Recommend
19 
 Thumb up
 Hide
8 Posts

Stone Age» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Stone Age - a great game for both gamers and casual gamers rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Chris
Netherlands
's-Hertogenbosch
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Game Summary
Stone Age is a worker placement game. Each player has a tribe of cavemeeples at their disposal. With this tribe they have to work towards the goal to score the most victory points. This can be done by going after long-term benefits and to collect resources and spend those on new huts or development cards. When the work is done, the cavemeeples will be hungry and have to be fed. And then...back to work, yet again!

Gameplay
Each player starts off with a tribe of 5 cavemeeples. There are 10 different actions on the board, which shows a player can’t do everything on just one turn. Choices will have to be made. On a turn each player orders -in turn order- one or more cavemeeples to 1 single action until all the cavemeeples are placed on the board. Some actions can only be chosen by 1 single player. Others can be chosen by a limited total number of cavemeeples of multiple players. Others have no limitations. Therefore you have to choose wisely in what order you choose your actions. You might be blocked out entirely for a turn. When all the cavemeeples have been assigned their jobs, these jobs are resolved. Last but not least, work makes people hungry and they have to be fed. Then it’s time for the next turn: choose actions, resolve actions, feed people.
There are four types of actions to choose from:
1) Collect food and resources:
Players collect food and 4 types of resources: wood, clay, stone and gold. Food is cheapest with a value of 2. Gold is the most expensive with a value of 6. Wood, clay and stone are worth 3, 4 and 5 respectively. Only 7 cavemeeples can be collecting each different resource. Food is the exception with no limitation. Players can determine the number of cavemeeples collecting a certain resource when choosing their actions. For each cavemeeple a die is rolled. The die total is then divided by the resources value. That’s the number of resources produced, rounded down. For instance: 3 cavemeeples are collecting wood, therefore 3 dice are rolled. They roll a 6, a 4 and a 1 which totals 11. 11 divided by 3 (the value of wood) = 3 wood, rounded down. Resources are dependent of the dice roll and are luck based. But, this luck can be migitated somewhat by the amount of cavemeeples put to work.
2) Long-term benefits:
There are 3 different long-term benefits:
- Farming: By farming you make sure you don’t have to feed one cavemeeple for the remainder of the game.
- Making babies: This action requires a total of 2 cavemeeples, no more, no less. But, in later turns you’ll have one more cavemeeple at your disposal. Also, it’s an extra mouth to feed.
- Tools: This is another way to migitate the luck of the dice roll. For each tool in possession one point can be added to dice rolls every turn.
3) Huts:
The number of players decides the number of stacks of huts. The game ends when one stack of huts runs out. Huts have to be paid for with the afforementioned resources and are worth victory points. (The small expansion adds 6 new huts with extra benefits, like long-term benefits or free resources every turn, and those are great fun.)
4) Development cards:
Each turn, 4 development cards are available. Development cards are also paid with the resources, the cheapest costing only 1, the most expensive costing 4 resources of choice.
Development cards have an immediate gain, like free food, resources, long-term benefits of victory points; sometimes a fixed number, sometimes a variable number.
Development cards also score victory points at the end of the game, mostly by multiplying the efforts on farming, making babies, tools and huts. This is where you can make the big scores. A lot of farming makes sure you don’t have to hunt as much, instead workers can be put to work elsewhere. A big tribe has the benefit of a large amount of workers available. Lots of tools migitates luck in the dice rolls and less workers have to placed to collect resources. Those are big advantages during the game but they don’t score any victory point. When you also have the right multipliers found on the development cards, they do score points. A player might have 6 tribe multipliers and a tribe of eight. At the end of the game this player scores 6 x 8 = 48 points. Huts -who do score victory points during the game- can be multiplied as well. But, it’s hard to focus on collecting resources and buying both huts and the right development cards.
Some cards do not multiply those efforts, but show relics. There are 8 unique relics, 2 of each. For each set of different relics collected, victory points are scored. 2 different relics score 2 x 2 = 4 points. 8 different relics score 8 x 8 = 64 points.
When the development cards can’t be replenished at the end of a turn, the game ends as well.

(Re)playability
Stone age is an easy to teach and fun worker placement game. The most difficult part to explain has to be the scoring at the end of the game, with both the multipliers and the relics. The choosing and resolving of the actions feels very intuitive. I’ve taught this game to many of my friends and all were quickly able to really play this game, trying out strategies they came up with on their own, even in their learning game. They all enjoyed this game tremendously.
The game plays in about 90 minutes. It scales well from 2 to 4 players. With less players, actions will be more limited, to keep the available options scarce. With 3 players only 2 of the 3 long-term benefits can be chosen. With 2 players, still only 2 of the 3 long-term benefits can be chosen, but access to resources is further restricted to only 1 single player.
Most importantly, it’s really fun to play. There are some tough choices, but it’s never brain burning and therefore it’s playable often -even after a hard day at work- and enjoyable for many people. I have played Agricola a few times now and would love to play it more, but there are definitly occasions when I’m just too tired to concentrate this much. Also, I can’t introduce this game to everybody, because it will dazzle some people. I consider myself a gamer and like to play some heavier games. But I also just want to play a casual game with my friends. Stone Age is just that, a great game to be enjoyed by both casual gamers and gamers and on many occassions!
Adding to the fun, my favorite variant would be rolling the die to decide whether or not you’re having twins when making babies.

Overall
Personally, I love this game. It’s fun and it gets played a lot. The production value is great. I can highly reccommend this to almost anybody. It might not be your cup of tea, when you’re a pure brain burning fan who only plays with serious gamers. If you do play games with casual gamers, this game is a must.

19 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Joe Adams
United States
Roy
Utah
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I concur. My wife does not like confrontational games and gets upset if someone goes out of their way to intentionally mess with another's strategy. This game has the ability to be played almost independently of the other players, but still has a high level of fun.

Safe for married couples!
9 
 Thumb up
0.25
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Bindas
United States
Renton
Washington
flag msg tools
Maybe it's been a long day, but you sold me when I read "cavemeeples".
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Greg S.
United States
Whittier
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
You have gotten me very excited to play this game. +thumb.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gordon Adams
United Kingdom
flag msg tools
mb
Good review

It does have replayability and that is a major plus to any game.

Regards.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jim bo
United Kingdom
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
good review.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Aaron Gelb
United States
Los Angeles
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I have some friends who aren't gamers...casual gamers at best. They do like Settlers very much, however. What do you think my chances of selling them on this game are?

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Steve Duff
Canada
Ottawa
Ontario
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I think it has great casual appeal.

It looks fantastic, so it really draws them in right off the bat. And it's very simple to play, put your guys down, roll the dice, collect the stuff. Buy bits with the stuff.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.