This game has been faithfully turning up at Thur night games and serially overlooked like an extra with a killer signing voice for over a year. We played it last Thur and Cyclades is a SUPER game.
It’s got everything I like in a game. A map, ships and land troops along with big monsters and Greek mythology. So it’s unique enough. (Now THERES a sentence)
On the face of things it’s a map based conquest game played out on a round map with preset island and sea squares. The map is a decent size but not too large that you won’t meet everyone else a number of times during the game.
There’s a bidding element to it too where you try and favour one of the gods who’s in charge of ships (go on guess his name), land troops, priests or colleges along with a fifth god which is a sort of god of social welfare who doles out coins and horns of plenty (+1 coins per turn)
Before movement commences the bidding kicks off and increasing bids push players off these actions and allows then to rebid for others. So each turn you’ll be doing only one thing, raising and moving troops, ditto ships, building colleges or Temples or grabbing money.
Add to this a set of one off cards which allow you to summon titans to ruin someone’s day or give you movement or battle boosts and you have a game that borrows a lot of good elements from a number of games.
(Can you tell I really like this game?)
It’s five player a semi magical number and the race to the finish sees a lot of plan changes and sneaky plays.
When we played it it ended very close with most of the players one turn from victory. No bad thing.
It’s very good. It’s medium complexity (something I can handle). It’s fairly fast, below two hours and there’s a great sense of achievement unlike those silly flicking games everyone is mad about right now 😉
There’s a couple of expansions out for it and a newer Egyptian themed version but for now the game I played is perfectly formed
Highly recommended and in need of another play. Maybe next Thur