Ok, I have only played this game a handful of times now and I definitely love it!
I played a 3-player game last night with the normal "starter" boards.
I am not sure what a high score is but I thought that 238pts was pretty good.
The fun part about this is that I achieved this without getting a single boat and moving up the shipping track and grabbing any goods tiles to be shipped later.
What that means is, I was only the first player for maybe the games first 2 turns, after that someone did the shipping and I was either 2nd or 3rd the rest of the way.
I went castles early, which I hadn't done before and was able to get the bonus tile for finishing up that color first.
After that I focused on 3 things; 1)knowledge, 2)Buildings and 3)Farming.
Early on I was able to grab the knowledge tile that gave me an extra VP per animal placed in a pasture so that told me to start working on my animals. I got very lucky to have a ton of sheep come out at just the right times which gave me a ton of VPs for same kind of animal, but even more because of my knowledge tile. I believe I was the second to finish this color to grab the small bonus here.
With buildings I tend to like to focus on the end game VPs(correction, knowledge tiles for building bonuses). I got 3 or 4 of the ones that gave me end game VP's for same types of buildings which either got me 28 or 40 VPs, I can't remember. I also snagged the tile that gave me 2VPs for each bonus tile I collected. that gave me 8 VPs at games end.
One of the main knowledge tiles I got (other than the animal bonus) was one that allowed me to gain a silverling along with workers when obtaining workers. This helped me build up some money and purchase some solid black tiles from the center depot at just the right times. I was the second to finish knowledge to gain the small bonus tile here.
I didn't win by too much, maybe 15VP's and it was all because the closest competitor was blocked from finishing his large pasture by the other player who stole the last animal tile.
I had just never seen someone win without going boats once. Again, I have not played much so, maybe this is more common than I think??
- Last edited Mon Feb 27, 2017 3:28 pm (Total Number of Edits: 3)
- Posted Mon Feb 6, 2017 3:05 pm
I think as long as you don't try to compete on ALL types of tiles (i.e. diversify too much), then you'll keep up with the rest of the players fine. I rarely ever go for the Animal tiles for some reason, but still get very decent scores, and win a decent amount of the time too. And if you try to complete all but 2 types of tiles, you can usually manage it and get some good bonuses that way.
I prefer the shipping route in higher player counts though, where the shipped goods are worth more VP each so are generally more lucrative to go for. But I've seen games with players ignoring ships, or ignoring knowledge, or ignoring animals, etc. Not sure I've seen many ignoring Buildings completely though as they're hard to ignore on most boards.
It's all situational. Depending on what board you play on and what tiles come out, certain strategies work better than others.
If the yellow tiles come out that give you bonus points for goods (1 point per good, and 3 points per good type) along with the one that lets you clear two goods spaces instead of one, then going for boats can really pay off.
There is not one dominating strategy and that's what I love about the game.
I also agree with Nick that boats get better the more people play because they're worth more points.