The Games We Play

The Games We Play

A repository of reports on the Wednesday night sessions of the club and anything else related to the club or boardgaming in general, which may be of interest to anyone who may be passing by.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Brine is fine ! Magnum Sal : Muria - 16 Jan 2013

Dave F, Scott, Steve H and I (Mike) gave the Magnum Sal expansion Muria a first outing at the Club - sadly only available direct from Poland for the foreseeable future.  I really like the base game, lots of strategy, a bit of luck, and a worker placement that actually feels a bit like you're using workers - they even get tired!  The new expansion now makes the water you're busy shifting out of the mine valuable as brine, as it can be used to make the normal salt varieties (2 for brown, 4 for green, 6 for white) and can be itself a component in some new Royal Order tiles.  It also has a totally different mine layout method - no longer fixed, but players themselves explore where they want and dig down to lower levels with six new shaft tiles.  A couple of new tools support these mechanisms, but you stick with 7 types available so two types will be removed at random, which offers even more variety.  Each player also gets a Foreman super-meeple, worth double when working in the mine, again offering some additional strategies.

So, Muria gives you more to think about, and therefore probably adds a little to the game length - our first attempt took nearly 3 hours, but the time didn't drag for me, because you're constantly having to watch what the others are doing while you - it's as interactive as the base game.  It also gave a pretty close result, I think we all made mistakes (easy to do in this!) but Scott played the steadiest and deserved his win despite a little bit of luck right at the end. 

You also get components for a 5th player, I'd like to try with this number but am doubtful it would be as good, certainly if any less-experienced players were included I think I'd try a 2-Phase 'tweaked' game rather than 3-Phase game to guarantee to keep it within an evening.  On the whole it adds more to an already engaging game so I'd stick with keeping it in for the future.

On the other table, Gordon, Simon and Dave D were playing Galaxy Trucker.  I played it once when it first came out and my thoughts are a bit like I think I heard Dave D say - a lot of fun for 30-45 minutes but the fun wears thin because the game goes on for at least as long again as repetition rather than development.

1 comment:

  1. I liked Galaxy Trucker. I don't think it lasted too long considering it was the first time we had played and we were being rather slow to activate the timer. Three rounds felt just right.

    We were a tough crowd for such a lighthearted game. As a near full session event it is probably not appropriate for a Wednesday night but there are situations when it would shine. For me it would be great as a family holiday game or a change of pace over a gaming weekend.

    Anyway thanks Simon for introducing me to Galaxy Trucker. I can see why it is such a popular game.