I have been eyeing this one for a while
The cover looked just too beautiful and I feel the theme is one I personally haven’t seen much on games (I suspect people who have played the Marco Polo games will disagree with me here and of course there is the new Raiders of Scythia which I also forgot before declaring a unique theme).
I also watched Radhos runthrough the other day and I find myself wanting the game even more despite his usual enthusiasm.
It seems to have one of the most streamlined third player simulations I have seen and I usually dislike having to simulate one to make a full game for two players. But this one is really neat with an I cut you choose mechanism where each player gets to make a decision about where the bot goes.
I also rather like the way that actions get stronger and stronger but as a player fills a row or column with their own buildings someone else can move in and activate their buildings. It seems like a take that moment until it turns out that the owner of the buildings also profits…
My biggest worry about the game is the point salad. the center gamplay in the city of Merv seems solid. But I wonder if the different actions that result from the gameplay are truly balanced. It seems much harder to gain points and advantage from some of these.
Anyway this one is a big temptation. The rules are simple enough but the decision space seems complex.