Archipelago: Solo Expansion
For my next foray into the world of Archipelago I chose a long scenario which is the only one that doesn't use evolution cards as a game timer or as a measure of success. The idea in this one is to explore the whole Archipelago ending with no surplus workers, for the Gold. I'm anticipating playing Archipelago multiplayer in the new year in a 'look what I got for Christmas' session, and so playing what must be the longest scenario would, hopefully, let me see more of the game.
Baron Steevie Jobs: mission: full-employment
Straight-away I spotted that it would be desirable to place regions with less huts. I would have to be buying up those surplus workers during the game with recruitment actions. Expansion during exploration actions and subsequent recruitment soon caused a burgeoning population. This in turn made domestic crises more dangerous as they required more resources to address.
Gaining florins to not only buy cards and activate cards and buildings, but to buy workers, was paramount. I found that I had to sell to diverse markets, consequently diversifying what resources I harvested, because I didn't want the Boards adding surplus workers in phase 3. It was great when the balance of the archipelago would flush-out resource cubes from a market, allowing me to sell to it again. One tactic I used was to preferentially sell to completely empty domestic markets, that way I could hopefully use them to satisfy a demand in a future domestic crisis. Only once was I forced to buy from a market to stop a surplus worker being added - when an explored region obliged me to 'over-fill' a market. The evolution card, Export, lent a hand in freeing-up a choice spot on the export markets. Exotic Fruits was the first market I exploited due to its capacity and return.
Some other evolution cards that proved useful were Missionary, Financial Advisor and Commercial Fishing. Emigration, which evacuates a surplus worker for every port, would have made this scenario a lot easier but it never came up!
Playing into the third stack of exploration tokens the population reached 30 and there were 5 ships. Moving the population past the 11-20 range stopped surplus workers being added by Board III. I had 5 temples, 1 market and 1 port. The map was filled out, there was a small isle in the middle, a long strip of land down the east side , and two promontories jutting in from the northwest and the southwest.
Eventually, although I had control over the level of surplus workers and was calculating the final recruitment cost, I had to resign in the 15th turn! I realised that I wouldn't be able to place the last region legally (one side had an awkward mountain pass on it). In fact, I don't see how it's possible to get Gold unless you are allowed to play out the Action phase, ie unless the game doesn't end immediately after drawing the last exploration token, because all the regions contain at least one hut.
Thanks for reading!
In fact, I don't see how it's possible to get Gold unless you are allowed to play out the Action phase, ie unless the game doesn't end immediately after drawing the last exploration token, because all the regions contain at least one hut.
I was wondering about the same thing and I think I found a solution: Through the "effects of exploration" (rulebook p. 10), you get an explore token before you add the new unemployed workers. So if you follow the rules very strictly (and the designer mentioned multiple times that we should), then the game is immediately over after you get the last token and thus before you add the new unemployed workers. So you could be fine (= get Gold) if you go into that explore action with an unemployment of zero.
- Last edited Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:15 pm (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:14 pm
I played this last night and was re-reading everything and came to the same conclusion about ending the game as you get the last explore token in this specific scenario.
I wanted to add this scenario didn't seem hard at all because of one thing: Taxing. Next time I might going to try and add a house rule. no taxing but overall this scenario was very long.