Maracaibo board game

Maracaibo, the new strategy game for 1-4 players by Alexander Pfister, is set in the Caribbean during the 17th century. The players try to increase their influence in three nations in four rounds with a play time of 40 minutes per player.

The players sail on a round course through the Caribbean. E.g., you have city tiles where you are able to perform various actions or deliver goods to. One special feature is an implemented quest mode over more and various tiles, which tells the player, who chase after it, a little story.

As a player, you move with your ship around the course, managing it by using cards like in other games from Alexander Pfister.

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User Reviews

  • I've played a few solo legacy chapters and this game has a lot going for it. It is easy to play and offers a good number of challenging choices.
  • Includes mini-expansion Armada
  • After the two+ hour first turn, this became quite the game. Really enjoyed the theme, and the various things that can be done in the game. Being able to chose if the round is fast or long is quite nice as well.
  • Feels like a best of Alexander Pfister. Lots of strategy and interesting choices. It has some similarities with Great Western Trail but is a bit heavier. It definitely stands on its own. If I want a streamlined smooth game I will reach for GWT. If I want a more wide open game I will reach for Maracaibo.
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User Activity Feed

I've really enjoyed my two plays of #Alma Mater and it has me thinking of snatching up #Lorenzo il Magnifico but I've really been loving #Maracaibo and instead of being glad I skipped over #Great Western Trail to grab it it just makes me want to go grab GWT as well.

I was trying to set up#Maracaibo all afternoon yesterday but never managed to set it up completely. It was frustrating. 

#Maracaibo against solo about 6-8 games into the campaign.  I wanted to see how the campaign played out and what it added to the game.  I had a good time against the solo but think the campaign would certainly be more fun with more players.  I'll hold out to play with others down the road but did learn that it would be just fine playing with some o the legacy tiles during a regular game. 

#Exploding Kittens about 3-4 games as my son has been into playing this recently.

Love Pfister's work – easily one of my favorite designers, if not my favorite. #Great Western Trail has been my #1 game for a long time, but have also enjoyed #Maracaibo, #Broom Service#Blackout: Hong Kong, #Mombasa, #Expedition to Newdale… needless to say, I'm very excited about this announcement! 🙂

I haven't gone to that side just yet. Yet. YET. I always go for games that I know for sure will be good for both 2p with my wife and solo. Even if the game will only see maybe 2-4 2p sessions in a year, it makes me feel good knowing that it'll be an option haha

There are games that have come close though:

#Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion - We ended up getting a copy for Board Game Atlas, but if we hadn't, I probably would've gone for it even if it's only for solo.

#Maracaibo - I've considered after hearing about its campaign. In the end though, it gives the impression of a game that's more complex (with many parts) than I typically prefer.

#Pax Pamir (Second Edition) - Another game we got under Board Game Atlas. In hindsight, after experiencing the solo mode, I would've gotten this just for the solo mode. I know for sure that I don't have the right group for a multiplayer session.

#Too Many Bones - I'm definitely hoping to try this out with my wife, but I know that it'd be more of a treat I'd be giving myself.

In general, I think I'm usually attracted to the idea of a game from Chip Theory Games or Alexander Pfister (and why #CloudAge is on my radar.) Cole Wehrle's works will always be on my radar too.

Yeah I could see this being right up your alley. Alexander responded to my tweet saying that it's medium weight (much lighter than #Maracaibo) and it'll play at 90 min for 4 players. That's perfect for me.

Edit: And there it goes into my wishlist.. haha

If it were just up to me.... I think that you should GAW something from Hollendspiele.

But, for you, I think you need to give away something more popoular, I am thinking about one of the really popular games Capstone released in the last year or so. And, to be clear, I have selfish interest in all these games LOL.


#Irish Gauge


Also, if you could somehow get ahold of a copy of #Brass: Birmingham. That seems to be very popular, and is usually out of stock.

Also, something from Cosmodrome/Arcane Wonders.

#Smartphone Inc.



In reply to your second question. Yes, I would love that. I expect that there would be much fewer entries, I for one would probably not have time to participate. But, I don't have a problem with that. I would love to see what other people come up with. And, if there are fewer entries, the people who put in more time would really have a pretty good chance.

I love this list and agree with the vast majority if not all of it.  I am not a huge fan of games based on luck and so #Candy Land Game, #Yahtzee, or even #Dice Throne do not peak my interest much or my interest (say as in Dice Throne) is tempered somewhat.  

Games with luck that allow you to push your luck #Diamant, #The Quacks of Quedlinburg, or such I am a little more ok with but they still aren't my favorite games.  Those a more of a controlled adjustment strategy #Orléans or #Dice Forge I enjoy a bit more.

Other games such as the luck involved in drawing cards in #Gloomhaven or #Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island that mimic the randomness of battle or wildlife are great and in both those cases the random nature impacts everyone (seeing as they are co-op games).  Even the luck of a drawn encounter card in #Scythe is mitigated by the balance across all encounter cards.

There are several games where I have felt that luck was not necessary and house ruled something to remove it. #Everdell: Spirecrest allows you to draw three cards from a seasonal deck at the end of each season and place them randomly at the bottom of the board with the first being free, the second costing a little more, and the third costing the most.  This seems arbitrary to me and so the last play we drew five, pick one, and place the others on the bottom of the deck.  In #Maracaibo is makes more sense to reveal all the privilege buildings at the beginning because there are 8, you randomly draw 4, and there's already enough luck with card draw throughout the game that revealing one each decade seems unnecessary. 

Two other games I've found luck workarounds are #Wingspan and #The Isle of Cats.  In Wingspan we draft cards at the beginning of the game with each player starting with 7 cards, drafting until necessary and discarding down to 5 (at least) by drafts end.  This gives everyone a fair shot at a solid opening hand and not ending up with 5 birds that don't play well in the first couple turns.  In Isle of Cats I divide the cards into green cards (baskets), purple, brown, and yellow cards, and blue card (lessons) stacks and each round we start the draft with each player getting three green, and choosing two or three from each of the other stacks.  THEN we draft.  This eliminates a whole round with NO extra baskets (unless you draft them that case your loss).  

Great topic/mechanic choice!

I have been able to play with family a lot over the past several months but with school starting I will be going back to more solo gaming in the coming weeks and with less income around the corner I'll be hitting the solos on several games soon.  (btw, I like your list!)

1. #Paladins of the West Kingdom this is still one of my favorite solo games and I don't see that changing.

2. #Clans of Caledonia is pretty fun solo and I am looking forward to playing this one again.

3. #Wingspan is decently hard solo and once I'm set up, playing 3-4 games is easy as the automa is super easy to run (but challenging to beat).

4. #Teotihuacan: City of Gods has to be added because my first couple solo experiences were so good that I am looking forward to playing this one again already.

5. #Maracaibo is on here because I haven't played it yet but am looking forward to playing and the solo looks excellent. 

Of the ones in your list I'm most interested in #Maracaibo and #Coloma. I eventually dropped Maracaibo from my wishlist thinking it might be overly complex for me and my wife (plus, I just had so many other games that creeped on on me haha.) It was a bit of a similar story with #Tekhenu: Obelisk of the Sun where even though I was immediately drawn in by seeing the designers involved, it looked like it had a lot going on. I've checked out Coloma several times in the past too but never got to the point of watching a video on it.

This would be my list, limiting to 5 games:

  1. #Too Many Bones
  2. #Keyflower
  3. #Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar
  4. #Brass: Birmingham
  5. #Aeon's End

This list is subject to change any moment tomorrow :)

Oh and I'll be buying #Flip Ships real soon for family game nights.

Looking for trade for #Paydirt and #Sierra West and interested in attaining #Raiders of Scythia, #Paperback, #The Quacks of Quedlinburg, & #Near and Far.  I have #The 7th Continent with three expansions (smaller ones) that I'd swap for #Maracaibo, #DinoGenics, or a combination of above options.  

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