Dungeon Lords was a flash in the pan after all. I still think it’s a good game, but after three plays weaknesses emerged:
* chaos – you can play as conservatively as you like, but it just takes one unexpected decision from another player to turn your plans upside down. Age of Steam has the reputation of being a harsh game, but bankruptcy is always deserved. In Dungeon Lords it’s out of your hands and in a game of this length it gets frustrating. Cute imps and funny monsters can only make up for it so much.
* tough learning curve – Jeff taught the game *brilliantly*, but I was able to teach San Juan and fit in a two-player game while the tutorial was played through.
* duration – despite familiarity this is a 2.5 hour game. Simply too long for a euro.
* fiddliness – there is a lot of shuffling pieces around that gets tedious.
Despite these criticisms there is still a lot to like. You have to plan carefully and the theme is irresistible, but I’m less enthusiastic than I was.
Come back Reiner! All is forgiven – except Beowulf.