Gameday First Play – The Lost Expedition

Posted on by Jesta

“On a harsh expedition, there’s no space for anyone who does not intend to finish.”

~ Tahir Shah

Legendary explorer Percy Fawcett marched deep into the Amazon in search of El Dorado. He was never seen again. Your team has gone in search of him, but now you hope to escape the jungle with the greatest treasure of all: your life.

In this co-op, there are competitive versions of this but we played the co-op version, players are trying to get (at least one of) 3 explorers to El Dorado… This is done via playing cards to create a path of peril players must work their way through.

The 3 characters each have 4 health and their own area of expertise.

Players get a hand of 4 cards and in turn order, they add one to a row keeping them in numerical order, lowest to highest. At this point, players can’t communicate about what they are holding.

Once everyone has played 2 cards, you resolve the path, lowest to highest.

These are not in numerical order, I’ll explain why in a bit 🙂

You start with the first card and check the symbols on each, but also which colour background the symbols are on.

The symbols on the cards have you gain/lose resources, gain/pay expertise or manipulate the line of cards.

Symbols in a Yellow box MUST be resolved and a Blue box can be ignored if you like.If they’re in a Red box, you MUST pick one of the Red boxes on that card and resolve all of the symbols on it.

If they’re in a Red box, you MUST pick one of the multiple Red boxes on that card and resolve all of the symbols in it.

The resources are Food, Ammunition and Health.Food is needed at various points in the game and if you need it and don’t have it, you take 1 Health from 1 Explorer. Ammunition is useful for protection or hunting as some cards will show a threat or potential food. Health is

Food is needed at various points in the game and if you need it and don’t have it, you take 1 Health from 1 Explorer.Ammunition is useful for protection or hunting as some cards will show a threat or potential food. Health is

Ammunition is useful for protection or hunting as some cards will show a threat or potential food. Health is

Health is Health and if all 3 Explorers die the game ends.

Each Explorer has their own Expertise and some cards require the use of this skill. For an explorer to use their Expertise they spend one Heath, but, some cards can be kept for their Expertise icon and discarded to prevent this loss of Health.

Some card abilities will let you skip the next card, swap cards around in the row or add/subtract cards to/from the end.

The final 2 actions are to move the meeple down the path in the middle of the table towards El Dorado, and finally, straight up kill an explorer.

Once you have resolved all of the cards you go into the Evening phase. Spend a food, then players play the other two cards in their hand but not in numerical order, just left to right.

Once these have been resolved you go back to the Morning phase and players draw 4 cards and spend a food again, rinse repeat.

If you get to the end of the path, you win!

If all 3 explorers die or the deck of cards runs out twice, everyone loses.

Positives

A decent system with a good balance of communicative vs non-communicative phases so neither gets tired or becomes a focus of the game. Means no real Alpha Gamer but it’s not ‘The Game‘.

The effect of the card and the art on the card is reflected by the name of the card and it all fits together quite well.

Better than a lot of short co-ops I’ve played…

Negatives

…but I’d prefer other co-ops if I were to play one.

Summary

A decent simple co-op.

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