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Subject: A short comparison with Caylus and San Juan rss

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Snowball
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Caylus Magna Carta (CMC) is to Caylus what San Juan is to Puerto Rico; a simplified, card based version.

Where San Juan is much less fiddly than it's forefather at the cost of some of the complexity, Caylus Magna Carta feels like a dumbed down version with a fiddlyness close to Caylus; the resource cubes,the coins, and the wooden cylinder workers stay there.

San Jan cards illustrations are vivid and very readable; CMC small cards sport the usual Ystari quality illustrations and the icons are too small, and the colors of the building cards are hard to distinguish.
As the number of card is quite small, one can wonder why, for the same price than San Juan, bigger cards where not used; it would have without a doubt made the game much more ergonomic.

As for the gameplay, while San Juan succeeds in keeping much of the feeling of PR but is an interesting game of its own, CMC feels much like a neutered version. In a two players games, the interactivity is close to nothing, and there is no incentive to build the later stage buildings; I think the game should be played by at least 3. Castle building (ie spending resources for prestige points) feels to me like an obvious thing to focus on, whereas Caylus presents much more difficult choices.

CMC has indeed a small taste of Caylus, but where San Juan is preferable to PR when a group does not want to get into thinking or setup time, I would always prefer playing Caylus than playing CMC.
That being said, the entire contents of the CMC box can be fit under the San Juan plastic insert, which makes it a game easy to pack when travelling, so it is not a complete waste.
I rate it a 5.
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Brian Cherry
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Sorry. I hate to post negative comments regarding reviews, but to say that the only thing saving CMC from being "a complete waste" is its portability, deserves a negative response.

To compare CMC to Caylus (which youve done) is one thing, but to compare it to San Juan is completely different. CMC is more of a board game using cards rather than a board. I wouldnt say its a card driven game, like San Juan.

A more accurate title for your "review" may have been CAYLUS MAGNA CARTA AS COMPARED TO CAYLUS AS SAN JUAN COMPARES TO PUERTO RICO. A review should probably give some consideration to the fact that not everyone has access to Caylus.

If you would rather play Caylus, and give CMC a 5 that is fine, you are entitled to your opinion. But, to call it a review, based on these criteria is a misnomer, in my opinion (which I am entitled to as well).

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Snowball
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the1jugg wrote:

A more accurate title for your "review" may have been CAYLUS MAGNA CARTA AS COMPARED TO CAYLUS AS SAN JUAN COMPARES TO PUERTO RICO.

Well the first line after the title is:
HavocIsHere wrote:
Caylus Magna Carta (CMC) is to Caylus what San Juan is to Puerto Rico; a simplified, card based version.

the1jugg wrote:

A review should probably give some consideration to the fact that not everyone has access to Caylus.

I think the title makes it quite clear who this is adressed to: those who know Caylus and San Juan.
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Brian Cherry
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HavocIsHere wrote:
the1jugg wrote:

A more accurate title for your "review" may have been CAYLUS MAGNA CARTA AS COMPARED TO CAYLUS AS SAN JUAN COMPARES TO PUERTO RICO.

Well the first line after the title is:
HavocIsHere wrote:
Caylus Magna Carta (CMC) is to Caylus what San Juan is to Puerto Rico; a simplified, card based version.

the1jugg wrote:

A review should probably give some consideration to the fact that not everyone has access to Caylus.

I think the title makes it quite clear who this is adressed to: those who know Caylus and San Juan.


I guess I started by disagreeing with your first line. I dont think CMC is a simplified card-based version. Its a different game using Caylus themes (according to its creator). As long as people continue to think of it as Caylus Express, they may be missing out on a good game.

To say that CMC is almost a complete waste seems pretty harsh to me. It's a less complex game that gives the same feel of Caylus without all of the rules (and expense) that plays well with 2 players (I guess that can be argued). I could never get my wife to play Caylus, but she will play Caylus Magna Carta.

I understand you didnt like it, and want people to understand that it does not fit the same niche that San Juan does. I for one, think that San Juan plays more like Ticket to Ride cardgame than Puerto Rico (its all shuffling, no meat)

Would you ever trade Puerto Rico for San Juan? No, I dobut it.
Would you trade Caylus for Caylus Magna Carta? No way
Is San Juan a good standalone game? Yes - I love it.
Is CMC a good standalone game? I think so. I love it too.

Just different opinions I guess.
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Snowball
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the1jugg wrote:
I understand you didnt like it, and want people to understand that it does not fit the same niche that San Juan does.

Well that is exactly my point, so we agree on something I guess.
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Brian Cherry
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HavocIsHere wrote:
the1jugg wrote:
I understand you didnt like it, and want people to understand that it does not fit the same niche that San Juan does.

Well that is exactly my point, so we agree on something I guess.


Cheers to that!
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Snowball
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Drew1365 wrote:

And I wouldn't call it a simplified Caylus,

I did call it a dumbed down version
 
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Drew1365 wrote:
a better Caylus.

Blows! Blows to my heart! cry
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Jorg Zoetebier
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The cards are this small because of the way you use them on your table. But i disagree on pretty much all your points... first of all i find San Juan a (very) luck driven game, as some cards are way overpowered, and some way underpowered, that also get's boring after a few plays. On the other hand CMC feels like a totally different game each time, where you have to be really careful in your timing. It has much more to offer as a (board)game in my opinion, which is remarkable seeing the low number of possibilities each turn.
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Brian Forsythe
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Drew1365 wrote:
I don't think San Juan feels anything like Puerto Rico. Similar action selection, and . . . well, that's about it.

Seconded. AAMOF, I've played several games of Puerto Rico and "Puerto Rico-think" messed me up when I tried San Juan. Biggest similarity is graphics. I'm not even sure it would be useful for introducing folks to Puerto Rico.

Haven't played Caylus at all, though -- can CMC be considered a good intro for Caylus?
 
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Snowball
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megasycophant wrote:
Drew1365 wrote:
I don't think San Juan feels anything like Puerto Rico. Similar action selection, and . . . well, that's about it.

Seconded. AAMOF, I've played several games of Puerto Rico and "Puerto Rico-think" messed me up when I tried San Juan. Biggest similarity is graphics. I'm not even sure it would be useful for introducing folks to Puerto Rico.

Haven't played Caylus at all, though -- can CMC be considered a good intro for Caylus?

Well, I would say so since there are similarities, but even though the similarities are strong, the point you made for PR/SJ would stand, ie the "Caylus think" is quite different.
 
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