Pitchstorm (Superhero)

When the Rat Hole launched we began the monthly tradition of looking at different expansions for Skybound Games’ runaway hit party game, Superfight. But since Skybound Games has a ton of more great party games (and games in general) we bring you Skybound Saturday. This month we look at the NC-17 expansion deck for Pitchstorm, and as the name suggests the content may not be suitable for all audiences.
 If you’ve never played Pitchstorm before, you may want to start with our review of the Core Game.

Right now we need all the superheroes we can get. But in these days of self-isolation, it is highly unlikely we will be getting a game about grocery store, gas station, or front line healthcare workers any time soon. So for now, we will just have to work with the more traditional definitions.

Just before Halloween, we featured Pitchstorm’s Creature Feature deck as our Skybound Saturday. The Superhero deck is similar, in that it’s a genre that is near-inseparable from pop culture. In fact, I would say that right now, at least, you will easily find more people who will get a hero reference over a horror one. I have ALWAYS been one of those people, so that may be why I see less obscurity in this set versus that one.

To be fair, some cards are in no way subtle. A Character card like THE GODDAMN BATMAN is going to be hard to sell as something else. If you’re good, FOUR WARRIOR TURTLES LIVING IN THE SEWERS could be a spinoff with Venus de Milo, Metalhead, Slash, and Jennika. TWO GERIATRIC HEROS FORCED OUT OF RETIREMENT could easily be anything, even Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy. There are plenty of cards that are less obvious or have the potential to be less obvious. But as always that will depend on the players.

Similarly, the Plot cards are often obvious, but not nearly as blatant. Besides, every hero TRIES TO STOP AN EVIL PENGUIN-MAN FROM BECOMING THE MAYOR, right? Just like every parent STRUGGLES TO RAISE A SUPERPOWERED KID WITH A VIOLENT TEMPER.

The Executive’s Notes cards could not give a nod to the worst superhero plot point in the history of superheroes. (Possibly in the history of anything with a plot, period.) WHAT IF THE HERO AND THE VILLAIN BOTH HAVE MOMS NAMED MARTHA?

*heavy sigh*

WHAT IF ALL THE HEROES HAD GIANT ANIMAL-SHAPED ROBOTS THEY CAN SUMMON, is a surprisingly multi-generational Note, with later Gen-X/Xennials remembering Voltron, some form of Power Rangers existing through most of the Millenial Generation, and Gen-Z is back to watching Voltron again. My favourite pair of Notes (something that rarely comes together in this game) has to be LET’S ADD A GIANT PSYCHIC SQUID. IT MAKES SENSE IF YOU’VE READ THE COMICS. along with HOW CAN WE MAKE A TANK OF SHARKS CENTRAL TO THE FINAL FIGHT?

As cool as that is, singular player would never get to play both a Character card and a Plot card. But if the cards align, an even better combo of combos for me in this set is a no brainer:

AN EDGY AND DARK VERSION OF _____ (PICK A LIGHT-HEARTED SUPERHERO) *Well, I’ve always wanted a dark reboot of Marvel’s Slapstick* FIGHTS A CRIMINAL CLOWN TO SAVE THEIR CITY.

Clown versus clown? The potential is unlimited I tell you! (Just an aside, the fact that this was a no brainer for me should give you a reasonable indication of why I’m not a fan of games that require players to think alike. Who thinks like THAT!?)

The blank on the Character card above lets the player pick the answer. That works perfectly here. What I will never like in this specific game, are “(DRAW A CHARACTER CARD)” blanks. I’ve only encountered one in this deck, but I just don’t like how the way these Character cards are written in the context of that type of blank.

That card is 1 out of 100 cards. Overall though, this is a solid and fun addition to Pitchstorm. Genre expansions will never please everyone, which makes them even better for the people who really like that genre, but I do feel like this will be hit with a broader-than-average number of players. Check it out for yourself.

You can find more about Pitchstorm online at pitchstorm.com or on Facebook at facebook.com/Pitchstorm.

You can find Skybound Games online at www.skybound.com/games or on Facebook at facebook.com/SkyboundGames.