I have been playing this lately and am wondering if anyone finds the 2 Council Chamber cards that give points a viable strategy for scoring? It seems like it is an option when no better one is available for council, or for last minute points. But in terms of it being a primary path to victory to spend your game time on, I am not to sure? I won last night with 54 points using the 4-points-per-family-member-alive card (3 markers), a full church, and a little bit of travel. It also helped that no one took the first player marker from me, so I was able to pick off the 3's for about 5 turns, and combo'd that with producing new family members that I could place on the council card.
From what I have experienced, Area Council will get you about 10 points max, if you activate 2 areas such as travel or crafts. I think population council may be 12-16 realistically, but that is a lot of end game planning/turns.
However both take a lot of turns to activate, and you are missing out on the special white banners from the other two council cards, and both of these are pretty good.
Anyone make this work or have success?
Another player took Area Council and picked up 12 points from merchant cards, but because that was all he did it wasn't enough. It was close, though.
It seems like focusing on 2-3 tracks is what you need for success. Two players went primarily into making and selling goods, but didn't do much else, and didn't do nearly as well. I find getting a plow and a farm early will take you a long way, since the monk cards can be bought, and travel benefits from them as well.