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Subject: Looking for a 2p sandbox Uwe, that is not Uwe... rss

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James
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Open for suggestions here. My wife and I are big Uwe fans - Fields of Arle is at the top of her favorites right now. We have quite a few more of his games as well: Agricola, A:ACBAS, Patchwork, Cottage Garden, Glass Road, Caverna: Cave vs Cave (soon). Other notable games we are enjoying range from 7 wonders duel to Stone Age, Dungeon Petz, Imperial Settlers, T'zolkein and Grand Hotel Austria.

I am trying to branch out for some variety of designers, but still have something like that Uwe integrated "smoothness" and:

Play VERY good with 2
Be reasonably obtainable
Weight between 2.75 and 4.0
Leaning more towards sandbox (FoA) than punishing (Agricola)

Some of the games I am strongly looking at though they don't meet all the requirements are:
Great Western Trail (Now high on my wishlist)
La Granja (Now high on my wishlist)
Roads & Boats (Back to being high on my wishlist )
The Gallerist (edit: Now high on my wishlist)
Terraforming Mars (definite interest, but not as high as others)
Viticulture Essential Edition (definite interest, but not as high as others)
Shipyard (edit: added from recommendations)
Concordia (edit: added from recommendations)
The Castles of Burgundy (edit: added from recommendations)
The Colonists (removed, just too long)
Vinhos Deluxe Edition (removed, just not my cup of tea I think)

Would love to hear people's thoughts and recommendations! It is hard to find Uwe that is not Uwe!

Cheers,
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I'm not sure if these would fall under sandbox or not...

The Voyages of Marco Polo - I believe this is out of print at the moment but there is an expansion coming and should be a base game reprint

La Granja - I believe the designers mentioned Uwe and Stefan Feld as inspirations for this. My plays so far are limited but it sure seems like there are a number of paths to victory.

The Castles of Burgundy - this is one of our favorites for two players.
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James
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Stefan Feld is one of the designers I think might have potential. I liked Notre Dame a lot back when it was new - but I wasn't sure about where to start with his bigger games. How fiddly is Castles of Burgundy?
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It's not available right now, but a very sandbox-y game for two is Roads & Boats. Worth watching for the next reprint, if one doesn't come up in an auction before then (I see them from time to time).

Roads and Boats is great as a low-conflict couples game? Who knew! (Thankfully, JohnRayJr did.)

We like a lot of sandbox-y games/Uwe games, and like La Granja quite well. It's not quite as sandbox-y as some others, but as mentioned, it does have different paths to victory. The multiuse cards make for more variety than it would seem, and setup is pretty painless.
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Jeff Thompson
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Maybe The Colonists?
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Quote:
Stefan Feld is one of the designers I think might have potential. I liked Notre Dame a lot back when it was new - but I wasn't sure about where to start with his bigger games. How fiddly is Castles of Burgundy


It can be a little fiddly as you are seeding the board with about 16 tiles every round for a two player game. I don't think it's any worse/different than playing an Uwe game though.

I bought a Meeple Realty insert for it and I like it much better than the original Alea plastic one.

Edited due to my terrible smartphone use...
 
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Aaron Yoder
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Tompy wrote:


The Colonists is a phenomenal suggestion. Concordia is a contender.

Just below that, Roads & Boats. Antiquity is another Splotter with a pending reprint that is as sandboxy as it is punishing (with smart play mitigating the punishment).

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James
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La Granja is now on my short list to consider!

For Roads and Boats, and The Colonists: I have looked at both, but they come across as very long and (at least the colonists) very overwhelming.

Considering FoA and Dungeon Petz are about the upper limit weight/complexity we have actively enjoyed so far - are The Colonists and Roads & Boats a step up in complexity & time commitment - or a leap?
 
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John Burt
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ghost604 wrote:
La Granja is now on my short list to consider!

For Roads and Boats, and The Colonists: I have looked at both, but they come across as very long and (at least the colonists) very overwhelming.

Considering FoA and Dungeon Petz are about the upper limit weight/complexity we have actively enjoyed so far - are The Colonists and Roads & Boats a step up in complexity & time commitment - or a leap?


Uwe fan here.

+La Granja, though TBH it feels more like Feld crossed with Chudyk, not Uwe.
+Terraforming Mars

-Feld: IMO Feld games do NOT feel like Rosenberg at all, certainly not CoB, which is quite light compared with, say, FoA. Try before you buy.

The Colonists has many Uwe-like mechanics, though it gets very heavy and long if you play the full game (you don't have to, and instead can play more manageable partial games).

R&B is my favorite game. The rules aren't more complex than a heavy Uwe game. It definitely has an Uwe feel, or I should say Uwe's games sometimes have a R&B feel, but even more: where Uwe constrains your strategic options, in R&B, it is much more wide open and you have more time to build your engine. Also, R&B is a brain burning logistical puzzle, which Uwe tends to neglect in his games. There really isn't anything like R&B.

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Maarten D. de Jong
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Shipyard is a reasonable suggestion... But as involved as Uwe makes them... Difficult.
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we seem to have similar tastes, and my wife and I also enjoy Castles of Burgundy. It may not quite have the "pretty" look about it that a lot of Uwe games have, and perhaps could be less economically built etc, but it's a damn smooth game which gets you coming back for more, and is excellent as 2 player.
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Ben Asher
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ghost604 wrote:
La Granja is now on my short list to consider!

For Roads and Boats, and The Colonists: I have looked at both, but they come across as very long and (at least the colonists) very overwhelming.

Considering FoA and Dungeon Petz are about the upper limit weight/complexity we have actively enjoyed so far - are The Colonists and Roads & Boats a step up in complexity & time commitment - or a leap?


Can't comment on direct comparison because I haven't played Dungeon Petz. However, given a) other Vlaada Chvatil games, b) other games you like to play, the Colonists isn't going to be too much for you. Don't mistake lots of moving parts for actual complexity; all the mechanisms in the Colonists are very simple. Even the way they interact with one another is pretty simple. There aren't even a lot of mechanisms, just a lot of buildings. Piece of cake.

I haven't played the two Splotters that are coming up either, but given the others that I have played (The Great Zimbabwe, Indonesia), they probably aren't too far out of your league either. Splotter tends to take very simple rule sets and give you impactful (if not necessarily complex) decisions to make within them.

Regarding length, the Colonists is very long -- if you play the full game on your first play, expect it to take a whole day. Fortunately, you don't HAVE to play the full game, and a learning game of 1-2 eras would be a more reasonable (cough) 4 hours-ish, including setup and teaching etc. Subsequent plays would be faster. Not sure about the play time on Roads and Boats, but other Splotters tend to run to the longish, too.
 
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I think La Granja was probably the best suggestion I've seen particularly as length might be an issue.

However, I will throw out some more anyway.

The Capitals - you are building a city; each addition ramps you up different critical tracks on the board; I think it's at least a bit sandboxy with the different options each round

Merchants & Marauders - you are a merchant or marauder; different captains and ship types, upgrades for your ships, different goals, a map to explore

Clash of Cultures - it's a civ game, so there is an obvious sandbox aspect as well as an interesting tech matrix that you can use to do different things each game

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cymric wrote:
Shipyard is a reasonable suggestion... But as involved as Uwe makes them... Difficult.


Yeah, agree, also great with 2p.
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Edward Uhler
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Tompy wrote:


This is what immediately came to mind.
 
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Stephan Wießler
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You could like Vital Lacerda's games.
 
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Edward Uhler
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ghost604 wrote:
La Granja is now on my short list to consider!

For Roads and Boats, and The Colonists: I have looked at both, but they come across as very long and (at least the colonists) very overwhelming.

Considering FoA and Dungeon Petz are about the upper limit weight/complexity we have actively enjoyed so far - are The Colonists and Roads & Boats a step up in complexity & time commitment - or a leap?


We've done full teaching and play-throughs (neither at 2p, but the gist remains the same), if you're so inclined (and want to answer that question for yourself) on our YouTube channel

Heavy Cardboard
 
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eapeas wrote:
Tompy wrote:


This is what immediately came to mind.


It's so long and complicated and I like heavy games. Give me Antiquity any day. It's less complicated.
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Scott O'Brien
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At the Gates of Loyang - probably Uwes best 2player game
Keyflower
also
Viticulture
 
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ghost604 wrote:
La Granja is now on my short list to consider!

For Roads and Boats, and The Colonists: I have looked at both, but they come across as very long and (at least the colonists) very overwhelming.

Considering FoA and Dungeon Petz are about the upper limit weight/complexity we have actively enjoyed so far - are The Colonists and Roads & Boats a step up in complexity & time commitment - or a leap?


Fields of Arle is given as 3.9 weight
Roads & Boats 4.2

Roads & Boats is a 2 hour 2p game (after the learning game), a step up from Fields of Arle but not bad. I haven't played Dungeon Petz (3.54) so I can't compare, though it seems a slightly bigger step up from that. For more reference, A Feast for Odin is a 3.84, another one in the same ballpark.

To get a certain amount of open sandboxy-ness, I think they're going to be at about that weight.

La Granja is in the Dungeon Petz zone, with 3.59
 
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Sue_G wrote:
eapeas wrote:
Tompy wrote:


This is what immediately came to mind.


It's so long and complicated and I like heavy games. Give me Antiquity any day. It's less complicated.


That's why I didn't pick it up. I already have my Splotters, and A Feast for Odin, and Fields of Arle.
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Sue_G wrote:
I think La Granja was probably the best suggestion I've seen particularly as length might be an issue.

However, I will throw out some more anyway.

The Capitals - you are building a city; each addition ramps you up different critical tracks on the board; I think it's at least a bit sandboxy with the different options each round



I really wanted to like The Capitals, but the rules didn't feel polished. I felt like a playtester rather than someone who had bought a finished game.
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James
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Really appreciate everyone's feedback and recommendations. I was hoping to get a decent response, but I wasn't expecting so many to chime in. Uwe really has left his mark on a lot of players here.

Will be taking another strong look at The colonists. As I said before, I was hesitant about it, but everyone's positive response is opening my mind again. Roads and boats is a grail game that I have wanted to work up to (if I can ever afford to get a copy).

Edward - Heavy Cardboard is an old staple for inspiration. I have played several of your videos during card sleeving sessions in the past. Appreciate the perspective and thoughts!
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James
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sao123 wrote:
At the Gates of Loyang - probably Uwes best 2player game
Keyflower
also
Viticulture


At the gates of loyang is already a must have on my wishlist and I am still looking at feast for odin, but I started this list as an attempt to branch out into other designers with similar depth and variety of strategies as compared to Uwe. Some spice and diversity to the collection now that I am getting a better feel for what my wife will enjoy (as I drag her ever deeper into the depths of our hobby!)

arrrh
 
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Brett McLay
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ghost604 wrote:
...I am trying to branch out for some variety of designers, but still have something like that Uwe integrated "smoothness" ...

Play VERY good with 2 // Be reasonably obtainable // (2.75 - 4.0 complexity)
Leaning more towards sandbox (FoA) than punishing (Agricola)


I am surprised Concordia has not been mentioned. Concordia: Gallia / Corsica is primed for 2P. ~ 3.00
If you play on the '3P' boards (Italia, Gallia and Brittania) the game will be more open.

You want history? Go with Wir sind das Volk! ~ 3.60

Otherwise, I would keep an eye on Vital Lacerda's CO₂: Second Chance. Next year it will be a unique cooperative redesign. (~ current version of CO2 rates 3.88)
 
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