Have you ever wanted to explore a haunted house to see all of its inner secrets and dangers? Well, you can do it in Vast: The Mysterious Manor, but you will have to be on your guard.
This game was provided to me by the publisher for review
Vast: The Mysterious Manor is a game from Leder Games where you and your opponents explore a haunted manor built on total asymmetry. Each player can take control of a different part of the story by playing one of the various roles. Each role has its own powers, pieces, and paths to victory…and there can be only one winner.
There are five roles in Vast, which are:
- The Paladin
- The Skeletons
- The Spider
- The Warlock
- The Manor itself
Leder Games was awesome and added a ton of variance in this game based on player count and desired difficulty. They provide different options from very easy to very hard for every role and pair different roles for player count needs. This includes a solo mode called the Paladin’s Journey.
First things first, I have to talk about the artwork of this game because I love it. It has a ton of character to it which you get just by looking at the box. I’d best describe it as whimsical and fits the game so well. So cheers to you Kyle Ferrin for being an awesome artist.
Gameplay-wise, I knew going into this game that it was not one I normally play. My go-to is light and quick games and gateway games. Vast is heavier than I am used to, but I really love the concept and theme of it so I decided to give it a go.
The consensus among all of my fellow players and myself is that we wanted more clarification on some things. The rule book is one of the best I have seen and has a lot of care and good structure to it. And each role does have a cheat sheet of sorts. But we all found that there would be a few things we would get stuck on, check the rulebook, not find an answer, and repeat. And some definitions that were in the rulebook would have been nice on the cheat sheet for quick reference. I know a portion of this is definitely due to the fact that none of us play games of this weight. But it made it a bumpy experience to get started.
Once we got into the game we started to get the hang of it more. Actually doing the actions and having to think through playing your role definitely helped us learn the game. I personally never felt defeated by the game, even when I had to check the rules for the 13th time in a turn because I really wanted to learn how to play the game. The lightbulb moments of figuring it out really helped.
This is definitely a strategy-focused game. You have to plan your next move which involves numerous steps and options, as well as pay attention and account for the plays of the other roles. I do really enjoy strategy games, both on the table and on the computer, so this is probably why I was so interested in learning this game. I would definitely play it again, especially since you can tweak the difficulty and there are so many options for combinations of roles to play. And every game is unique since you build the board as you play.
The last thing I want to cover is the cost of the game. This is a big game, so it does come with a decent price tag. $75 to be specific, which for some is going to be too high for a game. I do believe the price is justified for how much you will get out of the game. And I’d argue that it is more so worth it if you have a consistent game group to play it with versus not having that consistent gaming.
I definitely recommend getting Vast if you enjoy strategic games. Even if you are used to lighter games, if you have any interest in Vast, give it a go. I definitely had a lot of fun playing despite the increase in difficulty. There is also an expansion, Vast: Haunted Hallways, to go along with this version as well as Vast: The Crystal Caverns, another game set in the same universe that you can connect to The Mysterious Manor. The replayability is truly off the charts with Vast.
Vast: The Mysterious Manor will be available for retail purchase in October.
Have you ever tried a game that was outside your norm? What did you think of it?