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Subject: Ethnos, Yamatai or Century spice road for two player? rss

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M Smith
United Kingdom
UK
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Hello BGG , I seek your wisdom.
Me and the better half like to play the odd game or two.
The missus likes the look of Ethnos, Yamatai and Century spice road but the trick is which one would be best for two player games?

Any information or similar alternatives that play better as a two player game will be most appreciated .
 
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Zach Nuss
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San Pedro
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I have Ethnos and have only been able to play it two player thus far. It plays well for two, but I would love to play 4+ at some point.

I have watched a bit of gameplay on Century and it seems to be a very good two player game.

I honestly don't know much about Yamatai.

I'd wait for other suggestions as well, but 1 vote for Century: Spice Road from me.
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Nicholas Krause
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GRAND RAPIDS
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I've played all three games. Of the three I think Ethnos is the safe bet. It's good with all counts and is the most likable game out of the bunch. Century is a pretty good game and does play well with two, however, I seriously question is longevity. I know many players who jumped on board the Splendor killer hype train and jumped off when they realized it's not (for several reason I won't list here). That said you can do worse and I do think it's a pretty good game. Yamatai is super polarizing. Most of the people I've talked to are just warm on the game or flat out dislike it. Me personally I thought it was OK, but for my money if I'm dropping some hard cash on a Bruno game from days of Wonder it would be his phenomenal 5 tribes and not this one.
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Alluvian
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For two players, I find Yamatai far better than Five Tribes. The removal of the bidding for turn order is really helpful to solve analysis paralysis. I also find consecutive turns far easier to deal with in Yamatai, they actually make planning easier because you do not have to hide your plans. This is coming from someone who actually likes Five Tribes a little better overall, I just think it is a fairly bad 2 player game at least for my wife and I.

Yamatai has a lot of moving parts and won't be for everyone though.

The inclusion of it along with two very entry level games confused me a little. I would not consider Yamatai to be entry level, many of the rules are very counter intuitive to the theme. My wife and I love it, but not everyone will.

Ethnos and Century are both games I know a lot about but have not played. I would think they would both play a lot better at higher player counts, but I have 0 experience with them two player. They are both very easy to explain to new gamers.
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Ian Kissell
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Fort Worth
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Century Spice Road plays fine with 2 and is extremely quick, but there is little competition. Both sides tend to go for different contracts, so it lacks a bit of tension.

Yamatai I think would be best as a tow player game, and really I haven't liked it with more. With two players it is easier to know if you are setting someone else up, and if you do you have no one to blame but yourself.

Area majority games I think only shine with more players. I would avoid Ethnos personally for two players.

So, if you want a game you can play in 20 minutes, get Century (that is the play time I think with 2 players). If you want 60 minutes, get Yamatai.
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M Smith
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Thanks for the insight on these games.
I like Ethnos
Both like idea of Century .
But got Yamatai as it was the only one of the three games at a local game shop. (Missus thought it was a very pretty game too??)
So we grabbed it to help keep the shop ticking over and mentioned the other two games to the shopkeeper whistle.
They all look very solid gameplay wise and it is a bonus to hear they can play ok to good in a two player session.
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Dillon Waggoner
United States
Indianapolis/Muncie
Indiana
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Of these three, I have only played Yamatai. My wife and I enjoy that with just the two of us. Bruno Cathala is personally my favorite designer, and I think he is really good about creating two player variants. For example, in Yamatai, in a two player game you will each take two turns per round. This lends itself to a more strategic play style without making the game feel any heavier, which we love. If Yamatai is on your radar, you're probably familiar with Five Tribes by the same designer, but thats one of our favorite games to play with just the two of us. It also uses a two turns per round variant for two players.
 
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Randy Thomas
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GitFeatures wrote:
Hello BGG , I seek your wisdom.
Me and the better half like to play the odd game or two.
The missus likes the look of Ethnos, Yamatai and Century spice road but the trick is which one would be best for two player games?

Any information or similar alternatives that play better as a two player game will be most appreciated .


Yamatai if you want a longer more thinky game...spice road is nice for quick and light game.

Ethnos for me doesn't shine until higher player counts. I love Ethnos with 6.
 
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Kevin Garnica
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Ethnos is like if Ticket to Ride had a baby with Small World. While it might be more fun with more players, you have more control with 2. If playing *THAT* game with 2 sounds good then go with that.

Spice Road is like a "new girlfriend" version of Splendor. If you know and like Splendor but wish she was younger, go with that.

Yamataï is a kissing cousin to Five Tribes, just about as thinky, and both games at the 2P count feel like a similar experience as well. If that means anything to you, then go with that.
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Jon Visser
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Ethnos is very enjoyable if you like these mechanics:
Press your luck
Area control but can lose control
Set collection
Variable powers

Century is a fine stand-alone game and might get better with the next teo releases but Ethnos has more variety.

I would suggest Bunny Kingdom if you like these mechanics:
Drafting
Area control without losing control
Hidden objectives
Math
Set collection

Century is:
Engine building
Resource management
Not that exciting.

Bunny Kingdoms is one of my favorite games this year. Ethnos is also great. I would choose either of these over Century. I jumped on the Century band wagon, but it doesn't have the variability and longevity of either of those others. I have not played Yama yet.

(I really enjoy the artist for Ethnos... Very reminiscent of his LOTR art)

Heck... If you want area control with resource management, get Scythe... or all three! I almost only play these games with my wife as two player. These three give different experiences and are worth having in my collection.
 
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Ryucoo
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+1 Ethnos. Brilliant game with excellent replayability and scales well for all player counts.

-1 For Century Road. Its not a game its just a set of exposed mechanics, and its all the duller for it.
 
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Renuka Govind
Japan
Setagaya
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I have not played Ethnos and Yamatai, yet, but Century Spice Road has hit our table multiple times.
Century is a good two player game. However, sometimes I feel that the game is good when it wants to be.
I say this because it takes a long time to build an engine due to the card draws and even after building it, there is slight uncertainty due to the active contracts that have to be fulfilled (buying the VP cards). My husband and I found that Century outstays it's welcome with 3-4 players, as well as the turn order seems very important to grab cards. Not so much an issue with 2 player.

Those were the main points that annoy me about Century. However, we do enjoy Century when we play it, it's fast, parallel and it becomes matter of half an hr to finish an entire game when players are fast. And, yes, it is a good 2 player game and for us personally Century will always be a two player.

Having said all that, we prefer Splendor over Century (especially with the recent expansion Splendor: Cities of Splendor). We got Splendor way after Century and to us Splendor kind of weakened Century, which is contrary to Century's nickname - "Splendor Killer."
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Steve
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Renuka2010 wrote:
Having said all that, we prefer Splendor over Century (especially with the recent expansion Splendor: Cities of Splendor). We got Splendor way after Century and to us Splendor kind of weakened Century, which is contrary to Century's nickname - "Splendor Killer."

Splendor is the Century killer.
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