Sons of Anarchy: Men of Mayhem Boardgame Review; The Lovechild Of Agricola, Risk, And Cosmic Encounter

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10 Mar 2015 22:12 #199248 by Deleted

I saw this at Gencon last year, and despite never having seen the show that Sons of Anarchy: Men of Mayhem is based on, I watched the demo and was enthralled. I really thought it was going to be a really nasty Euro-style worker placement game with all kinds of fighting and Ameritrashy dice rolling. Well, it does all of that, but unfortunately, the game is quite dry if you’re not playing with a rowdy crowd. There’s a huge, and understated, negotiation aspect to the game that is only briefly mentioned in the rules, and that mechanic is what carries the game. It’s a shame, too, because I would think a game like this would have universal appeal since it morphs games like Agricola with the “punch you in your face” combat of Risk.  I didn’t buy it at GenCon, but rather got it recently from a co-worker, and I have to say, it’s very different.

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11 Mar 2015 14:28 #199249 by Deleted
The first paragraph is missing:

I saw this at Gencon last year, and despite never having seen the show that Sons of Anarchy: Men of Mayhem is based on, I watched the demo and was enthralled. I really thought it was going to be a really nasty Euro-style worker placement game with all kinds of fighting and Ameritrashy dice rolling. Well, it does all of that, but unfortunately, the game is quite dry if you’re not playing with a rowdy crowd. There’s a huge, and understated, negotiation aspect to the game that is only briefly mentioned in the rules, and that mechanic is what carries the game. It’s a shame, too, because I would think a game like this would have universal appeal since it morphs games like Agricola with the “punch you in your face” combat of Risk. I didn’t buy it at GenCon, but rather got it recently from a co-worker, and I have to say, it’s very different.

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12 Mar 2015 09:34 #199314 by RobertB

I saw this at Gencon last year, and despite never having seen the show that Sons of Anarchy: Men of Mayhem is based on, I watched the demo and was enthralled.


If you're dying to watch it, S1 and S2 are good, S3 and S7 are bad to horrible, and the rest are just okay.

I've played it three times now, each time with enough new players that I haven't been able to get the advanced side of the gang cards in play. The next time, new players be damned; we're using the advanced gangs.

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12 Mar 2015 10:39 - 12 Mar 2015 10:40 #199325 by charlest
Funny thing - there's actually not a shit ton of gang members on the show. SAMCRO is down to like 5 or 6 people in the final two seasons.

The Grim Bastards only ever seem to have like 4 or 5 people.
Last edit: 12 Mar 2015 10:40 by charlest.

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12 Mar 2015 11:33 #199330 by Deleted
As I said, I haven't seen the show, but I do know a shitload of bikers, and 5 bikers does not a gang make.

I looked up the show when I was researching the game and there appeared to be a shit-ton of the guys. At least 25. I know why they did it in the game, to limit things and make the game shorter, but I think that was kind of anti-thematic. Other than that, no real complaints. Just a little dry with the wrong crowd.

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12 Mar 2015 11:35 #199331 by Deleted

RobertB wrote:

I saw this at Gencon last year, and despite never having seen the show that Sons of Anarchy: Men of Mayhem is based on, I watched the demo and was enthralled.


If you're dying to watch it, S1 and S2 are good, S3 and S7 are bad to horrible, and the rest are just okay.

I've played it three times now, each time with enough new players that I haven't been able to get the advanced side of the gang cards in play. The next time, new players be damned; we're using the advanced gangs.


It definitely adds to the game. It's not ~that~ much different, but it does give the gangs more character, and changes your strategy. I think the biggest merit of the game is the fact that there's such huge replay value, and the gangs' powers totally adds to that.

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12 Mar 2015 13:30 - 12 Mar 2015 16:40 #199349 by stoic
I wonder if motorcycle gangs play SoA in their spare time?

Last edit: 12 Mar 2015 16:40 by stoic.

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