Gameday First Play – The Oracle of Delphi

“Over the entrance to the temple at Delphi was a famous inscription: KNOW THYSELF! It reminded visitors that man must never believe himself to be more than mortal – and that no man can escape his destiny.”

~ Jostein Gaarder, Sophie’s World

For once, Zeus, Greek god of thunder and sky, is in high spirits. Hence, he decides to offer a generous gift to a worthy mortal and invite him, or her, to his realm, to Olympus. To determine a sufficient candidate, Zeus hosts a competition for his entertainment. Twelve legendary tasks are imposed upon the fearless participants: to erect graceful statues, to raise awe-inspiring sanctuaries, to offer capacious offerings, and to slay the most fearsome monsters. The first participant to master all the posed assignments wins the favour of the father of the gods himself.

12 tasks to complete and that’s it… To complete the tasks you’ll be sailing a boat around the board in what is essentially a pick up and deliver game.

The board is made of tiles and contains all kinds of wooden bits, all randomly placed I think? (I was on my phone during set up, I know it took quite a bit of time)

the-oracle-of-delphi-board

The 12 tasks are essentially 3 copies of 4 different things to do…

The first is to build a shrine on an island tile… You start with the 3 shrines on your player board you just need to get them to your island… But the Island tiles start face down, randomly distributed around the board. So you need to first find your island tile, then drop a shrine on it.

That was all deliver, the next 2 tasks need you to do the ‘pick up’ part. One is picking up a Statue and dropping it off on a Statue island and the other is picking up an Offering and taking it to the same colour Temple.

Lastly, I assume to prove your strength, you fight Monsters.

How is all this done? Dice.

the-oracle-of-delphi-dice

You have 3 dice that you roll at the end of your turn, each dice has one of the 6 colours in the game on it. (With symbols, but even then most people have issues with Red and Pink)

The colours you roll determine which actions you can take on your turn… The dice are placed on your player board in a ‘colour wheel’ and you can spend Favour tokens to change the colour of the dice. But one token per single step in the colour wheel and ONLY clockwise… So it balances well between luck manipulation without you just always being able to pick a side.

the-oracle-of-delphi-player-board

There are 13 actions you can take… Some dependant on the colour dice you use, some not.

The actions that don’t require colour is to take 2 Flavor tokens (Use to change colour of dice), an Oracle card (depicting a side of a die you can use as a die of that colour) or look at two of those Island tiles…

Colour dependant actions are move because when you move your boat the colour of die determines the colour of space you can end movement in.

Fight a Monster of that colour to complete one of your 12 tasks… This is done via a roll of a D10.

Explore (Reveal) an Island tile if you’re next to it based on the colour of the space it’s on. If it’s one of yours, put a Shine on it and complete a task, if not you reveal one of your opponents Islands but you get a little bonus anyway. You can also build a shrine on an already revealed Island til of your colour in the same way.

Loading Offerings and Statues onto your boat require a die matching the colour of these wooden pieces… But you also need space on your boat.To make an Offering or raise a Statue you need to be adjacent to the right colour temple or empty space on an Statue Island

You have God tracks, one for each colour and you can move one of of the matching colour up by 1, they give awesome bonuses when they get to the top.

And finally, you can discard wounds… At the end of a full round the Titans attack and can give you Wounds… Get too many and you’ll eventually have to skip a turn.

You have a decent, and small help sheet to remind you of all this. This overview is very simplistic and basic and I’m not getting into the Companions, Equipment, Shields, Ship abilities etc Your player area starts to take up a bit of space 🙂

the-oracle-of-delphi-player-area

This is my favourite Feld game in game play only. I love the dice placement of Bora Bora and how nice Castles of Burgundy is, but this is my favourite for game play.

Problem is, it’s a race to the finish game and I generally don’t like and I would prefer the standard Feld Points thing.

But its very smooth though and despite not having an ending I’d like, it’s a very good game.

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