Stefan Dorra & Ralf zur Linde Eggertspiele + Pegasus spiele
So let’s get the main complaint over with first so we can continue with the game review. For some reason, having designed a really good game of building and planning, filling the box with a board of quality card and durable counters plus wooden pieces for roads, buildings and player pieces, the person in charge of development decided to make the player boards - the very well used player boards - of extremely thin, flimsy glossy paper, all four of which in my box had creases.
That’s all we could find wrong with the game, everything else is as near perfection as a board game could be.
There is very little luck, just the random drawing of the Worker tiles, and even then there is always a good selection (until possibly near the end of the game) available for each player.
There is very little, almost none, player interaction except perhaps the way players position the roads and Milestones on the board. Careful placing of the roads and Milestones ensures you don’t leave high scores open for the next player.
Careless building will no doubt give the game away.
The board, as you can see in the pic below is made up of triangular segments with Milestone markers on each intersection. When you lay a road, you place two lengths along consecutive lines and lay a wooden Milestone piece between them. This means that when you extend a road you leave the Milestone at the end of the previous road open - this is where a Market can be placed.
Players score points depending on whether they collect the Workers that begin the game on the board, where you place your roads (and thus Milestones), where you place a Market and where you build houses.
You get building resources from moving your Pawn around your player-board. He has to follow a clockwise direction and must always stop on the Castle - here you lose any resources you hold over 3 and also (very painful) lose a Worker every time. When your Pawn lands on (or passes) a resource you gain one resource type. You can move as far as you like with the exception of stopping on the Castle. This is a very clever movement mechanic as it leaves the player with the challenge of getting the most out of their resources before having them automatically stripped.
Highly playable, beautifully artistic (Klemens Franz is the artist) and (mostly) exceptional components.
There is an English translation version from Stronghold Games. £39.99. 2-4 players takes about an hour to play.