I believe that all but Mark had played before, although I'm not sure how far back in time those previous games might have been. I know Steve and I played a game at his house in September last year (I was Crete then too). The game was played on the whole of the original board without any expansion and after a brief recap of rules we started around 1:30 and continued to about 10:00 with a brief break for something to eat. At the finish I had just edged into the late iron age, 2 AST moves from the finish.
The nations in play were:-
Africa (Mark W)
Assyria (Steve H)
Babylon (Simon H)
Egypt (Jonathan M)
I had taken my camera with me to the Stag with the intention of taking pictures which I could post here, but as I find often happens, when I got involved in the game I completely forgot about it, so here are just some notes of possible interest about how the game progressed.
As usual the first few turns proceeded rapidly until cities were built and trading became possible. I held off building immediately as Crete has the problem of having to use population tokens to build ships to expand off the home island, in this case first to Asia Minor and then into Greece, meaning that population expansion is not as fast as for the other nations. As a result I was delayed one turn moving out of the Stone Age, this being the only delay I suffered.
My first purchase of Civilisation cards was Music, Drama & Poetry and Mysticism, having gathered a collection of a lot of Salt, hoping to mitigate the effect of any Civil War I might suffer. As it happened I don't recall that there were any significant Civil Wars throughout the game, two of them failed to occur when Jonathan and later Mike themselves had the largest stock having drawn the card.
Moving through the game, it became apparent that Mike & I were in the lead, Steve had been in a good position, but became the victim of the worst Barbarian invasion I think I have ever seen. It occurred when he had no units in stock and the Barbarians demolished 4 cities, which could not be replaced by tokens, meaning that they could just move onto the next merely leaving behind a number of units matching the population limits of the regions.
Moving into the later stages, I came under attack, not unexpectedly, with Steve encroaching on my position in Asia Minor having bought Military, by the end I had also bought it and was able to stabilise that situation moving after him. On the last turn Jonathan's Egyptian forces crossed the Mediterranean to occupy my home island and I just evacuated at that time and moved to attack Steve's city of Salamis on Cyprus, which having demolished it I was able to rebuild using Architecture. I took a Bronze card as plunder which I was able to trade back.
I was not able to put together a great trading round in tha last turn but was left with enough to buy a couple of decent cards (Medicine, which I never got around to buying earlier, and Enlightenment) using my accumulated credits. Knowing it is the last turn means that purchasing is not necessarily the same as would be done if the game were going another turn. In that final trading I ended up with 3 calamities and Piracy was drawn to be discarded, leaving me with Epidemic (pity I didn't get round to Medicine earlier) and Barbarian Hoards, which was quite lucky as if the Hoards (which don't affect Crete) had been drawn, it probably would have given the game to Mike.
I think everyone had a good time, although I think Mark suffered from being a beginner playing Africa, I think he might have done better with Babylon or Egypt, but they were both gone before he got to pick.
The final scores
|Advanced Civilization - 480 Mins.|
|1||Dave D (Crete)||3214|
|3||Steve H (Assyria)||2761|
|4||Jonathan M (Egypt)||2516|
|5||Simon H (Babylon)||2468|
|6||Mark W (Africa)||2360|