You either LOVE the base game and are starting to run out of content or are just mopping up mostly unrelated side quests or you have no need to consider it just yet.
Theme and What is it?
Forgotten Circles does exactly what you would expect: expand the world of gloomhaven with more content. The story missions introduced give countless hours of gameplay to an already extensive amount of game. The new character is a highlight of the expansion as it can be used prior to finishing the main storyline of the base game. If you already have mastered most of the missions in the base game you will find the expansion to be the best purchase this year, hands down.
What does it add?
The diviner character is the most immediately beneficial part of the expansion. It can be played with any part of the gloomhaven story and integrated into the base game immediately. It features rifts that it can place and manipulate in the environment of the game as well as ways to stack the combat decks favorably or predict important moments.
For those who have already finished most or all of the main storyline in the base game, you will find the rest of the scenario content to be even more wonderful than the new character option. Tons of new enemies, a new smarter way for enemies to do movement and target selection intelligently, and so many other things to explore.
What does it fix/ break?
There was nothing broken in Gloomhaven! And there is nothing broken with the addition of Forgotten Circles! As there are a TON of new things to explore and I still have a decent chunk of base game side missions left, I cannot completely commend on how great the new storylines are. But I can say the new intelligent enemy choices seem very appealing (and terrifying). I can also say I love that the scenarios have their chunks broken up now.
In the base game, you read an introduction to the mission and can see the new story point right there on the same page that you read once you open a particular door or do something else. In Forgotten circles, you are told to turn to a different page when you hit that moment to read the next update and then are pushed to yet another page for the conclusion. This keeps you from inadvertently seeing things you didn’t want to know yet and being surprised.
Do I want this?
This is a very easy question to answer. Are you getting low on new characters to unlock and play in the base game? Are you getting near the end of the main storyline? If you say yes to either of these, then you want to pick up forgotten circles immediately. New content that will keep your epic gloomhaven adventurers going longer is a serious winbutton. A new character to bring in when you slog down on finishing retirement conditions or have unlocked most of the other original characters already is also a great way to breathe fresh air in. New statuses and ways to manipulate the game are just a bonus.
Do I need this?
This is the same question as above. If you have played enough gloomhaven to run low on characters or finish the main storyline, you DO NEED THIS! If you are not to that point yet, you will be perfectly content to wait to spend your money later. If you just bought the base game and are starting to enjoy yourself and are a solid 10 missions in don’t look around and say “yeah, I love it. Expansion you are being ordered now.” You wont find much other than the diviner to use in the short term.
When you do qualify for really wanting this kind of content, you absolutely CRAVE more!
Forgotten Circles is one of the easiest expansions I have ever had to consider for recommendation. You should easily know if you do or do not need to pick it up. You either LOVE the base game and are starting to run out of content or are just mopping up mostly unrelated side quests or you have no need to consider it just yet. On that note though, go play the base game. A lot. It has a ton of learning, setup, and investment into your group. But it has a ton of payout that just keeps paying out for so much more actual tabletime than any other game I own.
I primarily play a party of 3 characters solo with a few side adventuring groups with friends. It is just hard to keep that many people back regularly and so many other games try to get our precious time too. But the experience doesn’t disappoint for soloing away a morning and afternoon on a few solid missions in a row.
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