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Thurn and Taxis: Power and Glory» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Does it feel like a different game? rss

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wayne r
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Last night, I finally got a chance to play the expansion, Thurn and Taxis: Power and Glory. I enjoyed playing Thurn and Taxis and it hit the table a lot when my friends and I got together.

P&G follows most of the rules from T&T but with few tweaks and changes. P&G comes with a new board along with a new set of cards representing the cities on the board. The board is of the northern part of Europe. The cards now have a drawing of 1-3 horseshoes on one side of the card and a city as well as a smaller drawing of the horseshoes on the other side.

P&G doesn't utilize the carriage mechanics and therefore the cartwright is no longer used in this game. You start a game with 2 horseshoes that is represented on your principle firm card. The gameplay is basically the same. You add a city card and can utilize either postmaster or the administrator. The changes come in when you play a card from your hand and try to score your route. When you play a card from your hand, you can either use the card to add to your route or add to the number of horseshoes. If adding to the route, you just place the card on the route and can utilize the postal carrier. If adding to the number of horseshoes, you flip the card showing the number of horseshoes and add it to your principle firm. Before you can score your route, you must now have a number of horseshoes equal to the length of your route. So, if you have a 5 route, you must also have enough cards down showing 5 or more horseshoes on the priniciple firm. Since the carriage mechanics are gone, the only game ending mechanic left is the first player to place all of his houses.

Another change is that there are what I call city states on the board. These are cities with their own bonus tile. These bonus tiles are round instead of square. As long as your route runs through one of these cities, you gain that city's bonus tile when you score your route. If your route runs through multiple city states, you have to choose which of the city states you will place your house and pick up that city state's bonus tile.

The production value of P&G seems to be an improvement over T&T. The cards are of slightly better quality and glossy. The artwork on the cards also seem to be better. The board is on par with T&T. You will need the houses from T&T to play the game.

I found that the intent of the expansion was to slow down the game. The urgency I felt in T&T wasn't as strongly felt in P&G due to the absence of the carriages and cartwright. Sure, it is still a race but I felt the urgency was lessened with the carriage and cartwright gone. I also felt the expansion was more forgiving than T&T. In T&T if you cannot connect a route, you must scrap the whole route and start over. In P&G, if you do not have the card to connect your route, you can instead opt to play a card on your principle firm to increase the number of your horseshoes. The increase in difficulty only came in the number of roads connecting each city. In T&T, most of the cities have 3 or more roads connecting to it whereas the majority of the cities in P&G have 1 or 2 roads connecting to it. Many times during play, I found myself playing a card for its horseshoes than for increasing my route.

I felt the expansion lost some of the depth I felt playing T&T. The carriages and cartwright gave another avenue in which to go about winning the game. The horseshoes in P&G, on the other hand, didn't. As stated above, it's main purpose seems to be to slow down the game. I did like the city states because they are a tempting distraction and adds to your decision on how best to build your route.

Did I enjoy playing the game? Yes, I did. Some here on BGG have said that the new board and mechanics gave it a different feel. I have to disagree. The horseshow mechanic, while an interesting variation, didn't add enough to the game to give it a different feel for me. The game felt just like playing T&T but in a slow-mo kind of way.

Is the expansion worth getting? In my opinion, not really. I felt it didn't add enough new mechanics or interesting twists to compel me to get it. On the other hand, if you prefer a slower, more laid back game of T&T, then P&G will be for you. While the game is not on the top of my list to get, I would not be adverse to playing the game again with someone who already owns a copy.
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Travis Easton
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Casey
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Thanks for that review. You may have persuaded me to save the money and spend it on a "new" game.
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William Springer
United States
Brooklyn
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I don't care for the new expansion rules, but I play using the BSW no-horses rules. (ie, use the carriage cards from the original game, keep all the rules the same except for only being able to place in one of the free cities) Then it's the same game only with a new map (and points for 8-length routes) I was bored with the old map, so the new one is nice.
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wayne r
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I was really looking forward to getting the expansion but as I read other reviews, my enthusiasm to obtain the game began to lessen. What I was really looking for in the expansion was for more player interaction similiar to but an expanded version of the one offered in a foreign game megazine.

Other reviews indicated this wasn't so but some BGGers were saying the expansion felt like a different game so I decided to get the game anyway if the game added enough new rules to make it more interesting.

I finally had the chance to play it before committing to buy and I was somewhat dissapointed. I didn't see why that horseshoe mechanic made it a different game. All it did was slow down the game as well as soften the blow of not being able to complete a route.

Don't get me wrong. It still was an enjoyable game...just not that different from T&T as others have claimed. For that reason, I placed that game on the backburner.
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wayne r
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wmspringer wrote:
I don't care for the new expansion rules, but I play using the BSW no-horses rules. (ie, use the carriage cards from the original game, keep all the rules the same except for only being able to place in one of the free cities) Then it's the same game only with a new map (and points for 8-length routes) I was bored with the old map, so the new one is nice.


Connecting routes on the new map is made more difficult by the decrease in number of roads connecting to each city. When I played it, I would have defaulted numerous times if not for the option of playing the cards for its horseshoes. I'm not sure if I would enjoy playing by the regular rules on the new map. My frustration would probably have increased.
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Werner Bär
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Karlsruhe
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Oni no board wrote:
I didn't see why that horseshoe mechanic made it a different game. All it did was slow down the game as well as soften the blow of not being able to complete a route.

In original TuT, unless in a 2 player game, it was a bad move to pick up a card only to deny it to your opponents, since you did hurt yourself by doing so. In GuG, you can pick it up and use it as a horse card.
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wayne r
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Werbaer wrote:
In original TuT, unless in a 2 player game, it was a bad move to pick up a card only to deny it to your opponents, since you did hurt yourself by doing so. In GuG, you can pick it up and use it as a horse card.


I think you still hurt yourself denying your opponent a card but having played in P&G's map, I'll agree that now it hurts your opponent much more because of the decreased number of roads connecting each city and the use of that card for its horshoes.

The next chance I get to play the game, I'll have to play more attention to my opponent(s) and try out the card denying tactic.
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