Merchants & Marauders is a superb pirate sandbox game. You are free to do whatever you like to gain glory points, be a pirate or good guy trading with merchants, maybe something in between.. Hunt other players, fight off threats on dangerous rumors or run missions for the colonial powers.. The game recently had its 10 year anniversary, but sadly no news in the franchise was announced. A few years back Christian Marcussen (game designer) said "I'm looking at an updated version, but I don't know if it will happen". So he may have some plans on his desk, but nothing materialized yet.
I still hope that we may see something new announced one day. It's just such a classic and a very solid game, but I see some things that I personally would have altered if we ever get to see a new or updated version of the game. So the coming list are just my ideas for what I personally would have done!
My go-to strategy game. It became an instant favorite for me after the first game. I just knew that this was going to see a lot of play!
Run around the Caribbean while visiting cities, villages, build cards from your hand, explore the jungle for rewards, combat alongside any of the 3 colonizing nations for mutual rewards, and much more. Every game can be very different, and I never feel like I don't have solid options to go for. Sometimes in TM I can feel "card dead" and not getting the right cards. I don't feel card draw is as punishing in Maracaibo. It also helps that you have an active display that you can draw cards from, expand your hand size, use cards you don't need for quests/trading goods or selling them to assistants. Even if we reach 200+ points, we usually find it is extremely close at the end!
I also like that you can dictate the round length! If someone is trying to build up a huge engine, you can advance more quickly through the map, which forces...
I wrote a very lengthy balance proposition to Jason Walden, the lead designer behind MoD (and contributor to the base game/other expansions). I'm not gonna post the entire document here (it's long), but I would like to take out bits, to spark discussion and hear other opinions on the matter.
Motivation behind this, was primarily the imbalance of Targaryen in Mother of Dragons, which became apparent after playing the expansion just a few times. Though I have played it many, many times afterwards to solidify that it is in fact a issue, like with Greyjoy-Lannister in base game.
My primary goals for AGOT in terms of balance are split into 3:
1) Sea balance in the first two rounds is critical. There is absolutely no reason why the game should allow another house to easily demolish another one in two rounds. (ref. GJ/Lannister)
2) Very aggressive sea expansion early on should still be an option, (never the go-to move), but it needs...