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Subject: Le Havre replaced by anything? rss

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Nathan T
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IMO Le Havre is the pinnacle of worker placement/economic engine games. But I'm curious if other fans of Le Havre feel it has been "replaced" or strictly improved upon by any more recent games. Since Le Havre is out of print it would be interesting to hear suggestions from this type of gamer.
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Tim Robinson
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baronholbach wrote:
IMO Le Havre is the pinnacle of worker placement/economic engine games. But I'm curious if other fans of Le Havre feel it has been "replaced" or strictly improved upon by any more recent games. Since Le Havre is out of print it would be interesting to hear suggestions from this type of gamer.


No it hasn't. I agree that at least for the time being it is the pinnacle. An excellent game.
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Geeky McGeekface
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I really enjoyed playing Le Havre when it first came out. But for the past few years, it's been completely replaced by Rosenberg's own Ora et Labora. This brilliant game is in my all-time top 10. I no longer have any desire to play Le Havre, because I'd be disappointed that I wasn't playing Ora instead.
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Norman Hedden
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No, none.
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Jon Vallerand
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Larry Levy wrote:
I really enjoyed playing Le Havre when it first came out. But for the past few years, it's been completely replaced by Rosenberg's own Ora et Labora. This brilliant game is in my all-time top 10. I no longer have any desire to play Le Havre, because I'd be disappointed that I wasn't playing Ora instead.


And I feel the exact opposite: I played O&L, loved it, but sold it because I knew that if I ever felt like playing that kind of game, I'd rather play Le Havre.

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Nathan T
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Wow I actually can't believe how much consensus there is on this! This must be just about the least controversial topic on bgg. The only person who's moved on from Le Havre has replaced it with another Uwe Rosenberg game? Sounds like we can safely declare Le Havre a "Timeless Classic", regardless of what happens from this point on.

Larry Levy wrote:
I really enjoyed playing Le Havre when it first came out. But for the past few years, it's been completely replaced by Rosenberg's own Ora et Labora. This brilliant game is in my all-time top 10. I no longer have any desire to play Le Havre, because I'd be disappointed that I wasn't playing Ora instead.


I've heard people mention this game as a sort of hybrid between Agricola and Le Havre, but this is the first time I've heard anyone say it replaced Le Havre for them. Believe it or not, I still haven't played it, but I will definitely check it out at your recommendation!
 
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David B
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baronholbach wrote:
Wow I actually can't believe how much consensus there is on this! This must be just about the least controversial topic on bgg. The only person who's moved on from Le Havre has replaced it with another Uwe Rosenberg game? Sounds like we can safely declare Le Havre a "Timeless Classic", regardless of what happens from this point on.

Larry Levy wrote:
I really enjoyed playing Le Havre when it first came out. But for the past few years, it's been completely replaced by Rosenberg's own Ora et Labora. This brilliant game is in my all-time top 10. I no longer have any desire to play Le Havre, because I'd be disappointed that I wasn't playing Ora instead.


I've heard people mention this game as a sort of hybrid between Agricola and Le Havre, but this is the first time I've heard anyone say it replaced Le Havre for them. Believe it or not, I still haven't played it, but I will definitely check it out at your recommendation!


Well I guess I should add something controversial then. I personally find Le Havre to be somewhat of a slog. Fish, smoked fish, coal, coke, wood, processed wood, cattle, beef, hides, iron ore, steel. How does anybody keep track of all these resources? Geez. I supposed I could keep track of all of them, but then I would feel like I should be paid by the hour.
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chris thatcher
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Not for me.Great 2 player and probably my fave 3 player euro.

Quote:
How does anybody keep track of all these resources?


Im not sure about the question. You keep track by taking the chit and put it in your play area?
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Ugur Dönmez
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Larry Levy wrote:
I really enjoyed playing Le Havre when it first came out. But for the past few years, it's been completely replaced by Rosenberg's own Ora et Labora. This brilliant game is in my all-time top 10. I no longer have any desire to play Le Havre, because I'd be disappointed that I wasn't playing Ora instead.


I'd have to agree with this (except for it being in my personal top 10), for me O&L scratches that particular itch a lot better than Le Havre (now a "Previously Owned" game) ever did.
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Nathan T
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pfctsqr wrote:
Well I guess I should add something controversial then. I personally find Le Havre to be somewhat of a slog.


Well thank you for adding something controversial. We now officially have a bgg thread!

But just to be clear, I didn't mean to imply that Le Havre is universally liked by everyone, end of story. I've played with enough different gamers to realize that's pretty far from the truth. But what's interesting is that for people who "clicked" with the game, there's remarkably little like it, even 8 years after it was released to great fanfare. That in itself is pretty unusual. I think for those of us who love the game, there's a certain quality to it that feels... damn near perfect. And the 150 different resources are part of it!
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Anthony Simons
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baronholbach wrote:
IMO Le Havre is the pinnacle of worker placement/economic engine games. But I'm curious if other fans of Le Havre feel it has been "replaced" or strictly improved upon by any more recent games. Since Le Havre is out of print it would be interesting to hear suggestions from this type of gamer.

I have a bit of a problem calling Le Havre "worker placement"; it is, however, rather heavy on the economic engine. I had a copy for a while, but sold it on; I thought other games did the whole economic engine thing better. Oddly, I cannot think right now specifically what I preferred and in which other games at the time; however, I can name at least three other more recent worker placement/economic engine games which work better than it:

1. Keyflower: Instead of buildings there are tiles, and in addition to being workers to place on your own/others tiles, workers are also used to bid on tiles in order to build them. In short, the workers form the economy themselves, which makes for a really interesting slant on the genre.

2. Vinhos: There are probably more appropriate titles bringing us worker placement and an economic engine than this from Vital Lacerda , especially since the worker placement here relates to action selection and that there is but a single "worker". However, as I recall, one could only visit one building in Le Havre (it's been a while). The main choices are challenging; however, players are competing to produce the most superior wines, not so much fighting over resources. The real fight between players is supplying their wines to local outlets or overseas exports, while throwing the odd barrel out to critics to establish a good reputation. Vinhos is soon to be reissued in a new deluxe version; I am looking forward to it.

Alright, just two for now then; more later, and I'll try and remember why I ultimately decided it didn't belong in my collection and get back to you - it may have just been the case that somebody else wanted it more than me.
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Nathan T
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fellonmyhead wrote:
I have a bit of a problem calling Le Havre "worker placement"; it is, however, rather heavy on the economic engine.


You're right, strictly speaking Le Havre is nothing like a traditional "worker placement" game. Just as you described for Vinhos, there is only one "worker" (or workforce) per turn, and you can use that to block other players out of an action although blocking isn't quite as prevalent as a typical worker placement game. I'll check out your recommendations. Great to hear they are reissuing Vinhos!
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Brie
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Glass Road replaced Le Havre and Loyang for me. Le Havre was just too hard to get to the table, due to length.
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chris thatcher
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Quote:
Glass Road replaced Le Havre and Loyang for me. Le Havre was just too hard to get to the table, due to length.


I have the same problem with Glass Road. For a 2 player game it hardly seems worth setting it up because the game is just too short!
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Nathan T
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Thanks for your suggestions! Is OeL too similar to Le Havre to justify owning both? After watching several reviews I can't really tell, although it does look a lot closer to Agricola if anything.

(In the end I'm not convinced that Le Havre has actually been replaced by anything, but OeL looks like it might be up my alley if it offers a different experience.)
 
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Jon Vallerand
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baronholbach wrote:
Thanks for your suggestions! Is OeL too similar to Le Havre to justify owning both? After watching several reviews I can't really tell, although it does look a lot closer to Agricola if anything.

(In the end I'm not convinced that Le Havre has actually been replaced by anything, but OeL looks like it might be up my alley if it offers a different experience.)


I think they are. I don't see a time where I'd want to play O&L but not Le Havre. They are very similar, except that O&L has tile laying instead of people feeding.
 
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Mark Smith

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Just gonna throw Caylus out there.
Also try looking into Homesteaders.
Not necessarily a Le Havre beater but a cool alternative.
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Michael F
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I felt like Harbour did the same thing in a more focused and faster way.
 
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Matt Logan
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I bought Le Havre from my FLGS recently purely because they had a copy and I had been hearing rumors it was OOP. I fell in love with it, and decided to add more Uwe games to my collection. I have since added Ora et Labora and Glass Road. I have yet to get either to the table, but have soloed both. From my solo run through, O&L seemed pretty different from Le Havre. I'd say it's worth owning both.
 
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Mike
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newkillerstar27 wrote:
I felt like Harbour did the same thing in a more focused and faster way.

I think Richard Ham said it best: Harbour is Tiny Epic Le Havre.

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William Springer
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baronholbach wrote:
I've heard people mention this game as a sort of hybrid between Agricola and Le Havre, but this is the first time I've heard anyone say it replaced Le Havre for them. Believe it or not, I still haven't played it, but I will definitely check it out at your recommendation!


That's pretty much how I feel; since O&L came out I've played it more than Agricola and Le Havre combined. (Actually, come to think of it, I'm not sure I've played Le Havre since O&L came out...but now I want to)
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Geeky McGeekface
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So let me expand my thoughts a bit about Ora. It resembles the Farmers of the Moor expansion of Agricola some, because of the ability to expand your territory. But it's closer to Le Havre in a variety of ways:

* Your principal activities are harvesting resources and converting items into other items;

* Feeding is important, but the inability to feed isn't nearly as crushing as it is in 'Gric;

* You are able to use your opponents' buildings;

* Here's the most important distinction. In Agricola, everything is focused on a few critical actions. The game revolves around setting yourself up to take those actions and ensuring that you can take good advantage of them when you do so. Le Havre has some important actions, but it's a much more open and forgiving game. The key in Le Havre is to choose the best of several good options, giving it a very different (and more positive) feel than Agricola. Ora is much more like Le Havre than Agricola in that respect.

I feel Ora improves on Le Havre in many ways, but I'll cite the two most important. First is the buildings. In Le Havre, your opponents get first crack at your newly created building, because building is an action. This gives it a weird feel, to me, and in the extreme case, can discourage you from building. In Ora, if you take the build action with your Abbott, you can use the building immediately after constructing it. This is a key strategy, because not only can you use your own building before anyone else can, but it gives you an extra action. I feel this is a marked improvement on how Le Havre handles buildings.

The second key improvement is in the paths to victory. I'm by no means a Le Havre expert, but it seems as if there's one strongest way to score points. There are variants on this, but it feels like there's a basic strategy. Ora, OTOH, has a very large number of paths to victory. I'm still exploring them. It just feels like a more refined game than Le Havre, for these reasons and other ones.
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Nathan T
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Thanks for the thoughtful breakdown! Maybe I'll have to pick it up just because I love Le Havre so much. Would you go so far as to say that this is your favorite economic/resource game, or would you have any other suggestions that are on par?

By the way, I may be in the minority on this, and of course I have yet to compare it to OeL myself, but I kind of like the way all roads converge on one or two strategies for big points in the end game of Le Havre. Rather than make the game feel stale, for me it had the opposite effect of making your timing dynamic for each game, based on what the other players are doing. And as nasty as it is, it's mitigated a bit by the final action, where you can kind of take destiny into your own hands as long as you have prepared. Another thing I really like about Le Havre (not sure why) is that the winner is determined simply by money, rather than VPs. Not saying it's any better than VPs in and of itself, but I think it's pretty unique, it makes sense thematically, and it's just interesting that you don't really miss VPs while playing Le Havre because they are built into the building costs.
 
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Geeky McGeekface
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Actually, I don't really consider Ora (or Le Havre) to be economic games, Nathan. They're more like resource conversion games, even though there is currency in both. When I think of economic games, it's along the lines of titles such as Automobile or Brass (both of which I love).

However, I rate Ora as my #6 game of all time. The only ones ahead of it that even include money are Puerto Rico and The Princes of Florence, neither of which I consider economic-based. So by your more relaxed definition, I'd say that Ora is my favorite economic game.

One warning concerning Ora. I don't know how important theme is to you, but I love Ora in spite of its theme. It isn't that it doesn't fit its theme (which is expanding your monastery) well--it probably does. But I know nothing about monasteries and don't care about the subject at all. So I just kind of ignore the theme and think of it more like a Civ game of sorts. That's a bit of a shame; it would be even better if it had a strong theme, like Agricola. Fortunately, theme is much less important to me than good gameplay, and Ora has that in spades.
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Game Knight wrote:
Larry Levy wrote:
I really enjoyed playing Le Havre when it first came out. But for the past few years, it's been completely replaced by Rosenberg's own Ora et Labora. This brilliant game is in my all-time top 10. I no longer have any desire to play Le Havre, because I'd be disappointed that I wasn't playing Ora instead.


I'd have to agree with this (except for it being in my personal top 10), for me O&L scratches that particular itch a lot better than Le Havre (now a "Previously Owned" game) ever did.


+1. The one area that Le Havre is still superior to me is at 2p. O&L isn't worth my time at 2p anymore. Otherwise, if its a choice between the two games and I have 3 or 4 players, It's Ora every time for me.

Where I choose something over either of them (but still want a similar experience) is if I don't want an abstracted resource management experience as I find (in an oversimplified way) that Roads & Boats is Ora & Labora without a few abstractions that O&L has (resource location/spending mostly). R&B also has a twist on the building location spatial management effect (Instead of points, it's pure efficiency in movement being the reward). The big chains in O&L are longer than Le Havre, and the conversion chain in R&B are almost twice as long as the longest ones in O&L...
 
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