This game is an absolute beast! The biggest reason to purchase ‘On The Brink’ is not necessarily just the extra role cards, or those cool little petri dishes. This expansion approaches you not with open arms and a smile, but with a big smack in the face and the order to strap yourself in. There is no pity granted to you in this version of Pandemic, it’s only designed to be much harder than the base game. This is partially what makes this game so great. If the initial difficulty is still not enough for you, you can play the virulent strain challenge, the mutation challenge, or the bio-terrorist challenge to add a little more intensity or variety to the game. I understand why adding the Bio-Terrorist challenge could really add a twist to the game, but I don’t personally think that Pandemic needs an antagonist aspect included since the foundation of the game is designed to be cooperative. The Bio-Terrorist does come with a large pad of paper that the bio-terrorist is able to use to secretly record their movements around the board to try and spread more diseases which is pretty cool, but I still don’t care for that antagonist aspect in a game like Pandemic.
You can also add multiple challenges together which makes this expansion even more intense. The fact that you are even provided an additional epidemic card seems suicidal to me if you’re already going to be playing with the 6 epidemic cards from the base game. Is the price point worth it though? This expansion was only a few dollars less than the base game, but it does add a substantial amount of options and weight to the game. In my opinion, the answer is yes, but that also depends how much you like the base game of Pandemic. In The Lab is not as challenging as ‘On The Brink’ is, and that may be better if you’re still adapting to Pandemic. You may want to play some other expansions first, unless you are bored with the original and are looking for a real challenge. At that point I would say look no further because you’ve found it. As for me, even as much as I love this expansion, I wouldn't say you really need this expansion because the base game is no good without it. The base game of Pandemic is an excellent game by itself, and there's already other methods that you can use and adjust the difficulty from the beginning if you really want to make it harder. It will all come down to what you're looking for.
Pandemic: On The Brink
Overall Meeple Rating: 8.5/10
1) 8x New Event Cards
2) 7x New Role Cards
3) 8x Virulent Strain Epidemic Cards
4) 1x Epidemic Card
5) 2x Mutation Cards
6) New Mutation Disease
7) New Challenges
8) 5th player added
9) Petri Dishes
10) Antagonist (Bio-Terrorist) Player Option
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