Stéphane B

Gatineau
Québec
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hello!

Our group (3 players, occasionally 4) is looking for a new game to try out, and these 3 are the ones that caught my eye, mostly because of theme. We like games with a good theme, but also with a bit of strategy. Personally, i'm not big on too much luck in a game, but i do realize that these games do have quite a bit, and a lot of games our group enjoys do have quite a bit of luck.

Games our group enjoys: Fresco, Ticket to ride, Airlines europe, power grid, Pandemic, Robinson Crusoe, Game of thrones, suburbia.

Games we have tried out but didn't really care about: Carcassonne, Agricola, Flashpoint.

Any thoughts on the 3 games i posted in the title? i'm reading the reviews on BGG, and i note that the ratings are not very high (especially for pirate's cove). I understand that in Thebes the digging part can get frustrating to some because it's all luck. Thematically, it makes sense, but it eliminates a lot of strategy. What are the big downfalls of Pirate's cove?

Or, any suggestions on other games i might want to check out?
thanks
 
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Bill August
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I would suggest Friedrich. Seems more complex than it really is. Lots of asymmetrical fun.
 
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Jeff
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Linden
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Thebes, without a doubt, is the best of these games. It's the only one of the three that's any good, in my opinion. It's also the only one with much of a theme. I wouldn't describe digging as "all luck," as you can mitigate that luck by getting there first and spending a ton of time, which significantly increases your chance of finding someone valuable. It's a really brilliant game, and that's coming from someone who finds most Eurogames incredibly tiresome.

Pirate's Cove has the problem that almost all pirate games have: it doesn't do justice to the pirate theme. If you're looking for a good piratey game, check out Merchants & Marauders or Blackbeard (though Blackbeard is fiddly, and sort of on the wargame side of things).

Cleopatra and the Society of Architects is downright bad. It's a triumph of style over substance. It looks nice, but the gameplay is tedious and ultimately forgettable.
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Chris SC

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I didn't find Pirates Cove that bad, it just is really lucky based on a lot of levels and doesn't feel SUPER strategic. You could get bad card draws, bad rolls, unlucky on the island you pick (against a stronger pirate), but at the end of the day if you are just having a good time and don't care about that it is a fun little game.

Theme wise, I wouldn't say it is that bad except one major problem. You more often than not want to run away (read:avoid) from everyone else rather than fight.

In the end though, would I buy it? Probably not. It is good as an "every now and again" game, but we didn't play it more than 10 times maybe.

All 3 are fairly light games though from what I've read. What specific themes or mechanics are you looking for?
 
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Kent Reuber
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San Mateo
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I'd recommend Thebes as well. It's one of our group's favorites. We typically play it with 4 players, but it works OK with 3 as well.
 
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Ladson
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Quote:
Blackbeard (though Blackbeard is fiddly, and sort of on the wargame side of things).


As the Dice Tower's Zee put, "Roll for lemons!"
 
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Stéphane B

Gatineau
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savagec wrote:

All 3 are fairly light games though from what I've read. What specific themes or mechanics are you looking for?


Yeah i would say they seem fairly light, but we enjoy having a variety in terms of weight. When we want a bit more, we get Game of thrones or dominant species out. When we want even lighter, we get King of tokyo, love letter, ratrace or ulcers out. We are basically looking for something medium. For the future, i'm looking at Kemet, which seems to fall in the 'game of thrones' weight.

As for themes, well i don't have anything specific in mind, but theme IS important for our group. I think it's one of the big reasons we didn't care for Agricola. IMO, there's nothing more boring than building up a farm. Give us pirates, egypt, archeology, romans, etc.. anything interesting really, but building up a farm was not exciting to us.

We like variety, in theme but also in mechanic.

We have 2 coop games we enjoy (Pandemic and Robinson Crusoe). We have a few worker placement ones (fresco, and i guess that's what dominant species falls in right?). We have suburbia, and the less liked Carcassonne, in which you place tiles.
We do have 7 wonders, but that's another thing i'm not a big fan of.. card games where all you do is play cards. (no board)

I like different ideas in games from what we have already, which is a reason the combat in pirate's cove seemed interesting and also the digging part in thebes.
 
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Gláucio Reis
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Rio de Janeiro
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Cleopatra is the least luck-driven game of the three. I'm not a fan of the corruption rules, particularly the blind bidding part (I don't like this mechanic in general, not only here), but it's actually a decent game and the only one that remains in my collection (although I must say that the gorgeous components weigh a lot in its favor).

Thebes is not too bad, but the digging part can, as you concluded, be extremely frustrating. To me, it ruins the game.

Pirate's Cove is simply awful. I sold my copy after playing it once.
 
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Frank Griese
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If you enjoy Fresco, power grid and Pandemic, you are ripe for Stone Age. A solid worker placement game that works perfectly in any combination (2, 3 or 4 players).

Unlike Agricola, this game is easy to play, yet it is a strategy game with some luck (dice rolling for ressources).

Another alternative would be Small World. Works best with 4 in my opinion.
 
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Tyler DeLisle
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I get the feeling that when you say "theme" your going more with the definition of just the game setting and not the integration of mechanics?

If that's the case, how about Libertalia? It has the fun artwork and overall Pirate theme, but the theme isn't worked into the game much, it's all pretty abstract. Still a great light-mid weight game that plays quickly, with a lot of replay value.

You seem to like games with confrontation, if Kemet feels like too much with the research paths, what about it's baby brother Cyclades? Or Nexus Ops if you just want a streamlined, high confrontation war game.

If the kind of cheeky combat of Pirate's Cove appealed to you, how do you feel about Flying Frog games? Loads of theme for just silly fun. Last Night on Earth: The Zombie Game or A Touch of Evil: The Supernatural Game?
 
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Stéphane B

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Thank you for the suggestions guys, i'll definitely look into them.
 
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