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Distributor: Eurogames
Category: Strategy game
Players: 2-4
Play time: 2:00
Ages: 12+
Content:     1 game board
  28 galleys
112 flags and masts to put on galleys and bases
  28 flag bases for showing ports controlled by players
  20 forts
105 commodity pieces in seven colours
180 blue sailor pieces (1 of mine was crushed)
101 coins: 20x1000 ducats, 30x500 ducats, 51x100 ducats
    1 turn marker
    4 markers to show the players turn order
    4 player aid cards summarising the rules (I got an extra)
    1 six-sided die
    1 rule book
Game target: At the end of the game the most prosperous player is the winner. The prosperity of a player is measured by the amount of money in his coffers, the number of ports under his control and their wealth.
Rules: Rules in English
Summary aid in English
Strategy: Avoid too much fighting, except maybe the last rounds. It'll weaken both you and your opponent much and will mostly be an advantage to the other players. Although an easy victory isn't too bad... Start to run for the commodity harbours where you might get a monopoly in practise this means Gemstones, Gold and Spice. But don't forget to build at least one more fleet as soon as possible, which requires a port with wood and iron.
Comments: My edition is from 1996. The designer is Dominique Erhard with assistance of Duccio Vitale.

Quite a nice game which have a lot of interaction, although less the first turns. Could be some downtime between the players. The main complaint about this game is that the Turkey player mostly wins, if the other players aren't aware of this, as his area is a bit sheltered away from the other. Probably not a favourite in the long run, but I wouldn't turn down a suggestion to play it. The rules are quite simple to learn and follow.

One interesting mechanism is the auction (one blind bid) of the first choice of turn order. Sometimes it's important for you to go first (ie to get first to a certain port) and sometimes to go last (ie to avoid a conflict). Those who don't bid anything at all has to throw a die, which decides the turn order instead.

The worst with the game is that it takes 2-3 hours to prepare the games, mainly to cut the plastics and fix the flags. Also the flags doesn't stick that well to the masts. Worst with the Turkish flags, probably because of their triangular form. So don't bring a shrinkwrapped copy to a gaming session!

 
 

 

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