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User Rating Comment Status
Olivier REIX
France
Grenoble
Unspecified
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10
Oct 2004*
Both cards are absolutly superb and offer a brand new gameplay.
They are small though, so you might prefer to use them with 3-4 players.
Italy map can be nasty (direct attacks are possible), so see whether you like that or not.
2004-10-19*
Owned
Stuart Faulds
United Kingdom
London
London
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10
Mar 2006*
The continued flexibility that different maps and minor rules changes give this system is astounding...a must have for all AoS fans
2006-03-16*
John Michalski
Belgium
Namur
Unspecified
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10
Apr 2006*
Great extensions to a great game. Italy is very chaotic and nice!
2006-04-17*
Owned
Paul Smith
United Kingdom
Ventnor
Isle of Wight
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10
May 2006*
Rating based on just 1 play of the France map - it is said to be perfect for beginners and this is so. I think whilst I will never turn down a game on the France map, I am itching to try out all the other maps, so it is difficult to rate this expansion 9 or 10. However, just to reiterate, this is an amazing map to learn how to play Age of Steam on.

EDIT: played France with 4 players. Loved it. Submitted a session report.
2006-05-02*
Owned
Harro Pahl
Germany
Quarnbek-Strohbrück
Schleswig-Holstein
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10
Dec 2006*
Very fine france map for three players
2006-12-21*
Owned
Marcus Lau
Malaysia
Petaling jaya
Selangor
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10
Aug 2007*
One of my favorite 3-4 player expansion. Both maps in this expansion is pretty tight with 4 players but is downright brutal if you play with 6 players. Play it with 5-6 players at your own risk!
2007-08-03*
Owned
CORWYN59 .
France
Unspecified
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10
Nov 2011
France is very good with Paris which received all cubes, for 3 to 4 players

Italy is very good : the black cubes gives negative points, also for 3 to 4 players
2011-11-10
Christopher Fritel
United States
Austin
Texas
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10
Sep 2014
France: "Beginner", Best:4, Rec:3, OK: 5-6
Italy: "Diabolical", Best:4, Rec:3, OK: 5-6
Bohrer
2014-10-06
Owned
Gareth
Switzerland
Zürich
Zürich
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My ass is green, but I don't let it worry me.
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9.5
Jul 2009*
France is a fun map, the bankruptcy rules give it a very different feel to most maps.

I can't see enjoying Italy without the consumption of large quantities of alcohol.
2009-07-12
Owned
Willem Holthuis
Netherlands
Buitenpost
Unspecified
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9
Nov 2005*
We played a 5 Player game of Italy.
Tense map! Delivering black goods brings down another player´s income. (Black cubes can be delivered anywhere your Engine allows it...) It was used about 5/6 times in our game, and yes it did hurt...

We made one mistake, after delivering black cubes they leave the game and go back to the other goods. We left them on the board...

The Urbanization action allows you to pick up 2 black cubes from the map and draw 2 new cubes! Was used 3/4 times.

Building tracks is awesome on this map: A Player can only build one completed railroad link in the least expensive way, there is no limit on the number of track tiles to be used! This is necessary for building in South Italy.

The Engineer lets you build one track tile for free.

You can't go bancrupt, you may issue shares during the game for $3. You may pass the 15 shares limit. Both options weren't used in our 5 Player game.

Italy for 5 is a 'fighting' map. The North gets VERY crowded, it's the region with most cities 'packed' together. Very TENSE!

Love to play this again with the right use of the black cubes rule.

I did have the same nervewrecking experience as the Ireland map I played once with 4 Players.

Recommended for AoS Diehards!

France not yet played.
2005-11-09*
Owned
Iain Cheyne
United Kingdom
Reading
Berkshire
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9
Apr 2008*
France works well with three.
2008-04-09*
Owned
Larry Chong
United States
Kendall Park
New Jersey
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9
Apr 2007*
Both, France and Italy boards IMO are best played with three or four players. France has Paris, a multi-colored city (all but black goods can be delivered there) and it produces all cubes on half of the display chart. Italy is a long narrowish pennisula-like island, where any black goods cube delivered will be minus 1 on the income track for each link of that particular player.
2007-04-22*
Owned
C Sandifer
United States
Lutherville
Maryland
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9
Mar 2006*
France:

Advertised as an introductory game, but for the life of me I can't figure out why. France is one of the more cutthroat expansion maps because of the critical need for Paris links and mountain builds. So, my comment to new players: Don't be surprised when you can never build again because the more experienced players monopolize the engineering (mountain-building) action. A fun introduction to AoS, eh?

The rules mitigate France's general unfriendliness by stating that players can never go bankrupt. But has there ever been a more worthless consolation prize in the history of gaming? If you're at zero income, you're still not going to win, even if the rules do prevent you from being formally ejected from the game. Under these circumstances, players want to get kicked out - not be forced to stay to endure the torturous downward spiral even longer than necessary.

Italy:

If you thought it would be fun to bankrupt an opponent on the second or third turn, this is the map for you.

One of the few maps that has a true gambling mechanism. Do you connect to a black cube and hope that it disappears before your unsavory opponents put it to use? Or do you forge ahead anyway, with your track builds flying in the face of danger?

Beware of players who don't mind hurting themselves (i.e., forgoing their own deliveries) for the sake of inflicting pain upon others. In my gaming groups, these sadistic "types" are a dime a dozen. I have even been known to be one of them.
2011-12-24
Owned
Eric Landes
United States
Hillsboro
Oregon
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9
Mar 2006*
Italy rocks with three players.
2006-03-18*
Owned
Geoffrey Steenberge
United States
Corning
New York
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9
Nov 2010
Bought
2007-03-16*
Owned
Richard Irving
United States
Salinas
California
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9
Aug 2006*
Two very differnet maps:
- France is pitched as a beginner's map, but it is mostly "simplified" due to lack of being able to build 4 hexes. This makes play very stereotyped. Rating 8.
- Italy: Has a potentially nasty new rule--black cubes can shipped over (opponent's) lines to reduce income level. But it is almost always better to ship over your own lines with other colored cubes, if you can. A few other rules changes which seem to be added just to make the different without regard to strategic implications. Still a fun, tricky map to play. Rating: 9
2006-08-21*
Owned
Champion Eternal
Malaysia
Unspecified
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9
Sep 2006*
Great map for 3 players!
2006-09-21*
Owned
Marko Tamminen
Finland
Espoo
Unspecified
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9
Dec 2006*
More extreme goodness for this excellent game.
2006-12-01*
Owned
Carl-Gustaf Samuelsson
Sweden
Borås
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9
Feb 2007*
A different map by using Paris as a node, which sucks up all goods but the black one and also get half of the produced goods. I really enjoyed my first play of the game, where we created a intricate railroad network, which looped for several players.
2007-02-25*
Owned
Joakim Björklund
Finland
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Overtext?! We don't need no stinking overtext! Oh wait...
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Overtext?! We don't need no stinking overtext! Oh wait...
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9
Jul 2009*
France
7.7.2009: Surprisingly good map. Rating: 9

Italy
7.7.2009: I haven't played this map yet.
2009-10-23
Owned
Want To Play
Chris Garlic-13 Aniballi
United States
Carpentersville
IL
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9
Sep 2007*
Played Italy only, four players. It's pretty nasty, but not as hard as the Scandinavia map. Another AoS winner.
2007-09-27*
Owned
Devi "Day" Hughes
United States
Irvine
California
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Orange County Board Gamers - come play games with us! http://www.ocbg.net
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9
Oct 2009*
Played France once. A good beginner map, but it seems like it goes on 1 or 2 turns too long with three players.
2007-10-29*
Owned
Want To Play
Koert Debyser
Belgium
Brugge
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9
Oct 2014
The France map (3 plays) is quite challenging with Paris as a multicolor city and the need of the engineering action to build in the mountains. Plays very well with four or three players, although the board will get practically completely filled up by the last round. *** Italy map (1 play) played with three players. The engineering and urbanisation action are rather different, as is the limit of building only a single complete rail link. The black goods can be cruel. Value of locomotive is lower. Possible to keep the number of shares really low if you don't need to build in the south!
2014-10-05
Owned
Neil Palfreyman
United Kingdom
Swindon
Wiltshire
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9
Jul 2008*
Italy is very tight and the additional rules - particularly shipping black tiles to reduce income points - makes it very cut-throat.

Only play if your group expects and can cope with mutual stitch-ups, otherwise you may find you awake with a horses head, or at least a red cube on your pillow!

France by comparison feels quite tame and forgiving. This may be since we played it as a three player map and competition for Paris was pretty light.
2008-07-12*
Owned
Aaron N. Tubbs
United States
Norwalk
Connecticut
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9
Jun 2009*
Italy is a brutal map with a lot of fun. The corruption goods make play a bit more strategic, and controlling certain hexes can be crucial to having any viability at all. Definitely one of the more interesting maps I've played, though definitely not for the new player; they would be crushed.

France is interesting too; I don't think it's nearly as forgiving or as easy as people make it out to be. There are a lot of opportunities to cut Paris off from the rest of the map with stop urbanizations; urbanization becomes a defensive play (both for yourself, and as a way to stave 5+-link good shipments by your competitors), which is sort of fascinating.
2009-05-31
Owned

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