Tuesday, March 29, 2022

#43: Core Worlds (Mark's Top 100 2022)

Core Worlds
    • rank: 809
    • rating: 7.2
    • published: 2011
    Print Status
    • in print
    Why It's On The List
    • Andrew Parks created a space empire-building deck-builder - and combined it with a tableau system for deploying units that makes this game both deeply strategic and a challenging puzzle. And then he created three(!) incredible expansions that make the game even better!
    Tips &Tricks:
    • I think the original Core Worlds game is a solid 7 - but when you add the first expansion (Galactic Orders), it's jumps to an 8 (or maybe even a 9). And the second expansion (Revolution) just locks that high rating into place!
    • The game has enough components for 5 players... but I prefer it with 2-3, as the pace of the game is quicker.
    • Building combos is important - as is managing expectations. You will not be able to do everything you want, so you will need to prioritize your energy and actions near the end of the game to bring in victory points.
    • The VERY recently released Nemesis expansion is an excellent solo mode for the game... making this the sixth solo-recommended game on the countdown.
    • I wrote a big review of the two expansions for the Opinionated Gamers website.
    • I'd also be remiss if I didn't recommend the newest game in the Core Worlds family, Core Worlds: Empires... thematically set in the same universe - but using a worker placement mechanic as the victors work to solidify their holdings. (Note: I was a playtester for both Empires and the Nemesis expansion.) There is actually rules to play a campaign consisting of a game of Core Worlds which affects your starting position in Core Worlds: Empires!
    • Here's what I wrote about the prototype after playtesting Empires. A full review of the new game is upcoming!
    • This is the first of two games designed by Andrew Parks on my top 100 countdown.


    Rob Cannon said...

    I am enjoying Core Worlds Empires as a solo endeavor, but I hope to get a full game in this weekend at Atlanta Game Fest. I haven't played the original game yet, but it is a major omission in my portfolio as I love deck building games.

    Andrew Parks said...

    Thanks, Mark! Looking forward to your upcoming review!

    Daniel Brown said...

    Sadly, I am going to miss Atlanta Game Fest this time. If I was there then I might have gotten in a game.

    Mark (aka pastor guy) said...

    Rob... I'd avoid a five player game of newbies - it's a lot to process the first time out (as you can see from your solo plays). Three would be perfect to get the feel without feeling overwhelmed.

    And do try Core Worlds... I cannot emphasize enough how much Galactic Orders pushes the game forward.

    Rob Cannon said...

    My verdict: A bit fiddly. Why do we need planet cards and the tiles? Just put all of the information on the planet tiles (and make them all round!!). The game feels long and there is a lot of mechanics that feel like they could have been cleaned up.

    Instead of having the marker to track how many events to discard, why not just deal five into a new stack, then the event action can look into that stack and move cards, and the beginning of the turn you clear the stack and deal five more. I'll post more on BGG, but this one needed a bit more development time, IMO.

    Mark (aka pastor guy) said...

    Note: Rob's response is to Core Worlds: Empires... not Core Worlds.

    And I disagree with Rob's frustrations with CW: Empires - I prefer to have the planet cards in order to track which planets I have in my control... and his suggested event fix does not actually have the same result in the way events drip into the game system.