Monday, January 26, 2009

CNY 1st Day Session Report: The One Where We Tried 2-Player Stone Age

Tried to garner a few friends for games today despite it being 1st day of CNY but in vain. Ended up playing some games with Van nonetheless - it had been some time since we played games on our own. 

We each picked one game: she chose Glory to Rome and I, Stone Age since I heard good things about its scalability and I was keen to try it out with just 2. 

Glory to Rome definitely scales better with 3-5 but I find that it plays out less predictably with 2 than Race for the Galaxy, which has made me increasingly unwilling to play it with 2. It always seems choices eventually boil down to a Consume (x2 VP) and Produce towards the latter rounds. That appears to be the predominant strategy to win with 2.

Enough rambling, back to GtR. I took an easy win as Van struggled to complete her buildings. An early sewer (put order cards played in stockpile after turn) put me in a good position and my stockpile was soon flooded. I eventually managed to build the Wall (every 2 materials in stockpile count as 1VP at the end of the game), and both my vault and influence easily trumped Van's. Clearly she isn't enjoying the game as much as before although I suspect with a little more efficient hand management she should find herself much more competitive.

As mentioned, it was our first play of Stone Age with 2 and Van obliterated me with a score of 338 to 293. I was already expecting higher scores especially after coming across a couple of 2-player session reports of Stone Age on BGG. 

I maxed out my tools and obtained all the 8 tool multipliers available. Alas, Van was playing a much more impressive game and she not only maxed out her food production and 'meeples' but also had more buildings than me. She also managed to obtain all 8 different types of the green civ cards while I ended up with 7, the last being at the bottom of the deck and was unobtainable as the game ended with a failure to refresh the civ cards.

It was clear that a more diversified strategy was probably necessary with fewer players.

Going visiting with Crusade friends tomorrow, hopefully I will be able to entice them to try a couple of games at the different houses.

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