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Much better than the two player "free city" variant in 7 Wonders. There's a definite amount of take that in the game, but overall the game is so quick and light that it doesn't bother us too much. Stored in Quiver case for portability.
Clean game, playthough getting faster when we all familiar with the cards and it has a lot of player interacting. Thing is, when you have an advantage in tier 1, early tier 2, its very hard for your opponent to make a come back.
GAMEPLAY Players are the leaders of generic nations trying to create the most glorious civilization possible. On a turn, players can do three things by drawing cards from a central tableau: take the card into the player’s personal tableau, “sell” a card for income, or use a card to build one of their four wonders. 7WD plays out over three eras, each with a different tableau layout. Players can win via three different victory conditions: 1) a VP count after all three eras have been played; 2) a military victory; or 3) a science victory. THOUGHTS What propels Duel from a fairly straightforward tableau-building game that plays in about a half hour to an enjoyable thinky filler are all the little twists: the white symbols allow you to snag a matching card for free; the progress tokens are incredibly powerful and each game features a different set; gold cards allow you to up your income and possibly buy a resource desperately needed on the cheap; and the wonders also vary from game to game and give some exciting bonuses. For my money, the three different victory conditions are what really gives this game legs. Sure, there is the straight VP win. But, the possibility of pulling off a science win by collecting six different progress symbols or a military win by pushing the marker into your opponent’s home city provide for constant tension. I’d like to play 7WD with the Pantheon expansion some more to see if I like what it adds. PROS -Cards look busy and I still can’t remember what some symbols mean but, overall, the iconography is really well done and simple to read once you start playing. -The card art is really fabulous for a game this light and inexpensive. -Plays quickly and relatively easy to teach. -A lot of good decisions and smart tactical play in a very small box. Hard to beat the value you get. CONS -7WD is critiqued for its zugzwang. Being forced to pull a card every turn, can mean your opponent occasionally “lucks” into a good card. But, this is mostly counterbalanced—a perfect timed science card or military card are the exceptions—with the knowledge that your opponent is also going to get ‘zwanged at some point. -I sleeved my cards but why give the backs a black border? That’s just a recipe for color fading.
Extremely disappointing after multiple plays. More tactical than strategic, 7 Wonders style, but with MUCH more limited options, and if your opponent manages to get early war cards or science cards, both paths that can lead to an early/instant win condition, you have NO choice but to do the same and then you're just playing catchup. Even when we forewent every combat card, the random layout of the resources going to one player swings every game. That combined with the extra punishment of increasing the resource prices after being denied the resource cards is just too much and made the second half of each game empty.
A great re-implementation of 7 Wonders for 2 players. One thing that always irked me about 7 wonders is that the resource management always felt so tight. You could never do everything you wanted. Duel feels a lot more open. You can do most of what you want to accomplish. Admittedly, this is more of a subjective feeling. A lot of players like the feeling of scarcity, and I normally don't mind it. But I much more prefer being able to accomplish most of your goals, without barely scraping by, and Duel give you that feeling. Aside from that, the rest of the game is great. There is a lot of "in your face" (obviously, given the title), but it's not overwhelming to me. Most of the things you do against your opponent are more in a roundabout way, instead of "give me that, it's mine now". I'd highly recommend this game to gamer buddies who enjoy 7 Wonders.
My wife and I used to play the two player variant that's in the base game. DONT. This is WAY better and makes it a very engaging two player experience. Highly recommend.
LBGG 2015 secret santa present. A little bit meaner than lauraine would like but still quite a light enjoyable game. Perhaps getting the winner to do the washing up might change her mind? Have the metal promo combat token.
Amazing. A near perfect package of strategy, theme, progression, rising tension and important decision making without AP. Very very highly recommend. The hype is justified, and this from someone who gives 7 Wonders a 7 rating.
This is so much more enjoyable than playing with a dummy player in the normal 7 Wonders game. This is the rare example of a successful game that has an enjoyable spinoff game. This is not a 10 because there is supposed to be a victory condition for science or warfare, but those victory conditions are almost impossible to achieve. I wish they were slightly easier which would make the game even more balanced.
This? This is one of the 10 greatest games ever made? Have these people only played 10 different games in their entire lives? It's an okay 2p game, I guess. I don't hate it, but seriously? The list of games that play well at 2p in under an hour that I'd rather play before I ever got to this one is bordering on inexhaustible.
W/ Exp: Pantheon Promo: Statue of Liberty, and The Messe Essen This is one of the few two player games I have, but it goes over very well when we want to play a heavier game. It can be a pain to setup and get started. The depth of the game though is a real draw, even if we're not a fan of the Science victory. Worth it!
I've definitely forgotten to input a bunch of plays for this. I actually prefer this to something like Through the Ages, which gives me similar feelings but takes an order of magnitude longer. Borrowed by Cam.
A very solid 2p game, with a minimal time investment and shallow learning curve. Multiple paths to victory add tension and strategic flexibility to the experience as well. Not only can you pursue military and science as a means of victory, but you can also leverage them to maneuver your opponent into weakened positions, forcing them to take sub-optimal moves, thereby acquiring and maintaining control of the game for yourself. The military track is a bit boring as it is just a push-of-war, but the technology cards are interesting. 7 different technology symbols win the game, but for each pair you manage to acquire you gain a very powerful progress token. Managing and choosing between these to science paths is very interesting. The game feels a bit over balanced, but it has been boiled down well for two players, and offers a bit of a deeper feel than most other 2p-exclusive titles.
My SO loves base 7 Wonders, but we don't have a group to play with yet, so this seems like the perfect fit for us. I would give this a higher rating, but the seeming random ability to secure a science win keeps it from being up there.
Infinitely better than it's predecessor 7 Wonders. Duel takes a boring drafting game and introduces mechanics that make it something interesting and more strategic. Having the most points is still how you win, but you also have to pay attention to other aspects of the game so you don't instantly lose, because then it doesn't matter how many points you have.