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Subject: Economic Game--just one more! rss

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Buz
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I received some $$$ for my birthday and would like to invest in just one boardgame. I'd really like it to be an economic game and I have a few in mind. There are a few criteria that, if met, will make the game a success. To me, success means I can get others to play it with me!

1. Good art. My wife loves games that look nice (Stone Age, TTR) and doesn't like games that look like games about factories (Power Grid, notwithstanding that it pretty much is about factories). I know this isn't economic games' forte, but it would be a MAJOR plus! With art I would include components. I like nice bits, what can I say?

2. Easy to learn. We play with a semi-regular group, but most of the time there is at least one new player. Indonesia hardly gets played because of the learning threshold; same for Race for the Galaxy. A game like Power Grid or Imperial would be OK, but easier to learn than they are would be great.

2b. Little 'mathiness'. Power Grid features everyone tabulating on paper during their turn, while Imperial sees people playing more by "feel" in buying bonds. We're looking more towards the latter. Math is OK, but easy tabulations are a super plus.

3. Able to compete on first play. This isn't quite as important as #2, but I'm not looking for players to go bankrupt all over the place. We just aren't that kind of group (sorry, 18xx). I'm not saying that a newbie should win as often as not, but the illusion of competing would be nice to have at least.

4. Reasonable playtime. Two hours or so should be sufficient for most of our group members' attention spans.

5. Different from my collection. Since I already have a few econ games (notably PG, Indonesia, Imperial), I'm looking for something with a bit of a different feel than they have.

So here are the games I am considering, with likeliest on top. If you have any other suggestions, don't hesitate to add them, while feedback on the ones already listed is more than appreciated. Thanks in advance!

Automobile: I like the unknown in demand and the R&D and character selectons available. I am unsure as to playtime or ruleset complexity. I also like the theme, for what that is worth.

Steam: I have a play of this and I know it would be OK, but is it the best we can do? And I know the art won't set my wife's world on fire...

Container: Very different idea, and I like the free market model. Is it tenable for new users? What about the art or playtime?

Brass: I have heard nothing but good things about this, though I know little specifics. Should I just go with the Warfrog Automobile over the FRED Brass?

Chicago Express: I'm attracted to the stock model, but would it add as much difference to my already owned titles as the above games would? Is it as replayable as the others?
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John Weber
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Buz, I would recommend Automobile. The rules are available on line (I believe there's a link at BGG or just go to the Warfrog website). Now, there is some math involved, but it's also a game you can play on instinct, which is what I usually do anyway. (Sometimes to my chagrin after the scores are announced.)

There's a recent post at the Automobile page on BGG indicating at least one US retailer has picked up some copies, but you can also order it directly from the UK for around $70 or so. (My copy took about a week to get here.) My guess is the Mayfair/Phalanx edition may not get in print until the end of the year, although it was initially supposed to be out in a month or so, so I wouldn't wait around if it's for a special occasion.

Quick comments on the other games: Steam, have played the original, which is a very unforgiving game, I prefer the flexibility of RR Tycoon which in my view is closer to Automobile which I really like. Container is a game I enjoy alot (rating between a 7 and 8) with very little luck but in my view, they screwed up the components, as three or four of the colors are really, really hard to tell apart. Brass, played once, didn't like it, found the mechanics very clunky and non-intuitive; played and bought Wabash Cannonball, the predecessor of Chicago Express, but don't play it much now, don't believe the game replayability is that high as there's just one or two ways to win and it's just not that interesting any more.

(As an aside, like you, I am huge fan of Imperial and also enjoy Power Grid quite a bit. I rate them both 9 out of 10 and tentatively have Automobile rated that highly as well.)

In short, I think Automobile is probably the best way to go but check out the rules and reviews (there's some detailed game summaries posted here already) before buying.
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Mystery McMysteryface
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Buz, I am going to recommend my new favorite and 10, Acquire, and I'll answer why to your questions:
buzhannon wrote:

1. Good art. My wife loves games that look nice (Stone Age, TTR) and doesn't like games that look like games about factories (Power Grid, notwithstanding that it pretty much is about factories). I know this isn't economic games' forte, but it would be a MAJOR plus! With art I would include components. I like nice bits, what can I say?
The only weak point, although the latest edition is a lot better than the 3M version I bought at the thrift!! You can pimp it up as well!!

buzhannon wrote:
2. Easy to learn. We play with a semi-regular group, but most of the time there is at least one new player. Indonesia hardly gets played because of the learning threshold; same for Race for the Galaxy. A game like Power Grid or Imperial would be OK, but easier to learn than they are would be great.
The brilliance of this title is the simple, complex, challenging, yet easy to learn rules. You can formulate your strategies right on the first play.

buzhannon wrote:
2b. Little 'mathiness'. Power Grid features everyone tabulating on paper during their turn, while Imperial sees people playing more by "feel" in buying bonds. We're looking more towards the latter. Math is OK, but easy tabulations are a super plus.
There are easy-to-use tables included plus tons more on the BGG files. Using these player aids, there is virtually no math involved until the end game when everyone counts their money!

buzhannon wrote:
3. Able to compete on first play. This isn't quite as important as #2, but I'm not looking for players to go bankrupt all over the place. We just aren't that kind of group (sorry, 18xx). I'm not saying that a newbie should win as often as not, but the illusion of competing would be nice to have at least.
Our first game was completed and didn't feel long at all. You are engaged the entire time!

buzhannon wrote:
4. Reasonable playtime. Two hours or so should be sufficient for most of our group members' attention spans.
No problem here at all.

buzhannon wrote:
5. Different from my collection. Since I already have a few econ games (notably PG, Indonesia, Imperial), I'm looking for something with a bit of a different feel than they have.
It's different from all those.

I can't comment on your choices except to caution you to read the comments on Brass as it seems to be a love it or hate it experience. Container's components/art is ugly to blah.

Good luck and let us know what you choose and how it worked out!!

Mrs. Mystery Bob
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ErikPeter Walker
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I played Industria last night, and it sounds like it fits your criteria just right, except that it is explicitly about factories (Though it has a crisp SimCity look that is much more inviting than say, Container). Some of the flavor of Power Grid, but I thought it was more fun and had less "mathiness". It also seems a tad lighter than many of the games you listed above but still has some meat and playtime to it.
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whistler
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Of the games you mention, I am familiar only with Steam. In this thread, I recommend it heavily, but based on the criteria you list, it may not be the best choice for you. I think you should give the base game a try (without auctions), but I'm not sure what your threshold for "mathy" is.
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Buz
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Thanks to all for their insight so far.

John, you really have me teetering on the Automobile brink. Is it sufficiently different from Power Grid to justify a $70 investment?

Mrs. Mystery Bob, I really like Acquire! Many of my friends have it so I won't need to get it for myself at this point.

ErikPeter, I will peek at Industria. Thanks for the tip.

native_son, thanks for the insight. I would say that "mathy" to me is when the calculations are so tedious that the player's turn is interrupted to complete them. In Power Grid, players often pause during the city building phase tabulating several different routes. This downtime can frustrate other players who must wait and frustrates some in our group who don't enjoy that simple math. I didn't think Steam was too "mathy" in my one play, but that is taking into account that the base game would more often get played in our group.

Keep the replies coming!
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Clark Rodeffer
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Among your short list, I think Automobile is probably your best bet. While I think Container is an outstanding game, and I've had success with it as a gateway game, the artwork is like Dr. Pepper -- love it or hate it. Not to muddy the waters too much, a bit lighter than Imperial suggests Hamburgum, and a bit lighter than Steam or Brass: Lancashire suggests Steel Driver. That's a lot of Wallace in the mix. Others you might consider are The Market of Alturien or Acquire.
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Mystery McMysteryface
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Ok, next try....how about Empire Builder, or one of the other Crayon Rails titles? They run about 2-3 hours but there are variants to make the game faster.

Not the most beautiful boards or components but they have to be like that because of all the colorful routes that go on the maps!!

These are economic, easy to jump into (if you go for a familiar map) and easy to finish right away. We bought India Rails, because it works better for just 2, and we found that we had to keep notes to keep track of our demand cards. So, of course, I created a worksheet and uploaded it to the BGG files!!

I also suggest the vinyl tablecloth covering with the vis-a-vis markers as opposed to using the crayons. This great suggestion comes from a thread by
Helen Holzgrafe
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It works wonderfully!!!

Good luck!!

Ooo! After seeing Clark's thread, how about Tinners' Trail? I've always been interested in that one, but it doesn't work with just 2!!
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Brian Barnes
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I vote for Automobile. Like you guys I love Imperial and like Power Grid. Automobile is sufficiently different from Power Grid to justify it. Our first playing of Automobile we played 3 games in a row everyone loved it.
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J C Lawrence
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buzhannon wrote:
Automobile: I like the unknown in demand and the R&D and character selectons available. I am unsure as to playtime or ruleset complexity. I also like the theme, for what that is worth.


The game isn't particularly complex. I'm also not sure it is very interesting. For a near 3-hour game, I'd rather players got to make more than 12 decisions each.

Quote:
Steam: I have a play of this and I know it would be OK, but is it the best we can do? And I know the art won't set my wife's world on fire...


As much as I like Age of Steam, I don't see Steam or Age of Steam being useful for you. They are both highly aggressive, calculational, games that do not reward novices.

Quote:
Container: Very different idea, and I like the free market model. Is it tenable for new users? What about the art or playtime?


Yes, Container fits all your criteria. With a little coaching over the requirements to keep capital in the game and to build a working economy the game plays very well with new and novice players. (Caveats: I do not recommend playing with just 3 if any of the players are inexperienced) The art is attractive, the ships are pleasant 3D printed plastic, the rules are not complex and playtime normally runs around 120 minutes. Additionally, there are really no other games which address the sort of emergent market dynamics and pricing problems that Container does. It is unique and delivers a notably different game experience each time. For me Container is the clear second best game to come out in the last several years. It is quite wonderful and remains in steady play locally.

Quote:
Brass: I have heard nothing but good things about this, though I know little specifics. Should I just go with the Warfrog Automobile over the FRED Brass?


I'm not fond of Brass as the cards really bug me. I'm pretty much the wrong person to ask about the game. It is not my sort of game.

Quote:
Chicago Express: I'm attracted to the stock model, but would it add as much difference to my already owned titles as the above games would? Is it as replayable as the others?


I am a hug fan of Chicago Express and its earlier version Wabash Cannonball. I consider it easily and clearly the single best game published in the last several years. It is that good and more. The contest isn't even close. However for your particular needs Chicago Express, great as it is, may not be the best choice. The game is certainly pretty, and the rules are not complex, but it is an unusually hard game to understand how to play well. The learning curve is counter-intuitive and long. I've played almost 70 times now, I still have core questions regarding good play, and it remains among my favourite games. I'd say it usually takes around a dozen games before a new player really has an idea of how the game really works and starts to have a good idea bout how to play well. I suspect for your needs Chicago Express may not be the best choice. It is likely a good choice, but I think Container may be the better choice. I'd put Container as more likely being of more use and interest to you. It has an easier entrance, is more intuitive, and has a much faster and more obvious feedback loop that leads players into quicker understanding of how to play well. And, it delivers a highly unusual play experience.

John Weber wrote:
...played and bought Wabash Cannonball, the predecessor of Chicago Express, but don't play it much now, don't believe the game replayability is that high as there's just one or two ways to win and it's just not that interesting any more.


I'm interested in what you think those two are. After ~70 plays I've found no simple answers to playing the game well.
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Josh P.
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I vote Chicago Express. One of my favorite games. Easy to learn, nice bits, and an appealing theme for gateway gamers.
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Ferdinand Chan
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How about Puerto Rico ?

Its still the best economic game that I've played. My wife and I really enjoy this game and so do most of my non-gamer friend.

It does requires a bit of learning and teaching at the very first game but after that the game just run smooth even with first time gamer.
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Eugene
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clearclaw wrote:
buzhannon wrote:
Brass: I have heard nothing but good things about this, though I know little specifics. Should I just go with the Warfrog Automobile over the FRED Brass?


I'm not fond of Brass as the cards really bug me. I'm pretty much the wrong person to ask about the game. It is not my sort of game.

Ask me, then. Cause I'm very fond of Brass. Don't let JC's misgivings about the cards dissuade you. They are not cards in the common sense of the term. Think of them more as action point counters in card form. Brass is not a card game.

Additionally, Brass plays exceptionally well with just two. A two-player board is available in the files section.
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Cuba

1. Good art, great bits. Has nice red wooden jugs, and lots of other colorful wooden bits, and great artwork and colors on the cards and boards. Players have player boards like in Agricola, to build buildings on and get resources from.

2. Everyone has the same character cards, and chooses the order in which to play them. The architect allows you to build buildings, for example. Role selection similar to Puerto Rico, except you only choose for yourself. Minimal hidden information, so easy enough to teach.

3. I think after the first round or two, a new person can see the rhythm of the game and make good choices. They might not win on their first turn, but they might get it and surprise you, depends on their experience with similar games.

4. Reasonable playtime. I think you should get in under 2 hours, depending on the group.

5. This has economic elements (the prices go up and down in the marketplace with supply and demand) with Acts being passed in Parliament that affect the game - adding or removing items from the marketplace, higher or lower taxes, etc. Players vote on the Acts. Votes are based on the value of the card you did not play in that round, plus you can choose to buy votes to get a majority, in an auction phase in each round.

Bonus: The expansion is newly out, too.



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Brad
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I'm surprised Le Havre hasn't come up yet. It's very much an economic game, but the theme is thick enough to disguise the mathier parts.

buzhannon wrote:
1. Good art.

I like the art in Le Havre, but it's nothing especially luscious. You can look in the gallery to decide whether you like it or not.

buzhannon wrote:
2. Easy to learn.

The rules are relatively simple, but part of the learning curve is understanding the various buildings. Not just what they do but, typically, which buildings get used in which order.

buzhannon wrote:
2b. Little 'mathiness'. Power Grid features everyone tabulating on paper during their turn, while Imperial sees people playing more by "feel" in buying bonds. We're looking more towards the latter. Math is OK, but easy tabulations are a super plus.

The mathiness in Le Havre is fairly well hidden behind thematic goals. The amount of food required of a player increases each round, which necessitates acquiring ships or else taking loans. You'll have a moderate feel for which actions are helping you gain traction and which ones are making you slip a bit, but it is very difficult to accurately calculate how many points an action is worth through the substantial mid-game.

There is mathiness on the last few turns as a player must figure (for example) how many goods they can ship, how much energy it will cost, and how many francs they will receive in return. Additionally, the scores are in the 200s so there will be some heavy addition required at game end. These arithmetic exercises will last a total of, say, six minutes though, in contrast to Power Grid where it is a portion of every turn.

buzhannon wrote:
3. Able to compete on first play.

Beginners will very much gain satisfaction on the first play. They may not compete with a veteran, really, but the beauty of Le Havre is the micro-turn. Every turn, you can either take a goods offering or else use a building. Beginners can look at the offering spaces and intuit that five wood is a decent take, and add it to their stash. Every micro-turn is part of a short, medium, or long-term goal (like getting cattle to slaughter them to feed your crew), so there is a constant feeling of progress, even if one doesn't truly have a chance to win the game.

Also, much of the game builds toward a few big actions at the end of the game. A beginner can have the illusion of competing throughout before their opponent ships big steel and cattle at the end for a hundred or so points.

buzhannon wrote:
4. Reasonable playtime. Two hours or so should be sufficient for most of our group members' attention spans.

The first few games will take longer than that--about three hours or even slightly longer. However, once you've learned the buildings and the typical game-arc, this is a two hour game (with two or three players). Again, though, I'll refer to the micro-turn as a beautiful thing. The game goes at a nice clip since the turns are so short, so the length of the game doesn't feel so long. There isn't much grimacing and staring laser beams through the board, which certainly occurs in Brass and Steam, and a little bit in Container. The micro-turn in Le Havre is the polar opposite of the operating round in Indonesia.

buzhannon wrote:
5. Different from my collection. Since I already have a few econ games (notably PG, Indonesia, Imperial), I'm looking for something with a bit of a different feel than they have.

Le Havre feels different from those three--it's focused on gaining resources and converting them into better resources or larger assets like ships and buildings. The player interaction is a bit lower in Le Havre than any of those, because you merely compete for common resources and actions. There are no auctions, and you don't have the ability to squeeze the value of other players' assets (like in Imperial). The same resources are needed by all, however, so it can be tense when you need your first ship but everyone keeps taking the wood.

Le Havre is one of my favorites, and I've noted why above. It's a great economic game where the math is hidden within a pretty convincing theme. However, you'll have to decide if you can accept:

-Three hour learning games. Like I said, once you get up to speed it'll be a two hour game, but not the first couple of times. Ultimately, I'd expect Le Havre to take about 70% of the time of a game of Indonesia.

-A soft cap at three players and a hard cap at four players. This is a great two/three player game. I'd urge caution about playing it with four and mandate avoidance of the five player game. The game length expands quite a bit with more than three and the allocation of turns per round gets awkward with four or more (there are seven total player turns per round, regardless of the number of players).

-A multitude of options available at any one time. The micro-turn is sweet, but a new player can feel a bit overwhelmed by the ability to do any one of, say, twelve different things on a turn and all of them look good. You say you'd like a game that's easier to learn than Power Grid, but what PG has going for it is there is always a narrow set of options at one time. Le Havre ultimately becomes a game about staying on target, as you must keep working toward your goals even though there are deliciously tempting options elsewhere (that will use up your precious actions and net you very little).

Eep. I didn't set out to write this much. I guess I picked up a case of logorrhea from some bad clams I ate...



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Michael J
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Automobile: I've really enjoyed Automobile the two times I've played it. However, I've found this game to be one of the most mathy games I've played. I happen to like mathy games like Powergrid, but I just thought I'd warn you. In automobile, you count cars, then re-count cars, then count again to make sure you don't overproduce by ONE. You can't know the exact demand of cars, so the fear of over production causes you to count exactly how many you will be stuck with if the production is 6, 7, 8, 9, or 10 (etc...). If this aspect turned you off in Power Grid, I think it is even more prevalent in Automobile.

Container: Just got my first game in last night! I really liked it. I think it is played more from the cuff than other games. Because you don't know what people will pay for, or how much the auction will run, you don't spend as much time calculating. It's a different type of game that is also one of the easiest to teach.

Might I also suggest Genoa? Fun economic game, pretty board, and lots of interaction!
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Brad Goodson
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What about Dominion?

Sooooooooooo much fun, new expansion just came out, very cross-over gamer friendly.
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jonathan schleyer
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buzhannon wrote:
I received some $$$ for my birthday and would like to invest in just one boardgame. I'd really like it to be an economic game and I have a few in mind. There are a few criteria that, if met, will make the game a success. To me, success means I can get others to play it with me!

1. Good art. My wife loves games that look nice (Stone Age, TTR) and doesn't like games that look like games about factories (Power Grid, notwithstanding that it pretty much is about factories). I know this isn't economic games' forte, but it would be a MAJOR plus! With art I would include components. I like nice bits, what can I say?

2. Easy to learn. We play with a semi-regular group, but most of the time there is at least one new player. Indonesia hardly gets played because of the learning threshold; same for Race for the Galaxy. A game like Power Grid or Imperial would be OK, but easier to learn than they are would be great.

2b. Little 'mathiness'. Power Grid features everyone tabulating on paper during their turn, while Imperial sees people playing more by "feel" in buying bonds. We're looking more towards the latter. Math is OK, but easy tabulations are a super plus.

3. Able to compete on first play. This isn't quite as important as #2, but I'm not looking for players to go bankrupt all over the place. We just aren't that kind of group (sorry, 18xx). I'm not saying that a newbie should win as often as not, but the illusion of competing would be nice to have at least.

4. Reasonable playtime. Two hours or so should be sufficient for most of our group members' attention spans.

5. Different from my collection. Since I already have a few econ games (notably PG, Indonesia, Imperial), I'm looking for something with a bit of a different feel than they have.

So here are the games I am considering, with likeliest on top. If you have any other suggestions, don't hesitate to add them, while feedback on the ones already listed is more than appreciated. Thanks in advance!

Automobile: I like the unknown in demand and the R&D and character selectons available. I am unsure as to playtime or ruleset complexity. I also like the theme, for what that is worth.

Steam: I have a play of this and I know it would be OK, but is it the best we can do? And I know the art won't set my wife's world on fire...

Container: Very different idea, and I like the free market model. Is it tenable for new users? What about the art or playtime?

Brass: I have heard nothing but good things about this, though I know little specifics. Should I just go with the Warfrog Automobile over the FRED Brass?

Chicago Express: I'm attracted to the stock model, but would it add as much difference to my already owned titles as the above games would? Is it as replayable as the others?


My feeling is that you already have heavy econ games. I would suggest lighter ones that can bring in non-gamers/light gamers that still allow you to scratch an econ itch. They are nice to look at, easy to learn, allow you to compete the first time but not that simple to master. So here are my recos:
Traders of Osaka
For Sale
Yspahan
Queen's Necklace
Saint Petersburg

Good luck!

Provence

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John Weber
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Buz, second round of comments.

To answer your question, I think Automobile is substantially different from Power Grid both in structure and function. It has a set number of turns (four), you have a set number of actions (12) plus the "bonus" you get from the special character each round. It's highly interactive, you really have to pay attention to what the other players are doing. For me, the decisions (at least in the first 25-30 playings) aren't nearly as clear-cut as most decisions in a Power Grid game. So, I say go for it.

Comments on some of the other games mentioned:

Acquire -- have tried it, and unless you play with open hands, there's a strong memory element to the game. Similar to another game that is actually much more attractive in terms of its components, Union Pacific.

Tinners' Trail -- played once, would like to try it again but the game is very, very difficult to get right now. So, if you want a game by your birthday, that's probably one to consider for a future year (there are rumors of a reprint or new edition coming out sometime).

Puerto Rico -- one of my all-time favs, great game, can't go wrong there.

LeHavre -- unless you are playing with three or less, it's going to be difficult to meet your 2-hour time requirement. The game by its nature takes incrementally more time with more players, and the Short Game is probably unbalanced and not worth playing more than once.

Cuba -- this is a game that just about everyone in our group played right after it came out, but it died out in about 6 months. Not sure why, not sure the game mechanics meshed all that well or fit with the theme.

Industria -- this is one I liked, not sure how easy it is to get ahold of, I believe its popularity was hurt by the fact that the English edition still had German components to it, not like most of the games Rio Grande puts out. Not as attractive or intuitive as Automobile.

To respond to JC (Clearclaw) re Wabash Cannonball, it seemed to me you wanted to have the most shares in the companies that made it to Chicago. I rarely saw one of the three actions used, but of course since it's primarily an auction mechanism I am ready to concede I may not have figured it out. Just not that interesting, had a similar reaction to Lokomotive Werks which a number of folks mentioned as being similar to Automobile.

To summarize, I think Automobile is clearly Wallace's best game yet; it fits the theme perfectly, the mechanics are very intuitive, relatively smooth, not that many player decisions but each one seems critical. Very similar to Puerto Rico. I rate it the best new game I have seen since Imperial came out two-three years back.
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Buz
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I just wanted to thank everyone again for their kind suggestions and the food for thought! I will post whatever I decide to go with.
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J C Lawrence
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Campbell
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John Weber wrote:
To respond to JC (Clearclaw) re Wabash Cannonball, it seemed to me you wanted to have the most shares in the companies that made it to Chicago.


That can be important, yes, though it is possible it win without any Chicago Shares (I've done it). There's also the small question of which companies will make it to Chicago. In 3-player games with good players it is rare that any company ever makes it to Chicago as there is too much counter-incentive. With 4 players Chicago Dividends are more common. Chicago is good to be sure, but not the key to good play. Control of game-length is the heart of the game and the primary factor that determines winners, not Chicago.
 
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Eugene
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Yes, JC is spot on with regard to WC. In my most recent game, a 3-player, no railroad made it to Chicago. I won resoundingly, and I only carried out the Expansion action twice. The rest of my moves consisted solely of auctioning off shares and performing null actions.
 
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James Hemsley
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I think most of the choices suggested here are very good. I'm going to throw one other one into the fray, because you didn't list price as a criteria: Planet Steam.

This game is aboslutely beautiful with fantastic bits. It also has a very interesting dynamic economy (not as cool as Container, but still very intuitive and responsive to player input). You've mentioned that you like Power Grid, and this game is similar (I think there should be a high correlation to people who like PG to Planet Steam). Check it out. You won't be disappointed.

--James
 
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John Rogers
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clearclaw wrote:


Yes, Container fits all your criteria. With a little coaching over the requirements to keep capital in the game and to build a working economy the game plays very well with new and novice players. (Caveats: I do not recommend playing with just 3 if any of the players are inexperienced) The art is attractive, the ships are pleasant 3D printed plastic, the rules are not complex and playtime normally runs around 120 minutes. Additionally, there are really no other games which address the sort of emergent market dynamics and pricing problems that Container does. It is unique and delivers a notably dFor me Container is the clear second best game to come out in the last several years. It is quite wonderful and remains in steady play locally.


thumbsupthumbsup

Have to say that I agree with JC on all his points. I'd like to emphasis that you haven't played a game like Container before and therefore players should understand that they are responsible for the emerging economy. Container can be unforgiving if new players take out loans and are unable to pay them back. Newbies should be discouraged from taking out loans.

The rules and mechanics themselves are easy to teach and I'm sure that less than halfway through your initial game you can abandon the rule book. Overall the game takes 90-120mins but time can be shorten by removing containers at the outset of the game.

The one drawback that you might have is the artwork might be a little dull for your wife. I like the realism of it but it isn't as attractive as say TTR or a Z-Man production like Wasabi or Reef Encounter. Still it compliments the industrial look and feel very well.

Happy Hunting .

 
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Andreas
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First a thumbs up that You actually reply with deep thoughts about the posters and their suggestions. Its great to get feedback!

My suggestion is a bit off the mark. Its an auction game where You buy and sell things on a market. 3-5 players, one auctions off and the others can buy - but only the first buyer gets the goods. Bad the deal gets better and better. Shall I buy now or shall I wait...

Not very deep but fun and You do not need a lot of $$$ for it. Its a Queen small box game and thus quite affordable, at least compared to the other suggestions. You might even get this AND another one.

Well here is the link to a video describing the components. In German but at least a video.
http://www.cliquenabend.de/index.php?page=spiel&kurzwort=fan...

And the game is....
Spoiler (click to reveal)
 
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