Ramping up my reviewing.
Happily playing games for many, many years.
This game was played with only three players, myself and two students, as the other students were involved with other school activities. It was definitely the fastest and most hectic game of the series, played in just 40 minutes.
As in previous games, B proved a very defensive player, preferring not to engage in conflicts but instead build up his position just with tiles, although in the last part of the game he took advantage of a removed leader to take a very strong position in the largest kingdom.
Meanwhile, A and myself were busy competing for dominance of the monuments. I built myself a Blue/Black monument, as I was weak in both Blue and Green, but I was unable to fortify myself to make the risk of building a Green/* monument worthwhile. A, making a very strong kingdom on the side of the board, was able to construct two monuments and soon was collecting one point in each colour per turn! Not a good thing to see!
B and I tried internal conflicts and we tried external conflicts, but A's position was just too strong. Even what we considered strong attacks were wrecked on an unfortunate hand of hidden tiles. I do admit that some of our attacks were ill-considered and that they just served to make A's position better, but we were getting desperate.
Finally I managed to totally disrupt the kingdom with an internal conflict, and B followed suit, but too late. We gained a scant few points from the two monuments we controlled, and then the game ended as the tiles ran out.
A: 15 (15 Blue, 17 Black, 21 Green, 23 Red)
Me: 9 (9 Green, 10 Red, 23 Blue, 26 Black)
B: 7 (7 Black, 8 Green, 11 Red, 14 Blue)
A had played a completely superior game, dominating the other two players. Next week we will examine Puerto Rico, which I trust the students will find stimulating, although it is truthfully too long to play in full.