Review – Archaeology: The New Expedition
A push your luck, set collection game.
Title: Archaeology: The New Expedition
Year Published: 2016
Designer: Phil Walker-Harding
Publisher: Z-Man Games
Game Time: ~20 mins
Set-up Time: ~3 mins
Theme: Egypt (Possible in the late 1800’s, early 1900’s)
Mechanisms: Push your Luck, Set Collection
How to win: Make the most money by selling sets of treasures to the Museum.
You are an archaeologist working the dig sites of the Egyptian desert. Search for the right pieces to complete torn parchments, broken pots, and other priceless artifacts. Explore an ancient pyramid in the hope of uncovering a huge stash of treasure! Trade shrewdly at the local marketplace to increase the value of your collection. Sell your treasures to the museum at just the right time for maximum profit.
But beware, the desert also has its dangers! A devastating sandstorm can throw your expedition into disarray, and cunning thieves lurk around the dig site ready to steal your prize discovery!
Set Up, Game Play & Game End
The game is very simple…
You draw a card and deal with it. The only card you draw that adds any rules complexity (if you can even call it that) are the sandstorm cards which only adds an extra set of rules that you complete once each, then continue as normal.
The hardest part of this is slowing the players down, making sure the ‘Use your tent?” and “Discard cards” portion of the Sandstorm resolution is done in turn order. Initially, it doesn’t seem to matter but it can change what you might do and which cards you might discard…
Once you’ve dealt with your drawn card then you have a few simple yet interesting choices.
If you have maps do you use them? Each Monument works differently but most reward you for hoarding more than one Map card. However, if someone takes the ‘lower’ options f the Monument you could miss out.
When trading with the Market are you taking what you need, are you giving away stuff you might need later or even worse, giving away cards other players need.
Then, do you sell partial sets or hold on to them for a bit in the hope you get a full one?
Sense says hold on to them but what if a Sandstorm comes and ruins your hand?
Do you have your tent? Then maybe you’re safe… maybe. If you have half a good hand and half junk then you can take the hit…
So each part of the game is simple but each comes with several things to consider.
A very fun light game with enough tension to keep you thinking without making you uncomfortably nervous!
I give it 7/10