Sunday, June 2, 2013

Hansa Teutonica : Ignore me at your own risk!

i'm purple btw! 
Our last game of the night to round off a almost 9 hours of gaming session was Hansa and we had 1 new player with us. Now in this game I have always ignored the action track (to get more actions) and did all sorts of other ways to score points. Mostly though I went with occupying cities because I can force the game to end faster before the others get their "engines" running and still score respectably.

In this session, I did get at least 1 extra action but again went for the cities. In the picture you can see at the end game I had about 8 cities linked up and also scored the 7 points from linking the red cities. The main difference I did this time was to go after the dinner plates which gave quite a lot of good benefits (though not as good as another friend had gotten as he consecutively obtain the extra actions bonus tokens) and also gave me extra 6 points. I had almost managed to do a cobra strike when I completed the red cities for 7 points to bring me to 19,  just 1 point shy of the 20 point ending game condition. I should have timed it better then I could have creamed the rest :P Still I did win and that's alright with me.
Its interesting how after a few plays with some of the same people for this game they seem to always still go for the actions first and then try to clear the same tracks (refresh track etc). I can understand why these are very important because if the engine is allowed to develop, then the end game scoring is quite a lot. So if I were to do my same strategy again, I will need to be the driver. Meaning that they react to what I am doing rather than me reacting. This will keep them off footed and perhaps allow me to sneak in a cobra strike for the victory! Last thing I want to point out is that in this game, the theme is very dry and non existent. We had a short discussion afterwards about what this theme thingie is and why it applies here (dry theme) and not on other games like Tzolkin or Terra.
For me I think certain things can click for me and allow me to still immerse somewhat into the theme. The Art, the components and perhaps some game mechanics still allow me to feel the theme of the game. For hansa though, it is non existent. It can get a whee bit too dry sometimes though as all you are doing is pushing cubes onto the board and around your play area. Matching colors, fighting for dominance in a city and scoring points. For other games for example bora bora, the huts and the board allows me to imagine my tribe is moving across Bora Bora. The little priest meeples in the temple allow me to believe they are praying and activating the man and woman tiles somehow ties in with all the theme.
Verdict of Hansa? Try before you buy.

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