I have had Amun-Re for about 5 months, sitting downstairs ready to play. I bought it with a large order and it was the last title we had yet to play. I told myself no new purchases until I had played all the games I owned at least once. I had brought it out at the 1st Annual Gregorfest on New Years day, but it never made it to the table.
Anyhow, I was able to teach Justin and Leigh in about 15 minutes the basic rules. As with most groups, I suspect, we are creatures of example and would much rather get our feet wet then memorizing the rules.
I had read several strategy articles here at BGG and explained the basic strategy of being sure you got some income going with farmers before buying stones.
One of the things that took us a little bit to grasp were the mechanics of the auctions. We are big fans of Power Grid but rarely do we have long drawn out auctions until the end of the game. So we played the same way, start low and try to decieve your opponent on which auction you truly want to win. With the different mechanics of the auction in Amun-Re though, we had some learning to do.
It took us until the 3rd auction to realize that if you really want to win a province you had to start higher. If you were first and bid 0 on the best province, you stood a good chance of the last person driving the auction up higher then you could afford.
At the end of the Old Kingdom, I was up 25 to 19 (Justin an Leigh were tied) in part due to having the most pyramids on both sides and two bonus cards.
In the New Kingdom we started to pick up on some of the strategies. I fell behind early as I lost the first auction of Mendes (Leigh), Thebes (Justin), and Sawu (me.) Justin and Leigh were able to max out their farmers, but fortunatly I got "camel bonus" on Sawu the first two rounds to keep my income going.
The last round was where Leigh lost it. She had a lot of bonus cards. We were all even on pyramids, and Leigh was tied for most pyramids on both sides. However, she lost out on the sacrifice as both Justin and I out bid her. That allowed for us to get additional bonus stones to break the ties with Leigh on most pyramids.
Final scores were:
* Justin wins tiebreaker.
Justin was up for another game, now that he knew how to play, but suprisingly Leigh was not enamored with her first play (usually Leigh will try any game at least 3 times.) I will try again next weekend ;-)