The Masked Meeples Review: Rex: The Fall of An Empire
To those who have played the 1979 Dune boardgame, Rex will hit you with a sense of Déjà vu. In this competative game, the players take on the roles of iconic Twilight Imperium races in an attempt to fight, negotiate and betray their way into controlling the Imperial City. Just like the Dune boardgame, each race (faction,) has unique abilities that both make them a threat to their enemies and a boon to their allies.
By gaining influence, you can purchase cards that help in combat, recruit units and deploy them on the map. The interaction between racial abilities quickly becomes apparent such as the Federation of Sol being able to deploy at certain locations for free while the Hacan earn income from those who pay to deploy their forces. Throughout the game, various locations may gain influence making them prime locations to try an capture to strengthen your own position. To make things more dangerous, the Sol’s massive warships systematically bombard the map forcing the races to plan their moves and seek the cover of force shields at some locations lest they lose their forces.
Combat is performed using a combat dial allowing you to assign a unit leader, allocated forces at the battle location and use action cards. Beware your opponent possessing a traitor card belonging to your chosen leader causing him to betray you and abandon the battle. Alliances can form allowing you to share special abilities and victory condition but can just as easily break possibly leaving you in a worse position than you started.
Rex is an intense game that is not for everyone. If you are a fan of Dune then this game will most likely suit your tastes. On the otherhand, balance issues between the races and alliance combinations may frustrate some players. Some races are significantly harder to play than others due to rule changes from Dune to Rex such as being unable to write down notes or secretly making deals. If you see such things as merely temporary setbacks then Rex: The Fall of An Empire is a must play either at the Hub or purchased from 6s2Hit!