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Munchkin Review: Munchkin 2 - The Unnatural Axe
Intro and New Race!
This is the first expansion to the original fantasy-themed Munchkin deck. Bear in mind, this deck really doesn't hold itself up and requires the original Munchkin deck to be fully functional. It adds more of the same with standard Class, Race, Monsters, and so on and doesn’t introduce any new rules per say. However, they have a new Race, the Orc, who is exceptionally good. Hate Curses? Give up a level to ignore one. The Orc also has an ability to grant himself an extra level if he defeats a monster one-on-one by more than 10 combat levels. One of every other Class and Race card is added as well to keep the ratio balanced.
Monsters and Opposition
There’s an interesting Monster Enhancer card called Undead +5 to Monster. The monster becomes undead as well as receiving a +5. However, unlike other +5 Enhancer, the monster is now worth 2 Treasures more instead of just 1. Clerics with the ability Turn Undead can get a +9 for discarding 3 cards against Undead. They may not only find this advantageous for getting Treasures, but also allow themselves to use their ability for a greater combat bonus. However, this Monster Enhancer card can also be played in tandem with Curse! Necrophobia. This Curse is pretty awful, forcing the victim to run from every Undead monster until the Curse is removed. This sucks, because most Undead monsters in the original deck (King Tut, Wight Brothers) force a penalty even on players who Run Away successfully, let alone get caught.
There’s also a seemingly insignificant Level 5 monster called Fungus. However, it receives a massive bonus if the Monster Enhancer Humongous +10 is played on it. Instead of being Level 15, it becomes 30! Worse yet, it’s only worth 1 Level and 4 Treasures. Want to know how to make it worse? Play Mommy on your Humongous Fungus. If a monster is level 5 or below or is affected by the Baby Monster Enhancer, another monster called Mommy appears and she receives a +10 to whatever the original monster is. Since the Humongous Fungus is really Level 5 with a +25, Mommy is still a legal card. Not only are you fighting a Level 30 Humongous Fungus, you also have to fight the Level 40 Humongous Fungus Mommy!
Do you play Munchkin with the opposite sex? You better, because there’s a new Level 13 Monster called the Lust Monster that forces to get help from the opposite gender. If you don’t, you can’t fight and have to try to Run Away. There’s also a Level 15 Hydrant that gets a +5 against a player with no help, and its Bad Stuff causes the victim to roll the die and lose that many levels. 6 Levels can be a very high price to pay.
Munchkin 2 The Unnatural Axe
Special Cards and Treasures
One of my favorite cards of Munchkin is the Annihilation card. Whatever you play this card on is immediately removed from the game. I don’t really think I need to explain how this card can be useful; it can literally be played in any situation. Friendly is another mean card. While playing it on a monster gives the option for the munchkin fighting it to just take the Treasure, they can choose to fight it, but they have to roll the die twice and add up the numbers to every monster they are facing.
As for Treasure cards, there’s a new +5 Unnatural Axe that’s usable only by Warriors or those with Cheat! Cards or the +5 Slug Thrower that only Orcs can use with two hands. There are new Item Enhancers now, which you can play on items you are using. Take that Unnatural Axe and turn it into the Unnatural Axe of Doom! for a +7. Some items, like the Knight Light Headgear, allow the player to stack items in the same equipment slot, so the Knight Light can be worn with Skull Helmet.
There’s also the Coat of Arms which allow you to wield 2 more Hands of items. The Tinfoil Hat is pretty awesome; any time a player tries to Curse you, the Tinfoil Hat blocks it. If you wear this hat with the Sandals of Protection from the original deck, you’re completely immune from all Curses (except those you play on yourself). Of course, this doesn’t protect from a Thief who may decide your gear is especially valuable, particularly with the addition of two more Loaded Dies. To protect yourself, wear the Helm of Peripheral Vision which makes you completely immune to all of the Thief’s abilities (remember though, you can’t wear this and the Tinfoil Hat). But don’t fret, Thieves, there’s a Boomdagger only usable by you that not only comes back to you every turn (except for Death and Bad Stuff, so you can sell it or lose it to a Curse) and requires no hands!
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And that’s about all I have for the first sequel of the fantasy themed Munchkin deck. Next time, I’ll cover Munchkin 3: Clerical Errors, an expansion that gives a handful of new cards, including a new in the Gnome and a new class via the Bard.