Monsterpocalypse: 2 Player Battle Box - Board Game Box Shot

Monsterpocalypse: 2 Player Battle Box

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monsterpocalypse

Monsterpocalypse is a fast-moving, action-packed strategy game played with high-quality pre-painted miniatures portraying the most fearsome giant monsters on Earth! Each battle takes place in a city that you and your opponent construct by placing buildings on a city map. Players choose their forces from their respective collections of figures and then battle one another with giant monsters and supporting units such as tanks, flying vehicles, and all manner of terrifying creatures. Charge your monster into the city to fight for supremacy, and be the last monster standing!

monster miniatures

When the battle begins, you command your monster and lead your units into the city to hunt down and destroy your opponent's monster. To accomplish your mission, your monster and units each have weapons and abilities that are activated by special dice.

Monsters can increase their power throughout the game by smashing buildings and destroying enemy units. When two monsters fight each other, the results are devastating—they can throw each other across the city, slam into buildings, and suplex each other into radioactive rubble! The last monster standing wins the game!

monsterocalypse

The Monsterpocalypse battle miniatures game puts you in control of power on a monstrous scale.

User Reviews (2)

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10
Jungle Elves - Summoner Wars
BoardGaming.com Beta 2.0 Tester
Summoner Wars Fan
Unicorn Clan - Legend of the Five Rings
8
32 of 33 gamers found this helpful
“Lots of fun to be found in a pile of rubble!”

I’m a big fan of theme, and Monsterpocalypse has plenty of theme to spare. If you’ve ever enjoyed those cheesy giant monster movies, this could be a great game for you. It really recreates the feel (or what I imagine the feel would be) of crashing through a metropolis, trading blows with a colossal foe while puny tanks or auxillaries take potshots at you.

The first impression always counts, and Monpoc definitely makes a good one. The components are top-notch, with excellent detail and a variety of playable units. The buildings are sturdy and well-made, and the box contains enough to get started right away. Most importantly, the monsters are just plain cool, whether you’re playing a giant mutated dinosaur, an evil entity from another dimension, or a genetically-engineered cyber ninja. And they all come prepainted, definitely a plus for me.

What makes the 2-player battle box great is that it contains two fully-playable factions right out of the box. This is a huge improvement over the original blind-purchase model, in which each starter set contained a monster and a variety of random units. Now, there’s no need to chase down booster packs; you can play a two-player game with the quick-start rules within minutes of opening the box. In addition to the armies provided, you also receive a good number of buildings, which helps to fill the maps from the start and opens the game up for its special brand of resource management.

Which brings me to gameplay: The great minis are complemented by a surprisingly deep resource management system that utilizes a variety of dice. The dice are used for movement, spawning units, and a huge variety of attacks for your monsters as well as your units, and you are constantly trading dice back and forth from units to monsters. You have to choose between activating units or your monster each turn, and this means that you are frequently making hard decisions on how to use your scarce resources. With that in mind, there is a lot of fun to be had in surprising your opponent with an unexpected monster activation and throwing him (or it) through a building.

That is where a great deal of the theme shines through. Using the various special attacks really makes the game feel like a clash of titans. You can destroy buildings, bodyslam your opponent or charge into him and knock him into a burning pile of rubble, and even pick up hapless units and toss them through the air at the opposing monster. The variety of attacks and abilities is staggering.

Which brings me to the biggest downside of the game: the variety of abilities is difficult if not impossible to remember and makes for a steep and intimidating learning curve. Playing involves a lot of stopping to look up effects, which does pull the player out of the game. Using the rulebook for this can be difficult because of the small type, but reference cards can be downloaded and make looking up abilities easier. Additionally, purchasing a DMZ pack, which contains multiple monsters, units, and buildings from the same faction, will provide you with a reference card to use, as well.

Another negative is the occasional issue with the minis breaking off the base, which has happened to me on at least two occasions. They are fixable with super glue, but this is less than desirable. Privateer Press will provide a free replacement miniature, no questions asked, so the excellent customer service somewhat made up for this.

Overall, this is a great game with an amazingly cool theme. The monsters are extremely detailed and cover all the fun giant monster stereotypes. The factions appear balanced, and the units and buildings, along with the unique resource management, offer a good degree of strategic depth. If you’re willing to work through a fairly steep learning curve, you’ll be sure to find an entertaining title that is loads of fun, and it is now available in a great new format. I highly reccomend giving it a try.

 
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6
Plaid Hat Games fan
Asmodee fan
I play blue
10
26 of 32 gamers found this helpful
“All Out of Bubblegum”

Privateer Press puts out some amazing games. The problem with most of them is that you need to buy an encyclopaedic array of manuals, more plastic than you’d see at the Screen Actors Guild, and enough art supplies to keep a first grade cl*** busy for a semester. Not that there’s anything wrong with that – if you have that kind of time and aren’t interested in the opposite ***, more power to you. Me, I have a wife and four kids, so no dice on Warmahordes, even if the minis are spectacular. Enter Monsterpocalypse – Privateer’s prepainted minis line featuring ginormous monsters destroying city blocks, kicking ***, taking names, and eating the Statue of Liberty for lunch.

Monpoc (as the kids call it these days) has been around for a while now – since 2008 to be precise – but this past year got a real shot in the arm with the introduction of a new packaging setup by PP. The Two-Player Battle Box opened up the game to a whole new audience: players who are attracted to the theme and intrigued by the gameplay but have zero interest in a blind-buy, collectable minis game. The battle box contains everything that a player needs to get started: two fully playable armies including a monster and thirteen or so units, customized to a specific faction, a double sided map, and nine buildings, plus all of the necessary accoutrements such as dice and health trackers. The armies don’t suck, either – they’re a nice compilation of basic units from the Rise! set, fully playable and more or less balanced against each other. The armies themselves are random selections out of six possible factions but if you can handle that little bit of living on the edge it’s a steal. In fact, the battle box packaging has been so successful that PP released a follow up collection of faction packs containing fixed units from the I Chomp NY and All Your Base sets, one for each faction. If blind buy leaves you cold, Monpoc has turned up the heat a bit in what should prove to be a solid new direction for the franchise.

Enough about packaging – on to the ***********. I’m more excited about this game than I’ve been for any game since Summoner Wars, and that’s saying something. The game itself revolves around a fantastic dice mechanic. Dice in MonPoc come in three flavors: action, boost, and power. Action dice are white and are the bread-and-butter of the game. They’re used as the standard attack dice, but also serve as the resource management component of the game. Boost dice are blue and are added to attacks for certain units. These dice are more powerful than action dice, containing more opportunities to hit, but also are free in the sense that they aren’t limited like action dice but instead are granted based on figure stats and abilities. Power dice are red and are the strongest flavor of dice in the game, having the most opportunities to hit. They’re also the hardest to acquire, as they have to be earned by controlling terrain or destroying figures, and they are only usable by monsters.

Turns can be of two types: unit and monster. During unit turns, a player spends action dice from his or her unit pool to spawn, move, and attack; a spent die is moved from the unit pool to the monster pool. This introduces a great tension in resource management – the more dice spent to spawn and move units, the less available for attacking, as they all come from the same pool. A player can begin a turn with a maximum of ten dice in the pool, giving a real sense of tension and resource constraint. You’ll simply not be able to do everything that you want to do on your turn. Ever.

But let’s be honest – nobody is playing this game for the units. I mean, it’s fine to have hovertanks and pterasaurs and flying saucers and bioengineered ninjas running around the map and all, but they’re really there so that the big guys can fall on something squishy and maybe have a tasty appetizer between rounds of ***********. This game is all about the monsters. Monsters come in two flavors: alpha and hyper. The alpha form is sort of your grade-A, run of the mill gigantic critter (or mecha); the hyper form is its ****** off version – you know, that moment in a monster movie where the beastie goes all transcendent and starts to glow and shoot fire from various orifices. To win the game, a player must destroy both the opponent’s alpha and hyper forms. A monster can switch between forms, but it costs power dice to move from alpha to hyper.

Let’s talk attacks for a moment, because that’s what we’re all here for. Attacks come in two basic flavors: brawl and blast. Brawl is what it sounds – a melee attack against an adjacent figure. Blast attacks are ranged; units can have a range of either two to three or two to five spaces for their blast stat. Certain abilities restrict the kinds of attacks that a figure can use or have used against it, such as Flying, which protects against brawl attacks. Monsters typically are able to use both kinds of attacks, plus a third type specific to monsters – the power attack. Power attacks come in various flavors, such as Body Slam or Throw, and typically involve scenarios such as slamming the opposing monster through a bunch of gl*** and steel and onto a pile of radioactive sludge. They do the most damage when properly used – it’s not like getting tossed through the Empire State Building isn’t going to leave a mark – but they require the use of power dice and specific positioning relative to the target, so a player usually needs to spend a few turns setting up before unleashing a truly devastating attack.

So far, none of this is really all that more complex than something like Heroscape. MonPoc offers a bit more complexity, though, and it comes in the form of abilities. I think it’s no exaggeration to say that the game has hundreds of abilities that units can have. I’m not sure, though, because they’re bewildering and take up seven pages in the back of the rulebook. That’s right – seven pages, in ultra-small font, just for the units from the first set. Abilities are what truly make this game shine. Some abilities add to the range of all of your allied units, some grant extra boost dice, some allow a monster to regain health, some grant extra damage, some create multiple attacks, and so on and so on. Each unit has a set of abilities indicated by a group of icons on the side of the base. To determine what the ability does, players need to pull out the rulebook and look them up. No, seriously. That’s how they work. This is, to my mind, the one flaw in the game, and unfortunately it’s truly epic. Looking up all of those abilities brings the game grinding to a screeching halt. A player could, of course, with sufficient practice and dedication, memorize all of the abilities for his or her faction. I think the level of effort is approximately the same as getting a CPA or so. Fortunately, there’s a dead-easy fix – google and download a set of unit reference cards. Print on business card stock, punch out, distribute to players, and put the rulebook back in the bathroom where it belongs. Something like this should really have been provided as part of the starter sets or something, but as a workaround, it’s a game saver. Don’t get me wrong, though – in spite of the tedium of the out-of-the-box experience, figure abilities make this game what it is. They create the synergy and many of the interesting decision points in the game, they define the purpose and function of each figure, and they give each faction a distinct flavor. In short – abilities good, rulebook execution bad. Fix with fan-made material and all is well with the world.

What puts this one over the top? I’m a sucker for a game drenched in theme. The components for MonPoc are some of the best I’ve ever seen, bar none. The game looks fantastic when set up – I played this at a local shop recently and had half the store gathered around admiring the bits. More importantly, the gameplay really immerses you in a cinematic narrative. The monsters feel like the threat that they should be. They smash their way around the city, leaving death and destruction in their wake. But although this is a brutal dicefest, it’s a smart brutal dicefest; a player will have to deal with insufficient resources and make meaningful tactical choices about how many dice to spend during each phase of the turn and where to position units for best impact. The risk/reward ratio is also satisfying – do you play it safe and do less damage, or do you move in for a punishing blow that opens your monster up to a vicious counter? These decisions are the meat and potatoes of this game, and the result is a very tense, challenging, and ultimately thoroughly satisfying gaming experience.

 

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