Gameday First Play – L’Aéropostale
“The federal government spends millions to run the Postal Service. I could lose your mail for half of that.”
~ Pat Paulsen
L’Aéropostale mixes competition and conquests while retracing the epic history of the first airline companies. As the head of one of these airline companies, your objective is to give it the most prestige possible by creating stopovers and by exploiting commercial lines. Participating in meetings, beating records, and having more and more successful planes will serve your strategy.
So how to sum this up…
You take actions to prepare a plane and a pilot to fly to a new area of the world to set up a runway. Then later, you can complete deliveries from one of your runways to another.
That’s essentially what you’re doing, but there’s obviously more to it than that.
The actions you take are on the top of your player board…
So the first action you can take is to create a runway in a region on the board. However, it’s not very straight forward…
You need an available Pilot, you need an available Plane that can also go the distance required, you need enough fuel and there needs to be space to develop your target destination.
You just dump a number of cubes of your colour at the destination to show you have a presence there. Each destination has a limit so you may not be able to put the full amount in.
The next action is to exploit these connections…
So now you need all of the above (Plane, Pilot, Fuel etc) but also the Plane used needs to have the ability to carry ‘stuff’ that matches the destinations requirements. Basically, you’re matching symbols.
If you deliver successfully you gain a ‘Wing’ of a particular colour. You can also kick out a cube belonging to an opponent and add one of your own hopefully knocking them out of that region completely 😉
You do this because you periodically score each region for the most cubes, with a bonus if you control one region fully. These give you Wings too.
Wings go onto a track, first person to fill that track wins.
Back to the other actions which allow you to rest pilots, repair planes, buy fuel etc… Generic stuff…
You are going to want better Planes eventually and to do this you try and break a World Record. Basically this is done on a die roll and costs fuel but it means you can gain new Planes that can go further and carry more stuff etc depending if you go for the distance, velocity or altitude record.
That’s pretty much it, there are more little things going on but the main parts are build runways, deliver stuff and gain Wings.
While there are plenty of restrictions, they’re thematic. You need to have a plane that can make the journey while carrying the required cargo… Also, you need enough Fuel and a pilot with the right experience. You can level Pilots up using certain actions and you need more experienced pilots to reach certain parts of the board.
The sort of area control-ish type game play is very nice.
While the board is busy, it’s VERY easy to understand.
Weather cards are a little random, they can be a mild annoyance or lead to one of your Pilots getting kidnapped…
All in all, not a bad game…