New Town, New Rules is scheduled to release on Nov 8th. There are still plenty of mechanics the players are begging for and the first saddlebag expansion intends to fill a lot of the obvious gaps from the starter box. This list will be updated as more spoilers are released. There are so many spoilers, I needed another post!
Wilber Crowley doesn’t look like much, but he is the second unaligned Huckster in the game. With Steele Archer, any faction in the game can reliably start two Hucksters. His zero upkeep makes him an attractive option for the Fourth Ring as well. His 1 Draw and 1 Influence don’t seem like much, but a Blood Curse and Shadow Walk could make Wilber a force to be reckoned with. He does suffer from a low value and that could make him an easy Shotgun target.
Morgan Cattle Company was the only faction that didn’t get to see their King in the first set. Max Baine is a solid power character on his own, but Lillian returns to Gamorra soon and she’s worth the wait. She has no bullets which makes her bad for shootouts, but she sports a massive five influence. With the Outfit ability for the Cattle Company, she can purchase any deed currently available in the game, for free. The Outfit ability can be risky, leaving your dude booted and susceptible to an attack. The last thing you would want is Lillian costing you the game on turn one.
Thankfully she has a built in defense for that. You can pay X Ghost Rock to move that many dudes to her location. You can then use another shootout ability such as Make The Smart Choice or Jarrett Blake to let Lillian run home to safety while your better gunslingers finish the fight. The best part? She gets three free Ghost Rock that can be used for that ability every time she gets in a shootout. Remember, if you use her Shootout ability in one fight, she won’t get to use it again for the rest of the turn without the help of a Good Stiff Drink.
To top it off, she has a Huckster skill of 2! She bucks the Morgan trend of having Mad Science easily available. Instead you can mix in a Blood Curse or two for quick wins against low influence opponents or even use Soul Blast as another way for Lillian to escape fights that she can’t win.
A Legendary Holster can be a scary thing to face in a shootout, fortunately the Faithful Hound is here to turn it into a chew toy. Not only does he get the Sidekick rule that lets him soak up a casualty, but he gets to chew on one goods item in the opposing posse. While this still can’t target spells, a Faithful Hound can attempt to remove anything from a Buffalo Rifle to a Flame-thrower from battle. Even your horses aren’t safe from this hound dogs maw. The attempt does require a pull below the value of the good. That won’t be much of an issue against the high powered goods and a deck built around low values could implement this dog easily. Try to make sure you get first shootout action before the dude holding the Hounds leash gets knocked out of the shootout before he can act.
Wylie Jenks is the Law Dog that fills in the 8 of Spades slot useful for a Dead Man’s Hand build. He shares the slot with the likes of the Ghostly Gun, Steven Wiles, and Lane Healey. You have to be good to compete with the other characters in that lot. Wylie has a solid 2 Stud and 2 Influence. His ability seems plain at first sight, but he gets +1 bullet for each wanted dude in the opposing posse and Law Dogs have no problem handing out bounties. Even Unprepared and Forget won’t hurt this bullet bonus. He fills the need for Law Dogs to have a solid dude that doesn’t require a legal hand or your opponent to be cheating.
Since Forget is a hex, it will likely show up in Fourth Ring Decks the most, but as seen above, Hucksters are coming to Gamorra in droves. Not only is this a great card, but it is only the second card in the Jack of Hearts space. That high value fits right in with a deck built around hucksters and their high pull values. This hex is incredibly easy to pull off. Steele Archer only needs to pull a 3 to succeed. The Huckster can hit any dude adjacent to him with this hex. Be wary if a Huckster takes town square while holding on to one of these. Remember that abilities are only the parts of a card that are bold and name a specific phase to be used in. Wylie Jenks can not have his text blanked by Forget because his text is a trait.
A Few More…
Roderick is another un-aligned Mad Scientist with a 5 cost and zero upkeep. He will be a solid starter for any deck that wants to splash a few gadgets without a heavy investment. He only has one Draw bullet, one influence and 1 Mad Scientist rating. He won’t do much for your shootouts, but he should come in handy to get that Flame-Thrower or Auto-Revolver into play.
Sloane Gang gets its Queen in this set and she looks to be gunning for Sloane’s dominance. Alice weighs in with 3 Stud, 2 influence and a strong ability. “If one of your wanted dudes accepts a call-out, Alice may join the posse from any location (without booting and even while booted).” Alice Stowe will be able to respond to most fights while playing the Sloane Gang. Law Dogs will have to think twice before throwing out bounties.
Too Much Attention
This card will be competing for the same space as Unprepared, making it a tough choice. However, Too Much Attention is the perfect card to shut down the strong mechanics that Sloane Gang has to build control points. This card could target Allie Hensman after she’s earned a Control Point or any one of Sloanes cronies that have earned a bounty or Control Point. Second, this card can hit locations before they get used. Nearly every location is a potential target for getting hit before it becomes useful. Shutting down a working R&D Ranch could be pretty useful.
Dulf appears to be a basic influence dude for Fourth Ring. He has an ace value, making him a great value for Arnold McCadish, but also susceptible to a Shotgun or Soul Blast. He is one upkeep with no game text visible. His text box appears to be one long quote with no game relevant abilities. His simple influence is paired with only a 2 Ghost Rock cost. Fourth Ring suffers with influence when they try to put out strong hucksters at the start of the game. Dulf might be the perfect stray influence Fourth Ring needs to add to their starting posse.
The R&D Ranch
Previewed on 10/8, the R&D Ranch is an out of town Control Point and a Ranch. This works well into the Morgan Cattle Company scheme if you’re willing to play 6’s. The ability is a blast, literally. Make a pull, gain 2 Ghost Rock. Then, if you pulled a club, blow up the ranch and everyone there. Instead of having a printed Ghost Rock income each turn, you will need to control it and make the pull each turn to earn its two Ghost Rock. I can see a benefit here to sacrificing a cheap card with high influence like Steven Wiles to take control and blow up any enemies that happen to be at your ranch. You can choose to not play actions (Clubs) in a gadget deck. Then, Elander Boldman wouldn’t be a risk either.
These are all the previews for New Town, New Rules that I have seen so far. If you find more before I do, feel free to let me know and I will add them here with my strategic thoughts added. Previews were found at Alderac’s Doomtown on Board Game Geek, Strange Assembly, the Doomtown Facebook Group, the Couple vs. Cardboard Twitter account, and the Run 4 Games YouTube channel.