8/8 FREE, PROTECTED
The second game of San Juan this evening showed more diversity amongst the players. Matthew was again looking to produce and trade - Ryan built an early Library and was the Prospector's best friend for some time. Nick again looked to a building strategy, this time by using a quarry and prefecture.
Ryan's early Library stalled him out for a couple rounds before he could build his hand back up. He was next able to build a Silver Smelter and Chapel. Thanks to his income stream from a Library enhanced Prospector and Builder and the occasional Silver trade he was soon feeding the Chapel with vigor.
Nick made several good moves to take advantage of lacks in the other players' positions, but for the most part was unable to get off the ground.
Matthew was the first to 11 buildings, having 7 production buildings out thanks to the Smithy - but he needed the Guild Hall to take the game away from Ryan. The first Councillor turn garnered nothing, however the second got Matthew the Guild Hall he needed (and the only one available in the deck, as the other had been buried in Ryan's Chapel). Ryan chose Builder on the next turn, hoping Matthew hadn't found a Guild Hall, and brought out a Palace to the groans of his opponents who looked at the Chapel lying on a bed of other cards. Matthew built his Guild Hall to end the game.
The draw of the Guild Hall made the difference in the end and took the game from Ryan's grasp.
Ryan - 30
Nick - 24