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Subject: Which would you suggest I'd get first....? rss

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Matt Tonks
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Mare Nostrum & the Mythology expansion

A Game Of Thrones & one/both of the expansions


I'm keen to get a civilisation and/or wargame as my next purchase & I'm currently leaning towards Mare Nostrum & Mythology at the moment.

I do play these types of game from time to time with my local group & we often fill up the game, so playing with 4, 5 or 6 etc isn't usually a problem.

If you have other suggestions, let me know!
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Scott Dresden
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Woodridge
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Seeing that I have only played a Game of Thrones, I would have to recommend that. It really is a great game made all the better if you are at all familiar with the theme.

Scott
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Mike Jones
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Mare gave me more of a 'set' collection card management/trading game feel then a civ building feel (but I know others that enjoy it). You are buying buildings, etc. But a lot of it is dictated by card draws and trades to build the right combos. I can see the civ building in it, it just didn't feel that to me.

Game of Thrones I felt more into the civ building, but you are just building fighting forces to take territories and not building other things. I like that it's a lot like Diplomacy, when it's about larger forces beating the smaller forces. It's just modified by card selection, much like Confrontation, so you have a lot of control and less luck (although I'm not against luck in a game).

I'd personally say Game of Thrones, but it's not building a civ more then building an empire.
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C Lloyd
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North Reading
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Hi Matt. Why choose -- get 'em both!

Unfortunately, even though I have MN & Exp, I haven't played it yet. I think it's something you'd like, and I'm not sure about availability these days, as I think it's OOP (though some places have acquired new stock).

If you like Diplomacy with a fantasy theme, player roles, and other cool FFG chrome, you'll like AGOT. And the other thing to think about is that you may want to pick it up before FFG prices go up in November. I'm actually thinking about it now as well. I liked the game, and my gamer buddy that owns it is moving soon.

Good luck choosing!
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♪ Isaäc Bickërstaff ♫
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[Insert obligatory "Here's an additional game that isn't even remotely related to your original question" suggestion here.]
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Greg Williams
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A Game of Thrones (first edition) is very much about managing armies and territory control. There's opportunities for clever tactical play and opportunities for diplomacy and backstabbing. Though I recommend both expansions it's probably easier to learn the game without using any of the variants to begin with. You're probably OK to use A Game of Thrones: A Clash of Kings Expansion for the sixth player in the meantime. Next I would use whatever additions from that game that suit you. I also really like the additions found in A Game of Thrones: A Storm of Swords Expansion but those are probably more advanced.

Mare Nostrum is much more of an economics game though there are definitely gains to be made from conquest, even economically speaking. Units in Mare Nostrum are much more vulnerable than those in Game of Thrones and conquest can actually distract you from advancing towards the end game if you focus on it too much.

I personally like both games. I've played Game of Thrones more so given a choice between the two I might pick it.

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Matt Thrower
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They seem quite different games to me.

Game of Thrones is not entirely undeserving of the common comparison with Diplomacy. It's a game of negotiation and strategic maneuver with a few bolted on Euro-mechanics to make it more interesting to modern audiences.

Mare Nostrum is a civilization game and it has a more balanced approach to the skills required. There's a bit of negotiation, a bit of warfare, a bit of building things, a bit of economic management.

Both take around the same time to play - about three hours. Neither scale terribly well to lower player numbers - you need at least 4 for either. Both have "balance" issues in terms of starting position, although so long as you play up the negotiation aspect this isn't really an issue. So, logistically speaking they're quite similar except that GoT is significantly more complicated.

Theme-wise I would say GoT requires some appreciation of the source material for maximum enjoyment. Everyone knows enough about ancient civilizations to appreciate MN.

My preference is for Mare Nostrum - I just think it's a more satisfying and engaging game overall, but both are good. If it's any help I don't feel that either game needs it's expansion. For GoT using the port rules helps, but you can download expansion the rules and construct your own counters for the ports. For MN using the Greek blockade rules helps but that requires no components so just download the expansion rules and put that section into force in the base game. If you skip the expansions, you might be able to find the cash to buy both base games.
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