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Subject: Our first two-era play of The Colonists rss

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Annemarie Post
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Last night, my boyfriend and I played our first game of The Colonists with colonies included through to era II. So far, we had played the introductory scenario on easy, medium and hard difficulty. We were planning to first play era I again with colonies, but after looking a bit more at them, it looked like they would be more useful if we played era II as well.

The colonies available in this game were the Lord, Storekeeper, Alchemist and Laborer colonies. I planned from the start to go for the Storekeeper colony, that on level 1 gives extra warehouse space and increased storage in storage sheds; and on level 2 gives extra basic storage space and the opportunity to build farmer buildings on spaces where you normally build storage sheds by only paying the fee. In era I, it didn't help me much, except that I never had to worry about storing goods. In era II however, I was able to build more buildings in one action then my opponent could, and in my last turns I replaced my storage sheds with factories to put my citizens to work. My opponent made great use of the Lord colony in his game. On the first level, this lets you take a wood or clay instead of doing an action at a place, and on level 2 you can even take planks or bricks. An advantage of this colony is that you have to worry less about which path to take to your places of interest.

Playing through to era II means you don't have to rush to get any citizens in late era I. When only playing era I we pushed to have 2 citizens working in factories at the end of the game. Now, neither of us had citizens at that point. We both had around 6 farms at that point. I had 3 Foresters Houses, while my opponent had 2; and we both had 1 factory. In era II, the citizens entered the game, but in many cases still only to score points at the end of the game. My citizens only worked in factories, and that didn't boost any production. My opponent's citizens worked in theaters as well. The ore that is available in era II wasn't used by either of us, because there weren't many buildings that use it.

We thought the game would be better when going from only playing era I to playing era I and II, and that's certainly the case. Colonies for one add diversity between players, and there seem to be different viable strategies. However, era II isn't that different from era I, since it still feels like you're building towards something. In the end, I still only had citizens in factories, like in era I (only more). I hope that they will be put to good use in era III and IV. Our scores weren't very far apart, 124 vs 117. We both felt we could win until the end, and that we had build as good a community as possible. So far, I like what I'm seeing, and can't wait to play era III and IV.

Player boards at the end of era II:

Mine:


Rob's:

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Ben Baker
Canada
Taber
Alberta
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Great session. Thanks for sharing!
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Joost Kleppe
Netherlands
Nijmegen
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Thanks for sharing!

And an important question: do you like the game? Do you think you will be playing it a lot?
 
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Annemarie Post
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joostkleppe wrote:
And an important question: do you like the game? Do you think you will be playing it a lot?


I like it a lot. I posted some of my initial thoughts in the comments of this image.

For now, we will certainly be playing it often. We are gradually increasing the difficulty/length of this game, so we'll probably play era I and II two more times before moving on to era III. Then we'd also like to try out how starting in a later era works and just play III and IV. The big game (all four) era's is planned for Christmas Day I can't wait.

For the long run, I don't know how often we'll be playing this. I suspect that once I know the game, I will be more interested in playing through all four era's, and not just 2 of them. That will make it harder to get this to the table. Also, I'll have to wait and see how easy it is to set-up for start in a later era. If that is easy, I think we'll play more of era III and IV. But this is all speculation. For now I enjoy it a lot and since we also want to introduce some friends to the game, it will see quite some gameplay this year at least.
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Annemarie Post
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So last night we played another two-era play of The Colonists. There were different colonies involved, namely the Envoy, Scholar, Trader and Alchemist colony. Rob played very heavy on the Scholar colony, while I had a level 1 Envoy and later also Trader colony. We had a lot of fun, although some of my turns took really long since I made some mistakes in calculating what I needed for the different actions. In the end, via very different strategies, we both ended up with 120 points. We're starting to feel that we understand the game, and next time we'll play era II and III. I'm very excited to see how starting in a later era will work out, and we're planning to look at the era III places beforehand, so that we can plan accordingly during our game.
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Richard Dewsbery
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Sutton Coldfield
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Anny48 wrote:
In the end, via very different strategies, we both ended up with 120 points.


Interesting. I played a 4-player, two era game last weekend. One player was a long way behind in terms of score, but three of us all finished on 122 points.
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