Anyone with a Wyrd bent will no doubt be aware that the second book for the excellent Malifaux has been released. There was a little delay in getting the books out to the non-US market post Gen Con but those players within the 6 Inch Move floating citadel have our grubby little mitts on our copies now.
So, what’s in the book then? When you look at the Rising Powers book it is pretty much the same size as the original rulebook, you’re not going to find any duplication here either, if you want to know how to play the game you’re going to have to pick up the first book. While Rising Powers does introduce some new rules it doesn’t give you everything you need to play, it just adds some bits here and there so is a true expansion rather than an alternative. One of the first things you notice is that the book is chock full of fluff, not the actual desiccated remains of its authors, but background story setting the scene for the new Masters, Henchmen etc… as well as telling you what people are up to following on from where things were left in the main rulebook. It’s of the same quality as what we got in the first book too, giving you little insights into the world of Malifaux, as usual the artwork presented throughout is excellent as well.There is an expanded section on working out encounters, the Schemes and Strategies from the first book are expanded upon and there are now Shared Strategies that you can use as well as a pointer to downloadable Story Encounters that I have yet to check out. There are more ideas for creating and setting up Encounters, including indoor locations and these parts are what takes up the majority of the “rules” section of the new book. In between all of this is the story sections leading up to what people are really interested in, the new models.
If I was to pick a main critical point about the book it would be that there are no pics of the new minis, while we’ve already had some insight with the Kirai, Collette and Gremlin boxes there is a large hole for the rest of the new forces. With some really nifty artwork I am hoping that they can translate them into awesome models, judging by the quality of what we have already seen I have high hopes. Each of the main factions gets a new Master, from what has already been released I reckon we’ll be seeing a new Guild and Neverborn starter set too to match the Arcanist and Ressurectionist sets already released. Henchmen are introduced for the first time too, these lads and lasses are an alternative to taking a Master and open up several more options for constructing your list. They can be taken with a Master if you are inclined but each has their own Special Forces type which changes what you can bring into your army. Not only are there new Totems for the new Masters but there are new faction Totems such as we saw within the first book. There are then a whole host of new Minions that expand on what was already on offer. You get much more of a feel for the Lawman style of the Guild with the extra options added into their section, while the first book really showed the forces linked to each Master you now can see more of the run of the mill Guild employees.
The new Masters aren’t a carbon copy of anything we have already seen, each one is genuinely different to stuff that we can already use and I have to commend Wyrd for this. Coming up with new themes for a Crew is going to be one of the hardest things they have to try, I’m looking forward to finishing reading all the back story to see more of how these newcomers interact with personalities already established in the narrative.
Considering that Wyrd seem to be one of these companies on the fringe of gaming, not having the market presence of your Games Workshops or your Privateer Presses but for me now we have more of a repertoire to judge them on I really hope that they generate a lot of success with their product. The Malifaux world is something vastly different from what we have already seen and its mechanics are interesting to say the least. I can recommend this book to anyone that wants more of what Malifaux has to offer, for anyone looking at starting the game then you’d be better served getting the first book as you then have all the rules you need, but there are enough starters to find something that will appeal to anyone and things are getting better and better.
I’ve looked at and played a lot of different games and this one just continues to impress. I look forward to trotting out Collette and her Showgirls in the not too distant future to see how they play.
if you’ve resisted Malifaux for a while, now may be the time to take a train through the Breach and see what the City has to offer!