Had the gang over yesterday (the five regulars) for a game of Dominant Species. This was our first five-player game, and the first time Mark had played the game. We handed out random animals, and ended up with: Mark–Mammals, Jason—Reptiles, Dave–Amphibians, me–Arachnids, Patch–Insects.

The early game featured Mark getting off to a roaring start, and building up a nice 20-30 point lead after 3-4 turns. Most every one was trying to adapt to take more food sources, but regression and events conspired against that.

2 turn5
Beginning of turn 5.

My position slowly fell apart during the course of the game (not that it was ever all that good). The four action limit really hurt, since I could never come up with a plan for the turn that worked. Worse, Omnivore and Intelligence came up on the same turn, and I missed what was going on. Patch had the first Domination, and took Omnivore for the extra action and left Intelligence to Jason, so Dave and I were left at four actions while the other three got five. I hadn’t really thought about that, and just expected Patch to take Intelligence.

A couple turns later, Patch got in first to take Parasitism, giving him (alone) six actions. Most of the pack was catching up with Mark at this point, while I finally started falling behind. Dave had some trouble also, but he managed to mostly keep up despite some disasters nearly wiping him out (he was at four water elements, and there were only two water elements on the board… and then one was lost to Wasteland…).

2 turn6
Beginning of turn 6.

Jason had worked on his usual survival strategy early on, but kept being limited to one tile, so it wasn’t actually generating any VPs. Patch finally took over from him in the second half (after two turns where they were tied), and started getting good bonus VPs for it.

I was down to about four dominances on the last turn, and saw it cut down to two during the turn (this usually where I do well…), and all I could do is block one or two to reduce the size of other player’s bonus VPs… not that it did much good. Other than me, the final turn was pretty tense, as everyone tried to squeeze a few more points out of a volatile race. Patch won with 112 VP, Jason had 103, Mark 101, Dave 96 and I had 83.

2 end
End of game.