St Ives, Sydney
The second showing started with 5 and then expanded mid-game to 7 with late arrivals (provided with 2 or 3 random cards invested and some cards in the hand to get them roughly equivalent). We played to 7 districts.
Highlights ... David had two merchant buildings invested. Each successive attempt to be the merchant got assassinated until on the third attempt, to his pleasure, the assassin was in hiding. And then Craig building numerous buildings costing one gold coin each with the architect, only to draw the soldier like a magnet (didn't you read last week's report of things not to do!!!).
Late arrival Alex stole the win (damn, gave him too many cards), assassinating the soldier when playing his 6th district to ensure he didn't lose it. With no cards and no gold, I thought I still had time to catch him, but a neat play with the magician got him a card he could build with his 2 gold income and he was home with the 7 point bonus.
Andrew again got soldiered on the last turn (same as last week) to much chagrin. I think we might play a house rule next time that destroying a building on the last turn can only be done if it directly improves the soldier's position in the game. Otherwise its just a puss-y kingmaking thing, even if it is only for position.
I reckon three-gold buildings are the ideal building card for much of the game, with one or two bigger cards to get you the win. You can generally play a character to get you three income in a turn, then invest it all and leave nothing for the thief next turn. They're also too expensive for the soldier to burn.
Thoughts ... still a bit slow, though we ended up with 4 newbies I guess so its understandable. Still, most were keen to give it another go and as there aren't that many games that play best with 6-7, it will. Has anyone ever played this in under the 60 minutes suggested on the box though?