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Subject: Completing the Series: A solo game with the I deck rss

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David H
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After having completed solo series with the E deck and K decks it was time to give the I deck a try.
You can see the session reports for the E deck solo series here.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/340429

and the K series here:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/343870

As before after each round I took all the minor improvements and Occupations (that were not being kept) and reshuffled the decks.

I Deck Solo Series Overview:
Game 1 59 points kept Wood Collector
Game 2 68 points kept Farm Steward
Game 3 67 points kept Bricklayer
Game 4 68 points kept Fence Delieryman
Game 5 75 points kept Field Watchman
Game 6 76 points kept Church Warden
Game 7 77 points kept Well Builder
Game 8 79 points

Final Farm from the 8th Game


The I deck is interesting, some of the occupations are very powerful. The combination of the Wood Collector, Fence Deliveryman, and Church Warden meant that I had more wood than I knew what to do with. Additionally the Church Warden was 3 extra bonus points at the end of the game.

The Field watchman may be one of the most powerful occupations I have seen in solo play. With 5 actions I had 4 fields plowed and sown with grain. I would often use some of the initial grain to feed my family in the first harvest but I still had 8 grain in the ground and as a result was never short on grain and never had trouble feeding my family.

The Farm Steward was very helpful in getting my family up to 5 quickly. In almost all games I would expand my wooden house to 4 rooms, grow my family twice, and then renovate to clay and get my 5th family member by the 3rd stage. This meant I had tons of actions for the rest of the game.

Unfortunately this is where the I deck was not as useful in solo play. Most of the minor improvements that I drew were essentially worthless. Without other players involved they didn't have the effect that they normally would and as a result were not worth playing. It was hard to justify getting a high cost card in play that wasn't going to pay back as other players would have used it in multiplayer. That's not to say that they all were useless but there were hands that I only had 1 or 2 minor improvements in play.

I found the most limiting thing for me was stone. Most of the games I was scrounging for stone to upgrade my home and build Major improvements. If I had access to more stone I would have been able to turn more actions into victory point opportunities. There were often several turns in the end game that I was wasting actions just waiting for the stone to build up.

I had no problem with beating the score target in every game but with the limited stone and not many playable minor improvements for scoring opportunities I wasn't able to generate the super high scores I had previously seen with the E deck.

The I deck was fun and I'm sure would play much better with multiplayer but it wasn't bad in solo play. I would definitely give it another try.
 
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