Get on board:
7 Wonders

An intriguing and inclusive board game that's a wonder in its own right

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Board game 7 Wonders is as intriguing as it sounds. With each player taking on one of the ancient Seven Wonders of the World, they must build up their monument over three different ages to eventually be declared the greatest ancient civilisation in history.

Each player has a wonder board, with the Hanging Gardens of Babylon containing different incentives to the Lighthouse of Alexandria, for example, giving individuals an idea of how they want to approach the game. To start, seven cards are distributed to each player from the Age I deck and they follow three simple steps – choose a card, play this card, pass your hand. Each card contains a different category, such as resources, victory points and military strength. Having a resource can lead to being able to access better cards as the game progresses, but having more military strength means you might win the end of age battle, and more points are rewarded.

In essence, 7 Wonders is a small deck building game, allowing players to formulate their own plan based on what they determine will earn them the most points. As the game continues, the Age II deck of cards is distributed and the process begins again; then Age III. However, just because you might be rich in wood and stone, doesn’t necessarily mean you are rich in points. There may end up being no advanced cards that require wood and stone to purchase it. Should you have picked up that theatre card when you had the chance? You could have upgraded to a gardens card by now…

At the end of the Age III, everyone adds up their points based on different criteria. How much treasure you have. Do you have a completed set of science cards? This part of the game is slightly tedious as it might take a good five minutes of counting on fingers and filling in your score pad. But in a way, it does add a nice element of surprise, as there is no clear winner until the final tally is announced.

7 Wonders is a step up from casual board gaming, but that doesn’t mean it requires extensive gamer knowledge or hours of free time. It occupies a nice middle ground and is inclusive, which is handy because it can also be played by up to seven participants (there’s a theme here…). There are also plenty of expansions, such as Armada and Cities, which add different ways to play and bring in new mechanics to keep the game fresh and exciting. It’s a wonder in its own right.

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