I’m back at BrettSpielWelt, it seems. The new user interface changes have made it more pleasant to use, so I might start visiting the place more often. Today I popped in three times. First time all I played was two rounds of Lost Cities. It was bit quiet and also the server restarted right after our second game, so I didn’t stay longer. The two games were special, as I have now played exactly 100 games of Lost Cities. It’s still fun, but these days I’m probably more interested in playing the four-player version.
At my second and third visit I got what I wanted: San Juan. I even played one three-player game. Other games were two-player games. I even won one game! I like the game a lot. It’s very much like Puerto Rico, but with new challenges. You can’t choose a strategy, because you can’t select your buildings. With all the luck involved (I got my only victory because of a last-turn Hero, which was worth something like nine points to me) it’s lighter than Puerto Rico, but make no mistake: it’s a complex game nonetheless. The way you have to use your building cards to pay your buildings is just nasty and makes managing your card economy quite a tricky business.
It’s fun, partly because it’s so much like Puerto Rico and partly because it’s so different. If you like Puerto Rico, I recommend you try San Juan. Those who play often with five players, worry not — according to Mik Svellov’s San Juan variants, adding a fifth player takes only one more Prospector (more cards can be added, if another set is available, but that’s not mandatory).