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Glen More II: Chronicles, Teotihuacan: Late Preclassic Period, Azul: Summer Pavilion

Glen More II: Chronicles was my gift for our Christmas gift exchange which ended up with Matt and Justine. We’ve been haphazardly playing through the “Chronicles” which are just modules for the game, and it’s been a highly pleasant experience.

The game weight is moderate, but it has really interesting decisions, culminating with probably the most important decision of all being the size of the area you’re building. A larger area gets you more activations, but every tile is -3 points at the end of the game. So, unlike other engine/tableau building games, with this one if you choose to build a large tableau, you get taxed for it, so every tile you take had better be worth it. This size consideration along with the mix of a “time track” and spatial activation mechanics make it really entertaining to play.

I’m looking forward to more plays, and would love to try all the Chronicles/modules.

Teotihuacan: Late Preclassic Period is also a modular expansion to Teotihuacan: City of Gods. The expansion adds asymmetric player powers, a new temple track, some building revisions, and a few other things. I feel like it generally “completes” the game in good ways, and would prefer to never play without it.

I have weird feelings about Teotihuacan, with or without expansion – it never really felt “good” to play for some reason, even though I should like it since I really love Tzolk’in: The Mayan Calendar, to which it is a successor. But, for some reason, Teotihuacan just lacks some kind of “spark” for me. I can’t put my finger on it. I thought it was just because I’d never won the game, and had almost given up trying to understand how I could do better, but even when I won (wich felt legitimate, but very “wonky” for lack of a better word) it still just had an “OK” feeling about the whole experience. I’ll play, but somehow without passion.

Azul: Summer Pavilion was nice. It felt different enough, a bit more focused on set collection rather than spatial decisions, but I would say my favorite of the series might be Azul: Stained Glass of Sintra. Generally, a pleasant experience I was happy to be a part of, but probably one that I would not seek out.

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