The Tao of Gaming

Boardgames and lesser pursuits

Age of Goblin Prosperity

Recent gaming:

Played another game of Gosu (4 player). At the end of the first round, 3 players having passed, one player said “Card, Card, Card, I win.” And so he had. Apparently it happened in the next game, too. I don’t mind auto-wins, but (for the second game out of … two), I got one playable Goblin in my opening hand. This time, after I drew three cards, an effect made everyone discard half their hand, so I was effectively out of the first round (I had actually gotten a second playable goblin, which unlocked most of my hand … if I could afford it). Highly chaotic.

Prosperity — I like it. I don’t think anyone is surprised.

Age of Industry — I never did update my thoughts on Brass, but you can easily surmise what I think by the fact that I never played again after an initial foray. (Actually, ditto Automobile, but I actually like that. Somewhat). Anyway, the sequel.

  • Cleaner rules (no canal vs rail dichotomy, only a single scoring, no weird map thing with special rules that aren’t listed on the map). That’s nice.
  • Components — [Shakes head, more in sadness than anger].
  • Gameplay — Simple rule changes deliver big differences, namely the “CareBearification” of Brass. Sure, the original game was a mess, but Brass had teeth. And a game where you get and payback loans in the same turn, with no cost or penalty? Martin Wallace must be chained to a radiator right now, in terror of the doppelganger bearing his name.
  • I have a strong suspicion that (at least for the US map) there really aren’t that many paths to victory. But I have no desire to find out.

Call it a mixed success.  I disliked Brass, but only feel a slight distaste towards Age of Industry.  The inevitable march of progress!


Written by taogaming

October 12, 2010 at 6:00 pm

Posted in Reviews

Tagged with , ,

5 Responses

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  1. Brass was a mess, but to the extent it worked, it worked *because* it was a mess. There was this opaque, messy system, and you gamed it. Other than that, there was no there there. There was no other game in the package. So if you try to clean it up, and you’re left with nothing.


    October 12, 2010 at 6:44 pm

  2. Apparently, the publisher of Gosu, Moonstar games, has added some addendum rules for tournament play / more fair starting hands.

    From the article: 2 additional rules were added so far: Draft(*) with double first pick(*), and Turn Limit when the opponent has passed.


    October 12, 2010 at 7:11 pm

  3. CareBearification – Nice.

    I wonder if the Automobile reprint will do anything other spruce up the components a bit.

    Benjamin Kindt

    October 12, 2010 at 7:42 pm

  4. I can see Age of Industry having multiple good paths to victory and I suspect (and hope) that it comes down to a combination of taking advantage of both board opportunities and opponent strategies. Some of the obvious strategies have obvious counters to them. If one person is going for goods factories, you can counter by not building ports/ships and/or by building cheaper cotton factories and supplying the ships/ports. If one player goes deep into iron or coal, perhaps you can build the more shallow techs, or do more developing of the middle techs and overbuilding so you aren’t consuming as many iron/coal on buildings and railroads.

    It’s also possible that in a five player game all the strategies will be covered so there will be some equilibrium of playing “the obvious strategy” (whatever that is) and trying to find your niche elsewhere.


    October 13, 2010 at 11:17 pm

  5. I hope not, Benjamin–the game is perfect as it is. Anyway, the reprint’s been delayed and won’t be available until early next year.

    Larry Levy

    October 14, 2010 at 10:33 am

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