If you’re a fan of cooperative board games, particularly the original Pandemic, then Pandemic Iberia is a must-try (especially now that we all got more familiar with pandemics). This standalone game by Z-Man Games takes you back to mid-19th century Iberia, where you’ll face the challenge of stopping four diseases from spreading across the peninsula. In this review, we’ll take a closer look at the game’s mechanics, gameplay, and components.
Historical Twist to the Classic Cooperative Game
Pandemic: Iberia offers a historical twist to the classic cooperative game, where you’ll play as members of The Second Royal Philanthropic Expedition, taking on one of seven roles such as a rural doctor or an agronomist. The game mechanics include treating patients, sharing knowledge, purifying water, and building a railroad network to make travel between hospitals more efficient. All these efforts will be for naught if you cannot prevent the four diseases from spreading.
In addition to the original game mechanics, Pandemic: Iberia includes two variants: Influx of Patients, where you’ll need to contend with the rush of patients into the fledgling hospitals of the 19th century, and Historical Diseases, where you’ll deal with even more powerful diseases that behave in unique ways. These variants add further options and historical accuracy to the game, making it a more challenging and enjoyable experience.
Like the original game, Pandemic: Iberia has you wandering a map trying to prevent disease outbreaks while researching cures. Each turn, you get four action points that can be spent moving from place to place, removing disease cubes, setting up hospitals, and researching cures. You’ll also draw player-deck cards that can either be event cards, epidemics, or city cards that can be combined to cure a disease or spent for different standard actions.
The game components are top-notch, with a beautiful game board, detailed character cards, and high-quality disease cubes. The artwork and design give players a sense of the historical setting, adding to the overall immersion.
Pandemic: Iberia is an excellent standalone game that offers a historical twist to the classic cooperative game. The new game mechanics and variants add to the already-challenging gameplay of the original, making it a must-try for board game enthusiasts. If you’re a fan of the original Pandemic, then Pandemic: Iberia is definitely worth adding to your collection.
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