We brought this game as a gift to our friends Sarah and Eric, he served as out tour guides on our honeymoon
in Holland. They took to this game immediately, and we played it several times a night.
Prior to these sessions, I had only played Carcassonne a few times, and while I had enjoyed every game I was
unsure whether it really had a lot of replay value. Now I am convinced that it does. We would often play a
few games in a row, and no one ever objected when it was brought out again the next day.
Now there has been much discussion about how the Monastaries and the Farmers are just too powerful in the
game. I must say that I have yet to see any indication that either of these claims are true. Yes, if one player
pulls three or more Monastary tiles he can amass a lot of points with relatively little effort, but a player
could do the same thing by pulling the right series of City or even Road tiles as well. Because the game does
have quite a bit of luck, you will occationally see some of these statistical flukes, but that doesn't mean the
game is necessarily in need of fixing. And although Farmers can wrack up huge points at the end, we have
started making our maps a little more disjointed (with lots of open spaces and peninsulas) which results in a
bunch of smaller fields instead of one large one. I don't think that there is any problem with the Farmers so
great that it can't be overcome with clever play.
Everyone won at least one game of Carcassonne, which was nice. As we grew more comfortable with the
game, our playing time almost halved. All the better: that just means we can play it more often in the same
amount of time!