Yet another successful game day yesterday. Got everyone over (6 people total) for Advanced Civilization on Sunday. Overall it went smoothly, and a great time was had. Someone really needs to reprint the darn thing.

In the initial picking, I was fourth and took Africa. I know I’ve played Africa before (in the dim time), and have vague memories of being pretty squeezed. So I played to an aggressively expansionistic policy, which went pretty well. Jason took Egypt, and maintained a compact, if dense, civilization the entire game.

Dave took Italy (he had the final choice), and was squeezed between me and Mark’s Thrace the entire game. Early on, he had more than enough trouble with a very aggressive Thrace that I easily settled Sicily first, and he didn’t try anything there until my first wave of disasters, and in the long run ended with control of much of southern Greece.

Zjonni took Crete and followed a course that I suggested might work (it had popped into my head the night before). I’m only used to seeing Crete build a ship on turn 4, sacrificing population to spread off-island. Building a city instead sacrifices more population, but there’s enough to maintain the city, and the taxation pays for the ships, meaning that there’s no continuing drain on the population for more shipbuilding, and you start building up trade cards slightly earlier. It’s probably best to migrate on 4 and build a city on Crete on 5, but I hadn’t thought it through, and was surprised when Zjonni actually did it. Any rate, after a slow start he went into Asia Minor, mostly staying out of the Italy-Thrace war.

Patch took Babylon, and spread far and wide with no immediate neighbors. We really need to stop letting him do that. However, he was a little slow building the initial cities, and got slammed by two Barbarian Hordes during the game, which slowed him down.

I note with some amusement, that except for trading out Assyria for Crete, this is exactly the same set of countries as our last 6-player game. It seems to me that having Assyria/Asia & Illyria instead of Italy & Thrace might be a better balanced set.

Between Sicily and the bulk of Sub-Saharan Africa, I established the first dominant empire, generally keeping one city ahead of anyone else, and getting some good trade sets to get set with good advances and make it into the Late Bronze Age. I dodged the first calamities and got up to seven cities for two turns before they caught up to me. I had been successfully cycling tokens in and out of stock, taxation and population, I was exerting pressure on the Nile valley, my attempt to colonize Cyprus failed, but I ended up with small colonies in Greece and the Sinai.

So I was the perfect target of the first Civil War of the game. Crete got a valuable shot in the arm, but the resulting possessions were too scattered to easily manage. After that, I recovered some, but then kept taking calamities that kept me off-balance while Egypt finally got its act together. I still had some high-value cards that allowed good trading opportunities, but I ended up keeping a Resin card until near the end of the game. Right at the point where my fortunes were lowest (soon after a Treachery and a Slave Revolt), Crete was hit by a Civil War… and I was the beneficiary. I got two cities (one of which had been mine…), and scattered possessions in th

Sadly, that happened a little too late in the day for me to get some real momentum back. After being the one in the lead of Civilization cards for much of the day, others were catching up. Patch got his eighth (out of nine needed to enter the Early Iron Age) on the last turn. So did I, because it was the last turn; otherwise I would have been better served to sit on my poor trade cards, used the Grain I had to soak up some of the Famine I was dealt, and hope for a real hand to buy two better cards on the next turn.

Final Scores:

Side Player AST Cities Civ Cards Cards Treasury Total Place
Africa Rindis 1000 250 580 3 1 1834 2
Italy Dave 900 300 300 25 5 1530 5
Thrace Mark 1000 200 410 1 0 1611 4
Crete Zjonni 1000 300 205 0 1 1506 6
Babylon Patch 900 400 590 13 0 1903 1
Egypt Jason 900 350 375 18 8 1651 3

For the fourth time in a row, I came in second. Patch has won three out of four games. The one time he didn’t win is the one time I had a civilization on his border. I think he’s been getting lucky with non-aggressive neighbors.