Götterdämmerung (Twilight of the Gods Part I)

It is the year of our Lord 1949 and the world is in flames. The Second World War rages unchecked around the planet as nations die and millions perish as the thin veneer of civilization is utterly consumed. Technology and dark magic via against each other as all sides seek final victory.

Dark things lurk beneath the Third Reich: twisted creatures of malevolent intent born of demented minds. It is a time of monsters and madness and armored behemoths. Though chaos reigns and evil flourishes in this desperate age, it is also a time of heroes and maybe even of hope.

After picking up on a few internet vibes, I recently purchased a copy of Incursion and have decided to share it as part of my Three Colours Zombie trilogy of posts (Red Gore / Pale Flesh / Sickly Green in case you were wondering) that kicked off with Slow Zombies the other day.

Incursion is a board game by Grindhouse Games featuring an alternate World War II setting where the retreating German army unleashed V-Gas, the ultimate vengeance weapon and turned whole swathes of Europe into a Zombie wasteland.

Familar? Well Nazi zombies seem to be one of those recurring memes, a blending of archetypal bad guys that features in everything (well nearly everything, well okay quite a few things at least)  from the classic Doom precursor Castle Wolfenstein shoot ’em up to the fun and bonkers Dead Snow (fortune and glory kid!).

Nazi Zombies are obviously one of the ultimate bad guys because you get some cool imagery and there are absolutely no qualms in dispatching them in a variety of messy ways. No worrying about that Storm Trooper’s wife and kids back home, no fretting about the fate of that Orc’s poor old squig. Just another foot soldier of evil kaputski.

The backstory, created as part of the Secrets of Third Reich gaming background, adds in a few other arcane happenings and features pretty much all the horror staples, such as their take on werewolfs and vampires, and expands this by sprinkling the odd piece of reverse engineered tech gleaned from the Roswell site and mecha mayhem. All in all it’s a very different background to the usual counter factual musings on the ‘what if’ game for WWII.

The story kicks off as the reconstituted American Lucky Seventh Armoured Division, replete with diesel powered exo-skeletons (APEs), prepare to delve deep into the labyrinthine caves and tunnels under Gibraltar where the mad genius Doctor Hugo von X (is there any other kind?) has set up a laboratory crafting technomancy nightmares and possibly a Doomsday weapon just for good measure. Zombies are far from worst peril lurking in the depths!

So far so good, interesting background with  a little of the edge (but only a little) taken off the blood and guts by a slight comic book style to some of the artwork (more so in places, like the below image from the expansion pack SNAFU, than in others).

After savouring that smell of newly opened game, a quick look inside showed the box packed to the brim with some top quality cardboard components. Miniatures are available separately if you want to supplant the cardboard standees or opt for the British as protagonists via the more lightly armoured MI-13 Commandoes.

The rule book comes in at a lean 24 pages, roughly half of which are the mission profiles, and the mechanics seem fast ‘n’ furious at first glance, closer to the beer and pretzel (or should that be cider and Pringles for a Bristol based gamer?) spectrum of the board game market, no Axis and Allies slogfest here.

In fact, there seems a lot in common with classic Space Hulk game mechanics, which may not be too much of a surprise as it gets a name check in the developers’ bio section of their website in the inspiration stakes.

But is Incursion any good? Well I’ll share my impressions and some more details sometime soon-ish (and maybe a game report) once I get a few sessions under my belt, so tune in again folks.


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~ by Jack on May 17, 2011.

One Response to “Götterdämmerung (Twilight of the Gods Part I)”

  1. I’ve been play testing the Secrets of the Third Reich miniatures game. However, I know Incursion is their nifty introductory version to the game in a board game style. Very interested in seeing what you think.

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