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As of the Big in Japan expansion, there are 55 factions, which can combine to form 1,485 unique pairs of factions.[1]

Each player shuffles two factions together to form their deck of 40 cards. Every faction typically has 20 cards with some combination of minion cards and action cards. Factions have a typical structure, although there are many exceptions. The typical structure of a faction's cards is the following:

  • 10x Minions (total power 30, average power 3):
    • 1x Power 5 - the "King Minion"
    • 2x Power 4
    • 3x Power 3
    • 4x Power 2
  • 10x Actions:
    • 2x Some Action
    • 2x Some Action
    • 1x Some Action
    • 1x Some Action
    • 1x Some Action
    • 1x Some Action
    • 1x Some Action
    • 1x Some Action

Factions with a different power distribution (while still retaining the regular 1x, 2x, 3x, 4x structure) include: Aliens, Dinosaurs, Wizards, Zombies, Bear Cavalry, Ghosts, Killer Plants, Elder Things, Shapeshifters, Giant Ants, Elves, Halflings, Mages, Orcs, Thieves, Changerbots, Teddy Bears, Sheep.

Factions with a different structure include: Robots, Innsmouth, Minions of Cthulhu, Geeks, Princesses, Mythic Greeks, Superheroes, Astroknights, Star Roamers, Rock Stars, Smash Up All Stars, Itty Critters, Kaiju, Magical Girls, Mega Troopers.

Most sets are expansion packs with 4 factions, although there are many exceptions to that pattern as well, namely the Core Set, The Big Geeky Box, Smash Up: Munchkin, It’s Your Fault!, All Stars Event Kit.

Each faction has a special gameplay mechanic that is common among the faction's minions and actions. For example, Zombies come back from the discard pile, Ninjas specialize in destroying other minions, and Ghosts gain bonuses from having only a few cards in their hand.

Each set comes with two bases per faction. Usually, a pair of bases is themed to correspond to a faction from the same set. You might say that each faction has two bases, although the relation is mainly thematic: If a faction is not chosen, its associated bases can still appear, and some bases don't really give an advantage to their associated faction, e.g. Jungle Oasis (the Dinosaurs can easily score it, but only for 2 VP), Temple of Goju (by themselves, the Ninjas won't be able to get back their highest-power minion), Cave of Shinies (the Tricksters can destroy other players' minions, but they definitely don't want to do it there, and their own minions are usually protected against destruction), The Dread Gazebo (the Ghosts don't get any advantage from it and they even have a play-on-base action),...

List of FactionsEdit

Core SetEdit

  • Aliens - Return minions to their owners' hands, gain victory points instantly, and manipulate bases.
  • Dinosaurs - Play high-powered minions and actions with some protection and destruction.
  • Ninjas - Destroy minions and sneak onto bases at the last second using special abilities.
  • Pirates - Move around from base to base and destroy weak minions.
  • Robots - Play several weak minions in a single turn, often with power bonuses or useful abilities.
  • Tricksters - Force other players to discard and make bases undesirable to play on.
  • Wizards - Draw and play extra cards each turn, especially actions.
  • Zombies - Play minions from the discard pile or place them into your deck/hand.

Awesome Level 9000Edit

  • Bear Cavalry - Move and destroy other players' minions on bases you have minions on.
  • Ghosts - Can shrink hand size and gains benefits from having 2 or fewer cards in your hand.
  • Killer Plants - Grow more powerful on bases through multi-turn abilities, and base manipulation.
  • Steampunks - Play powerful base actions that can be salvaged from the discard pile, and move minions and actions between bases.

The Obligatory Cthulhu SetEdit

  • Elder Things - This faction gives Madness to other players, and has strong minions that are difficult to play.
  • Innsmouth - Lots of power 2 minions that work together well and can be played in droves.
  • Minions of Cthulhu a.k.a. Cthulhu Cultists - Play lots of actions, recover cards from the discard pile, and slow the game down all the while gaining Madness.
  • Miskatonic University - Gain, use, and lose Madness to accomplish a little of everything.

Science Fiction Double FeatureEdit

  • Cyborg Apes - Play lots of actions on minions to power them up.
  • Shapeshifters - Copy other players' power and abilities, destroy and replace minions.
  • Super Spies - Sabotage other players' hands and deck while improving yours, and play specials while bases are scoring.
  • Time Travelers - Replay actions and minions, and avoid the discard pile by placing cards in your hand or the bottom of the your deck.

The Big Geeky Box Edit

  • Geeks - Interrupt other players' turns to disrupt their plans.

Monster SmashEdit

  • Giant Ants - Weak minions with lots of +1 power counters that can flexibly move and allocate them.
  • Mad Scientists - Play lots of +1 power counters, and gain bonuses for removing +1 power counters.
  • Vampires - Destroy your and others' minions to gain power counters.
  • Werewolves - Strong minions with temporary power bursts, bonuses based on power, and destruction.

Pretty Pretty Smash UpEdit

  • Fairies - Choose between effects and counter actions played on minions and bases.
  • Kitty Cats - Temporarily take control of other players' minions, and destroy minions you control.
  • Mythic Horses - Play multiple minions in a turn with bonuses for having multiple minions on the same base.
  • Princesses - A few power 5 minions with powerful talents and abilities, and a diverse assortment of supporting actions.

Smash Up: MunchkinEdit

  • Clerics - Return cards from the discard pile and prevent cards from going to the discard pile.
  • Dwarves - Gain and play treasures to boost the power of your minions.
  • Elves - Help other players to indirectly help yourself at the right moment.
  • Halflings - Draw many minions, play many minions and put minions on top of your deck.
  • Mages - Discard cards to gain power, destroy minions, play extra cards, and manipulate monsters.
  • Orcs - Brute force against your opponents with bonuses for having more power than others.
  • Thieves - Steal action cards in play, gain treasures, and sell treasures for VP.
  • Warriors - Play and destroy monsters on bases to manipulate the breakpoint and gain treasures.

It’s Your Fault!Edit

  • Dragons - Break down bases and make them unattractive for other players with your presence.
  • Mythic Greeks - Get bonus power from playing the diverse "favors of the gods" (= actions).
  • Sharks - Destroy minions below a certain power to get extra power and extra minion plays.
  • Superheroes a.k.a. Super Heroes - Power 2 minions that can directly bring in a diverse crew of power 5 minions.
  • Tornados - Move minions. Move your own minions. Move other players' minions.

Cease and Desist Edit

  • Astroknights - Ten unique minions focus on drawing and playing cards to increase minion power.
  • Changerbots - Mobile faction where minions switch between having higher power or utilizing abillities.
  • Ignobles - Give control of your minions to others for benefits, often before taking them back. [2]
  • Star Roamers - Cards work together to trigger and manipulate how your minions are affected.

What Were We Thinking? Edit

  • Explorers - Future base manipulation and knowledge, Move/Play extra minions on new bases to take early leads. move all over the place.
  • Grannies - Manipulate your deck, draw/play actions from the top of your deck and draw/play minions from the bottom of your deck.
  • Rock Stars - Collect Groupies and gain advantages from bases with high breakpoints. Play and move many minions at once to break bases.
  • Teddy Bears - Low power minions who rise in power to challenge opponents, with actions focused on neutralizing enemy threats and drawing more cards.

All Stars Event KitEdit

  • Smash Up All Stars - Draw and retrieve cards from your deck and discard pile to get your best cards out as soon as possible.

Big in Japan Edit

  • Itty Critters - Play weak extra minions that go under your deck at the end of the turn.
  • Kaiju - Gain power through your base actions and destroy other players' cards.
  • Magical Girls - Abilities that get better the more minions you have on the same base.
  • Mega Troopers - Special abilities that can help you during the scoring of bases.

Sheep Promotion (Winter 2017) Edit

That ’70s Expansion (Spring 2018)[3] Edit

Oops You Did It Again (Fall 2018) Edit

  • Egypt -
  • Samurai -
  • Cowboys -
  • Vikings -

ReferencesEdit

  1. to count the possible combinations of 2 items from a set of n items, use n choose 2 = n(n-1)/2.
  2. https://boardgamegeek.com/article/22462602#22462602
  3. https://twitter.com/bobazach/status/897923466250272768

Unsorted ListEdit

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