A Deep Dive into the Keys!

September 24, 2018


Welcome officers! Last time, we took a look at The Sixth Cycle and Velocity, two of the expansions available for Brook City. Today, we’ll be taking a look at the other two expansions available during this campaign: Delta Keys, and Keys to the Kingdom!

 

Keys to the Kingdom is an expansion exclusive to this Kickstarter campaign, meaning that after Sept. 30 (the date the pledge manager closes), it will not be available in stores! If you’d like to secure a copy, make sure to pledge for the Officer tier or above!
 

Let’s take a closer look, shall we?

THE CASE: KEYS TO THE KINGDOM

The BCPD has recently heard whispers of a new shadowy organization digging its claws into Brook City: The Kingdom. There is little to no information as to who they are, but with the help of Interpol, your team now has a few clues to follow that might shed light on their machinations! 
 

Keys to the Kingdom is unique compared to other cases for a few reasons. Firstly, unlike most cases where you need to head out into town and find clues, each cop is assigned a clue of his choice at the start of the game! This alone makes the case highly repayable, simply because the board will always start in a different state based both on player count and clue distribution. Secondly, clues are not associated with a specific location in town; they are actually tied to the current active lead, meaning that only one clue can be investigated at a time, regardless of how many are in play! Cops will need to work together in order to determine whose clue is more pressing and coordinate encounters appropriately! 

Thirdly, with The Kingdom always watching from the shadows, clues might up and vanish in the middle of your investigation! In gameplay terms, this means that every time you encounter a clue, the active lead will move to a new location. So, if you do not successfully investigate a clue (i.e. “bust” it) in a single encounter, it will move elsewhere! This might send it across town, so you’ll have to make sure to work with all available cops to approach clues tactically! Lastly, it is important to remember that The Kingdom is highly influential. At any moment, your progress in the case might be hampered, and clues you thought were resolved might suddenly require further investigation! This is represented by cards like “The Kingdom’s Keeper” that can flip clue tokens back to their active sides, which is bad since you can only win by collecting clues that are on their inactive sides!

Keys to the Kingdom is a case that requires more coordination than most at higher player counts, so make sure you approach all targets carefully! And remember, The Kingdom is watching …
 

THE SUSPECT: AH LONG

As leader of the Golden Dragons, Ah Long is quite influential. He runs gambling dens all over the world, and Brook City is his latest playground.
 

Playing against this infamous triad leader is a high-stakes game in and of itself, one that literally comes down to the roll of the dice. You see, while Ah Long gains influence like all other criminals, you can never be certain when he’ll gain it. Throughout the game, Ah Long will collect assets from the various gambling dens he has set up around the city. Then, during the Criminal Turn, he will roll a die for each asset he has collected; if any of those dice show a critical result, he gains 1 influence! A die only has a single critical face, so the odds of him rolling one are slim … right? If you’re feeling lucky, you can ignore Ah Long in order to concentrate on gathering clues for the case! 

 

How long will your luck last, though? 


Of course, a way to minimize the risk is to minimize how many assets Ah Long can collect. To do this, you’ll have to find and shut down his gambling dens. The Lotus girls who run them like to roll the dice as well, though, and they are not guaranteed to provide Ah Long with the assets he needs. So, again, you could push your luck and let them do their thing in the hopes that they will roll poorly … but your luck will probably run out eventually! 

Oh, did we mention that Ah Long has other ways of getting assets? Well, we’ll let you discover those on your own! 
 

THE COP: YING HUA WONG

Ying Hua is an Interpol agent who has come to Brook City in the hopes of apprehending Ah Long and finding information on The Kingdom, whom she believes he works for.


She’s a powerful asset on any squad, both her quick learning skills and analytical mind helping cops manipulate their decks by both discarding and drawing cards, often out of turn, to better prepare themselves for upcoming encounters. Additionally, she comes equipped with many tactics that will significantly boost the effects of said deck manipulations. A great example is “Trial and Error,” which allows any cop who discards a card because of her to draw a hunch. This can be huge in the right circumstances! 


Of course, you might be asking yourselves why you’d want to discard cards in the first place! Well, a great example is the card “All Points, Engage.” After Ying Hua has finished encountering a target, a cop, at the cost of a card, can not only move 2 out of turn, but also place a progress on any Crime in play. This can be absolutely crucial, and even win games when applied correctly! Imagine Ying Hua just finished encountering a criminal, and was only 1 progress away from busting him! Well, with this card, a cop can finish the job for her and then position itself for its own turn (and possibly gain other rewards if her tactic cards are in play)!

If you’re the kind of player who enjoys interesting card play and providing support to others (and yourself), Ying Hua is the cop for you!    

 
THE CAR: SPRINTER D


As if the three new modular decks weren’t exciting enough on their own, players also get a brand new police cruiser they can select at the beginning of the game (or whenever they visit the BCPD): the Sprinter D! Unlike the slower, albeit powerful, standard-issue BCPD Cruiser, the Sprinter D is a fast little import that allows cops to move diagonally! This means they can take corners when driving through the mean streets of Brook City! At first glance, this might seem less advantageous than what its bigger brother offers, but effectively “skipping” streets when moving gets you where you’re going a lot faster, and is an ability that is always available, regardless of the crime rate!

 

 

THE CROSSOVER: RIVALS AND ALLIES FOR STREET MASTERS

For all our loyal fans who backed the original Street Masters Kickstarter, or plan on backing the Street Masters Aftershock Kickstarter when it launches on Oct 23, Keys to the Kingdom offers a very attractive set of Rival/Ally cards! There is one for every unique character miniature in this box! Here are previews of only one side for each; we’ll let you discover what the other side does!

 

 

 

Delta Keys offers a new and exciting way to play Brook City: a side board representing the beautiful and exotic locales of the Delta Keys! Keep in mind, officers: you’re not going on vacation! Your job is to stop The Syndicate’s smuggling network, which we suspect originates from one of the islands there! Luckily, the chief has gotten two of the Valice PD’s finest to come help out: the Murdock brothers!

 

THE DELTA KEYS SIDEBOARD & NEW REMOTE VEHICLES


The Syndicate has begun cranking up its smuggling operations, and now all sorts of contraband is leaving the Keys and making its way into Brook City via the South Glen Docks! This is clearly not a good thing, so it’s up to you and your fellow cops to stop these shipments as much as possible!

 

 

The Delta Keys sideboard is a modular element you can add to any game of Brook City to add a new challenge layer and offer exciting new tactical choices to your players! Every round, a facedown smuggling card will be set on the first space of the side board’s smuggling track. Then, every card on the track will move one space towards the top of the track, accumulating contraband tokens along the way. If a smuggling card ever makes its way off the track, it arrives in the South Glen Docks in Brook City (along with all its accumulated contraband tokens), which results in the card being flipped face up to reveal what has come to town! If there are enough contraband tokens in the South Glen Docks (including the ones it just brought over), its Quota is met and its negative effects take place!

Luckily, there are ways to stop contraband before it enters the city! This can be done by traveling to the Delta Keys via remote vehicles! Once you’ve arrived, you can encounter the location target where a smuggling card resides and, if successful, remove said card from play by resolving its Bust effect! If you do a good job of cleaning up the Keys, you can even encounter Crimes back home in Brook City to help the cops who stayed behind! They might be a little jealous that you’re catching some rays, though!

 

There are other ways of slowing down smuggling cards and contraband, but we’ll keep those hush hush for now as to not ruin any surprises!

 

If you’re looking to add an extra layer of fun and suspense to your games, the Delta Keys side board will do the trick!

 

CASE #1: TROUBLE FROM PARADISE


The first of two cases in Delta Keys, Trouble from Paradise is an exciting case where the city is being flooded with contraband and the cops’ only hope of stemming the tide is investigating clues and pinning proof on the suspect. The catch is, unlike most cases, the clues are hidden in the case deck at the start of the game! Therefore, cops will need to “survive” long enough for the clues to appear during case turns! Of course, there are ways of accelerating the process, such as a case-specific rule that lets cops discard hunches to dig through the case deck. There are also events like “One Thing Leads to Another” that lets cops that control a lead search for clues, but such events also come with a negative effect as well!    

When a clue finally appears, it’s usually not easy to investigate it. Most have high resistances to approaches, so you’ll have to be fully prepared before tackling them! Each clue does have a way of making things a little easier for you, but that usually comes at a cost, so make sure you can handle the consequences!

 

CASE #2: THE SEASIDE FIVE


The Seaside Five have just pulled off the first successful robbery of the Liberty Bank, and they’re now laying low as they formulate a way to get out of town with their big score. The BCPD has managed to locate each member of the crew, and now the race is on to catch them before they make a break for it!


This case is a deceptive little number that, at first glance, looks like it will be a walk in the park. The thieves (represented by clue tokens) have been located and are on the city board just waiting to picked off. Upon closer examination, however, you’ll come to realize that each crew member has very specific prerequisites printed on their corresponding clue cards! “Marlene Poe”, for example, is sitting pretty in a boat in the middle of the Jersey, so only a cop that is also driving a boat can encounter her! Every one of the Seaside Five will have special conditions surrounding them, so you’ll need to make sure you’ve got what it takes to face them!

To make matters worse, the clock is ticking before these baddies get away, and the cops know it. Every round, an event will be drawn from the case deck and they will relate to one of the five robbers. If the named thief is still in play, a negative effect will occur. How negative depends on if any cops are closing in on their position! On “Shots Fired,” for example, cops near Vinnie Franco will suffer stress or discard a lead, which is bad … but if no cops are near Vinnie, each cop will suffer 1 stress! 

 

As you can see, there isn’t a clear approach when dealing with these scumbags! You get too close, you pay the price. You leave them alone, the whole team pays the price! What will you do?

 

Whatever you decide, do it fast! If the case deck runs out of cards, the crew escapes and the cops lose!

 

THE SUSPECT: ANATOLY VOLKOV


One of the biggest Russian oligarchs on the world stage, Anatoly Volkov has his finger in every pie, knows every power player, and runs a vast real estate empire. That’s why he’s the suspected leader of The Syndicate!

 

As you’d expect when playing against “the big boss”, things are going to be very difficult for the cops when he’s in town! In fact, he is quite possibly the most challenging suspect deck in the entire Brook City lineup! He is nearly impossible to encounter (which is one of the only ways to slow him down) because he is hardly ever on the board; he controls things from the shadows, sending his “associates” out into the wild to do his bidding. One of their main tasks is collecting compromising information on public servants, and when they deliver it to Volkov, the cops better watch out! He will blackmail them without hesitation, which will cause them to suffer incredible amounts of stress if they haven’t been doing their jobs properly …

Of course, good cops will know that the best way to stop Anatoly is to stop his associates in their tracks. Without the valuable assets they provide, Volkov will have a difficult time making the lives of those who uphold the law difficult! Watch out, though! Some of his associates will personally target you if you don’t take care of them, and if you were unable to stop the spread of crime in the city, you’ll be paying the price!

 

THE COPS: AXEL AND RHYS MURDOCK


The Murdock twins come as a pair, for better or worse. Axel is an upstanding cop that everyone gets along with. He’s well-connected, well-mannered, and an exemplary cop through and through. Rhys, on the other hand … well, let’s just say that if it wasn’t for his brother, his half-cocked approach to police work would have gotten him fired a long time ago (regardless of how good his arrest record is)!

 

Axel is all about supporting his fellow cops and knowing what’s going on around town. He’s one of the few cops that can get his team leads without having to physically locate them, and he’s the only cop who can control two leads! That’s right! No more having to choose which lead to discard when gaining a new one; both can be kept and used when appropriate! As you can imagine, this makes Axel a force to be reckoned with as he can often perform extra actions, travel anywhere on the board, heal stress, and take advantage of all sorts of other great lead-related powers!

 

Rhys is the complete opposite of his brother. Sure, he watches out for his fellow boys in blue, but he doesn’t necessarily think things through before pulling the trigger! He has incredible skills, but using them often comes at the expense of himself or his team mates! So, just like his coworkers, you’ll have to deal with his nonsense in small doses, lest you end up stressing out and getting fired! A great example is his “Getting F.U.B.A.R.” encounter card. It’s incredibly powerful as it essentially gives any vehicle in the game the same power as the BCPD Cruiser (discard the vehicle to go anywhere in the city) while also providing a chance to encounter a target … but jumping out of a moving car with both guns blazing will cause him to suffer some stress (which is perfectly understandable, really)! “Watch It, Potato Head” is another example of how Rhys’ incredible skills might hurt others. Moving 5 and playing a card is excellent, but everyone around him will suffer a stress to benefit! 

And there you have it folks! We hope you enjoyed this closer look at the final two expansions for Brook City! As a reminder, every item you’ve seen described is completely modular and can be socketed into any game of Brook City to further increase the possible unique gameplay combinations players can experience!
 

 

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