15th October 2019
Tuesday evening has rolled around again and we're at 'The Sovereigns' in Woking. This can only mean it's games night.
Our game of the evening is 'Gold West'. A game for rootin' tootin' prospectors and quite possibly outlaws and bandits.
What's in a game?
There are quite a lot of components in Gold West. The general game components are:
How's it play?
Before beginning, setup needs to be carried out:
Resources are supplied through the supply track.
So now that resources have been moved out of the supply track, they must be used. There are 5 resources and 3 of them are precious metals - gold, silver and copper. In this stage, the precious metals are 'spent'.
Build camp/settlement or loot
After using metals, the active player has to build a camp or settlement, or loot. This is done using wood and/or stone resources that were bought out of the supply track along with the metals.
This means that having more than 1 stone or 1 wood is a waste as these will be discarded. A player only needs a stone or a wood, or a stone and a wood.
That's it for a player's turn, it seems like a lot, but in play it's pretty straightforward.
Gold West is played over 11 rounds, players have ten tents to use and there's a further round with no tents. Then we get on to scoring, points are scored in the following ways:
There's a lot to like about Gold West.
The supply mechanic is equal parts infuriating and brilliant. If you put your resources in the lower boxes and have trouble getting them out effectively, it's only your own fault for being greedy for points. But if you're able to manage the flow of resources well, it's a good source of points.
Talking of points, Gold West presents players a good variety of ways to score points. There is always a way to accumulate points, it's a question of optimisation and individual strategy. Players are always given meaningful choices on how to approach scoring. Even if a player fails to bring out a stone or wood resource, they still have the open to loot.
I also like how resources become revealed as players build camps and settlements on the map. It's a nice touch.
The game is also a nice looking game, I like the stagecoach meeples and there's something pleasing about looking at the game map covered in lots of tent meeples.
All in all I liked Gold West.
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