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157 of 169 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Misprint
You should be aware that there is a misprint on some of the first-run boards. There should be a connection between Lagos and Sao Paulo. The manufacturer (Z-Man games) has been very responsive about replacing boards with mistakes.

In any case, this is a great game and you should buy it. Worst case scenario: draw in the missing connection. Just make sure you...
Published 14 months ago by fandizer

versus
31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as much fun as forbidden island or Arkham Horror
This was OK, but we had just purchased Arkham Horror when we played this. I think that while Pandemic is more complex than Forbidden Island, it doesn't end up offering all that much more actual fun. For a light cooperative game I would go with Forbidden Island. It is easier and quicker, but offers pretty much all pandemic offers as far as fun - the added complexity of...
Published 6 months ago by John W. Robertson


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157 of 169 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Misprint, February 6, 2013
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
You should be aware that there is a misprint on some of the first-run boards. There should be a connection between Lagos and Sao Paulo. The manufacturer (Z-Man games) has been very responsive about replacing boards with mistakes.

In any case, this is a great game and you should buy it. Worst case scenario: draw in the missing connection. Just make sure you are playing the correct version.
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67 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Misprint Corrected, July 12, 2013
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= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
I'm sure everyone has heard enough of the goodness of this game.

My purpose is to tell you that there was no misprint on my game board. I placed an order on 30 Jun 2013.

Hope this helps for people who are on the fence on the issue with the game board.
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66 of 75 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great co-op game, March 17, 2013
= Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:2.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
Pandemic is a rare board game in that (1) it is cooperative and (2) you can play with as few as two players. The cooperative aspect of the game is a great way to break up the monotony of some of the race to the finish/get the high score aspects of most other board games. Also, if your household is plagued with an overly competitive person who tends to ruin game night, Pandemic is a great game to encourage teamwork rather than an extended effort to beat your opponents into the ground (Risk and Monopoly are the two main culprits, in my mind). All players work together to cure four diseases that are constantly spreading across the globe. The game board is a map of the world, diseases are represented as plastic cubes of different colors, and each player is assigned a character. Each character has special abilities and many of the abilities complement each other. There are several ways to lose the game, but only one way to win. On a given player's turn, the player will move around the map, treat disease in different cities, build research centers (where diseases can be cured), and cure disease. The game, especially on higher difficulties, places players on the defensive rather than offensive. By that I mean that most of the game is spent containing the spread of the diseases rather than curing the diseases. I personally love the defensive aspect, as the team is always in jeopardy of losing, but some people I have played with felt the game was too much of a chore.

The game shines when you are playing with three or four players, in my opinion. You are never sitting around waiting for your turn, because on every turn the team debates about what the best moves are, what special abilities can be used to achieve the goal efficiently, and what problem areas need to be dealt with. Two players generally works very well, but if one of the players has a much higher skill level, the game turns into a solo affair where the less skilled player just follows instructions from the more skilled player. The game is not terribly complex, though if you are planning on playing with a child, I would say that a 10 year old could pick up on it. A more simplistic game with very similar rules is Forbidden Island, if you are looking for a cooperative board game but think Pandemic might be a tad too advanced.

Other reviews have mentioned the misprint on some of the boards. Mine did come with a misprint and I contacted Z Man Games via email for a replacement. It has been several days and I have not received a response. I will update this review once I follow up on my email. However, I could easily solve the problem by drawing in the missing connection, so even if customer service support turns out to be lacking, it is hardly a deal breaker for me.

If you are on the fence about whether or not to get this game, I find that watching the game in action is a much better way of deciding whether or not you want it than reading reviews. I would suggest checking out the web series Tabletop, which did an entire episode on this game.

UPDATE: Z Man Games sent me a replacement board about three and a half weeks after my initial email. Apparently, they aren't responding to emails, but they are replacing the boards. Just keep this in mind when you read other reviews bashing the customer service. It exists, and the response time is decent, though not great.
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48 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great game and worth the time, February 8, 2013
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
This game is great. It's cooperative, which is different. After getting whomped two games in a row, we won on our last game with few player cards left. We all did a simultaneous, bilateral high five with four players...A high forty...We're in our late 20's and were impressed. We play tons of board games with only one winner, and the only teamwork we had in the past was to destroy first place's lead. So, this was a nice change.

My version has the misprint from Lagos to Sao Paulo. There is a discrepancy with the number of players. On Amazon it says 2-5. The box and rule book state 2-4 players. We tried with five people, four epidemic cards, and lost at the end of the second round.

Game is still a bunch of fun, and we will buy the expansion.
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31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as much fun as forbidden island or Arkham Horror, September 24, 2013
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
This was OK, but we had just purchased Arkham Horror when we played this. I think that while Pandemic is more complex than Forbidden Island, it doesn't end up offering all that much more actual fun. For a light cooperative game I would go with Forbidden Island. It is easier and quicker, but offers pretty much all pandemic offers as far as fun - the added complexity of pandemic feels like it adds complexity but not a lot more actual fun. Pandemic is close enough to forbidden island to still feel pretty light regardless.

When we want to play something that gives a cooperative game that is more epic than forbidden island, we pull out Arkham Horror. Be warned that Arkham Horror is magnitudes more complex than either of these, so that sort of extreme may not appeal to most buyers.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite game!, August 8, 2013
By 
Mr. Six (Memphis, TN) - See all my reviews
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
My favorite game!

If you grew up playing games like Monopoly, Uno or Risk and hated it because in many games someone either got mad / quit / cried / threw cards / knocked over the board, then you will LOVE Pandemic.

This is the game that made board games my hobby. Pandemic is called a Cooperative Game. This is because each player is not competing with each other, but rather trying to defeat the game. It's like a puzzle, but far more interesting and the game is different each time you play it.

I won't bore you with details about the theme or how the game is played; there are over 100 reviews here already. However, if you want to see it in action, check out Wil Wheaton's YouTube show TableTop:

[...]

This version is the 2nd edition of the game, which is a much prettier version with an easier to understand rulebook and a couple of bonus cards. I do not recommend buying the older version. (Why would you??!!?)

If you buy this and enjoy it, go ahead and buy the expansion "On the Brink" a bit later. The expansion is a bit more advanced & is not needed to play this game. It is just a way to spice up the original after you've played it a bunch of times.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great cooperative game, October 29, 2013
This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
I am a huge board game fan and heard great things about Pandemic before purchasing. In this game you and your friends will be working as a team trying to fight a series of 4 diseases that have broken out around the world. It is your collective job to find a cure for each one before 3 specific things occur that cause you to lose. Each player is given a "role" which grants them a unique special ability to help the team. Each turn you take a series of actions, draw cards and place new disease cubes. The placement of the disease cubes is mostly out of your control and can cause the different viruses to rapidly spread in an event called an "outbreak". Too many outbreaks and you lose. If you run out of cards to draw you lose. If you run out of disease cubes you lose. It takes about 30-45 minutes. Check out the table top video to see how game-play works: [...]

This has easily become one of my all-time favorite games. If you enjoy euro style board games you will likely find the transition to pandemic seamless. (as a reference, I mainly play ticket to ride, settlers, puerto rico, dominion, thurn & taxis, carcassonne)

Pros:
- The cooperative design is very unique and prevents any hurt feelings or over competitiveness within friends.
- The pieces are very high quality. In the 2nd edition the disease cubes are plastic and not wood but are quite stylish and almost look like glass.
- The Lagos - Sao Paolo missing link was fixed on my purchase.
- The game is a lot like Forbidden Island but a bit more complex and more difficult. If you are unsure, I would first invest in Forbidden Island and see if you like cooperative games.
- Great replay value. Every game is different and I have found myself playing back to back for hours.
- This game is highly strategic with only a bit of luck involved.

Cons:
- After playing this game around 20 times I now think that it is a bit too easy. It was very difficult at first but now I almost always win with plenty of time to spare.
- The weakness of this game is that it is very easy for one person to basically take over and dictate your strategy
- The cards are a bit flimsy and I have found that they bend pretty easily.
- Setup can take up to 10 minutes.
- This is not an easy game to learn on one's one. I would suggest looking at youtube videos or having someone teach you.
- Though you can play with 2 players, I have found it to be less interesting and easier for one person to take over.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cooperative but challenging, December 20, 2013
This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
This game does have a learning curve, but once you've played it through one time it seems simple. I love that it's cooperative, which means I get to work with my friends rather than against them. Instead of secretly plotting against each other, we spend the game coordinating strategies, simulating different possible outcomes, and planning for contingencies. It's a logic game above all, and it's both challenging and fun. Also, when we lose, we all lose together, so we're motivated to try again. If we win, we're tempted to try it at a higher difficulty level (there are 3 difficulties).

This is also great because you can play with just 2 players. Moreover, if you find having only 2 characters limiting, you can "ghost play" with 4 players by having each of you play two characters.

Last thing: if you want to add some fun to the game and also avoid losing any of the tiny cubes that come with it, I highly recommend buying some cheap plastic petri dishes to keep the cubes in. Like this one: B005Z4QU5U
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Co-op Board Game, Hard to find these days, February 14, 2013
By 
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This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
After playing more and more board games recently, such as Munchkin, Last Night on Earth, Betrayal at House on the Hill, I thought I would like to find even more games to play. I much prefer coop games rather than ones where I feel alone and have to take on the world. They are kinda fun, like when I win. But most of the time, I do not and everyone but the winner feels like poo.

Anyway, this game is a good challenge for up to 4 people. Everyone must work together to stop the pandemics from taking over the world. We found it to be pretty straightforward with the rules. Everyone takes 4 actions, gets 2 cards, and then infect certain cities. We enjoyed playing and trying to solve it together.

A few things with it though, we noticed that we would only go through 1/4 of the infection cities because epidemics would occur. This meant we would basically keep 1 person near those cities to heal them and send everyone else out to clean up a bit. Made it a little less exciting. Secondly, the game seems like it isn't very difficult if you get through the epidemic cards. You just need to have enough cities colors to cure each of the diseases. Epidemics are what cause a lot of outbreaks to occur, which can lead to losing the game. We never ran much risk of losing cubes, as of yet. We've played about 3 games already. I think we may need to change some of the rules to make it even more challenging.

Apparently, the 2nd editions sold on amazon as of 2/10 were still 1st print. This means, as mentioned in other reviews, that you will have a misprint in it. There should be a line between Sao Paulo & Lagos. The manufacturer seems more than happy to send a replacement to me. You can email them at csr@zmangames.com

***UPDATE***
I got the fixed board from the manufacturer. It looks proper. The customer service was very nice. However, it took 3-4 weeks to get it in the mail. A long time for the fixed board, but worth it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must-Have Board Gaming Experience, December 26, 2013
By 
Brett D. Donjon (St. Louis, MO USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Pandemic Board Game (Toy)
I purchased this as a Christmas gift for my fiancée's family, who enjoy playing board games together. So we played for the first time yesterday.

If you firmly believe that every game should have defined winners and losers, and if you're driven in your board game playing to be "better" than the other players, this game is not for you. Once you get past this concept of winners and losers, you have a game where everyone works together, there are no secrets between players or cards you have to keep hidden from everyone else; you save the world together, or die trying.

Pandemic's instructions are excellent. They provide clear step-by-step instructions for setup. When the game starts, Z-Man even includes four identical cards, simply as a reference, listing the various actions a person can take on his/her turn. Those cards were a godsend, and tells me that Z-Man "gets it" when it comes to board games. The fact that those questions of the first round or two of "What can I do?" could simply be answered by saying "Look at your card" surely saved a fair amount of explanation time.

At first glance the game looks complicated. And the game does go slow at first, as the game mechanics take a couple turns to grasp.

A couple turns later you begin to feel out how each individual person can help the players win, using the advantages of each person's player card (e.g.: Medics are better at treating cities, Scientists can find cures quicker, etc.). Everyone works together, makes decisions together, learns from their mistakes as they go.

For a family it's a great bonding game, and for anyone else it's an excellent team-building game.

We lost that first game, unfortunately. And naturally, since everyone lost, everyone was able to think about what could have been done differently. In fact I was elated to hear that my fiancée's father and brother woke up bright and early this morning, determined to have their revenge on the game. They successfully beat the "easy" version.

For a family that has never played a cooperative game before, where "everyone wins or everyone loses", it was clearly enjoyed by everyone.

The app version of this game is available on iPad as well, for those who'd rather pay $6.99 instead of shelling out 5 times more money for the board game. In fact, the app is excellent and captures the game perfectly, EXCEPT for the experience. The experience of the whole family or group of friends huddled around a gameboard, trying to plan the next series of moves to "cure this disease" or "prevent this outbreak" CANNOT be duplicated.
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Pandemic Board Game
Pandemic Board Game by Z-Man Games
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