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Subject: Eggs in one basket rss

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Jonathan Liu
United States
Portland
Oregon
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I taught my brother and dad how to play Agora and played one game. Despite my demonstrations, we ended up with a game that was played entirely on the grid, entirely connected (except when a fire opened up a space in the middle, creating two large pieces). I thought about playing some angled pieces, but generally ended up using pieces to close off doors since my brother's shops were easy to block that way.

After the first few rounds, my dad recognized that the strategy was to get stores with few counters but lots of doors (aha!), which I'd been using to my advantage already. My brother, on the other hand, kept glomming onto his OWN stores and buying fairly expensive stores (with lots of counters). I kept telling him that it was risky in case of fire or flood, and he replied, "Big risk, big rewards!" But in this game, that's not always the case, since you can get a big-counter store that gets all the doors shut down, in which case you're left with big risk and no reward.

Strangely, though, we only pulled two events the entire game--a fire on the second turn (so it burned down the only store in the game, basically starting over), and a fire a little later on that burned a hole in the middle of the board. But after that, my brother continued his strategy of large stores, eventually having a 9 or 10 counter store.

If it weren't for my advantage of starting a few separate small stores early on, his "big risk" strategy might actually have come close--if he had drawn a festival it would have put him over the top. But by the time they realized how close I was to winning, it was impossible to shut out enough of my stores. Final score: me 62, brother 37, dad 29

It does seem in the few games I've played that generally one player is able to get a runaway lead, and it's quite hard to stop them unless you get a festival just at the right moment (i.e. on your last turn possible). Otherwise, if you've got enough small shops on the board, you can just take the last few turns to place cards to defend your stores and not buy anything at all.

Still, a fun game and an interesting play mechanic.
 
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Richard Vickery
Australia
Tempe (Sydney)
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Quote:
It does seem in the few games I've played that generally one player is able to get a runaway lead, and it's quite hard to stop them unless you get a festival just at the right moment (i.e. on your last turn possible). Otherwise, if you've got enough small shops on the board, you can just take the last few turns to place cards to defend your stores and not buy anything at all.


Of course it does take several turns to get the small shops, and if your opponents let you get away with it, then that is really their own fault. There's not much variation in the cards that would make one player get a lucky break, and in this case the winner was the player who had played before - which seem like a good thing to me, as it shows there is some skill in the game. I'd be more worried if the run-away leader was someone who had never played before.

Agora requires you to pay attention to the turn-by-turn income, once someone is at 10 income, it is probably too late to stop them. You need to keep nibbling away at the other players' income.
 
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