Sentinels of the Multiverse: Rook City Game Expansion

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The Basics:

  • For ages 7 and up (publisher suggests 8+)
  • For 2 to 5 players
  • About 1 hour to complete

Geek Skills:

  • Active Listening & Communication
  • Counting & Math
  • Logical & Critical Decision Making
  • Reading
  • Strategy & Tactics
  • Risk vs. Reward
  • Cooperative & Team Play
  • Hand/Resource Management

Learning Curve:

  • Child – Moderate
  • Adult – Easy

Theme & Narrative

  • Take on the role of a superhero and fight fantastic villains in this cooperative card game

Endorsements:

  • Gamer Geek approved!
  • Parent Geek approved!
  • Child Geek approved!

Overview

Rook City coils around the river that cuts it in half like a dark poisonous snake. Its streets are filled with crime and the overworked and underpaid police force are full of crooked cops too burnt out to fight the criminal element that rules the city. But there is also hope. On the roof tops and in the alleys, a secret war is waged between villains and heroes. To the winner will go the heart of the city and its future. A prize both sides intend to win.

Sentinels of the Multiverse: Rook City, by Greater Than Game (LLC), is an expansion for the popular cooperative comic book superhero themed card game, Sentinels of the Multiverse. The expansion is comprised of 2 Hero decks, 4 Villain decks, and 2 Environment decks. The illustrations on the cards and their quality are excellent, equal in all ways to the base game they must be played with.

New Game Play

The expansion is played with the base game, Sentinels of the Multiverse, and does not require any changes to the game set up. The expansion does introduce three new game rules, however.

Irreducible

This new game mechanism makes it so damage cannot be decreased. It can, however, still be increased and redirected. Immunity to damage or having a special effect in play that makes a character temporarily immune to damage still blocks damage regardless if it is irreducible or not. For example, one of the attacks that will be inflicted on the Heroes is a nasty little plague that will cause 1 irreducible damage to their HP. In other words, unblockable.

Indestructible

This is a special trait on very few cards included in the expansion. If the card has “Indestructible” on it, the card cannot be destroyed or removed whatsoever for the duration of the game once played. The card can still take damage; however, it just keeps getting up no matter how many times it’s knocked down.

Heroes (H)

This new game mechanism is brilliant and allows the game to scale in difficulty according to the number of players in the game. One of the complaints about Sentinels of the Multiverse (1st edition) was that it didn’t scale at all. A very strong villain was an easy opponent with many players and almost unstoppable with too few. The new (H) (a circle with an “H” inside of it) represents the number of Heroes in play. For example, one attack against the Heroes states that an assassin “deals the Hero with the highest HP (H) minus 2 melee damage.” This means if the game had 4 Heroes, the assassin would deal 2 points of damage (4-2=2) to the Hero with the most HP. It’s a very clever and easy way to make sure the even the wimpiest of bad guys can still leave a mark on a Hero, thus making the game more exciting but always balanced.

New Heroes

The expansion comes with two new Heroes, but they do not have super powers. Nevertheless, they can hold their own and make the bad guys nervous. They are introduced and summarized here.

Mr. Fixer

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Quiet, stoic, and reserved, Mr. Fixer is a ex-Martial Arts Teacher, part-time mechanic, and full-time crime fighter  His body and mind are strong and sharp, like the blade of a sword. His arms and legs are capable of inflicting a great deal of damage with just the slightest touch thanks to his indepth knowledge of many Martial Arts styles. If the situation calls for it, Mr. Fixer is also very comfortable picking up anything that might be around and using it as a very effective weapon. When Mr. Fixer hears that something is broken, he makes it his job to make it right. That could be fixing an engine or fixing the rampant crime on the street.

Expatriette

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The daughter of a super villain who doesn’t have any superpowers of her own, Expatriette learned to rely on her cunning, skill, and wide variety of guns and armaments to even the odds. She is the enemy of any person or organization who is power-hungry and uses that power to suppress others. If she encounters a huge super villain, she uses her bazooka to bring it down. If she comes into conflict with a fast-moving opponent, she uses guns that fire bullets at an even faster rate. Expatriette has discovered that one doesn’t need super powers to be an unstoppable force for good or evil.

New Villains

The expansion introduces two new Villains to the mix that are directly in conflict with the new Heroes, but they can just as easily wage war with the Heroes in the base game, too. They are introduced and summarized here.

Plague Rat

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Once a prominent and feared drug dealer who owned the streets of Rook City, he was forced into hiding and went underground to live in the city sewers. The rival gang that challenged and won his territory relentlessly pursued him until they thought him dead. But he wasn’t. He hid for years in the dark waiting for a chance to return, but his long exposure to the toxic drugs he sold mixed with the chemicals in the sewer, mutating him into a rat-like creature. What was once a man is now totally replaced by a disease-carrying monster that is driven by hate and hunts the sewers for its next meal.

The Matriarch

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A young girl who was given all of life’s privileges wanted only two things: fear and respect! She was denied both and she hated the world for it. She turned inward, shrank away from the love of those around her, and found solace only in her dark poetry. One day, amusing herself, she visited an antique store and was drawn to a feathered mask. Putting it on, something inside her sparked to life and she could feel the presence of birds. She reached out with her mind and they responded. Never happier, the young girl walked out of the shop with a new name and a new purpose. She was now The Matriarch! She was no longer  a little girl, but a woman of power! Anyone who thought otherwise or crossed her would be pecked to death by her bird minions.

The Chairman

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Behind every crime in Rook City, no matter how seemingly random it might appear, is a person pulling the strings. The police department have collected bits and pieces of stories they have heard through interrogation, recorded conversations, and whispers on the street of a person known only as “The Chairman”. This individual, if he or she exists, is supposedly the boss of all crime bosses. No one knows what this individual looks like or who it could possibly be. One thing is for certain, however. Whenever the police start to dig into The Chairman stories, nothing is ever found and informants either disappear or show up face-down in the city river.

Spite

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His name was Jonathan “Jack” Donovan and he was sentenced to execution after being found guilty for over 40 murders. Murders he not only willingly committed, but was proud of. It was a quick court case and the city was happy to see the murderous nightmare behind bars and soon to perish. But then Jack was offered a deal while on Death Row. If he volunteered to donate his body to science, his sentence would change to “Life in Prison”. He and many other Death Row inmates accepted. The scientists injected his body with poisons and chemicals with mutagenic properties. All the inmate test subjects died except Jack. Where others perished, he flourished and grew stronger by the day. He was eventually strong enough to overpower a large group of guards and escaped into the night. Now he is known as Spite and he craves only two things: murder and more chemicals to pump into his system to make him even stronger.

New Environments

In addition to the new Heroes and Villains, the expansion introduces two new locations were epic battles of “good versus evil” take place.

Rook City

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The official name on the map is Overbrook City and it was once a prosperous place, full of industrious people who made their living by the large river that flowed through it. Known as center of trade and commerce, people eagerly moved in to take advantage of new opportunities and a chance for prosperity. As the city grew larger and older, it became darker and more Gothic in appearance. Through a series of seemingly unrelated events, the city began to fall to crime and corruption. The locals now called their home Rook City. Tourism dried up, families moved away, and legit businesses closed their doors. Now all that remains is the overworked police force, corrupted officials, and the unfortunate people who could not move. The city is full of crime and violence, but there is hope. Brave Heroes also make their home here and are growing more bold in their private war against the underworld of crime.

Pike Industrial Complex

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Established in 1921, Pike Industries was focused on realizing a dream. The owner wanted to revolutionize the human experience through beneficial and safe technology. In less than a year, tremendous technological and scientific advances were made. Then the dream died, both literally and figuratively, when company’s founder perished. The company and the unrealized dream passed on to the son. A son who was just as clever and as capable as his father, but not of the same mind. Where the father’s goal was to advance the human race, the son’s only goal was self advancement. The work became twisted, chemicals were created to enhance but also control a human mind, and the factory felt more and more like a prison for those who worked within its walls. Pike Industrial Complex is the largest company on the river and it is rumored that they deal in many shadowy circles.

To learn more about Sentinels of the Mulitiverse: Rook City, see the game’s web page or download the rules for the base game to learn more about how the game is played.

Final Word

The expansion brings two things to the table. The first is the new game mechanisms for irreducible damage, indestructible cards, and variable affects based on the number of Heroes in the game. Very cool stuff. The second is the new environments to battle in, new Villains to contend with, and new Heroes to enlist in the fight against villany and crime. The expansion truly expands the game and does nothing to reduce the amount of enjoyment the base game provides. The new cards in Rook City fit seamlessly into the plot lines and are easy to use right out of the box.

The new Villains are interesting adversaries. The Matriarch has the ability to constantly harass and slowly “peck away” at the Heroes, Spite is constantly getting shot up with some new drug that makes him unpredictable, the Plague Rat is not a foe you want to get into melee combat with because of his diseases, and The Chairmen is truly a force to be reckoned with. They are big, bad, and right out of comic books. Perfect enemies guaranteed to make the game play rememberable.

The new Heroes are also a lot of fun to play with, but neither of them are really “super”. They are just normal people who have trained hard, are highly dedicated, and willing to sacrifice everything for their ideals. In many ways, they are like Batman or The Punisher. They use technology, training, and weapons with their cunning and willpower to take the fight to their enemies. They both play very differently with Expatriette bringing a large variety of weapons and ammo to solve any problem and Mr. Fixer whose entire body can be used as a weapon. They are the underdogs who have a tremendous bite.

Is the expansion worth it? Most certainly! All the players who have had an opportunity to play Rook City enjoyed it, including me. Sentinels of the Mutliverse continues to be a great game that is entertaining, challenging, and always interesting. As the stories unfold, all the players must truly work together to successfully play off their strengths and weaknesses to defeat their enemies. And, once again, all three of our test groups approved the game.

This game was given to Father Geek as a review copy. Father Geek was not paid, bribed, wined, dined, or threatened in vain hopes of influencing this review. Such is the statuesque and legendary integrity of Father Geek.

About Cyrus

Editor in Chief, Owner/Operator, Board Game Fanatic, Father of Three, and Nice Guy, Cyrus has always enjoyed board, card, miniature, role playing, and video games, but didn't get back into the hobby seriously until early 2000. Once he did, however, he was hooked. He now plays board games with anyone and everyone he can, but enjoys playing with his children and wife the most. Video games continue to be of real interest, but not as much as dice and little miniatures. As he carefully navigates the ins and outs of parenting, he does his very best to bestow what wisdom he has and help nurture his children's young minds. It is his hope and ambition to raise three strong, honorable men who will one day go on to do great things and buy their Mom and Dad a lobster dinner Cyrus goes by the handle fathergeek on Board Game Geek. You can also check him out on CyrusKirby.com. Yes, he has a URL that is his name. His ego knows no bounds, apparently....
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