20 May 2021
If you don’t own the Century series, this is a great place to start
Reskinning games has its ups and downs. For the publisher it’s often a good way to get a little more out of a game rather than just going down the ‘second edition’ route. For designers it’s often another chance to tweak a few bits. For the general public it’s a good way to get hold of a game should the original gone out of print.
This is a reimplementation of the modern classic, Century: Eastern Wonders with the ‘Golem’ treatment. That treatment is to add a cute mythical layer to the game and change some of the language – so rather than harvest, we mine – and the rest remains mostly identical.
The core game consists of moving around a hexagonally tiled map created for your playthrough. Each turn you can create an outpost in a tile, causing other to pay if they also want to place an outpost there. The point of the outposts is the be able to activate the trade mechanic, which allows your caravan to swap one or two of the resource gems for a different configuration of gems – usually for valuable. Eventually, when you have the right gems in hand you’ll travel to a town to buy some victory points. It’s got a good flow, as the original did, and aside from a forgivable typo in the rules, it’s beautifully produced. The game’s robust nature allows for nearly anyone to get involved, it’s a pleasure to teach to new players and a solid step up from the straightforward gateway games that we get started on.
If you don’t own the Century series, this is a great place to start – and certainly has a brighter appeal to non-gamers who might be put off by the slightly serious looking box art of the original. For those who already have a copy of the series, this is probably the one you’ll want to buy for someone else.
Christopher John Eggett
PLAY IT? PROBABLY
Designer: Emerson Matsuuchi
Publisher: Plan B Games
This article originally appeared in issue 47 of Tabletop Gaming. Pick up the latest issue of the UK's fastest-growing gaming magazine in print or digital here or subscribe to make sure you never miss another issue.
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