An adaption of the popular board game of the same name, Pandemic: The Board Game brings the iconic franchise to a digital medium. Playing as four different characters, each with unique abilities, you must work against the clock to cure the four main diseases as fast as you can and stop a global pandemic. Adapted by Asmodee Digital how does the videogame compare to its physical counterpart?
Complex but fun
Pandemic: The Board Game at its core is about successfully managing resources to, not only fight back the spread of the various diseases but also cure them as fast as possible – the ultimate objective. To stop your progress, contamination and epidemic cards will be dealt to further the progress of the four different diseases. Each disease card will raise the contamination of a city by one, – up to a maximum of three – if a city receives another disease at this point, then occurs an outbreak, which will spread the disease to each one of the directly connected cities. When you reach eight outbreaks in one game, you will lose.
To Counter this, you will have a team of four different characters which you can randomize or specifically select, each with different abilities that will provide useful to win the game. Strategy and team planning are essential to succeed.
The Drawbacks of the digital adaptation
The original board game has an excellent gameplay concept which was awarded many prizes multiple times, and this the videogame managed to adapt in a relatively proper manner.
However, here stands the main problem with this game – It is a mediocre port, and not a good adaptation. Firstly, the game was clearly envisioned first for mobile systems and only after to the to PC, and so there are weird design choices like no option to change the screen resolution, making you wonder if the PC port had any attention at all.
Then we have an odd lack of online multiplayer integration. You can only play local multiplayer, which is all well and good, but what is the point of a PC adaptation of a board game, when the only advantage over it – if it can be called an advantage – is that it can be played digitally?