oh rats

They get everywhere.  Every place that mankind has gone, they have come along, infesting our sewers, hiding in the tiny dark places, bringing filth and disease.  Rats are a scourge, and just like they stowed away on sailing ships of old (and even modern ships), they also exist in space (queue the modified theme from the muppets - RATS IN SPACE!!!)

The Veer-Myn have been part of the original Warpath universe - the predecessor game to Star Saga (Project Pandora) was a PVP game of GCPS v Veer-Myn.  They were added to Deadzone in the second edition (originally to be just an expansion introducing them, it changed into a full new edition).  So it only makes sense for them to be a part of Star Saga!

Veer-myn are both playable as mercenaries as well as minions in the character / mission creator, which has the cards for them.  But Mantic didn't just give us a retread of these.

The Star Saga expansion Retake the Blackstar Stations pits Blaine's mercenaries against an entire new breed of Veer-Myn.  These have adapted new technologies, and are a whole new breed to challenge the players.

The rulebook has six new scenarios detailing the battle to retake the station that has been taken over by the rats, as well as some new rules (being in space after all, you do have to worry about your oxygen supply, especially when the enemy controls the environment)

There is a single tile sheet, withnew 2 sided tiles (one side being 'normal', the other  'infested') and several new counters.

There are new cards for the two new mercenaries, Arkiline (a Crystallan) and Ugurik (an Orc marauder), as well as two bosses - Thorn and the Crone Mother.

There are six new minions - there are NOT the standard Veer-Myn, but are new stats and new models.
The Volt Stalker, Volt Runner, Shocker, Fuser, Trapper and Overcharger

Of course there are also new cards for the nexus deck, as well as additional rare items, loot, mission bonus and skill cards.  Nexus cards are for these missions, but the other cards can be added to your custom games.

But as always, it is all about the miniatures.  (and while I want to make a Meghan Trainor reference - Ice Cube would probably be more appropriate).

First up is the Crone Mother.

and Thorn

Then there are the two new mercenaries, Ururik

and Arkoline

There are three bags of minions with five models in each.  There is the Overcharger, a large model - nasty tough combat engines

The trapper has the ability to shoot mines as well as has a long range shooting attack.

The Volt Runner is a lower level shooting minion, though it gets a bonus for short range attacks.

The Volt Stalker is the cannon fodder for the Veer-Myn

The Fuser has a powerful ranged weapon that disregards nearly all armor

Mantic was honest and announced that there was a slight mispacking problem with this set.  While everyone was supposed to get 2 Fusers and a Shocker - you either got 3 Fusers or 3 Shockers.  However you did get the arms to convert the missing models.  My set had 3 Fusers - so one had to have it's arms swapped out.

Now for some board gamers on Facebook, this was like the world was ending.  Apparently they had never had any issue before, and never actually put a model together.  For the rest of us who kept our minds during this horrible, earth shaking crisis (or minor bump as it actually was), it was not a big deal.

The arms actually were glued on surprisingly well.  I look at all three of the models, and picked the one that seemed to have the largest gap at the shoulders, though none had a significant one.

I was not in a hurry, so I remembered reading somewhere that if  you freeze super glue it weakens it.  So I popped all three into the freezer for a couple of days - and it did absolutely nothing at all - the arms were still very solidly attached. 

So for attempt two, I applied some super-glue remover around the shoulder.  As I mentioned, there wasn't much of a gap for this, but with a bit of leverage from a hobby knife, I was finally able to work the arm lose, exposing the socket.

The other arm was not so easy however.  As I was trying to pry it a bit, I ended up cutting into the plastic, and as I tried to work it out it started to tear - so I just gave up and sliced it off.

What this meant was I simply had to clean the body and cut the tab off of the arm so they both had flat joins.

I then let them sit a bit - a minimum of overnight to make sure all the super-glue remover was dried - as gluing the arms on with that still there would be be self defeating.

The right arm fit the socket perfectly, and the left was just as easy to attach (though I had to hold it for a minute or so to let the glue set).

And now I had my Shocker!

This looks like a fun new adventure, and the way Star Saga seems to be a bit more balanced than Dungeon Saga, I don't expect to have the issues (i.e. the heroes simply got too powerful and walked through the later adventures) that it had.  I like that each adventure has not only a recommended set of mercenaries, but also a set point value - so you can easily use any mercenaries you want that fit those values.

I have found that while it is great that we got the full retail version of the expansions, the plastic inserts for the box to hold the components seemed to get in the way once I tried to put the models in it - it because much easier to fit everything back in the box without it.  I do somewhat miss the 'book boxes' from Dungeon Saga - and have yet to find a solution for how to store more than the base set in the original box - I did see someone on Facebook with a tackle box that appeared to hold everything - if I actually get to play this some it might be worth looking into.

Because it is all fun and games . . .