High Frontier 4 All: Module 2 – Colonization (Kickstarter Edition)Expansion of: High Frontier 4 All (Kickstarter Edition)
30m - 240m
1 - 5 Players
This mechanic requires you to place a bid, usually monetary, on items in an auction of goods in order to enhance your position in the game. These goods allow players future actions or improve a position. The auction consists of taking turns placing bids on a given item until one winner is established, allowing the winner to take control of the item being bid on. Usually there is a game rule that helps drop the price of the items being bid on if no players are interested in the item at its current price.
Hand management games are games with cards in them that reward players for playing the cards in certain sequences or groups. The optimal sequence/grouping may vary, depending on board position, cards held and cards played by opponents. Managing your hand means gaining the most value out of available cards under given circumstances. Cards often have multiple uses in the game, further obfuscating an "optimal" sequence.
This mechanic usually requires players to pick up an item or good at one location on the playing board and bring it to another location on the playing board. Initial placement of the item can be either predetermined or random. The delivery of the good usually gives the player money to do more actions with. In most cases, there is a game rule or another mechanic that determines where the item needs to go.
Pick-up and Deliver
Pick-up and Deliver
12/21: The Bernals are good, and you really need to build one early, which makes me wonder whatperios the game is trying to simulate, because building a burneal would seem to me to lag a moonlanding, but so be it. JeroenD colonized, but I didn’t get so far.
I hate the bernals. It's not an engineering problem to design or anchor them. It's just an economic problem of saving enough aquas to boost one and tow it a few burns away. You unlock your faction ability and earn 1 aqua income per turn, so you should do it ASAP. Meaning you can't avoid being thrust into the role of space empire management, which I have no interest in. Why lock the faction abilities at the start? They're most needed during that slow first cycle to add flavor to the auctions. For that matter, why add new player abilities from all these bernals, purple-side upgrades, and futures? The endgame is already divergent enough, now it's a mess of stuff that nobody's paying attention to because it's complete Multiplayer Solitaire. Only it takes twice as long because of the extra cycles, and another twice that from all the extra bonuses you accumulate. I hate the colonists. I've noticed a pattern in Phil's games where he adds too many abilities which allow free actions, and it breaks the action economy. High Frontier isn't too interactive, so it just has the other problem: it takes forever to micromanage these clowns. They're spit out randomly from a deck so it's too difficult to plan any strategy around them. It's not even a challenge that they take up precious mass, because pretty soon you'll have TW thrusters and freighters to bus them around and harvest your free actions. I even hate the futures. It's nice of the game to provide objectives for players who have no imagination to tell their own stories in a sandbox, but these don't even provide interesting rewards. Just... more.... efficiency! And some VPs. They come at the part of the game where players have already stopped interacting, so it's not even a shared story about humanity's future. This solipsism is the worst part of modern eurogames. The core game is slightly guilty of this, but I see it as letting players do one last mission with the engine they've assembled, before it closes the curtain and leaves them hungry for more. But allowing players to build endlessly beyond that, accumulating more and more like they're playing Cookie Clicker, it's just not interesting anymore at that scale. I thought the core game did a great job of presenting a paradigm shift, where industry moves to space and becomes self-sufficient without Earth, and it shows this story through the game mechanics. The Colonization module tries to tell the same story, but primarily through flavor text and abilities, and the effect isn't nearly as profound. I guess it could be argued it has its own shift of an engineering game turning into a corporate boardroom game, but it's so bad that it creates a paradigm shift in my brain from awake to ZzZZzzz.
[microbadge=1966][microbadge=4143][microbadge=18088][microbadge=50101][microbadge=5191] [b]NOTE:[/b] Much of what I've written about [person=174]Phil Eklund[/person] in the past was written with the understanding that I had a fundamental difference of opinion with him in as far as the ethics of economic systems, the role of government and community in the lives of individuals, and the human-originated negative impact on climate. After his public remarks in early 2021, I have to take a stronger stand and say that Eklund is absolutely wrong in his political, historical, and scientific assessment of the world. I personally am dissuaded from purchasing any of his future titles, and I would encourage any discerning board game purchasers or players to make a careful read of his public remarks, manual footnotes, and essays. The idea that a harmful or problematic statement is useful because it encourages discussion and research is flawed; some perspectives are wrong and should not be further engaged or platformed. My existing comments and ratings will remain the same as they were, as changing them now would be as disingenuous as the type of thinking that I am protesting. [microbadge=5389] Colonists are the core part of this expansion, and they tend to affect everything. They modify operations, they change the political environment, and they grant access to powerful Futures. They do a lot of everything but require some critical setup to get there. Generally, colonists are a powerful tool that can be difficult to learn to use correctly, but amazing once you do. Bernals are the other addition in this expansion. I got to say, I like them way more than how they were introduced in HF3. Instead of faction specific bernals and orbits, there's a lot more flexibility and customization. Like freighters, the floor for the usefulness of bernals is high if only because it's another stack you can move each turn. Combined with colonist access and promotion opportunities, bernals can define your broader strategy. From what I can see of Conflict (module 3), bernals will have a huge impact in the wars. As always, skip the footnotes.