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Endeavor: Age of Sail "Commodore" Pledge Edition (Kickstarter Special)
Board Game Geek Rating: 6.78
Board Game Geek Avg Player Rating: 8.27
Players: 2 to 5
Content Notes: Kickstarter "Commodore" pledge edition of Endeavor: Age of Sail by Burnt Island Games. This includes the core game, recessed player boards, custom minis, 4 sculpted status track markers, custom wooden tokens, "Charter Companies" mini-expansion, plus all other unlocked stretch goals. Please note: unless otherwise stated paid add ons from the Kickstarter Campaign are not included.
The modern classic returns! Did you miss your chance to play it when the original edition was available? Did you play a friend's copy and can't understand why it ever went out of print? Did you play your own copy into ragged pieces like we did? Whichever one of those is true, or if this is your first look at the game, welcome to the campaign! It is a dream come true for us to bring this game from Jarratt Gray and Carl de Visser back to gamers everywhere!
Endeavor: Age of Sail is a strategy board game set in the historic Age of Sail. Starting out in the crowded hub of Europe, you must struggle to dominate at home while sending ships to the closed regions of the world... and be ready to seize control when they open up! You'll compete to grow the most successful empire through a smooth combination of:
- area control (capture key cities and the routes that join them!)
- resource collection (get the assets to build your empire!)
- engine-building (construct the buildings to power your strategy!)
- action management (use your population and trade tokens wisely!)
The elegant gameplay is driven by five different actions (Occupy, Ship, Draw, Attack, and Payment), and five different attributes (Industry, Wealth, Culture, Influence, and Glory):
The way you build, combine, and manage those elements creates your empire. Your challenge will be to navigate the maps of the world as they unfold, and write the history books so that the Age of Sail describes your victory!
For a detailed description of gameplay, see the How to Play section below.
Endeavor: Age of Sail preserves everything about the original edition that you know and love. The satisfying pacing which begins briskly but grows richer and deeper with every turn, the always-interesting breadth of the choices available to you, that feeling of the world unfolding as the game progresses, it's all still there. And it's all driven by that surprisingly lean ruleset which draws its complexity from the interactions and tensions that it creates. So how did we improve on this? Let's take a look:
Exploits are the major new gameplay addition unique to Endeavor: Age of Sail. Sure you can play the game without them (and for your first play you probably should), but once you play with them you'll never go back!
In each game you'll deal out three random Exploits (or choose three you enjoy playing with). Like the regions of the world, Exploits are locked at the start of the game. Each Exploit is a historical event from the era that is related to two of the regions on the board. When both of those regions are opened during the game, that Exploit becomes unlocked, and players may now begin interacting with its unique mechanisms and scoring opportunities.
For example, the Spanish Main Exploit is related to North America and South America. When those regions open up, that means that the Spanish Main is now occurring in the story of our game. Players may now use the Exploit's actions to Fortify their cities using the provided tokens (making them costlier for foes to attack), and once they've fortified, can trigger a powerful mid-round payment of workers back home! In addition, a new scoring opportunity opens up. Amazing!
Each Exploit comes with its own immersive new abilities and strategic possibilities, and the game includes all of the special components that are needed to carry them out. This exciting variety of possible Exploit combinations means that every game will drive player interest towards different regions of the world, and create new pathways to victory even for seasoned veterans!
Players command major seafaring empires during the historical Age of Sail. You have your own player mat, where you track your empire’s attributes, construct buildings that permit you actions in the game, and gather Asset cards to build your attributes and gain Glory!
Each round, you’ll construct one building (based on your Industry level), gain population (based on your Culture level), pay workers to free up buildings (based on your Wealth level), take actions, then manage your cards (based on your Influence level).
At the start of the game, player actions are mostly limited to interacting with Europe; using your population to activate your own buildings, you’ll draw Asset cards to increase your abilities, and occupy Cities to gain their Glory and assets, and to control the valuable linksbetween them.
Soon enough, you’ll construct buildings that permit ship actions, and this allows you to reach out to the closed regions of the world. By shipping to a region, you can begin drawing cards from that region; when its shipping track is filled up, the valuable Governor card is awarded and the region becomes open. An open region’s Cities and links can be competed over just like Europe’s.
Eventually players will run out of room to expand, and if you’ve built buildings with attackactions, you’ll be able to engage in combat. Drive your opponents from the cities they’ve claimed, to deny them the city’s Glory points and to break up their network of profitable trade routes!
Once seven rounds have passed, the game comes to an end and scores are tallied. You’ll earn Glory for:
- How well you’ve improved your four attributes (Industry, Culture, Wealth, and Influence)
- The Cities you occupy and the links you control
- Glory symbols on your cards and buildings
- Special scoring opportunities from this game’s Exploits
The player whose empire has accumulated the most Glory wins!
In Endeavor: Age of Sail, players strive to earn glory for their empires. Sailing out from Europe and the Mediterranean, players will establish shipping routes and occupy cities the world over. As they do so, players will leverage their growing industry, culture, finance, and Influence, building their engine and extending their reach into the far-flung regions of the world.
In this second edition, players will experience:
Double-sided board to accommodate different player counts
Variable starting set ups with new buildings
Exploits to enhance the mechanisms and story of the different regions
Updated visuals by the original artist and graphic designer, Josh Cappel
—description from the publisher
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