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Repos Production: 7 Wonders Duel – Review

January 19, 2016

Logo-7-Wonders-Duel

Publisher Repos Production
Genre Card/Board
Number of Players 2 (only)
Play Time 30 minutes
Initial Review Date 1/14/16
Last Updated 1/14/16
FAQ
Rules Interactive
 Trailer Official Game Trailer
Click here to Play

This is a stand alone game that has the same look and feel as 7 wonders. It is specifically a two player only version of the game. Many aspects of the original game have been simplified and reduced (both figuratively and literally in some cases) in order to make the game feel more intimate.

Setup

The game starts by drafting wonder cards. In this game each wonder is represented by a single card and only has a single “stage”, that grants a benefit when it is built. Much of the symbology is the same as it was in the original game making understanding many of the cards straight forward.

A total of 8 wonders get drafted, but during the course of the game only 7 may be constructed. Once the seventh stage is built the remaining incomplete wonder card is discarded.

Once the wonders have been drafted the first age cards are setup in a pyramid like pattern with alternating rows of cards being face up and face down. Only cards which are not covered by any other cards may be chosen for play.

Finally, there is a military/science track that is setup between the two players.

Differences from 7 Wonders

Aside from some minor changes like the removal of certain resources. There are some other more dramatic differences which help maintain intensity during the game.

Everybody has Access to Resources: In this game, every resource may be purchased from the bank for 2 coins. However, there is a markup that you get hit with if your opponent has those resources. In this way your opponent can put you at a disadvantage by having resources you don’t have, but you’ll never get completely screwed out of anything (unless of course you don’t have enough coin). This means it’s rare to have a card that is “unplayable” by your opponent so you’re always sweating they will take the card you wanted.

Military Instant Win: You cant afford to completely ignore your opponent’s military in the game. The reason is that there is a marker on the military track that moves toward your opponent every time you gain military. The distance it moves is proportional to the military you gain. If the token ever makes it to the end of the board, that player immediately loses the game. As a result you can find yourself buying military cards you don’t really want just to keep from losing out right to your opponent.

Science Instant Win: Similar to the military victory it is possible to win instantly via science cards. There are now 7 different science symbols in the game and if you manage to collect 6 different symbols you immediately win. As with military this can also force you to “waste” turns buying or trashing science cards just so that your opponent won’t grab them and win.

There are other changes but those are mostly in place to keep the game interesting and balanced for two players.

Conclusion

7 wonders duel is a vast improvement over the 2 player rules presented in 7 wonders. The game is a bit more intense however, meaning you’ll probably play it once and then be ready for something else. That isn’t to say you won’t keep coming back to it, just that it won’t fill a full evening of gaming. It’s a good game for what it is. Unfortunately, it currently isn’t compatible with any of the 7 wonders expansions.


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