5th Jan 2023 - Endeavor

by RobinWed, 25 Jan (Updated at Wed, 25 Jan)

There was a nautical theme at the club this week, with two different games involving voyages of discovery. My group played Endeavor: Age Of Sail, in which we competed as European nations to get resources and conquests in the rest of the world. I had not played this one before, but I can see why it’s so popular: a nice straightforward engine builder that flows very well. Downstairs, they were doing the same thing, only with less merchanting and more marauding, in Francis Drake: a similar theme but with a much more colourful board.

There were many fantastic colours on the tables downstairs. On the next table they were playing Dude Where’s My Castle: Stefan Feld’s kaleidoscopic take on medieval castle building, also known by its more official name of Castles Of Burgundy. The third table was also richly patterned, but calling a spade a spade with Mosaic. I think this is a new game(?) with a whole grid full of little models to fit on the hexes, this time on the theme of civilisation building – looked interesting.

Our game of Endeavor finished very quickly: Elsa gave a comprehensive rules run-through and we still finished by 9pm. So after that we played Hansa – an older game that allowed us to step back in time from the Age of Sail to the glory days of the Hanseatic League, in the Baltic sea pre-Renaissance. Like so many older games, I guess this one is overlooked now in favour of its glossier successors, but I thought it was really nice: a great little pick-up-and-deliver tactical challenge.

So all the games at the club this week were set in the distant past, except one. Frostpunk, on the table next to ours, is set in a chilly post-apolcalyptic future, whose people are presumably harking back fondly to the Black Death era of Hansa. It’s a co-operative game that looks complex and very long (they didn’t finish) – about keeping (some) people alive. Not sure it’s my cup of tea, but the deliberations about who will be left out to die this round make for interesting background noise. It sounded rather light-hearted given the context – we are always a cheerful club :-)