Gameday First Play – Stone Age

Posted on by Jesta

Worker placement, tools and feeding your people.

Just collect resources until your boat comes in.

The “Stone Age” times were hard indeed. In their roles as hunters, collectors, farmers, and tool makers, our ancestors worked with their legs and backs straining against wooden ploughs in the stony earth. Of course, progress did not stop with the wooden plough. People always searched for better tools and more productive plants to make their work more effective.

In Stone Age, the players live in this time, just as our ancestors did. They collect wood, break stone and wash their gold from the river. They trade freely, expand their village and so achieve new levels of civilization. With a balance of luck and planning, the players compete for food in this pre-historic time.

Game Play

To survive in the Stone Age, you need to Hunt, Gather, Build, Invent and take advantage of the land…

You need to send your tribesmen to the Woods, Quarries, Mountains and Rivers to chop Wood, dig for Clay, break Stone and find Gold. Of course, technology being the way it is you aren’t guaranteed to get as much as you like, if at all!

Getting someone in your camp to make Tools will give you an advantage in your gathering so the more advanced tools you have the better you will be at gaining resources.

Of course, everyone gets hungry so you need to feed your tribe. Finding food can be hard so building farms will give you a regular food income. Not being able to feed everyone can be bad!

Stone Age Game Board

To achieve all of this more efficiently you may need to have a bigger tribe… and we have a special Hut for that 😉

Speaking of Huts, you can build them to improve your camp.

Trading with nearby villages is worthwhile too. They need your hard earned resources and you need their items and artefacts…

My Review

As far as worker placement games go this is pretty good. There are a lot of little bits I like so I’ll go through them now.

Placement/Activation

You place in workers one space at a time around the table in turn order until everyone has placed. Then, you take all your actions in one go in turn order. It makes the game feel a lot faster.

Also, while spaces a limited in important areas, you are rarely blocked from attempting to gather a resource you need.

Random Resource Gathering

I say attempt to gather a resource as this is done with dice. Wonder if you’re thinking what I’m thought at the time? 🙂 It’s not that bad.

You get 1 d6 per worker and divide it my the value of the resource. Food is 2, Wood 3, Clay 4, Stone 5 and Gold 6 as depicted on your player board.

Stone Age Play Area

You can build tools which you can use to add to die rolls and it led to some interesting maths, calculating the minimum amount of workers needed to be able to get what you need.

This random resource gathering is quite thematic too.

Huts/Boats

Building Huts can get you a lot of points and these points are scored in different ways.

Boats are interesting as they are cards that require 1-4 resources to be traded for them, depending where they are on the row. They can give HUGE end game scoring depending on several factors including the number of farms you have, the number of workers you have or a set collection.

Boats can also give you a one off bonus.

 

I do like this game. It’s another example of why I rate Lords of Waterdeep so low. It’s a very smooth, quick worker placement game with good thematic elements and quite a bit of variety and multiple paths to victory.

Would play again.

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