Replayable Blog Small City Big Playing Time

Small City Big Playing Time

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Monday night David, Greg, and I played Small City: Deluxe Edition for the first time. This Alban Viard game shares many aspects with Antiquity. A city builder with a polyomino puzzle, citizens you need to attract to your borough with open jobs, rising pollution levels which kill citizens, and yes, cemeteries. Small City big playing time indeed.

Buildings are constructed at a given size if they meet all of the prerequisites. Alternatively, they are upgraded to that size if you meet the requirements later. For example, you decide to build a 1-square residence. If you want to build a 2-square residence then it needs to be adjacent to two civic buildings. If you later want to upgrade it to a 3-square residence then it needs to be adjacent to 3 civic buildings. Nothing can be rearranged.

I liked it, but it is a brain burner early on. I’d say that it is upside down in its AP: your decision space shrinks as the game goes on because you’re executing on the vision you needed to have at the beginning of the game.

Our play took 4 hours and a 16 minutes, including being taught how to play (the infamous “teach”). I love Antiquity, so Small City could be a contender if its playing time could get anywhere close to two hours.

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