Scott Nicholson
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BoardGameGeek » Forums » Gaming Related » Podcasts & Blogs
BGWS 040 - Video Exploration of The Pillars of the Earth
Time for more Board Games with Scott!



This time, I'm talking about The Pillars of the Earth!

You can enjoy this episode over at
http://www.boardgameswithscott.com/?p=67

I'm trying to replace some of my failing equipment. If you'd like to help, you can send donations via Paypal to scott@scottnicholson.com .

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Michael "Ice" Berg
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Acworth
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Great episode, as usual Scott . While I've seen the game name tossed around a bit, I never really looked into it. While it isn't exactly my type of game, it still looks fun, and I now know not to turn down a game.
 
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John Earles
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Another great episode. meeple My wife would have loved it when she was first reading through the rules.

One minor comment. At the bottom you state:

Quote:
If you decide to purchase a copy of Yspahan because of this video, let the publisher know! ...


While Yspahan is a great game (and now available for PC play: http://tinyurl.com/2k26ug) I don't know how many will sell based on a review of Pillars of the Earth.
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Michael "Ice" Berg
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scott wrote:
If you decide to purchase a copy of Yspahan because of this video, let the publisher know! ...


jearles wrote:
While Yspahan is a great game (and now available for PC play: http://tinyurl.com/2k26ug) I don't know how many will sell based on a review of Pillars of the Earth.


I think he's banking on the fact that the majority of his audience is debating between Pillars and Yspahan. The real question is, which publisher does he want informed?

 
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Scott Nicholson
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Doh!

All better.
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A. C.
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Another great presentation.

Aside : Black shirt + black background = Amazing detached hands! - "Thank-you, Thing"
 
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Lacombe
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Suddenly a shot rang out! A door slammed. The maid screamed. Suddenly a pirate ship appeared on the horizon! While millions of people were starving, the king lived in luxury. Meanwhile, on a small farm in Kansas, a boy was growing up.
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I've watched a good portion of your videos, and I think your presentation of the critical elements of the game is getting better over time. The order in which you introduce elements (talking about the master builders go on the board before talking about how you get them in the first place, talking about how all the stuff on the board works before talking about the order in which it takes place, etc) worked really well in this one. I'd never read or heard a single thing about the actual gameplay of this game, but I feel like I could pick it up right now and play it without ever looking at the rules. Great work.
 
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Seth Jaffee
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I suspect someone's mentioned this elsewhere, but here are some nits to pick:

1. The tax die has the 3 and the 4 repeated, not just the 3. That's real minor, but here's the kicker regarding the tax roll as discussed in the video...

2. Scott mentions that you lose 2vp per gold you can't pay. In fact, it's 1 vp per 2 gold you can't pay, rounded in your favor!

Otherwise a great review, except for the 'get to play with sheep... BAAH' comment. I did however like the 'don't go there' comment regarding Aleana bringing you wood every turn

and 3. There was no mention that the Wood->$3 Woodworker! is clearly the best craftsman in the game, and in fact in the sample round the yellow player was allegedly swearing for being drawn first, when in reality they should be happy to pay the $7 for that Woodworker! (and extra bonus if he got Aleana as well!)

- Seth
 
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Scott Nicholson
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sedjtroll wrote:
I suspect someone's mentioned this elsewhere, but here are some nits to pick:
2. Scott mentions that you lose 2vp per gold you can't pay. In fact, it's 1 vp per 2 gold you can't pay, rounded in your favor!


Ooops!

I'm off to fix that one now and re-render and re-upload, as that's a big mistake. Gimme about 5 hours.

 
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Some Guy
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Thanks for that review. I am a big fan of Caylus and I have hard in several parts (including your video) that Pillars is "Caylus-light". My question is which would you buy, if you could only buy one.
 
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Scott Nicholson
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jonjacobmoon wrote:
Thanks for that review. I am a big fan of Caylus and I have hard in several parts (including your video) that Pillars is "Caylus-light". My question is which would you buy, if you could only buy one.


I don't own Caylus (but have played it many times).

I don't enjoy Caylus, so it's an easy question for me to answer. (I do, however, enjoy Caylus Magna Carta!)

Here's my perspective:

I like a game where you get to set up an engine and then run that engine.

In Caylus, you are fighting to build your engine every turn. It's very tactical and confrontational, and there are some unforgiving mistakes. At the end of a game of Caylus, I don't feel like I've done much other than squabble. It's a very tactical game with little luck (but actions of other players can ruin your plans). While you are supposed to be all working together to build the castle, the mechanics and the theme clash and it feels very competitive. I don't usually like games where there is constant conflict; I prefer games with more meaningful points of conflict that you build for.

In Pillars, you develop your sets of craftsmen to work together, and then look to improve that engine as the game goes on. At the end, I can look at my craftsmen and feel a sense of building a team. It has a more-pleasing-to-me balance of strategy, tactics, and luck. It has less direct player interaction; therefore, it feels less directly competitive and more in with the theme of working together.

So, that should help you make your decision based upon what you enjoy.

My short review of Pillars: "It's like Caylus, but fun!"


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Paul - the
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Great review, now I just have to buy the game...
 
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Jerry Dziuba
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As a watcher since ep.1 I have to say that the quality of the presentations is getting VERY good. Quite honestly I'm not watching so much these days for info about the games as much as for pure entertaiment. Your on air persona is really taking off and I think you're finding your comfort zone and starting to flourish with it.

A big thumbs up and a hearty "Well done!" from me.
 
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David Kahnt
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It's fun, it's healthy, it's good exercise. The kids will just love it. And we put a little sand inside to make the experience more pleasant.
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You know, they say there was a man who jumped from the forty-FIFTH floor? But that's another story...
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Scott,

Thanks for all the reviews!

This is the first episode that I actually have the game before I watched the episode...

Keep up the good work!

-DK
 
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Jeffery Qualey
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I enjoyed the video and recommended it to those of my friends who haven't yet played the game. It's better than a dry read through of the rules.

I did notice that when you simulated a purchase of a craftsman while using other cards to place meeples on the resource areas, you did not show a reduction on the money meter for that purchase. You did point out later that the craftsmen on the board (through a master builder) did not require money to acquire, so it's not a big deal.
 
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Ed
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Great review as usual! Hmmm, this game sounds suspiciously familiar. Keythedral and Leonardo da Vinci, anyone? I don't know if I want to own all of them. What do you consider the best game in this genre?
 
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Eric Faris
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Excellent review again. I will second the opinion that you are becoming more comfortable. It shows! Thanks.
 
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John W
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my god - you just kept going on and on and on with the rules - they seemed to never stop. surprise

Definately going to stay away from sinking the time into this game - thanks for the review and saving us precious gaming time.
 
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Ed
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I played this for the first time on Friday. I had the same reaction to it that I had to Thurn and Taxis: this is a very nice looking game that feels like a lot of other games that came before it.

I really dislike the use of the draw bag to decide the order of master builder placement. In the game I played, there were usually two or three options each turn that were significantly better than the rest and it sucks not being able to get them simply due to luck of the draw. I don't mind luck and randomness in games (for example, the event cards really don't bother me), but I prefer it as a side dish, not the main course, and here it feels like the main course.

Has anyone come up with a variant that eliminates or reduces the use of the bag? This seems to be begging for an auction to force players to pay for actions according to their true value, not according to some rigid 7-6-5-4-3-2-1-0 schedule. I would say in a game of X players, the first X - 1 placements should be auctioned off for gold, with players who win an auction not being allowed to bid in subsequent auctions (i.e. similar to the power plant auction in Power Grid). Player X gets to place for free, and from thereon placement rotates. Thus the harm to Player X from taking a less desirable action is offset by the free cost and going first in the rotation.
 
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Randy Miller
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I enjoyed the episode and think I would really like this game as well.
 
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