Cole Feeser
United States Pennsylvania

Hello everyone,
COMBINATIONS:
I have been thinking quite a bit about this game over the last week or so. For starters I thought about just how many different combinations of a full game you can have. I mean think about it. For each of the 3 age decks you have to remove 3 of the 23 cards (of the 20 cards in Age 3). You have to randomly add 3 of 7 guild cards to the age 3 deck. You randomly have to lay out each of these age decks in a certain manner. You have to randomly deal 5 out of 10 progress tokens. (Assuming you have the Messe Essen wonder promo) You have to deal out 4 of 13 wonders and take turns drafting them. Then you have to deal out 4 of the remaining 9 wonders and take turns drafting those. So based on all these considerations here is what we have:
Building the Age 1 deck: 20 cards out of 23 total required = 1771 unique combinations Building row 1 of the Age 1 pyramid: 2 cards out of 20 total required = 190 unique combinations Building row 2 of the Age 1 pyramid: 3 cards out of 18 total required = 816 unique combinations Building row 3 of the Age 1 pyramid: 4 cards out of 15 total required = 1365 unique combinations Building row 4 of the Age 1 pyramid: 5 cards out of 11 total required = 462 unique combinations Building row 5 of the Age 1 pyramid: 6 cards out of 6 total required = 1 unique combination Building the Age 2 deck: 20 cards out of 23 total required = 1771 unique combinations Building row 1 of the Age 2 pyramid: 6 cards out of 20 total required = 38760 unique combinations Building row 2 of the Age 2 pyramid: 5 cards out of 14 total required = 2002 unique combinations Building row 3 of the Age 2 pyramid: 4 cards out of 9 total required = 126 unique combinations Building row 4 of the Age 2 pyramid: 3 cards out of 5 total required = 10 unique combinations Building row 5 of the Age 2 pyramid: 1 card out of 1 total required = 1 unique combination Selecting the guild cards: 3 cards out of 7 total required = 35 unique combinations Building the Age 3 deck: 17 cards out of 23 total required = 1140 unique combinations Building row 1 of the Age 3 pyramid: 2 cards out of 20 total required = 190 unique combinations Building row 2 of the Age 3 pyramid: 3 cards out of 18 total required = 816 Building row 3 of the Age 3 pyramid: 4 cards out of 15 total required = 1365 unique combinations Building row 4 of the Age 3 pyramid: 2 cards out of 11 total required = 55 unique combinations Building row 5 of the Age 3 pyramid: 4 cards out of 9 total required = 126 unique combinations Building row 6 of the Age 3 pyramid: 3 cards out of 5 total required = 10 unique combinations Building row 7 of the Age 3 pyramid: 2 cards out of 2 total required = 1 unique combination Revealing the first set of wonders: 4 cards out of 13 total required = 715 unique combinations Player 1 chooses his 1st wonder: 1 card out of 4 total required = 4 unique combinations Player 2 chooses his 1st 2 wonders: 2 cards out of 3 total required = 3 unique combinations Player 1 chooses his 2nd wonder: 1 card out of 1 total required = 1 unique combination Revealing the second set of wonders: 4 cards out of 13 total required = 126 unique combinations Player 2 chooses his 3rd wonder: 1 card out of 4 total required = 4 unique combinations Player 1 chooses his last 2 wonders: 2 cards out of 3 total required = 3 unique combinations Player 2 chooses his last wonder: 1 card out of 1 total required = 1 unique combination Revealing the progress tokens: 5 tokens out of 10 total required = 252 unique combinations
So if we multiply ALL of these numbers together: 1771 * 190 * 816 * 1365 * 462 * 1 * 1771 * 38760 * 2002 * 126 * 10 * 1 * 35 * 1140 * 190 * 816 * 1365 * 55 * 126 * 10 * 1 * 715 * 4 * 3 * 1 * 126 * 4 * 3 * 1 * 252 = 57,358,271,699,209,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 possible ways any given game could be ultimately laid out.
Now one thing I want to point out is that that number is me assuming that the position of the cards within each row don't make a difference but if you felt they did then instead of do the combination value for each row of each pyramid we would do the permutation value for each row of each pyramid and as a result the new total would be: 2,045,648,448,034,030,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000
Those are some BIG numbers for sure so let's now take a look at some smaller numbers.
SCIENTIFIC SUPREMACY:
Let's start of easy by saying that the earliest you could win the game via scientific supremacy would be on your first turn of the 3rd age. To do this you would play all 4 Science cards in Age 1 and then at least 1 science card in Age 2 (for a matching pair) or visa versa. With the matching pair you would theoretically take the Law progress token. Then on the first turn of the 3rd age you simply take the 6th science symbol needed to win. This assumes of course, to make things easy, your opponent would always just choose to discard a card on their turn.
MILITARY SUPREMACY:
Next, let's look at military supremacy. How quickly could you win the game via military supremacy? Well let's see:
To start you would need the following wonder for yourself: The Temple of Artemis, The Great Library and Circus Maximus.
Then for Age 1 (assuming the cards are laid out exactly so that you can do this) on each of your 10 turns you do the following:
Turn 1: Draft the Lumberyard for +1 Wood Turn 2: Draft the Glassworks for +1 Glass paying 1 coin leaving you with 6 coins total Turn 3: Use any card to complete the Temple of Artemis wonder for +12 coins and the ability to immediately play a second turn paying 4 coins for 1 Papyrus and 1 Stone leaving you with 14 coins total Turn EXTRA: Use any card to complete the Great Library wonder for the ability to randomly draw 3 of the undealt Progress tokens and play 1 and +4 VP paying 6 coins for 1 Papyrus and 2 Wood leaving you with 8 coins total PAUSE: Randomly deal yourself the Strategy Progress token and then draft it Turn 4: Draft the Guard Tower for +2 shields leaving you with 2 total shields Turn 5: Draft the Stable for +2 shields leaving you with 4 total shields Turn 6: Draft the Garrison for +2 shields leaving you with 6 total shields paying 2 coins for 1 Clay leaving you with 6 total coins Turn 7: Draft the Pallisade for +2 shields leaving you with 8 total shields paying 2 coins leaving you with 4 total coins Turn 8: Use any card to construct the Circus Maximus wonder for +1 shield and the ability to discard one of your opponent's grey cards paying 4 coins for 2 Stone leaving you with 0 total coins and 9 total shields
So there you have it the earliest you can win via military supremacy is on your 8th turn in Age 1. Also, as with the scientific supremacy, you can just assume your opponent would always just choose to discard a card so as to keep things easy.
P.S. props to
for finding the solution above. I got it down to 9 turns but that user managed to knock off another turn bringing it down to 8!
THEORETICAL HIGHEST POSSIBLE SCORE:
Moving on the final piece of theory I want to look at is the theoretical highest possible score a single player can achieve with in this game. For this last piece I intend to go into as much detail as I feel necessary so bare with me.
To begin let's start with the 2 rounds of wonder drafting. After those 2 rounds both player should have the following:
Player 1: The Great Lighthouse: Cost (2 Papyrus, 1 Stone, & 1 Wood)  Gain (+1 Stone, Clay, or Wood and +4 VP) The Sphinx: Cost (2 Glass, 1 Clay, & 1 Stone)  Gain (Immediately play a second turn, +6 VP) The Great Library: Cost (1 Papyrus, 1 Glass, & 3 Wood)  Gain (Randomly draw 3 of the undealt Progress tokens & play 1, +4 VP) The Pyramids: Cost (1 Papyrus & 3 Stone)  Gain (+9 VP)
Player 2: The Temple of Artemis: Cost (1 Papyrus, 1 Glass, 1 Stone, & 1 Wood)  Gain (+12 Coins, Immediately play a second turn) The Hanging Gardens: Details not important will not be used The Mausoleum: Details not important will not be used The Messe: Details not important will not be used
Next let's look at the 5 progress tokens that WILL be dealt out: Architecture: 2 Resources From Cost Of Building A Future Wonder Masonry: 2 Resources From Cost Of Building A Future Civilian Card Urbanism: +6 Coins, +4 Coins For Each Building Built For Free Via Linking Theology: +1 Extra Turn From All Future Wonders Constructed By You Mathematics: +3 VP For Each Progress Token (Including Itself)
With that out of the way we can move onto Age 1. First up is the 3 cards not included in the deck and they are as follows: Stable Garrison Pallisade
Next I will show you exactly how the pyramid should be structured and then a full turn by turn breakdown of Age 1:
 Pharmacist  Tavern   Guard Tower  Baths  Scriptorium   Clay Pit  Theater  Stone Pit  Altar   Press  Wood Reserve  Workshop  Clay Pool  Apothecary   Lumber Yard  Stone Reserve  Quarry  Clay Reserve  Glassworks  Logging Camp 
I know that some of the cards in the pyramid would normally be hidden until they are revealed but for the sake making things easier to understand I am just revealing them ahead of time. With that in mind let's begin the turn by turn break down:
Player 1 Turn 1: Draft the Lumber Yard for +1 Wood Player 2 Turn 1: Draft the Stone Reserve for the option to buy Stone for 1 coin each paying 3 coins leaving himself with 4 total Player 1 Turn 2: Draft the Quarry for +1 Stone Player 2 Turn 2: Draft the Clay Reserve for the option to buy Clay for 1 coin each paying 3 coins leaving himself with 1 total Player 1 Turn 3: Draft the Glassworks for +1 Glass paying 1 coin leaving himself with 6 total Player 2 Turn 3: Discard the Logging Camp for +5 coins leaving himself with 6 total Player 1 Turn 4: Draft the Press for +1 Papyrus paying 1 coin leaving himself with 5 total Player 2 Turn 4: Draft the Wood Reserve for the option to buy Wood for 1 coin each paying 3 coins leaving himself with 2 total Player 1 Turn 5: Draft the Workshop for +1 "A" Science Symbol and +1 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Papyrus Player 2 Turn 5: Discard the Clay Pool for +5 coins leaving himself with 7 total Player 1 Turn 6: Draft the Apothecary for +1 "Wheel" Science Symbol and +1 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Glass Player 2 Turn 6: Discard the Clay Pit for +5 coins leaving himself with 12 total coins Player 1 Turn 7: Draft the Theater for +3 VP Player 2 Turn 7: Discard the Stone Pit for +5 coins leaving himself with 17 total coins Player 1 Turn 8: Draft the Altar for +3 VP Player 2 Turn 8: Discard the Guard Tower for +5 coins leaving himself with 22 total coins Player 1 Turn 9: Draft the Baths for +3 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Stone Player 2 Turn 9: Use the Scriptorium to complete the Temple of Artemis wonder for +12 coins and an immediate second turn paying 6 coins (2 for the Papyrus, 2 for the Glass, 1 for the Stone, & 1 for the Wood) leaving himself with 28 total coins Player 2 Turn 10: Discard the Pharmacist for +5 coins leaving himself with 33 total coins. Player 1 Turn 10: Draft the Tavern for +4 coins leaving himself with 9 total coins
A few notes about this first age. I choose for player 2 to draft Stone, Clay, and Wood Reserves because those 3 yellow cards mean that player 2 will net more coins over the course of the game. Also I choose for player 2 to use one of the cards to complete the Temple of Artemis wonder because doing so nets him 1 more coin than he would have got if he just discard the card instead.
I had player 1 pay for the Glass and Papyrus in this age because he wouldn't have the spare turns in Age 2 to get the freebies. Plus if he didn't buy those in this age then he wouldn't be able to afford cards in the second age. Lastly I had player 1 take the Tavern because he will need the money for Age 2.
On to Age 2 and the deck. Let's look at the cards NOT included and they are as follows: Walls Archery Range Parade Ground
Next is the Age 2 pyramid and the turn by turn breakdown:
 Temple  Barracks  Acqueduct  Library  Rostrum  Dispensary   Glassblower  Tribunal  Drying Room  Statue  Horse Breeders  Caravansery  School  Brickyard  Laboratory   Sawmill  Customs House  Shelf Quarry   Forum  Brewery 
Player 1 Turn 1: Draft the Forum for +1 Glass or Papyrus paying 5 coins leaving himself with 4 coins total Player 2 Turn 1: Draft the Brewery for +6 coins paying nothing because it is free leaving himself with 39 coins total Player 1 Turn 2: Draft the Sawmill for +2 Wood paying 2 coins leaving himself with 2 coins total Player 2 Turn 2: Draft the Customs House for the option to buy Papyrus & Glass for 1 coin paying 4 coins leaving himself with 35 total coins Player 1 Turn 3: Draft the Shelf Quarry for +2 Stone paying 2 coins leaving himself with 0 coins total Player 2 Turn 3: Draft the Caravansery for +1 Stone, Clay or Wood paying 4 coins (The 2 coins itself plus 1 coin for the Glass and the Papyrus) leaving himself with 31 total coins Player 1 Turn 4: Draft the School for +1 "Wheel" Science Symbol and +1 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Wood and 2 Papyrus PAUSE: Having formed a matching pair of Science Symbols player 1 drafts the Urbanism Progress Token for +6 coins and +4 coins for each building built for free via linking leaving himself with 6 total coins Player 2 Turn 4: Discard the Brickyard for +8 coins leaving himself with 39 total coins Player 1 Turn 5: Draft the Laboratory for +1 "A" Science Symbol and +1 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Wood and 2 Glass PAUSE: Having formed a matching pair of Science Symbols player 1 drafts the Theology Progress Token for +1 extra turns from all future wonders constructed by you Player 2 Turn 5: Discard the Glassblower for +8 coins leaving himself with 47 total coins Player 1 Turn 6: Draft the Tribunal for +5 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 2 Wood and 1 Glass Player 2 Turn 6: Discard the Drying Room for +8 coins leaving himself with 55 total coins Player 1 Turn 7: Draft the Statue for +4 VP and +4 coins (thanks to the Urbanism linking bonus) paying nothing since he drafted the Theater earlier leaving himself with 10 total coins Player 2 Turn 7: Discard the Horse Breeders for +8 coins leaving himself with 63 total coins Player 1 Turn 8: Draft the Temple for +4 VP and +4 coins (thanks to the Ubranism linking bonus) paying nothing since he drafted the Altar earlier leaving himself with 14 total coins Player 2 Turn 8: Discard the Barracks for +8 coins leaving himself with 71 total coins Player 1 Turn 9: Draft the Acqueduct for +5 VP and +4 coins (thanks to the Urbanism linking bonus) paying nothing snce he drafted the Baths earlier leaving himself with 18 total coins Player 2 Turn 9: Discard the Library for +8 coins leaving himself with 79 total coins Player 1 Turn 10: Draft the Rostrum for +4 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Stone and 1 Wood Player 2 Turn 10: Discard the Dispensary for +8 coins leaving himself with 87 total coins
A few notes about the second age. Most immediately if you do the math might think, "Hey if you discard the Customs House and Caravansery instead of drafting them you can end up with 93 total coins for player 2 at the end." Yes, you are right that is a +6 coin difference BUT the Yellow card bonus increase gained by drafting those cards will ultimately give player 2 more coins in the end.
Not much to say about player 1 other than when making his first Science Symbol match it was important that he first take the Urbanism Progress Token so as to maximize the coins he would get going forward since he would be doing quite a few free drafts via linking.
Fun fact: At the end of player 2's 8th turn there would only be 1 coin left in the bank. So in order for player 1 to fully execute his 9th turn more coins or bits meant to represent coins would be required. Since the rules do not explicitly state that once the bank is out that that is it nothing is stopping you then from adding in your own coins, bits or whatever to track both players money.
On to Age 3 and the deck. Let's look at the Guild cards that will NOT be included and they are as follows: Shipowners Guild Builders Guild Scientists Guild Tacticians Guild
Let's look at the nonGuild cards that will NOT be included in the Age 3 deck: Arsenal Courthouse Fortifications
Next is the Age 3 pyramid and the turn by turn breakdown:
Magistrates Guild Armory   Palace  Gardens  Port   Obelisk  Senate  Town Hall Chamber Of Commerce  Study   Pantheon   Lighthouse Merchants Guild Academy Moneylenders Guild  Arena  Circus  Observatory   Seige Workshop University 
Player 1 Turn 1: Use the Seige Workshop to complete the Great Lighthouse wonder for +1 Stone, Clay or Wood, +4 VP, and an immediate extra turn (thanks to the Theology Progress Token) paying nothing since he has the requisite 2 Papyrus, 1 Stone, and 1 Wood Player 1 Turn 2: Draft the University for +1 "Globe" Science Symbol, +2 VP, and +4 coins (thanks to the Urbanism linking bonus) paying nothing since he drafted the School earlier leaving him with 22 total coins Player 2 Turn 1: Draft the Arena for +2 coins for each wonder constructed in your city and +3 VP paying nothing since he drafted the Brewery earlier leaving him with 89 total coins Player 1 Turn 3: Use the Circus to complete the Sphinx wonder for an immediate second turn and +6 VP paying paying nothing since he has the requisite 2 Glass, 1 Clay, and 1 Stone Player 1 Turn 4: Draft the Observatory for +1 "Globe" Science Symbol, +2 VP, and +4 coins (thanks to the Urbanism linking bonus) paying nothing since he drafted the Laboratory earlier leaving him with 26 total coins PAUSE: Having formed a matching pair of Science Symbols player 1 drafts the Mathematics Progress Token for +3 VP for each Progress Token (including itself) he has at the end of the game Player 2 Turn 2: Draft the Lighthouse for +1 coin for each yellow card in his city (including this card itself) and +3 VP paying 2 coins (1 coin for the 1 Clay and 1 coin for the 1 Glass) leaving him with 97 total coins Player 1 Turn 5: Draft the Merchants Guild for +1 coin for each yellow card of whoever has the most and +1 VP for each yellow card of whoever has the most paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Clay, 1 Wood, 1 Glass, and 1 Papyrus leaving him with 36 total coins Player 2 Turn 3: Discard the Academy for +10 coins leaving himself with 107 total coins Player 1 Turn 6: Draft the Moneylenders Guild for +1 VP for every 3 coins of whoever has the most paying nothing since he has the requisite 2 Stone and 2 Wood Player 2 Turn 4: Discard the Study for +10 coins leaving himself with 117 total coins Player 1 Turn 7: Draft the Pantheon for +6 VP and +4 coins (thanks to the Urbanism linking bonus) paying nothing since he drafted the Temple earlier leaving him with 40 total coins Player 2 Turn 5: Discard the Obelisk for +10 coins leaving himself with 127 total coins Player 1 Turn 8: Use the Senate to complete the Great Library for the option to randomly draw 3 of the undealt Progress Tokens and play 1, +4 VP, and an extra turn (thanks to the Theology Progress Token) paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Papyrus, 1 Glass and 3 Wood PAUSE: One of the three randomly drawn Progress Tokens was the Philosphy Progress Token and player 1 drafts this token for +7 VP Player 1 Turn 9: Draft the Town Hall for +7 VP paying nothing since he has the requisite 3 Stone and 2 Wood Player 2 Turn 6: Discard the Chamber of Commerce for +10 coins leaving himself with 137 total coins Player 1 Turn 10: Use the Palace to complete Pyramids wonder for +9 VP and an extra turn paying nothing since he has the requisite 1 Papyrus and 3 Stone Player 1 Turn 11: Draft the Gardens for +6 VP and +4 coins (thanks to the Urbanism linking bonus) paying nothing since he drafted the Statue earlier leaving him with 44 total coins Player 2 Turn 7: Discard the Port for +10 coins leaving himself with 147 total coins Player 1 Turn 12: Draft the Magistrates Guild for +1 coin for each blue card of whoever has the most and +1 VP for each blue card of whoever has the most paying nothing since he has the requisite 2 Wood, 1 Clay, and 1 Papyrus leaving himself 55 total coins Player 2 Turn 8: Discard the Armory for +10 coins leaving himself with 157 total coins
A few notes about the third age. As with in the prior ages I had player 2 draft the Arena and Lighthouse to increase the yellow city bonus when discarding cards. The Arena was an easy choice given its free cost. For those wondering about the Lighthouse though. If player 2 didn't draft that card then he would've ultimately ended the age with 152 coins instead.
For player 1, I had him draft the two Science cards with the "Globe" symbol not only because they were free and he got coins via the linking but because it would equal out to another pair. This would allow him to draft a third Progress Token worth quite a few VP. To maximize the benefits of the Merchants Guild player 1 needed to draft this card after player 2 drafted 2 yellow cards. Same concept comes into play when considering when to draft the Magistrates Guild.
I should note that what you see here is a second iteration of this all. In this iteration I achieve the highest individual score but in the first iteration I achieved the highest combined score.
Now for the info you really want.
THE FINAL TOTAL:
Player 1  Player 2  Civilian Cards: 50  0 Science Cards: 8  0 Commercial Cards: 0  6 Guild Cards: 73  0 Wonders: 23  0 Progress Tokens: 19  0 Coins: 18  52 Military VP: 0  0  Total: 191  58
Final thoughts? Well most obviously is the fact that the Moneylenders Guild is theoretically VERY powerful. Yellow cards can be very helpful especially beyond their listed benefits. Given that the upcoming Pantheon expansion does not use the Guild cards I would have to think that getting a score as high as I did would not be possible. I wish I could've broken 200 points but I just can't see where that is possible.
This exercise was fun and if you think a higher score is possible then great. Prove it! You needn't go into as much detail as I did but some details would be nice.

Dennis Beck
Germany Bielefeld NRW

Very nice! Please check out this one:
A very lucky guy can manage a military victory in Age I: You need to start the game, get all cards in the perfect order and the following 4 wonders: Piräus, Great lighthouse, Great library and Colossus The warfare token must be discarded and you need another lucky draw on it :)
1. Take stone for free 2. Take lumber for free 3. Take clay for free 4. Take papyrus for 1 coin 5. Build Great lighthouse for 2 coins (grants additional "brown" resource) 6. Build Piräus for free (grants additional "grey" resource) Extra turn. Build Great library for 2 coins. Grab warfare token 7. Build garnison (2 military with warfare) for free 8. Build watch tower (2 military with warfare) for free 9. Build stables (2 military with warfare) for free 10. Build Colossus (3 military with warfare) for 2 coins
Order of 14 and 710 may differ. You spent all of your 7 coins but never need to discard something for money. If you start the game, you win with the last card of Age I. :)

Cole Feeser
United States Pennsylvania

Joellenbecker wrote: Very nice! Please check out this one: A very lucky guy can manage a military victory in Age I: You need to start the game, get all cards in the perfect order and the following 4 wonders: Piräus, Great lighthouse, Great library and Colossus The warfare token must be discarded and you need another lucky draw on it 1. Take stone for free 2. Take lumber for free 3. Take clay for free 4. Take papyrus for 1 coin 5. Build Great lighthouse for 2 coins (grants additional "brown" resource) 6. Build Piräus for free (grants additional "grey" resource) Extra turn. Build Great library for 2 coins. Grab warfare token 7. Build garnison (2 military with warfare) for free 8. Build watch tower (2 military with warfare) for free 9. Build stables (2 military with warfare) for free 10. Build Colossus (3 military with warfare) for 2 coins Order of 14 and 710 may differ. You spent all of your 7 coins but never need to discard something for money. If you start the game, you win with the last card of Age I.
Wow, thank you for that. I completely overlooked that Strategy Progress Token. I am totally going to update my original post as a result.
EDIT: I initially was all excited and was almost ready to update my original post when I noticed that the rules make a clarification of saying that the Strategy Progress Token (Warfare as you call it) does not apply to Wonders which have the Shield symbol. So this token would not work with the Colossus wonder.
EDIT2: After looking at it some more I DID find a way to do it. In fact I even did it in 9 turns! See my original post as to how.

Dennis Beck
Germany Bielefeld NRW

Nice work! I was not aware that the strategy token does not apply to the wonders. I'm owner of the german version, that's why I did not have the correct names.


Regarding the earliest military victory in age one
First column is the turn number (3 is the artemis doubleturn). Second column is the gold running total after the action in this row. Then, what is built and remarks. Very similar to the proposed solution above and certainly it is the "Helpmatechessmode", real opponents will never be that kind to let it happen.
0 7g 1 7g lumber yard ==> wood 2 6g glassworks ==> glass 3 64+12=14g artemis 3 10g circus max military sum 1 4 4g bibliothek military token 5 2g palisade military sum 3 6 0g garrison military sum 5 7 0g stable military sum 7 8 0g guard tower military sum 9

Cole Feeser
United States Pennsylvania

Wow, thanks eaglewing for that solution. I've updated my original post accordingly! I think 8 turns is the best we can do.


