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Geoff Burkman
United States
Kettering
Ohio
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Can't say I expected to post another one of these so soon, but as luck would have it, this recent mano-a-mano with Ron marked our first recorded play of the newly revamped edition of the greatest cardboard subsistence game in the world, and it proved an interesting outlier of sorts. Revision cards only, 10/7 draft, no expansion tiles, and Ron had the honors.

Constant Reader will notice I've altered a few Round action headers to reflect the new version, while leaving others untouched, and I've made no attempt to rename the resource spaces. Grain Utilization (GU) = the old Sow & Bake. Cultivation (Cu) = the old Plow & Sow. And, I'm sorry, Family Growth (FG) is going to stay FG, with or without. Wishing for Children (WfC) just doesn't cut it. Wish in one hand, you better be doing something useful with the other, no matter how desperate you are for kids!

Round One/GU
Ron – Occ/Seasonal Worker
Geoff – 3W(3)
Ron – DL(2f +1G)
Geoff – SP + Rammed Clay (1C)

Ron opens the proceedings with an old standard that will prove a mixed blessing; I counter with the obvious wood draw. Ron obeys the “play the ock, use the ock” dictum, and I swipe the button with a semi-useless revision Minor.*

*All I really want is the clay, for reasons soon to be made clear. Otherwise, in a 2P contest, being able to fence with clay isn't a terribly great advantage unless someone's card play injects a sizable amount of it into the game, or if you're simply planning to clay-hog. I see no reason to count on either condition.

Current Status
Geoff – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 3f, 3W/1C
Ron – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 4f, 1G, 1 Ock

Round Two/MIMI
Geoff – 1R(2)
Ron – 1C(2)
Geoff – SP + Herring Pot (-1C)
Ron – 3W(3)

I promptly claim the reed, Ron counters with the clay as expected, and I step on the button to activate a revision Minor imported from the NL-Deck.* Ron, who borders on the pathological about not allowing an opponent to claim a 6Wood, spikes the lumber.**

*No doubt Constant Reader can predict what's going to happen...

**Any good reason he might have been willing to let it slide? I can think of one...

Current Status
Geoff – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 3f, 3W/2R, 2 MnImp
Ron – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 4f, 3W/2C, 1G, 1 Ock

Round Three/Sheep
Geoff – Fish(3f) + 3f>
Ron – SP + Stone Tongs (-1W)
Geoff – 3W(3)
Ron – MIMI/Fp2 (-2C)

I empty the pond,* Ron retakes the initiative, boosting his stone futures, then has second thoughts and opts for Scullery instead, suffering pangs of regret after I double down on timber and he realizes he's foxed himself. His agonized groans touch me; I allow the take-back play of Stone Tongs on the button heist and then the acquisition of his beloved fireplace. I can live with that.

*Triggering my Herring Pot for the first time. I'm a big fan of “play the card, use the card,” too, you know.

Current Status
Geoff – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 6f, 6W/2R, 2 MnImp
Ron – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 4f, 2W, 1G, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/1 MnImp

Round Four/Fences Geoff – 1f
Ron – 1R(2)
Geoff – Occ/Animal Tamer (1W)
Ron – 3W(3)
Geoff – SP + Mini Pasture> (F/4 -2f)

Ron snaps up the reed, no surprise, and I get out my first Ock, an OG* favorite that's been powered-up a hair for the revised edition.** Suspecting my next move, Ron again spikes the woodpile. I retake the button as expected, firing along another OG favorite he's not going to like seeing. Harvest is uneventful.

*Original Game

**No free wood or grain with AT v1.0, sad to say

Current Status
Geoff – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 1f, 7W/2R, 1(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 2 MnImp
Ron – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 0f, 5W/2R, 1G, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/1 MnImp

Round Five/Family Growth + MI Geoff – 1f
Geoff – Sheep(3)
Ron – BR(1) + x (-5W/2R)
Geoff – 1C(3)
Ron – FG + x

When growth—excuse me, Wishing for Children—pops, I think long and hard before hustling the woolies to shelter.* Ron wastes no time knocking out a room and then adding a worker after I haul clay. A Rubicon has been crossed. Will I be able to regain momentum?

*I am normally loath to cede first build, especially in 2-player games, but I've also noticed some advantages to the timing, and I'm not really thrilled about letting Ron claim a 6food at this point.

Current Status
Geoff – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 2f, 7W/3C/2R, 3sh, 1(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 2 MnImp
Ron – 3Wood Rooms, 3 Peeps, 0f, 1G, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/1 MnImp

Round Six/Stone Geoff – 1f
Geoff – 3W(6)
Ron – 1R(2)
Geoff – MIMI/Fp3 (-3C)
Ron – DL(2f +1V)
Ron – Occ(-1f)/Firewood Collector

Growth or no growth, I see no reason to pass up the cheap lumber. Ron snags the reed, squelching any thoughts of a double build. Discretion being the better part of valor, I build the distaff fireplace. Ron hits up the DL again, then pops an Ock he won't use for another five Rounds.

Current Status
Geoff – 2Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 3f, 13W/2R, 3sh, 1(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/2 MnImp
Ron – 3Wood Rooms, 3 Peeps, 1f, 2R, 1G/1V, 2 Ock, 1 MjImp/1 MnImp

Round Seven/Renovation + MIMI
Geoff – BR(1) + 2s (-9W/2R)
Ron – Sheep(2)burn1
Geoff – Fish(4f) + 3f>
Ron – DL(2f +1V)
Ron – SP + Mini Pasture> (F/4 -2f)

Time's a-wastin'; I knock out a room and paired stables, with one ensconced in my pasture. Ron possibly errs by chivvying the woolies, but it gives me pause, and I end up spurning growth in favor of the fish.* Ron then hits up the DL for the early veggie and swipes the button for a pasture of his own. He has lamb and carrot stew at harvest; I let my woolies multiply. The midgame waits.

*That I have no doubt will get snapped up if I don't claim them. Is a 7food worth sacrificing an action? We shall see.

Current Status
Geoff – 3Wood Rooms, 2 Peeps, 3f, 4W, 4sh, 2s, 1(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/2 MnImp
Ron – 3Wood Rooms, 3 Peeps, 1f, 2R, 1G/1V, 1(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 1 MjImp/1 MnImp

Round Eight/Vegetables Geoff – 1f
Ron – 3W(6)
Geoff – SP + Mini Pasture> (F/3 -2f)
Ron – BR(1) + x (-5W/2R)
Geoff – FG + Caravan (-3W/3f) (b1sh)
Ron – 1S(3+1)

The Eighth unfolds with predictable precision: bargain timber to Ron, I reclaim the initiative while fencing my other stable, Ron forces me with more construction, and I hire on, unveiling a choice revision Minor that I'm surprised they* allowed in the revision edition. Note the charred wooly to help pay for that Minor. Ron vacuums up the rocks, first use of his Tongs.**

*Hi, Uwe! Hi, Hanno!

**And—bummer!—last.

Current Status
Geoff – 3Wood Rooms, 3 Peeps, 1f, 1W, 3sh, 2s, 2(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/3 MnImp
Ron – 4Wood Rooms, 3 Peeps, 1f, 1W/4S, 1G/1V, 1(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 1 MjImp/1 MnImp

Round Nine/Boar Geoff – 1f
Geoff – 1C(4)
Ron – Sheep(2)
Geoff – FG + x
Ron – 1R(3)
Geoff – Fish(2f) + 3f>
Ron – SP + Beanfield (-1f)

Current Status
Geoff – 3Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 1f, 1W/4C, 1sh, 2s, 2(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/3 MnImp
Ron – 4Wood Rooms, 3 Peeps, 0f, 1W/3R/4S, 1G, 1(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 1 MjImp/2 MnImp

Now things get interesting. Neither of us has shown any indication of having an extra clay source, so if I forgo growth to claim the bricks, I will simultaneously guarantee my own renovation while making the same goal difficult for Ron. I do just that. Taken aback and leery of his own feeding abilities, Ron herds woolies. I then happily hire on my fourth worker. Ron liberates reed, I fish again, and Ron retakes the button,* popping out the revised Beanfield.** His woolies and veggie perish at harvest-time; I slaughter a pair of lamb myself. Onward...

*For what will prove to be the last time.

**The original version has no food cost

Round Ten/Cattle Geoff – 2f
Ron – 3W(6)
Geoff – Boar(2)
Ron – DL(2f + 1V)
Geoff – 1S(2)
Ron – FG + Mini Pasture> (F/3 -2f)
Geoff – SP + Lumber Mill (-2S)
Geoff – MIMI/Fp3> CH4

Ron immediately commandeers the lumber, I corral the pigs, and Ron flogs the DL. I grab some rocks, Ron hires on while keeping the bargain pasture in motion, and I then reclaim the button, turning my stone into points,* following that with a cookery upgrade.** I've regained a “lost” action, but will it make any difference? I know I'm still down two; the retrospective count is 25-23, Ron's favor.

*And a few downstream wood, if I can manage it.

**Likely a net 3- or 4food at this point. Plowing a field might have been better.

Current Status
Geoff – 3Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 3f, 1W/4C, 1sh/2b, 2s, 2(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/4 MnImp
Ron – 4Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 0f, 7W/3R/4S, 1G/1V, 2(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 1 MjImp/2 MnImp

Round Eleven/Stone Geoff – 1f
Geoff – Cattle(2)
Ron – Sheep(2)
Geoff – 1R(2)
Ron – PF
Geoff – SP + Canoe (-1W)
Ron – MIMI/Basketmaker's Workshop (-2R/2S)
Geoff – Fish(2+1f +1R) + 3f>
Ron – GU (1Gf/1Vf)

This being a harvest Round, I've no choice—the cows are mine. Equally impelled, Ron shepherds. I assure myself of renovation, Ron gets started tilling, and I see no reason not to step on the button, getting a semi-utile Minor into the fray.* Ron snags a favored crafting Major, I take my new Canoe for a spin,** and Ron farms for effect, at last collecting his first firewood. His woolies, a reed, and a veggie fulfill harvest needs; my wooly dies as well, allowing both pigs and cows to party.

*Given its discounted cost, I am not unhappy; swapping a wood for a point is not a bad thing.

**The reed/food payoff turns out to be minimal, but I've triggered Herring Pot a fourth time! I can live with that.

Current Status
Geoff – 3Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 1f, 4C/2R, 3b/3c, 2s, 2(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/5 MnImp
Ron – 4Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 1f, 8W/2S, 1G, 1 PF(2g), 2(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 2 MjImp/2 MnImp(1v)

Round Twelve/Cultivation Geoff – 2f
Geoff – 3W(6)
Ron – Boar(2)
Geoff – SP + Mini Pasture> (F/3 -2f)
Ron – Cu (PF + 1Gf)
Geoff – PF
Ron – 1C(3)
Geoff – 1S(2)
Ron – DL(2f +1V)

I'm just as happy that growth doesn't manifest; I sweep up the lumber posthaste. Ron conservatively herds piggies, and I quickly step on the button.* Ron farms, I start in on plowing as well, and Ron clears the clay, a move that will almost necessarily make renovation costly. I nab a few rocks, and with little else useful to do, Ron hits up the DL for what will prove to be the last time,** accruing another stick of firewood as our dudes trudge home at Round's end.

*Mini Pasture has gotten one heck of a workout.

**As if five isn't enough.

Current Status
Geoff – 3Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 1f, 6W/4C/2R/2S, 3b/3c, 2s, 1 PF, 3(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 1 MjImp/5 MnImp
Ron – 4Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 3f, 9W/3C/2S, 1V, 2b, 2 PF(5g), 2(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 2 MjImp/2 MnImp(1v)

Round Thirteen/Family Growth w/o Geoff – 1f
Geoff – FG w/o
Ron – Cattle(2)
Geoff – 1S(3)
Ron – Cu (PF + 1Vf)
Geoff – MIMI/Well (-3S) + 1f>
Ron – Fences/8 (-8W)
Geoff – Sheep(2)
Ron – 1R(2)

The penultimate Round unfolds like clockwork orange as we maneuver for points. Ron sloughs a reed/veggie combo at harvest; I fry up rejuvenating steak and bacon. Ron collects more firewood; game's end is at hand.

Current Status
Geoff – 3Wood Rooms, 5 Peeps, 0f, 6W/4C/2R/2S, 3sh/3b/3c, 2s, 1 PF, 3(1x1)p, 1 Ock, 2 MjImp/5 MnImp
Ron – 4Wood Rooms, 4 Peeps, 0f, 2W/3C/1R/2S, 2G/1V, 3b/3c, 3 PF(3g/1v), 2(2x1)2(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 2 MjImp/2 MnImp

Round Fourteen/Renovation + Fences Geoff – 2f
Geoff – Cu (PF + x)
Ron – PF
Geoff – 3W(6)
Ron – MIMI/Pottery (-2C/2S)
Geoff – Ren>C + Joinery (-2W/3C/1R/2S)
Ron – GU (1Gf/1Vf + 2f-1G)
Geoff – Fences/5 (-5W)
Ron – FG w/o
Geoff – 1V

In retrospect I likely should have claimed the wood immediately, but didn't want to cede easy cultivation to Ron, who then commits what may be the move that makes or breaks things. He nabs Pottery; I breathe more easily as I snap up Joinery while upgrading. Ron farms and grows; I fence and wipe a negative, and we're done. Ron feeds on a reed/clay/piggy combo, while I shuck wood, woolies, and a whack-a-piggy. Ron draws another forlorn firewood,* and we tote up the scores...

*Yep, maybe shoulda nailed down that Joinery, not the Pottery. Ah, glorious hindsight!

Current Status
Geoff – 3Clay Rooms, 5 Peeps, 1f, 4W/1C/1R, 1V, 1sh/3b/4c, 2s, 2 PF, 3(1x1)1(2x2-)p, 1 Ock, 3 MjImp/5 MnImp
Ron – 4Wood Rooms, 5 Peeps, 0f, 3W, 3G/2V, 3b/4c, 4 PF(3g), 2(2x1)2(1x1)p, 2 Ock, 3 MjImp/2 MnImp(1v)

Final Score (Ocks Played, Minors/Majors Played)(Wood taken/bonus)(Rounds as SP)(Total Primary(Special) Actions)(PPA*)(Food Spent)
Primary Actions are those taken when a player claims a space with a family member. In sessions of Farmers on the Moor, special actions are counted as Primary actions, with their subtotal indicated in parentheses. * - Points per Primary Action.

Geoff – 38 (1 Occ, 3/8°)(24/15)(10)(40)(0.950)(48) °Mini Pasture thrice
Ron – 37 (2 Occ, 3/4~)(18/11)(4)(41)(0.902)(47) ~Mini Pasture twice

Player Fields Pastures Grain Veg Sheep Boar Cattle Unused Stables House Peeps Pts Bonus
Geoff 2(1) 4(4) 0(-1) 1(1) 1(1) 3(2) 4(3) 4(-4) 2(2) 3C(3) 5(15) (10) (1)
Ron 4(3) 4(4) 6(3) 3(3) 0(-1) 3(2) 4(3) 1(-1) 0(0) 4W(0) 5(15) (6) (0)


Bits & Pieces
I love 1-point games, no matter who wins. They mean the play was competitive, the cards were relatively balanced, and the contest was in question to the bitter end. Can't ask for much better than that.

Plus I won. whistle

That said, did Constant Reader notice that I never once put my lone Ock to work; all it ever served to do was allow me to play Canoe. Likewise, Firewood Collector netted Ron a whopping 1Wood (useful) and the ability to play Beanfield. He used Stone Tongs all of once.

Meanwhile, Ron's lead Ock essentially netted him a 10food, while my Rammed Clay/Herring Pot combo got me a 12food. Mini pasture injected a prodigious 17Wood into the game.

Ron recently paid me back in spades for this threadbare win with a near-identical RC/HP opening gambit, 52-46 final score. That'll teach me.

Edit 8/25 - I realized I hadn't created proper links to relevant Minors and Ocks. Constant Reader will immediately note that play-agricola.com has not yet updated their entries for the revision cards in their final form, although the info on them is, far as I can tell, all correct. Also, I finished the title for this post; how I missed that upon originally posting is beyond me. whistle

As always, thanks for reading, and all transcription/editing errors are mea culpa. Until next time, whenever that may be, happy gaming to all!
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Chris Geggus
United Kingdom
Brentwood,
Essex
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Re: 2-Player Shakedown Cruise, or
Love it!

Keep 'em coming.
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