me. The original game is a thicker card stock where this game is more like a magic card. Toss some sleeves on the game and the problem is fixed.

The expansion for ascension functions as a stand alone 2 player game and also allows 6 players when paired with the original. Mechanic wise it adds an ability called fate, which is an ability that takes place the moment the card enters the center row. One card has a fate mechanic of “every player draws a card”. Nothing game breaking but it is a nice and welcome addition to the game. The expansion also comes with rules for a team variant and solo play.

My only suggestion is for more than 4 players add a second center row. With 5-6 people there is no real strategy or planning, you just grab whatever comes up. For 5 we do the normal 6 card center row with 4 extra center row cards underneath it and with 6 we do 12 cards total in the center. This allows a good 4+ experience while still having enough cards that you aren’t just grabbing whatever happens to come up on your turn.

Don’t let the naysayers sway you, if you really love ascension get the expansion. Outside of the card thickness issue which is easily solved with card sleeves it is a great first expansion t an already great game.

 
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6
Unicorn Clan - Legend of the Five Rings
Gamer - Level 6
Novice Reviewer
8
39 of 47 gamers found this helpful
“Great addition, troubling precedence.”

Return of the Fallen is a great expansion to the core Ascension game. Many new cards are added for all four factions as well as a host of new monsters to defeat. RotF adds a new game mechanic called Fate. Cards with Fate text have an immediate effect on the game when they are added to the center row. Examples include “all players may draw a card” and “banish all cards adjacent to this one.” These Fate effects are clearly marked on each card in a separate black box of text, making it easy to identify when a Fate card has entered the center row. This was a great design move, as including it as normal text would have made recognizing Fate cards much more complicated.

One flaw the expansion may be guilty of is too much synergy. There are some cards that manipulate the top card of a players deck. When playing with just Return of the Fallen as a two-player game, these cards are useful. When these cards are mixed in to the core game it dramatically reduces that chance of these cards turning up in the center row. This can sometimes cripple their usefulness. It is somewhat worrisome that the trend for Ascension expansions will continue to be “more of the same,” adding cards to an already bloated center deck with little innovative new game mechanics. That being said, the cards are wonderful additions and it is highly recommended for fans of the core game.

 
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7
Advanced Grader
Novice Reviewer
Knight
8
39 of 47 gamers found this helpful
“Great Addition to the Original.”

Ascension: Return of the Fallen is a great addition to the original Ascension: Godslayer. For an review of the original, refer to my post under Ascension: Godslayer.

This expansion adds new cards to the portal, with the introduction of “Fate.” Fate is an ability that is played as soon as the card hits the line up. These often modify the line up in some sort of way or benefits players by having them draw cards, discard cards, or even gain new cards. All without having to purchase the card from the lineup.

Scoring rules have been modified from the original in this game. However this isn’t a huge deal as the other Ascension games have adopted the format given in Return of the Fallen.

Also while there are several new cards that this set brings, the “Boss” of this expansion adds the ability to add monster cards to your deck instead of discarding them into the void. These monster cards provide attack to your deck.

Final Review: I fell that this expansion adds a lot to the original game. The original while very fun, is basic and can get a little bland after awhile. My opinion is that this expansion adds the right amount of synergy between cards, as well as adds new rule additions that make the game more fun but not too complicated that new people cannot play.

 
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2
Gamer - Level 2
10
39 of 50 gamers found this helpful
“Great expansion to a good game”

Return of the Fallen adds several things to the original game. Other than the new cards (with some escalated power and toughness), it adds the fate Mechanic, expands the base game to 6 players, and is capable of being played by itself.
The fate mechanic triggers when any fate card appears in the center row. Some cards help, some hurt, they all affect everyone..or no one.
The expansion doesn’t radically change the game, so if you liked it before, you’ll still enjoy it, and if you didn’t care for it, the expansion isn’t likely to make you change your mind.

 
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4
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
BoardGaming.com Beta 2.0 Tester
Amateur Advisor
6
39 of 54 gamers found this helpful
“Doesn't fix the problems of the original.”

The expansion adds some fun cards and mechanics, but in the end it has the same problems as the original. First, it doesn’t add enough synergy between cards or “suit loyalty.” Second, it adds way too many powerful 1-off cards. The only way to keep Ascension balanced and not entirely luck dependent is to have many copies of each card. Having single copies simply leaves it up to luck who gets the card. This expansion should have added more copies of the powerful 1-off cards in the original, and had lots of copies of the powerful new cards. It didn’t, and for that it deserves a 6.

It IS still fun, though.

 
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2
Mantis Clan - Legend of the Five Rings
8
40 of 61 gamers found this helpful
“Amazing expansion”

Certainly a worthy expansion to an amazing game.

 
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I Am What I Am
9
40 of 62 gamers found this helpful
“Expansion over standalone”

Great expansion but not that great as a stand alone game

 
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5
Vanguard
BoardGaming.com Beta 1.0 Tester
I Play This One a LOT
Strategist
10
41 of 66 gamers found this helpful
“Great expansion to a great game!”

As with the base Ascension game, this expansion is really well done and fun for everyone. It adds a new mechanic that gives the game a bit more random flavoring. Perhaps the best part is the expansion can be used as a stand alone two player version, or if added to the base set, it increases the max number of players to 6. Overall a great buy.

 
Player Avatar
1
10
40 of 65 gamers found this helpful
“Adds some intresting twists”

This expansion is great as it offers a solitaire version of the game. So if you want to play but there is no one around you can still enjoy a game. It also gives you new monsters and new hero cards with greater abilities and some with higher cost honor values.

 

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