So I ran across a solo variant for this wonderful little two-player game of economics, resources, and building. I decided to make some tweaks to it, and show the results in a Flickr photoset. Multiple pictures behind the cut.
I forgot to add 3 gold below the resources board. Pretend it’s there.
Divide the buildings into four groups: A-C, D-F, G-I, J-L. Randomize each group.
For each round, look at the buildings reference for that round and note the number of buildings in that row. Draw that same number out to be available to buy. For example, round A introduces 5 buildings, so we draw 5 buildings from the first pile of buildings and place them in a row.
Here are the front sides of the tiles, which have all the game-relevant information on them.
As you can see, I made tiny reference cards to remind me how many buildings go in each row. Keep buildings organized in rows, it’s important later on.
For how many actions you get per turn, follow the directions here:
Now this is where things differ. Note the 0 card on the left. This is blocking the A row from being bought. It’ll become clearer next rounds what I’m doing.
The next round. Now you can see the 0 card shifted down one row, and above it we added a 2 card. Now the B row is blocked from buying. But the A row can now be used (not bought) for 1 franc to apply effects twice per building.
And now we have shifted down the 0 card, 2 card, and added a 3 card. The 3 card works like the 2 card, except you can apply effects 3 times.
Rule of thumb: the latest 2 rows are always open.
When you use a building on the table (rather than on your board) you put 1 franc on the current sector of the board to remind you that you took an action. Then use the building for the number-card number of times (in this case, 2). Then turn over the used building. It is not available until it can be bought again (we’ll get to that in a bit).
Note: I just used the Kiln here for demo purposes; I didn’t have the money to use it.
We now have a 4-card. Notice that the empty E row still exists for purposes of shifting the number cards down.
When starting the G round, move all your buildings from the sectors on the first board to the corresponding sectors on the second board. And move the pointer to “G”. Which I forgot to do just now. Pretend I fixed it. :)
You can now see we’ve added a 4+franc card. If you use a building in this row now, you apply it four times and get one franc afterwards.
You can see that the number cards have shifted down, but no new card was added. The A row is now free to be bought (not used though) again.
When a building is forced to be sold, it is added above the A row. It can be bought again (but not used).
After round L and any forced sales, count up your points as normal. And that’s the game!
If you want an easier and more open game, don’t randomize the buildings. I noticed that my usual strategies got screwed up by the draw, but it was still quite fun. Even more fun, now that I think about it.