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Subject: Strategy layers aplenty! rss

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Steve Carey
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I thoroughly enjoyed a 5-player session (my first time, others had played before) of Indonesia today. The rules aren't that difficult, but the layers of strategy are just amazing.

Since the table was very aggressive with Slots and Acquisitions (plus two companies were discarded due to not allowed placement), we only played 6 total turns (2 in Era A, 3 in Era B, and 1 in Era C) rather than the usual 7-8(?). As a result, the final money tally was a bit low from what I understand - the winner had $1,105, second place had a $1,000, and so on. So it was a tight game, with Oil not accounting for much (though doubled).



There were 8 mergers total, 4 for Siap Faji, 3 for Shipping, and 1 for Rubber. Merger level never rose above 2 for any player, which restricted opportunities.

City Growth was limited to ten Level 1's, four Level 2's, and no Level 3's (1 City was blocked and didn't place).



--Player 1 won the game with a strategy of steady miscellaneous shipments, then monopolizing Rubber, and also having the largest combined (merged) Shipping company, thus not having to pay others for selling any of his Goods.

--Player 2 initially focused on a merged Shipping company and made income off of Spice, later gaining good income from Siap Faji. Raising his Shipping to Hull 4 (with a boost from another player) was key to a second place finish.

--Player 3 created a huge Rice company near Bali, and later acquired two Siap Faji companies. He expanded a lot (Level 3), but had no Shipping interests during the entire game. He was also blocked from locating a City (no legal placement available), placing third.

--Player 4 went for Turn Order and Slots. Near the end of Era B, he had lost all his companies to mergers. He made most of his money from Spice on the east edge of the map, and finished 4th.

--Player 5 started with Shipping and a Rice company, but later overpaid for a merger and couldn't catch up, finishing in last. He went up to Hull 3, but it didn't see a lot of use at that level.



Total play time was 4 hours (not including a meal break and a rules/strategy review). The game met and then exceeded everything I had heard about it, and I liked the different theme too.

A fantastic session with good friends (but which still saw several cut-throat plays) that has now shot up to the very top of my Want List - now to find a copy (or hope that Splotter will reprint it soon)!
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Jean-Michel Petit
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Thanks for the session report!

I love hearing about the first time someone play this game...it's like the sun dawning on our face for the first time isn't it?

As for the total round, with a full complement, it's normal to have less rounds. But 4 hours for a 5 players game is a tad long since usually with this one, the more player, the shorter the game. What is important though is that you thoroughly enjoyed your experience!

Cheers and come back again!

Micquebec
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Steve Carey
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Micquebec wrote:
4 hours for a 5 players game is a tad long since usually with this one, the more player, the shorter the game.


Time went by so quickly, I could hardly tell - there really wasn't much AP at all as we were having fun calculating options and making decisions.

I'm sure we could shave a 1/2 hour or so off now that we have the rules and map fully understood.
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Steve Carey
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Just for comparison sake, here were the Merged Companies held by each player (listed in their order of finish) at the end of the game:

Player 1: Shipping and Rubber

Player 2: Shipping and Siap Faji

Player 3: Siap Faji and Siap Faji

Player 4: none

Player 5: Shipping and Siap Faji
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