Whats the difference between Terra Mystica and Sidereal Confluence for you? They’re both overstuffed with different resource types and are somewhat difficult to learn.
Speaking of Terra Mystica, has anyone played the re-implementation of the game with a space theme? https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/220308/gaia-project
I heard it streamlines/rebalances a few things; I’m kind of curious how it compares. The setting, at least, reads a little blander to me.
I saw this youtube video a couple months ago about this two player board game; the board was like this 3d sculpted island, with the top divided into a grid; two players, each controlled two little dudes; the game was about building these little white plastic buildings up on the grid; had to build next to one of your two dudes, they could climb up onto the buildings one story at a time; if you built one 3 stories tall I think you won, and maybe if you trapped one of the opponents dudes you also won?
Can’t remember the name but it seemed neat.
edit: it is called Santorini, I described the rules wrong I think, and also there is a fully abstract version, neat.
they’re both admirably heavy-yet-loose (in that there’s almost no way to definitively plan more than one or two moves ahead, but you still have plenty of opportunities to scheme and try to make any of a dozen things happen if you want to), but sidereal confluence doesn’t really strand you on your own in between interacting with other players to the same extent; it does have a clear split between the “I” phase and the “they” phase of your turn, but the whole thing is such a big codependent mess that they don’t feel artificially separate from one another in practice (with the exception of maybe the imdril nomads, who are my least favourite race in the game for that reason)
sidereal confluence is also far less dry; it’s massive and intimidating but it doesn’t actually have that many resource types or mechanics and it’s incredibly silly in practice which goes a long way toward keeping it interesting.
it’s also a great example of how you don’t need literal randomness to make a game extremely difficult to do straightforwardly well at, you can make it unpredictable in plenty of other ways. it’s so flexible! you will never ever lose due to one move, you will lose because you didn’t get enough people on board for an insane four-way loan no one would ever have come up with.
I really like sidereal confluence, I feel like it was made just for me
Oh I think I identified your problem and its my number one criticism of the game
what player count were you playing at?
Terra Mystica is not great at low player counts because it gives you too much room to do your own thing. At 4-5 players its an overcrowded elevator where you’re trying to press the right button but you keep stepping on everyone else’s toes. But in a good way.
Its like if Agricola wasn’t a game you play by consulting a spreadsheet about optimal worker/point exchanges.
yes but for that same reason agricola is actually pretty good up until your group has played it more than 5 or 10 times (and caverna largely fixes this by making it more maximalist, which is the right approach in that case) whereas it takes too many games of terra mystica to sufficiently internalize its artifice and really make those elevator buttons sing
I don’t think I ever played it with more than 4, I probably played at least one game of 3
Agricola lacks the ‘but in a good way’ clause for me
What makes Terra Mystica work is the amount of choices you have and how you’re trying to outmaneuver the other players with thoughts of “I need to terraform this tile but if I do that, they’ll just immediately terraform it on their turn and gain the benefits from my work. I’ll spend half the game showing complete disinterest in it and hijack it when they make the first move.”
I agree that’s exactly what’s good about the game, it’s just it’s far too often what should be good about the game but doesn’t quite get there, or requires the right group to do so
whereas I’ve like never had a remotely uninteresting game of sidereal confluence, it’s just a big stupid machine no one can say no to
even if you have one player who’s too willing to make deals it doesn’t even matter, the game balances itself and minimizes that, which is something no other negotiation game does
Uh, board games? Moving things around on a table? Enforcing rules based on the flawed misunderstanding of humans?
Board games are a lot of fun but escapist they ain’t
I have, it’s Terra Mystica but in space. I don’t remember much else, the streamlining probably was fine but I didn’t notice it being better or worse than before. There’s more fun space games.
I remember coworkers were made for Terra Mystica and were amazed when I said I preferred 5-player Dominant Species & that we could finish it in 2.5-3 hours
This damn promo video nearly made me break all my principles and actually back a KS campaign when it came out
I have yet to play it and I am holding off on it because of the modular board. I like static boards, I like boards that can be studied and figured out. There is so much information on what the best starting tiles are for a race, and I love that stuff. With a modular board, can you have those same kind of discussions?
I think you can talk about the value function you use to determine which spaces are good or bad instead of the output of the function instead.
Like how in Spice Road, the points card value is
(1xA + 2xB + 3xC + 4xD - points + coin) x ( turns before you claim < turns until someone else claims ? 1 : 0 )
Played Root, it was enjoyable, I didn’t like it, I’d play it again.
It seemed designed to be hard to read this game state, and you not only have to consider what your best move is with your asymmetric abilities, but also the other players’ best moves too. Then translate that into points to work out who’s winning. So you can’t make reasonable informed decisions until you’ve worked out how to win as every faction, which might take a few plays per faction.
The owner compared it to GMT’s COIN series games (4 player, asymmetric), which it is superficially but the complexity in those games isn’t in working out who might win (since the victory condition thresholds are clearly marked on the map/points tracks and the player aids, and working out the move which gets the most points isn’t too hard) but in choosing what action to take (because getting closer to achieving your victory condition might help you win but may not be the best move). I felt Root was most like Twilight Struggle, a game you have to study/play a few times to learn exactly how you could lose the game at any time, so you can take the right defensive moves and have a fighting chance.
Anyway I was the Vagabond and managed to zoom to victory with 12 points in my final turn from quests 4 & 5 in a suit + a choice crafting. No other player noticed the ridiculously high payoff quests had, nor could they have stopped them from being completed.
One of the worst board games ever made is getting themed spinoffs and I’m astonished by the first release:
I’m legit reeling from this.
It makes perfect sense
I’m astonished Square’s Disney license allows them to make ancillary licenses like this
I am so hype. This is perfect and hideous and I could not be more on board.