WBG Score: 8.5
Player Count: 1-4
Published by: Sinister Fish Games
Designed by: Haakon Gaarder
This is a free review copy. See our review policy here.
Moon: Valkyrie Board Game Expansion Review - Buy the game here - Sponsored link
To read my review and how to play guide for Moon, the base game, head to here. For my thoughts on the expansion, read on!
I very much enjoy expansions that add more choices with minimal rule changes. More so when it is for a game I already like and feel it does not need any significant changes or additions made to it. It's nice to see an expansion bring something new. A surprise. Rather than fix a glaring error. Valkyrie and Moon offers exactly this. Having played Moon a few times, I was left wanting more. More time with the game that is. I was very happy to keep playing without adding the expansion The game is great and I see no issues with it that need fixing. However, for purposes of the review, I added the expansion from game five onwards. And, well, its pretty good! I will now use it in every game. Let's get it to the table and see how it plays.
How To Set Up Moon: Valkyrie Board Game
As well as the set up for the main game that you can read about in my main review here, simply add in the new Valkyrie launch board above the Flag reward board and give each player one Valkyrie (the ship tokens). Place any remaining Valkyries by the launch board. Then place the Valkyrie Structure cards on the table. There are two identical decks included with this expansion, use either one. The only difference is one has a shiny foil finish, so obviously pick that. At the start of the Construction phase, place one Valkyrie Structure card from the current Era above the Launch board, one card per player. Like the main game, for a two player game, use three cards for a two player game.
How To Play Moon: Valkyrie Board Game
During the Construction phase, place any unowned Valkyries onto the launch spots on the Launch board. Use the numbers shown on the top left of the first Valkyrie Structure card to chose which launch spots to use. As you are only placing the unowned Valkyries, in a five player game, this step is missed, they are all owned.
Players now have the additional optional action on their turn to launch a Valkyrie. Place the Valkyrie you own onto the left most available location on the Launch board. You can then take the depicted reward shown on that space. If you have to place your ship onto the first space you will not get a bonus action but you will get first pick at the new Valkyrie Structure cards. The other spaces grant you an extra Rover, Resource, Flag to be used this turn, or two Resources. The later benefits are more powerful, but you will then be getting last pick on the Structure cards.
This is because if you meet the Flag requirements and have the resources needed, you can then as well as this, build one of the Valkyrie Structure cards. This would be on top of your normal Build or Assimilate action. Turns can be quite a lot more powerful with this expansion! But of course, as you can only do this when you launch a Valkyrie, which counts as one of your optional actions, this means you have to have all the resources you need to do this yourself. You cannot relay on using the other players Flags or resources by using the Rover action to do this. The rule book suggests to teach this by saying you can use one vehicle per turn. Either the Rover or the Valkyrie.
At the end of the Construction phase, all Valkyries are returned to their owners, just one per player, and any unowned ships are removed from the Launch board. All unowned Valkyrie Structure cards are placed back into their deck.
Moon: Valkyrie Board Game Expansion Review
Valkyrie is the perfect expansion. Two new simple things to add in. Minimal additional rules. The Ships that let you gain a bonus benefit and build another Structure are a simple additional to the game but add a lot. It makes one turn each round a lot more more powerful, but it only happens once per round as you need a ship to do this. So timing is everything.
This expansion scales brilliantly as any unowned ships block spaces on the launch board each round, meaning there is still a sense of urgency to use your ship with less players, as there are only a few spaces available, and therefore less choice. And of course, with more players, when there are all five launch spots to pick from, you will still want to beat the other players to these spots to have the first choices as to which Structure card you can build. Maybe there is only one you can build? Maybe there is one that is perfect for your current engine?
The new cards look awesome too. I like how you have options of both the normal or foil finish. I suppose some people hate these foil cards, or find them hard to read. It's good to have both options. But for me, I love the Foil cards. They add a sense of wonder and a premium luxury to an already well produced game. The powers they offer are great too. They are strong. But you can only do one per round remember, but that turn feels wonderful! But they are not over powered. It does not affect the delicate balance of the game.
If you have the base game without this, then get it. Although it shipped with all Kickstarter versions I believe. So, you probably do already. And sadly, it is currently not available as an add on with the retail version. So, you may not be able to get your hands on it for a while. But when it does become available, I will add links here. It all fits, just, into the main box, although you may need some minor skills in packing to do get the lid flat!