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Subject: Best space exploration style game for a Euro Gamer? rss

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Themistoklis Dakanalis
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Hi guys, I am about to buy a game with a space theme. However, I do not like war or miniature games. I would rather buy a space exploration game !!!

Any suggestions?
 
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Neil McIntyre
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I can highly recommend Tiny Epic Galaxies. There's actually a Kickstarter for the expansion running now, in which you can back simply for the base game.
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Ray
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Matthew 10: 29-31
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I also love Euros, but Xia Legends of a Drift System is fantastic. Yes there are dice and miniatures and they get used like crazy...but this game is really a wonderful sandbox experience.

You can explore, pirate, smuggle, bounty hunt, interact with non player character ships...it's truly open. And it has an expansion on the way!

For more Euro, Eclipse has the space thing too, but I haven't played it
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Jordan Booth
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Leaving Earth is a game about exploring the solar system and completing missions to the various celestial bodies by building and launching spacecraft. It is a race against the other players to complete missions first with the ability to trade technologies between players, no "take that". With multiplayer there can be some significant downtime, but you probably won't notice if you're busy doing your own calculations. Of course then it really shines in solo mode where there isn't any downtime. They recently released an expansion that adds the outer planets.
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dave bcs
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Merchant of Venus (second edition) is a good pick-up-and-deliver game, though can get long.
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Shane Larsen
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People are going to tell you to get Eclipse. And that's fine. But I need to inform you, from one Euro gamer to another, the reasons why Eclipse did not work for me. The reason is simple: Randomness. Everywhere.

Eclipse fans argue to no end that you can mitigate against the randomness in Eclipse. And there may be some truth in that. But for me, one of the important elements to a good Euro game is the ability to strategically plan. And that comes from knowing you can count on certain things. Eclipse doesn't do this--not even close--because there is randomness in nearly every mechanism:

Set-up - unknown and random
Exploration - you choose to travel before you know what you're getting into. You can get screwed by poor luck of the draw
Tech advancement - the technologies are randomly drawn from a bag every round
Fighting - Dice, dice, dice
VPs - The designers even managed to make VPs finicky. When you win a battle, you draw your VPs from a bag, wherein there is the possibility to draw low rewards for your won battle.

I see why people want to say it's a Euro; mostly because the player boards are inspired by TtA. But I think a good Euro should have very little randomness, not randomness at every turn, like in Eclipse.

I will get flack from fanboys for this post, I'm sure. I just wanted you to know my thoughts. I'm a Euro gamer, and I really wanted to like Eclipse as a Euro-driven space-themed 4X game. But because of all its randomness, it missed the mark.

I would recommend something for you, but I haven't played one that actually fills the niche yet. I really like Roll for the Galaxy, even though it's filled with randomness and luck, it plays quickly enough to almost be considered a filler. So the randomness doesn't bother me.

The other one that's on my radar to try is Exodus: Proxima Centauri.

Hope this helps. Good luck and have fun!
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John Prewitt
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tdakanalis wrote:
Hi guys, I am about to buy a game with a space theme. However, I do not like war or miniature games. I would rather buy a space exploration game !!!

Any suggestions?


Leaving Earth

Done. I found it's good solo, doesn't work whatsoever multi player.
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Danny Perello
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Galactic Emperor is a great though somewhat forgotten gem in the "Euro in Space" category. It's available in the marketplace here for very little money as well. Definitely worth a look.
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John Burt
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Depends on what you mean by "space exploration", but Terraforming Mars is shaping up to be one of the better euro-style sci-fi game of recent years.
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Brent Gerig
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Roll for the Galaxy gets a lot of play time at our house. I suppose some might argue against calling it a Euro since it has so much dice rolling, but I'd disagree with them. Here's the reasons I enjoy it:

- Engine building
- Unique player start abilities
- Different ways of earning points
- Plenty of luck mitigation
- Strategic decision-making
- Anticipating other players' decisions

The Roll for the Galaxy: Ambition expansion adds even more decisions and strategies via objectives.

Plus, it's satisfying to just chuck a bunch of dice.
 
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Harv Veerman
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I'm mainly a euro-gamer myself and I'm totally in love with Quantum. I really don't know how easy/hard it is to get your hands on, but it might be totally worth every effort. Check it out, I say.
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Themistoklis Dakanalis
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Thank you all guys for your quick feedback !!! I have checked all the suggestions and until now I find more interesting the Terraforming Mars because it has strong mechanisms and also has a good solo variant (my main gaming partner is my wife and she is not very keen on the space theme).

Do you know if there will be any preorder available in Europe for an English version?
 
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Gláucio Reis
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Most of the suggestions above either are not totally Euro or don't give much of a sense of space exploration. My recommendation for a Euro gamer is Ad Astra, even though it's out of print.
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Gregg Saruwatari
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thedacker wrote:
People are going to tell you to get Eclipse. And that's fine. But I need to inform you, from one Euro gamer to another, the reasons why Eclipse did not work for me. The reason is simple: Randomness. Everywhere.

Eclipse fans argue to no end that you can mitigate against the randomness in Eclipse. And there may be some truth in that. But for me, one of the important elements to a good Euro game is the ability to strategically plan. And that comes from knowing you can count on certain things. Eclipse doesn't do this--not even close--because there is randomness in nearly every mechanism:

Set-up - unknown and random
Exploration - you choose to travel before you know what you're getting into. You can get screwed by poor luck of the draw
Tech advancement - the technologies are randomly drawn from a bag every round
Fighting - Dice, dice, dice
VPs - The designers even managed to make VPs finicky. When you win a battle, you draw your VPs from a bag, wherein there is the possibility to draw low rewards for your won battle.

I see why people want to say it's a Euro; mostly because the player boards are inspired by TtA. But I think a good Euro should have very little randomness, not randomness at every turn, like in Eclipse.

I will get flack from fanboys for this post, I'm sure. I just wanted you to know my thoughts. I'm a Euro gamer, and I really wanted to like Eclipse as a Euro-driven space-themed 4X game. But because of all its randomness, it missed the mark.

I would recommend something for you, but I haven't played one that actually fills the niche yet. I really like Roll for the Galaxy, even though it's filled with randomness and luck, it plays quickly enough to almost be considered a filler. So the randomness doesn't bother me.

The other one that's on my radar to try is Exodus: Proxima Centauri.

Hope this helps. Good luck and have fun!


I can understand why some eurogamers don't like Eclipse, and that's fine, but it is a really good game of its type and worth trying out first or one of the first. He mentioned he likes exploration which is random in most of the games mentioned. I am sure it won't be hard to find someone in a local game group that would bring it to play or lend it if you guys see each other often. Some of the other games here are pretty hard to find.

I also feel the need to say I hate dice and they hate me. I would love if there was no dice in Eclipse, but it works and there are ways to avoid high risk die rules. A couple of ways include diplomacy, using technology in a defensive way or looking un-threatening through tech and placement choices.

I would put this firmly in the euro category because there is a set number of rounds, but you can control the number of turns. You have more than one way to gain VP currency; and the winner is determined by addition. There is virtually no player elimination.
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Shane Larsen
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tdakanalis wrote:
Thank you all guys for your quick feedback !!! I have checked all the suggestions and until now I find more interesting the Terraforming Mars because it has strong mechanisms and also has a good solo variant (my main gaming partner is my wife and she is not very keen on the space theme).

Do you know if there will be any preorder available in Europe for an English version?

I too have pre-ordered Terraforming Mars based on this thread.
 
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Matt Brown
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I would have preordered Terraforming Mars, but preorders are vastly sold out for OLGS. I went to GrandCon and then someone there bought the last copy. The retailer said they were blowing through copies there, in store, etc. The guy who bought it and another player who both did at least two plays gave it an approval when I asked later on. I'm waiting for OLGS to get their follow up orders after their preorders are filled. I figure I need to wait for like a week at best once the preorders come in.
 
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Ryan Keane
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drdranetz wrote:
Merchant of Venus (second edition) is a good pick-up-and-deliver game, though can get long.


This one gives me the most feel of exploration, although it's more like you're searching for your home world and in the process, finding other races, getting bonus credits, and establishing good pick-up and deliver routes. But players differ in how much they keep investing in exploring or when they switch to delivering goods and passengers. You can also easily shorten the game length by either at the start agreeing to a reduced number of rounds like 20 instead of 30, or have everybody start with a level 2 pilot (actually, I think there are specific fast game rules in the rule book - can't recall them exactly).

I haven't played Xia yet, but Firefly, while perhaps more thematic than MoV, doesn't give me much exploration feel. Eclipse has very little exploration feel - everybody's going to explore about the same number of tiles but you're not moving. It's like if I called Carcassonne an exploration game.

Conquest of Paradise isn't space and doesn't get much love, but it's really a great exploration game. One of the only games I know of that has a mechanism for increasing risk as you choose to keep exploring farther out, in addition to having "fog of exploration" where one player's discoveries are kept hidden from the other players until they go discover it (or when a player settles a secret island and then the whole Pacific learns of the new village). Perhaps GMT should retheme it in space with aliens and it would be a hit?


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Michael Drog
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Leaving Earth is the answer. I can't recommend this enough

High Frontier (3rd edition) I would recommend this but the 3rd edition will never see the light of day
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Victor Caminha
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And so it begins...
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mdrog2 wrote:
High Frontier (3rd edition) I would recommend this but the 3rd edition will never see the light of day


Untrue. The designer also reafirmed here.
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Andrew Hopkins
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Have a look at my geek list for some suggestions -

Realistic space exploration games
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Claudio Coppini
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You might want to check out Kepler-3042 as well, comes out at Spiel Essen this year. It's a Space exploration euro with an interesting twist on resource management.
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Nathanael Allison
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I'll mention Hegemonic as an often overlooked low luck euro space exploration hybrid game. It's compared to Eclipse but with less luck and more strategy. I had this game suggested to me as a eurogamer and I traded for it, but have not played yet. Looks fantastic though.
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Donald Papp
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Anyone who doesn't like the randomness in Eclipse (not saying it can't be mitigated, just that some people don't like it), Omega Centauri is the game you want.

Due to publisher hijinks and various other stuff it's been hard to get until recently. You'll see some similarities with Eclipse in the type of game it is, but the game in its current form predates Eclipse by quite a lot actually (though it was known as Alien Ascendancy back then).
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