Board game reviews, strategy tips & session reports
No. of players: 2-5
Amount of time to play: 60-90 min
Age requirements: 13+
Set-up time: 5-10 minutes
Factions is an expansion for Alien Frontiers that adds another player, factions, agendas and new alien tech cards. Do these new elements add up to a better experience?
This review of Factions assumes you know the basic game play of Alien Frontiers. If you have yet to play Alien Frontiers, read my review here.
This expansion adds factions (thus the title) that give each player a unique dock. The new docks grant a special ability to the owner and add another orbital facility to place your ships on. Other players that use your dock, but must pay you do to so.
Agendas are hidden and can score you one point when accomplished. Agendas have two goals, one you can complete during the game and one that is checked for at the end of the game. You can only complete one of the two agendas on your cards. You get two agendas at the the beginning of the game and can purchase more at the Orbital Market. You may never have more than three agendas.
Eight new Alien Tech cards are added to the deck and add more abilities to the game. Some help you access ore, another lets you have an extra agenda and all are useful.
The extra player is nice but will make the game take longer.
Factions adds new elements to Alien Frontiers without adding a bunch of new rules. That said it does change the game a bit.
The biggest (or most significant) change are the agendas. Since these are hidden it makes the end game more exciting and less predictable. Some agendas are easier than others and a few seem near impossible.
The faction docks are interesting and add some new ways to gain colonies, ships, and resources. Again some of these are more useful than others, but you’ll get to choose yours.
Factions is not a necessity for Alien Frontiers but it does add some fun, new elements. If you have played the base game a lot and are looking to spice it up, you should try this expansion. I didn’t say a lot about the fifth player, but if your group consistently has more than four wanting to play Alien Frontiers, pick this up.
Score and synopsis: (Click here for an explanation of these review categories.)
Strategy 4 out of 6
Luck 4 out of 6
Player Interaction 5 out of 6
Replay Value 4 out of 6
Complexity 3 out of 6
Fun 5 out of 6
Overall 5 out of 6