Hey there! I think I know why you are here: you enjoyed Bang! so much that now you want to buy an expansion, but you are not sure which one.
Don’t worry, I got you covered: in this article, I’ll describe all the Bang expansions, with everything they add to the main game, from the new mechanics to the new cards.
Over the years dV GIOCHI published 6 Bang expansions.
Of course, some are more worth buying, and with this article I hope to help you choose which one you think is the right expansion for you!
By the way, this is not a ranking, I sorted them from the oldest on top to the newest.
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Bang! Dodge City
- 8 Role cards;
- 15 Character cards;
- 40 Playing cards;
- 1 Summary card.
This expansion allowed to raise the maximum number of players from 7 to 8 with the addition of the second renegade.
The basic rules didn’t change, but each renegade has to be the only one left to win. There cannot be a win for the renegade if both renegades are alive.
Dodge City also introduced the Green-Bordered cards, which added a new mechanic to the game. To be activated, you have to wait at least one turn from when you played them.
Once its effect is used, you’ll have to discard it.
Another addition was the Discard Another Card symbol. To play the cards with this symbol you’ll have to discard the card itself along with any other card of your choice from your hand.
Last but not least, it added 15 new character cards.
Out of all the Bang expansions, this is definitely my favourite one. It is the biggest one and the most balanced of them all.
The green-bordered cards added a very neat mechanic to the game, and the new characters blend nicely with the old ones, without being too overpowered.
It’s definitely a must-buy to add replayability to the game without adding anything too overpowered.
This expansion is included in The Bullet, the deluxe edition of the game.
Bang! High Noon | Bang! A Fistful of Cards
- 15 Event cards for each expansion.
Each of these expansions added 15 Event cards, which added a new mechanic to the game.
The Sheriff chooses either one of the expansions’ decks, sets aside the High Noon or the A Fistful of Cards card, and shuffles the remaining 14 cards. He then puts the set-aside card on top and flips the deck showing face up the first card.
Beginning from the second turn, the Sheriff, before its turn, will have to take the top card, read it aloud, and put it into play. This way, each round will have a different event happening, that can give both advantages or disadvantages to each player.
I put together these two expansions because they are basically the same, just with different cards. Besides, they are sold together.
They both added the Event Card mechanic, which I think is pretty cool and sometimes it can turn the tables around.
However, I have to say that with all the things you can do in Bang, it’s pretty easy for the sheriff to forget to put the event card into play each turn. But this is just a small downside, easily avoidable by not having the memory of a fish like me!
They are very small expansions, and they are not essential to the game. Therefore, I don’t think you should consider this expansion as the first one to buy. Still, I think they are pretty fun to play with!
They are both included in The Bullet deluxe edition of the game.
Bang! Wild West Show
- 10 Event cards;
- 8 Character cards.
Wild West Show added a new deck of Event cards that are activated each time a Stagecoach or a Wells Fargo card is played. The card at the bottom of the deck has to be the Wild West Show card.
This expansion also added 8 new characters.
Personally, I think this is the most useless out of all the Bang expansions. It’s very similar to High Noon and A Fistful of Cards, but the Event cards are not as fun and they just create chaotic rounds. More so, each event can stay in play for a very long time if the Stagecoach or the Wells Fargo cards are not played.
Besides, the new characters feel overpowered compared to the other ones, and Big Spencer is definitely the most annoying character of them all. He just has too many life points and if he uses beers he is impossible to kill.
That’s why we never play with him, even though a nice balancing could be that he is not allowed to use beers to gain life points back.
The only thing I like of this expansion is that it’s the first one that allowed the eliminated players to return into play. In order to do so, you need the Bone Orchard event card to come into play.
In the end, this is probably the only expansion I would not recommend buying, unless you are a completist and you want to have the complete set of expansions.
Bang! The Valley of Shadows
- 8 Character cards;
- 16 Playing cards.
This expansion added new playing cards, some of which are pretty cool, like Rattlesnake and Fanning. The first one allows you to shoot to persons; the second one has to be played on any player: at the beginning of his turn, that player has to draw a card, and if it is of spades, he loses 1 life point.
The most interesting card of this expansion is Ghost. It allows eliminated players to get back into play.
Besides these new playing cards, also 8 new character cards were added.
The Valley of Shadows is not a big expansion, but the new cards added a good replay value to the game and some new effects.
I think it has a way more interesting way, compared to the Wild West Show expansion, to bring the eliminated players back into play. The Ghost card is definitely the best new card from this deck.
Also, the new characters are not overpowered compared to other ones, so they can be easily mixed with the main game’s characters without outbalancing it.
In the end, it’s a pretty fun addition to Bang!, even though it’s a small expansion.
Bang! Gold Rush
- 24 Equipment cards;
- 8 Character cards;
- 1 Shadow Renegade role card (for the Shadow-Gunslingers variant);
- 30 Gold Nuggets.
This is another expansion that added a new mechanic: the gold nuggets.
Each time you wound another player you take a gold nugget. You can use them to buy equipment cards in the shop: if they are brown-bordered you have to use their effect immediately; otherwise, if it’s black-bordered, you can keep it face up in front of you: its effect remains active until someone else makes you discard it by paying the card cost plus one. This is the only way to discard black equipment cards.
Gold Rush also added a new variant to the game: Shadow-Gunslingers.
In this variant, when you are eliminated you don’t have to stand to the side anymore just watching, but each of your following turns you come back as a shadow-deputy, a shadow-outlaw, or a shadow-renegade, depending on your past role.
You draw two cards, you play your turn normally, and at the end of your turn you discard everything in your hand and on your board. You can only keep the gold nuggets, if you have any.
The Shadow-Renegade works this way: before each of your turns, you’ll have to check which side you’ll be on. Whichever team has the most eliminated players will be your team for the next round. If there’s a tie, he’ll side with the outlaws.
From now on, until his next turn, the Shadow-Renegade will win only if its team wins.
First of all, I have to say this expansion’s rules are a bit more complicated to understand than the others’. I’ve had to read them more than once before fully comprehend them.
Having said that, this is the other expansion I recommend buying immediately because I really like the gold nuggets mechanism, and I think it brings a breath of fresh air to the game.
Beware though because this new mechanism could make the matches last longer than usual.
The new characters are dependent on the gold nuggets mechanism, so use them only if you are using this expansion. It happens that sometimes you don’t want to use certain expansions because you want to keep the game simple.
Gold Rush was my second favourite expansion before the release of Armed & Dangerous.
Bang! Armed & Dangerous
- 28 Playing cards;
- 8 Character cards;
- 32 Load Tokens.
Armed & Dangerous added the new mechanism of the Dangerous cards. They are orange-bordered and when you play you have to add load tokens to them. In order to use its effect, you’ll have to pay (discard) the amount of tokens that card requires.
If a dangerous card runs out of tokens you’ll have to discard it. Don’t worry though: if the card is running low on tokens, you can add one token to it each time you play a blue-bordered card, or by discarding a card from your hand at the end of your turn.
The load tokens can also be used to upgrade a brown-bordered card. The price is written on each card.
Regarding the new characters, 3 of them can be used without this expansion; the others will have to be used with this expansion since their effects require the load tokens, otherwise, they will be pointless.
This is the latest of the Bang expansions to this day. I think the load tokens mechanism is pretty similar to the gold nuggets one; still, it is a nice addition, even though the Dangerous cards are not that different from the brown-bordered ones. The only difference is that they require load tokens to be activated.
The Bomb card is pretty fun. It’s pretty similar to the Dynamite from the main game, and I always love playing the Dynamite.
If I had to choose between Armed & Dangerous and Gold Rush, I’d probably choose this one. They are pretty equal on the fun level, but Armed & Dangerous is a little bit easier to understand and to play with.
The Bullet – Deluxe Edition is a great Bang! edition to buy because at a great price you’ll have the base game and three expansions: Dodge City, For A Fistful of Cards, High Noon.
Plus: there is a Sheriff Badge included!