So, today I had the first opportunity to try the new Carcassonne: Hunters & Gatherers. There are quite a few changes from the basic game, but it’s still definitely the same game.
Cities have turned in to forests. They are quite similar, however, there’s an interesting incentive to close other people’s forests. If a forest tile has a gold nugget on it, the player who completes the forest, gets a bonus tile, ie. an extra turn. These bonus tiles feature few special tiles, which give some tactical advantages.
Roads are now rivers. Here big improvements has been made. I feel there are more closing tiles for the rivers, they score more points and there are huts: special meeples that score points for the whole river network. They can bring lots of points in the end.
Fields are different, too. Instead of counting cities, fields contain animals. Mammoths and deers give points, but tigers kill deers. So you can make your opponents fields weaker, if you want… That’s pretty nice.
Cloisters have been removed completely. They were a bit of a lucky thing, I suppose. I think the new game is more interesting than the old one. There are more scoring opportunities and more interesting tactics to pursue. Still, it’s fairly simple and easy to play.
I recommend trying it. However, while I prefer playing it over the old Carcassonne, I don’t feel a great urge to buy it. It’s too similar to the old Carcassonne I’m so bored with. I think I’d rather own and play Africa…