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Best of 2013 Part 4

 ‘Caverna’ is my most played game of the 2013 crop - if you did not like’ Agricola’ because ‘its no fun/you can’t’ specialize/its not got Dwarves/feeding is boring then’ fill your boots with this magnificent game.  ‘Caverna’ adds a lot to the ‘Agricola’ formula – more animals, more resources and both a farm to build and an underground chamber to carve out and fill with rooms. The addition of currency in the form of gold and rubies adds interesting timing and conversion possibilities and the expeditions a whole new way of getting all the stuff you need. The design (and difficult production) choice to make the game playable by seven dwarves gives some clue as to the best player count – the more the merrier. At lower numbers it is an enjoyable, but solitary, optimization exercise, with higher numbers you are bumping up against Grumpy, Sneezy, Sleepy et al for the spots you want and the tiles you need.  Magnificent yes, but after 20 plays I need an expansion - I am interested in exploring the game  with 5+ player , whereas I am still happy to explore the limitless possibilities of the E,I and K decks. Excellent game – but not as good as ‘Agricola’

20 plays. Rating 8 out of 10

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