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Terra Mystica playing with Fire & Ice over the holiday break

iOS, Android, PC/Mac/Linux •

Digidiced‘s digital version of Terra Mystica brought one of the heaviest and most complex board game titles to our tablets earlier this year and, for the most part, did so successfully. I say “for the most part” because the digital version didn’t alleviate any of the game’s complexity, which is usually something you expect when the CPU is handling the rules and fiddly bits. I’m not saying they didn’t create a good port–I’m not sure how they could have fit everything TM has to offer in any other fashion–but it’s a daunting game to play and even those of us who have played the tabletop version need to dedicate our full attention to follow just what the hell is going on. It’s worth the effort, however, as TM is a pretty great euro game once you wrap your head around it.

It gets even better when you add the Fire & Ice expansion which is currently being worked on in the Digidiced labs. Luckily, they need our help to iron out the bugs, so we’ll have a chance to try it out for ourselves over the holidays when it becomes available for owners of the TM app as part of an open beta.

The Fire & Ice expansion for Terra Mystica does the one thing you wouldn’t think TM needs: ups the complexity. Not only does it add six more factions, but there’s also a new board, new terrain types, and a new way to calculate final scoring.

The new factions are divided amongst the two new terrains, ice and volcanoes. There are the Ice Maidens and Yetis on one side, and Acolytes and Dragonlords on the other. The remaining two factions are “variable” and can pick from any of the remaining factions and use that faction’s pieces for the game. These are the Shapeshifters and Riverwalkers.

Digidiced has been working on this expansion since the game’s release and have ironed out all the bugs on their end, but they know more will pop up when 80K users are playing the game, thus the reason for the open beta. As soon as Apple gives it the greenlight, it will go live, allowing all of us to start and play in games using the Fire & Ice material. Of course, it’s still a beta, so there’s a good chance you’ll run into speed bumps along the way. Finding those bumps for Digidiced is the whole point, however, so suck it up.

After the holidays, the expansion will head to its favored terrain: behind the paywall. If you liked what you saw over the holidays you’ll be able to buy it and continue your games where you left off.

Digidiced isn’t sure when Apple will approve the update, so it could be going live at any time now. Keep checking!

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