Games played at Epsom Games Club 22.03.2018
Gordon Watson
United Kingdom
Banstead
Surrey - United Kingdom
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ASL - other tactical wargames call it Sir.
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It was Thursday so on a whim a few of us decided to turn up at The River Club and play some games - Gordon, Elizabethan Chris, Paul, T101 James, Andrew B2, Mike, Hugh and Karl (welcome), played -

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1. Board Game: Sid Meier's Civilization: A New Dawn [Average Rating:7.53 Overall Rank:906]
Gordon Watson
United Kingdom
Banstead
Surrey - United Kingdom
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ASL - other tactical wargames call it Sir.
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Played by: Gordon, Paul, Hugh and Karl

Another outing for the newest and slickest Civ iteration. New to all but me but everyone seemed to grasp the central focus bar mechanism pretty quickly and everyone was soon building new cities, kicking barbarians, being kicked by barbarians (well just Paul really), spreading their cultural influence, building Wonders and advancing towards the modern world.

The challenge is to keep your eyes on the prize that are the three victory conditions you have to meet (they vary each game) and recognising the tech advances you need to supercharge the optimised (via your focus bar) actions you take whilst navigating the pitfalls and opportunities presented by your board position.

Hugh's initial alarm at having barbarians close to his capital soon turned to glee as he realised the potential to farm them for trade tokens for the rest of the game - Paul not so much so as his local barbarians kept sallying-forth from their mountain fastnesses giving him some grief. Karl spread fast and was well placed for grabbing the warmonger victory condition, due to his proximity to a couple of City-states which had soon yielded to his might, and he had soon built two blue wonders to grab a second victory condition.

After heading in the wrong direction initially, i.e. towards the rather militaristic Hugh, I eventually got my feet out from under me, maxing my tech dial and getting two yellow wonders, but I was struggling to see how to get the War Monger victory condition as the City-States were too far away and I was struggling to build wonders due to not having enough cities to build them in. Paul was getting close to victory as well but not as close as Karl, but fortunately Paul stopped Karl's city drive at the last minute, giving me one more round where I managed to grab a City from Hugh which contained a red wonder - 3 conditions met. But Karl scrambled to his third as well by building a final wonder, which meant we were tied on victory conditions and wonders and after a count of friendly spaces (the second tie-break condition) tied on that as well.

Karl & Gordon tied victory

Good game.
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2. Board Game: Keyflower: The Farmers [Average Rating:7.89 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.89 Unranked]
Chris Littler
United Kingdom
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First plays for: James, Mike, Andrew and Chris

Keyflower: The Farmers introduces 4 new "resources" to the game; sheep, pigs, cows and wheat.

Animals live in fields made up by the green spaces between roads on your village tiles. At the end of the game you score points for each field that has an animal in it; 1, 2 or 3 points for sheep, pigs and cows respectively. Multiple animals in a single field don't gain extra points, but do breed at the end of spring, summer and autumn.

Grain is used when transporting and allows you to increase your movement by one for every grain spent.

We went "full farmers" as suggested, using all 4 new tiles for spring, summer and winter, topping up with 4 tiles from the base game. When playing with farmers, each player gets 4 winter tiles instead of 3, so we used all the winter tiles from the expansion and topped up again.

All in all I like the additions this expansion makes. Animals brings in an interesting spatial element making the fields you create important for adjacency to your animal producing tiles. Wheat will balance out the games where resources come out but little extra transport tiles come out.

At the end of the game, the scores were:

James 74
Chris 60
Andrew 53
Mike 41
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