Klicka för svenska      Age of Steam

Distributor: Warfrog
Category: Strategy game
Players: 3-6 (best with 4-5, Scandinavian map best with 3 players)
Play time: 120 minutes
Ages: 14+
Content: -
Game target:
Rules: Rules in English  
Rules in English for expansion #3 - Scandinavia and Korea 
Strategy: -
Comments: My edition is from 2002. Expansion #3 from 2004. The designer is Martin Wallace.


Extract from Belgoludique report 2004 The people who wanted to play Keythedral were spread out and I finally instead got the chance to play Age of Steam. Alice had played it before, so she explained the rules in French, so I had to translate to Mikael sometimes, although he seemed to follow the explanation quite well, as everything on the components of the game are in English. I had played Volldampf a couple of times before and had quite easy to understand the mechanism of the game. Some friends of mine had said it’s just an unnecessary complex version of this game, but I found that the game was much more interesting and intriguing with more choices, not least the bidding of different actions, like first move, locomotive upgrade, urbanization etc. Even if 4 of 5 players were beginners, we ended the game in about 3 hours and not 5-6 hours as some of my friends had done. Afterwards we saw that everyone, including had made a few really bad mistakes, because we didn’t understand the mechanism. We should all upgraded the locomotives faster, as well as used the town hexes much more to increase the income. On the other hand we succeeded to avoid the beginner’s fault to go bankruptcy in an early stage of the game. This is a must buy for me now and I will rate it 9 of 10.
Extract from Belgoludique report 2005-02-06 This day started with a long awaited game of Age of Steam. Since I played it last year here and even had bought a copy in Essen, I never got around to play it again. I played it with Anne (who won with 107 vp), Alice (97 vp) and Karine (76 vp, although I think it was her first game). Myself I ended up with 97 vp. I started with engineering, which made me build tracks between two red cities in the West, which had altogether 3 red cubes initially. I choose to build it through a town, to get income 2 immediately. I continued to keep the West more or less for my self, except a small try by Karine to intervene, as the other mostly were on the East side. Anne probably won because she succeeded to keep the borrowed shares down. I made a mistake late in the game, as I had counted that I needed engine=5, which was upgraded instead of transport goods. In the next round I made the highest bid in the game (10 copper) and took the engine upgrade anyway. This miss was probably a major mistake, as well as I late in the game had too much money left after each round (one reason for the high bid was possible). Rate 9 of 10.
Extract from Varberg convention report 2005-02-19 Next game was finally Age of Steam with the Scandinavian map (expansion #3). With 2 beginners this is not a map to recommend, as this is much more of a brainburner and more narrow than the original map of America. There are actually a few hexes, which I can't see any reasons to build on and they were there probably only to get a realistic map. I succeded well in the first round, but at least two of the other suffered already a lot, so we decided to make it a "try round" and restarted the game, which were more even. Stefan went through the rules, as he had played it more than myself, but we discovered that 5-6 rules he had played wrong before, so he said he was eager to play the standard game soon again! I've been luckily to learn the game from people who already had played the game, as the rules are poorly written, although basically the rules are quite straightforward. I made a few mistakes and missed to consolidate my economy, so I had to borrow 1-2 shares each round, which I suffered from in the end. After a few rounds, we realised how strong the new action "ferry" actually is on this map and sometimes the only possibility to transport goods on a long link. Actually it sometimes was stronger than "Urbanization". I was mostly in the centre (Southern Sweden), but I also built a link between Germany and Northern Denmark, which only gave me some income in the last round, so it was probably too expensive and this showed in the final result, which was Bo 63, Magnus J 46, Stefan 44 and Carl 33. Still the rating is 9 of 10. I would recommend this map for 3 players in the future. The game took 2:45 to play, interrupted by dinner.



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