Voyage of the BSM Pandora

pandora

I learned of Voyage of BSM Pandora from a video by Geek Gamers.

It is a 1981 planet-exploration boardgame published in the Ares magazine, which is freely downloadable.

I have printed the game, using some of the convenient re-designed stuff available on Boardgamegeek.

After playing a first mission (which I lost) I agree the game has merits. In some respects, it is rather complex and I am considering simplifying some details (e.g. Supply Checks), but I am not sure how to do this without risk for the game balance. What I am more seriously thinking of is trying to throw in some RPG elements, for instance, whenever dice are rolled, add a “surprise” D6 and on a roll of 6 make something “special” happen and play a role-game scene instead of computing the action outcome on the basis of the original die roll. Mixing boardgames and role-playing is something I have done extensively in my solo games (in particular with miniature rules and various RPG systems, but I also tried a Valor-and-Victory/Ironsworn mix). With Pandora, it could be the other way round, with the boardgame providing the “strategic framework” and an RPG system guiding the details of some scenes/encounters.

There are other things I could tweak to make the game more “creative”: drawing new maps for some of the planets; making new creatures on the fly on the basis of the wide bestiary of “Pandora”; adding some back-story for at least a subset of the crew members. Years ago I tried something similar with 3:16 Carnage Among the Stars (posts in Italian, I am sorry): I am curious to see if my increased experience in solo gaming (and knowledge of a wider toolbox) would result in a more enjoyable sci-fi campaign…

 

ares

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