Just got this game, and I think we will begin each game with more creatures, because in our first 2 player game only 1 colonist died. It was just too easy to get 3 people on a boat and get them onto an island, unless your opponent rolled a sea serpent (only a 1 in 3 chance). But I had some rules questions too.
How I play, might not be in the rules
1) Can a boat/swimmer willingly move into a space containing a creature that can sink/kill them? I assume the answer is "No", but I can't find this in the Parker Brothers rules. The game would seem pretty silly if you could do this without being killed.
Sure they can move but the boat will get sunk or the people eaten.
btw you might want to do this on a boat where you only have a "1" person while you think the other player has a more valuable person on the boat.
2) If there are some "landlocked" beaches, do you start removing forests until a beach is touching water again?
3) Does "start of your turn" (like a dolphin) mean before phase 1, or sometime during/combined with phase 1 (the movement phase)?
I think that is in the rules.
4) Can a dolphin carry a person to land, or do they stop at the edge and the person then needs to spend "1" to hop onto the island?
Stops a the edge.
5) I assume you don't have to finish destroying the island once everyone is safe?
I would agree.
6) Is it common in a 2 player game to never even get to destroying mountain spaces because all the people are safe already?
I don't think so. Don't you take away the tiles that you opponent is on?
On the whole it was an uneventful 2 player game because we were deliberately on opposite sides of the island. Is there a variant anyone uses that forces you to "mingle"?
One house rule we play with is that after everything has been setup. Every player rolls a die. You then place that monster any where you want. Sea Serpent menas you choose whale or shark.