My first game of the day was this quick 'filler' game of sorts, but one which I haven't played this year and am usually up for, especially to start a full day's gaming.
Initial turn order: Matt C, Carl B, me, Ted G.
I placed my first guard in what was a near-empty green palace, only to have two others fill up the joint! (My other guard started alone with a blackguard in the red palace; the purple palace, interestingly, started with no player guards.) My usual first-move strategy is (a) place 3 workers at one card each if possible, and (b) take 3 cards + dancer if I can't; I went with 'b' this time, and by game's end did so two other times.
I was fortunate to have areas open up when it got round to me, and was able to get 3 workers in palaces often for 1 card each (sometimes having to move a guard or two to make it happen). But what really helped my cause was the ability to get the first treasure from a number of palaces (at a cost of only 4 workers each).
Though I was 3rd to get my first treasure (Ted and Matt got the first two, both from the yellow palace), I got three of the 'first' treasures, the last of which got me to three while everyone else had two. Carl made some nice moves late, getting to three (followed by Matt), but by then I had 3 workers in the purple palace (with both my guards, no one else) and a lot of cards (but no purples and only one dancer left). On back-to-back moves, I used cards of a single color to (a) move a guard to another palace, (b) get a worker in that palace, and (c) move the guard back to the purple palace, worker in tow. The 2nd such move gave me my 5th worker, enough to grab my 4th treasure and win the game.
ToB is most certainly a tactic-heavy game, where it's virtually useless to plan longterm (apart from just getting workers onto the board). Here, the stars seemed to align for me whenever it got to me, and I made the most of it.
Fun game, and a springboard to more meatier fare later in the day.