Tuesday 1st August - Goa
As usual the production values from Hans Im Glück are first rate, the board and all the bits of high quality. The only thing lacking is a way to keep track of the actions and rounds, I had made a small board using the graphics from the game to do just that.The main part of the board consists of 25 tiles laid in a 5 x 5 grid, these tiles consist of plantations producing spice or special actions that can used during the course of the game. The game starts with the player in control of the flag placing it on the board, either on the edge of the grid or in a blank space. Then the next player places his marker on an orthogonal tile and next player his marker orthogonal to that one, lastly the flag owner places a final marker. The tiles are then auctioned, with the money going to the owner of the marker, or if the owner buys it himself to the bank. When this phase is completed each player gets to perform 3 actions. Either moving a marker along one of 5 tracks, ships, harvest for spices, ducats, expedition cards, getting more colonists or you can try to found a colony.
The expedition cards let you perform special actions or give you extra ducats and such. Garry found all this a bit daunting at first, but as with a lot of games once you have played a round the mist starts to lift. As the game progressed you can keep a rough check of how many VPs your opponents have by looking at their tracks board and colonies and plantations, and I could see that it was going to be close. And it proved to be the case with only five points between first and third. Some people find the game dry but I thoroughly enjoyed it and perhaps it will see the table more often.
Final Scores (Tracks, Colonies, Expedition cards, Ducats, Bonuses)
Steve 18 - 10 - 10 - 0 - 4 = 42
Colin 22 - 10 - 4 - 0 - 6 = 40
Garry 25 - 6 - 3 - 3 - 0= 37