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jvreynolds

New Player, What are the best way to add expansions?

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Hello All,
I am an OCD board game player/collector and when I buy a new board game I like to get all the expansions at once. To that end what is the best way and in what order should I play the expansions? I typically play a 2 player game (my wife and I), but can add more investigators as needed to be up to 4.
Thanks for all your input.
 

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I am just like you, man. All expansions at once! Unfortunately, I can say emphatically that Akham Horror is not the game to do that.

Start with the base game. And only the base game. After you've played a number of times, then get an expansion. Any will do, but here's what each will offer:

Curse of the Dark Pharaoh: Minimal new rules, and little added difficulty. Some cards are written strangely, and can seem confusing. But the theme is top notch.
Dunwich Horror: The fan-favorite. New AOs, investigators, Injury and Madness, gate bursts, and new board are all great things. But it adds a significant amount of difficulty and new stuff to learn. Only get this once you're comfortable with the game mechanics and are seeking more of a challenge.
King in Yellow: Adds a good amount of difficulty, without too many new rules. Like Dark Pharaoh, it adds a bunch of good theme, but is more difficult overall, with fewer ambiguous cards. Also, this is the fan-favorite small-box expansion.
Kingsport Horror: New AOs, Investigators, gate bursts like Dunwich, which is great. But the new board doesn't add as much difficulty. Its lack of gate locations and its disconnected rift theme makes it boring to many players, but the rifts will never get diluted, no matter how many expansions you use. Also, this expansion has the ever-necessary Epic Battle deck!
Black Goat of the Woods:
This doesn't have as much pervasive theme as King in Yellow or Dark Pharaoh, but its raises the difficulty by a lot.

Bottom line, if you're set on getting all the expansions (and you can afford them!), get them all. But don't touch a single one of them until you've played the base game enough to both be comfortable with the basic mechanics, and to appreciate the base game. Then, either gradually start playing games with one expansion at a time, or gradually start adding expansions. If you're looking to get just one expansion, get Dunwich. If you're getting only one small-box expansion, get King in Yellow.

As a side note, two investigators is difficult, but will suffice until you start adding expansion boards. For each expansion board you add, I'd recommend adding at least one more investigator. Currently I play with all five expansions and with four investigators, and it works just fine. But I found that 2 investigators was the breaking point with the Dunwich board added on: you need at least 3. I assume it's the same with Kingsport

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I agree with TIbs on this one. If you bought the game and all expansions at once (which is exactally what I would do), you may want to start by playing the base game, then incorporating the expansions as listed. I'm afraid if you opened all the boxes, added everything to the mix, the learning curve would be pretty daunting, maddening, even. But then, there is a cozy asylum in Arkham...

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