Terra Mystica

I have to be honest.  I don’t understand Terra Mystica.

When I went into my friendly local games café to meet an out of town friend for some “light gaming,” little did I know I’d be playing a hardcore pure strategy game.  One of the other regulars suggested it, and I’m always up for learning a new game, so into the world of Terra Mystica we went.

The basics of the game are actually quite simple.  Build stuff, expand your territories, get more points then the other guys.  But once you get playing there’s much more to it. There are multiple build options, each simultaneously increasing and decreasing a different resource.  Of course in order to build, or take any action really, you need resources so you need to find a balance between what you build, and when.

The game last 6 rounds, each round giving different bonuses for different actions and giving you a varying number of victory points.  There are several ways to earn and lose victory points (more than I wish to go into here) some take effect immediately; others don’t get added until the end of the game.  A mechanic that very easily allows the frontrunner and a player seemingly behind switch places very quickly.

Overall Terra Mystica has a steep learning curve.  But if you are willing to give it a chance, and maybe a second chance, it’s a fun and thought provoking game.  It may not be a staple in my gaming collection, but I would definitely like to play it again sometime.

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