Welcome to the tenth preview in our series of previews on the Specter Ops. Previously, we featured the A.R.K. Agents of Specter Ops. Before that we featured the Raxxon Hunters. Last week was our first look at the other equipment cards of the game. Specter Ops: The Shadow of Babel is currently available for pre-order in the PlaidHatGames.com store. Watch a game overview video, check out our second equipment preview below, and then pre-order today!
The first thing I love about the equipment cards is how they feel like real, physical tools at the A.R.K. Agent's disposal. Today's previews are definitely that way, as you throw them into the area near your agent to get the effect you seek.
The second thing I love applies to the Agent's equipment and their role in general: misdirection. What I love about hidden movement games is that the seekers (in this case, the Hunters) can deduce what was the "best" move for the Agent all they want, but there's always a chance the Agent took the counter-intuitive route and your own deduction plays against you. The more clear the "better move" is, the more willing the Hunters are to go all out for it, and the more enticing, and dangerous, going the other way becomes.
If you really want the Hunters to question whether you might have doubled back or gone for the clear open skies, take a look at today's equipment cards.
The smoke grenade creates an artificial barrier to line of sight, a path which the Hunters can't see through but can move through. Since you reveal this card, the Hunters know exactly what happened. The question they have to ask themselves is, what did you use it for? To run past the grenade without being seen? Or only to make them think you've done such a thing? The Smoke Grenade takes the "did they or didn't they" aspect of Specter Ops to the next level. Not only that, but it could protect you the turn it's played on AND the following turn as well.
The Flash Bang card is similar to the Smoke Grenade. It only lasts for the Agent's turn, so its effect is shorter, but affected Hunters lose their line of sight completely--you can walk right next to them and they'll never know. Considering the Flash Bang's range, imagine a 5-player game in which your double agent has been discovered and needs to get away. Flash this from across the board and your opponents have no clue which direction the rogue Hunter went--or if they crossed the line of sight at all.
Sometimes, Specter Ops is about speed. Sometimes, brute strength. And sometimes, misdirection and uncertainty. You'll use all these tools as the Agent. Tomorrow will be our final preview, on the promo equipment cards you can get from ordering Specter Ops from PlaidHatGames.com.