Saturday gaming with some BGG friends! Five hours and three games. A good day.
I wanted to make sure to get a granary out right away, not knowing if people were going to explore all over the place. Glad I did—never took a grave for famine the whole game. Mike and I both took San Christofori for the storage, next turn Shaun took Santa Maria. An ambitious choice that paid off for him.
I annoyingly explored two wines in a row which probably added on one more turn than necessary to achieving my winning condition, but I was gathering up everything I needed. Mike switched to Santa Barbara and would have won if he hadn’t been unable to pollute due to Shaun’s Dump + Expansion strategy—he was forced to take graves-a-plenty. Shaun had me completely surrounded and all the buildings built (or so we thought) the same time I gathered my final wheat to complete San Christofori. He won the tie break.
As we were cleaning up, we realized Shaun had never built Storage and it was unclear as to whether he could have squeezed it in one of his three cities (he had one wood left over, but we had packed most of the game away at this point). Anyway, my one upsight from this game is this: I threaded the needle too fine in accumulating my three of each good. I only put men into the fields to farm near to the minimal of each good I needed, but I was never really troubling for men. If I had pushed it a little, I would have had food to out run (for at least a little bit) Shaun’s Giorgio. Also, my granary was a huge help, I avoided graves for most of the game (got two due to no room for pollution). Until proven otherwise, I will almost certainly begin the game with one—maybe less valuable in a 2 player game? Remains to be seen. Great fun, and I’m nervous for when Mike doesn’t attempt an “unconventional” strategy… will we have a chance?
This is a game I’ve had on my watch list for a while as it has come highly regarded by many people with good taste. The rules were simple so we got into it pretty quickly. The three scoring conditions were: horizontal rows, settlements near mountains and area majority in each district. I and Mike were close on most of these at the end but I had way more settlements touching mountains (basically it was all I focused on) to win my first ever play! It was fun, but will probably stay off my buy list—for now.
Ah, Hansa. I will never win this game. I was probably near the lead about 2/3rds of the way through and didn’t have the good sense to push an end game. I was hanging out at 3 actions to Mike’s 4 and Shaun’s 5 and as the game continues that deficit gets worse and worse. Serves me right, I got last by a healthy margin. Love this game, though.
Good day for gaming and it may not even be over! I may be able to squeeze a Burgundy out of Jeff later tonight. We shall see.