Recommend
26 
 Thumb up
 Hide
4 Posts

Dominant Species» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Evolution of the Dominant Species rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Dan Likos
United States
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
My regular game group picked up a copy of the 3rd edition of Dominant Species at the end of June. We chose the game based mostly on reviews and comments posted on the geek.

I set out to learn the rules, so I read the rulebook, reread it and posted my only question (singular, as the rulebook is fabulously written) here...
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/821342/blight-and-catast...

Armed with confidence and knowledge we set out to play our first game, 6 of us, 4 regular to the group, and 2 temporary to the group, who were friends of one of our regulars and passing through town at the time. It took us about 30 minutes to get the game set up and explained. This was a longer process because we were ALL new to the game and thus forgivable at this time.

Game play was fairly smooth, slow at times but never "boring" as none of us knew what we were really doing noone really could claim that they played well or poorly or better than anyone else because we all made dire mistakes and learned from them. Amphibians took the game in just over 4 hours.

This first game raised only 1 new rules question...which I posted the next morning here...
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/822384/elements-on-earth

Game two occured a few nights later, We picked up two of our regulars but lost one (there are 6 of us) so it was a game of 5 with 2 noobs, and 3 1 timers. Rules explaination and set up were less painful, but the game took MUCH longer...right around 5.5 hours with an Insect victory...I feel the increase in game length is because we learned so much that first play that we were so very careful not to make the same mistakes. We all knew that length of play was THE major con of this game, and don't mind longer games so it wasn't too much of an issue, only that we couldn't get another game in (usually we play two titles a night) However this game the dominance cards were SO MUCH more brutal. I suppose it was their timing coupled with the fact that we hadn't yet learned to look out for them and take proper evasive actions. A few people got a bit upset, and I feel they left still steaming...to me this is unacceptable

Game three occurred almost instantly after game two. I believe it was the next night with the same 5 people and was VERY similar to game two. Arachnids took the game (3rd different winner and 3rd different animal) in about 4.5 hours...we shaved a bit of time off, but were still a little concerned with length and definatly still concerned with people getting upset during game play. One of our players is pretty innocent and is quoted to have said "I think I need to drink beer when we play this game" ...she very rarely drinks.

Over the next few days we shared some BGG threads with each other concerning defensive play...and mitigating damage done by dominance cards.

Game four comes a 4 or 5 nights later. All 6 of us for the first time.
Reptiles take the game down, and we have our first repeat winner, but still not a repeat animal. We played great. No one got upset (atleast not redfaced or huffy) but length was still an issue. We are still reduced to a single game per session. After this play we talked about how can we reduce the time. We decided that we were doing too much discussing options with each other...and questioning each others play...(we do this alot to learn) And that next time we play there will be none of this.

Game five (our most recent game) occurred a few nights ago. I finally won! with Arachnids...and a repeat animal. (Only birds have yet to see the podium...and oddly enough the guy whom we tend to agree is our best overall player) AND we played the game in 2.5 hours! WOW. We decided that 10 seconds (no timer or anything, but peer pressure kept everyone moving) and no move discussions or suggestions or questioning or changes of mind were allowed...and game play was seamless, what a wonderful experience, The game finally shone. We all made minor mistakes of course, but I imagine that as we play more often at this clip, we will begin to reduce these and become really good players.

I write this (I am mathematician by trade, and poor writer, so I never do reviews or the such) because I have seen that there are several people out there that play this game one time and give up on it because it is complicated...brutal..."not for crybabies" as one BGGer quipped...and long. But as your play evolves these issues will in fact iron themselves out and the game lives up to its high rankings and praise.








27 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dvonn Yinsh
Canada
Etobicoke
Ontario
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
Thank you for the session report.

Unfortunately, I have experienced quite a few new players who played once but won't play again because of their perceived chaos and overpowering cards.

I had warned them of this beforehand. And I told them that I felt that way after my first game. But that it takes 4 to 5 games to start to grasp how to play the game. And that the cards are not as swingy as first perceived.

I would just encourage anyone who has only played once, to give this game several more plays. Then its brilliance will shine through.

And as for play time, we can get a 4 player game done in 2.5 hours. So it doesn't have to be an all night game.

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fernando Robert Yu
Philippines
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Wow..4-5 hrs is LONG!!!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Steve Briscoe
United Kingdom
Shropshire
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
This brings back the memories of the golden age of 'Monopoly' when 4-5 hours was really quite short.
They used to last sometimes upwards of 2 weeks. Wow the stamina! every night in the spare room one more slog, until finally the last person was left standing with everyone else in total bankruptcy.
I love the slightly longer game myself, a sort of endurance, but then I used to play chess for 5 hours, so it's nothing different to me.
This is one mega game, but I think it is really the best out there. I do see though that enough hours to fit in could be a problem. Hey, that's what game nights are made for!!
Let's set it up and lets play!!!
 
 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.