Steam Works Review
|Game: Steam Works||Players: 2- 4|
|Publisher: Tasty Minstrel Games||Age: 12+|
|Time: 60 minutes|
Steam Works Review
During the 19th century our alternate historical Victorian era brought to us the power of steam, clockwork, and electricity. We machinists work hard to create some of the most inventive devices for our Queen. We know that in the end, one of us will be appointed official inventor for our majesty. We few, surround ourselves with machinery, metals, and research all day to truly declare ourselves self-made inventors.
In this Steam Works review I’ll be covering how to setup and play the game, and my thoughts on my experience. Steam Works is a 2- 4 player worker placement board game where you are an inventor raising prestige in order to win over the Queen from everyone else and be appointed her official inventor.
How is this process handled? Begin by separating, shuffling, and laying out each of the 3 ages onto the game boards respective locations as well as laying out the starting 8 tiles across age 1. Once the randomly generated character selection is over (each player is given 1 of the 8 personas’), give everyone their specified tools (characters cash, mechanics, and components/sources). Decide the first player and begin distributing your mechanics (meeples) to each player. Place the clock tokens (or coins for a 2 player game) out onto their locations on the main board–you are ready to begin inventing!
Use your mechanics to either pick up components, take sources, build a device, or activate your inventions. The game features a fantastic concept of a “create your own” action. What this means is, your components will be strung together through what YOU decide to pick up and mix together. These actions will then be available for you to assign your mechanic to. Follow each source connected with a component and activate 1, some, or all of them (all the components connected by clockwork, or steam, or electricity). To give you an idea of what to expect, here are what some of the components include: Librarifier (take any tile from the Age I/II/III conveyor belt when powered by a Clockwork/Steam/Electrical source), Distiller (Discard a source to receive £5), and Manufacturer (Build a device of size 2/3/4 from components and sources in your supply).
I felt it so rewarding to connect all these different gadgets to my sources. For example, I had a collective that offered me free coin (in order to hire more mechanics), an option to take a component from the conveyor belt, and an option to add from my supply to any device. Being able to decide which components I’d like to run or not when I activated my devices was a great use of variety and choice. My inventions were mechanisms that could not fail! Until my opponent got herself some free prestige points along with a new automated mechanic to appoint. Then she won…The construction of devices are endless and each new string offers a variety of new tactics and strategy to win the most prestige points.
I haven’t played a worker placement so opulent before, seriously. Opulent may seem weird to use but I felt that the way this game was, how it was a good experience, and the way it optimized creativity says a lot. It excelled at enveloping a specific depth, with an easy-to-learn game and a hard to perfect strategy.
If you enjoyed this Steam Works review check out our other Tasty Minstrel Games reviews here!