Jumping right in, whether you are looking at the video below, others online, or pics you see of this game while searching, you can't help but notice it's unique style and artwork. Miguel Coimbra is the credited artist here, and it is a nice, unique touch in the world of collectible card games or deck builders, to have something more artistic than comical. Miguel's artwork brings ancient civilizations to life in your hands and really is the center for this game. More after the video: (All apologies for some of the focus issues, I'm still learning the camera)
So first, this isn't a deck builder or a CCG, it really is more like a LCG, Living Card Game, if you are familiar with them. If not, think of it as this, it's a city builder, with
cards, where you will draft your strategies! Sound fun? Well, it is!
As you'll notice, there is very little writing on the cards themselves. Essentially, starting in the upper left and going clockwise, you have the cost in resources to play a card, the results it provides when played at the top, any additional structures it can lead to in future "ages" in the lower right, a note for if the card is included based off the number of players in your game (2 through 7) and then the name of the card in the lower left.
The game plays out in a draft format, where you build up and up to create the most wondrous civilization you can, with the ultimate goal of gaining the most victory points. There are several ways to gain victory points and win, appealing to almost anyone's fancy, be it commerce, resource control, special buildings (that provide direct points), science, or might.
The wide array of possible ways to win keeps the game very fresh. That said, there is already an expansion out for it if you still feel the need for more.
After separating the cards into ages, and then filtering out any cards not needed for your amount of players, each player will be dealt 7 cards and the fun begins. Players all play at the same time, each drafting a card to play and then passing the remaining 6 cards, and so on, with each age alternating the direction of passing. Each player reveals their card, and plays it, paying any associated costs. If you don't have all the resources in play to play the card you chose, have no fear, you can always buy it from a neighboring city, but beware, while commerce trade is an excellent way of obtaining resources not produced by your city, for each 3 gold your opponents have, they gain victory points! So, be careful who you buy from!
The game can be highly strategic, as anyone familiar with Magic: The Gathering draft games go, however, that is where those similarities stop. There are so many ways to gain victory points, it can at times, be daunting, but once you get familiar with the cards in the game, you will start to build strategies based on your opening hand and first few sets passed to you.
Overall, this is an extremely fun game. If you have ever played Puerto Rico, it has that type of feel. Lots of resource management and great style bring out the best in this game, and makes it one I recommend highly to obtain, play, and enjoy!
Final Score from 1 to 10 Crits with 10 being the highest?:
Repos Productions: http://www.rprod.com/en/accueil.html
Expansion - "Leaders": http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgameexpansion/92539/7-wonders-leaders
Watch It Played: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EkEz4iEiTpc&feature=related
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