I preferred Spice Road over Eastern Wonders but A New World may now top them all.
Theme and What is it?
Century: A New World is the last installment of a trilogy series from Plan B games. The series gives players the chance to explore the history of trading throughout three different centuries. Each installment is a standalone game but can also integrate with each of the others in the series.
The series started with Century: Spice Road. It is set in the 15th Century and players collect four unique spices along the spice road to trade for wealth and fortune.
Players then sailed the seas to search for new exotic lands in Century: Eastern Wonders. The most valuable spices are found there and as players control these islands, they receive more glory and profit.
Two centuries later, the spice trade has built and demolished empires and encouraged man to explore the world. Welcome to the discovery of new worlds!
What I love about Century and its mechanics is that they are simple. You can have it set up and playing in no time because the rules are always a two-sided sheet.
On your turn, there are under a handful of actions to choose from. This makes turns quick. In Spice Road, there were three available actions. They added a couple more with Eastern Road. I expected A New World to have even more but now there are just two actions to choose from.
I will not go through all the setup for this one. It is very similar to the other two installments. The cube colors are the same, but now they represent corn (yellow), meat (red), tobacco (green) and fur (brown). In A New World, they added a popular mechanic: Worker Placement.
Each player starts the game with 6 settlers. The settlers are represented by these little tiny meeples. Each location on the board has a settler requirement ranging from one to three. If an opponent has settlers on that location, it requires one more settler. Then, that players settlers get returned to their player board.
- WORK – Choose a location on the board that does not have an Exploration Tile (more on these later) and that does not have your settlers already on it. Place the required number of settlers on the location. Then, take that location’s action(s).
- REST – Gather all of your settlers and return them to your player board.
It does not get more basic than that! There are four different locations. Three are the same as in the other two games in the series and will be recognized. The other has a mixture of the other two.
The Fort Locations are the ones different from the other games. You can do one or both of the following things:
- Take the topmost bonus tile of that Fort Locations stack.
- Claim the Point Card above the Fort Location by turning in the depicted cubes required.
Each point card has one of the four New World icons. These icons are on bonus tiles. Most of the bonus tiles require sets of icons and at the end of the game, players receive points for however many sets they have.
The point cards also have an immediate or ongoing benefit depicted. These can give you extra settlers, etc. It can also give you an exploration token.
At the beginning of the game, exploration tokens are placed at certain locations. You cannot use these locations until the exploration token is removed. The exploration token itself will have either an immediate or end of game bonus depicted.
Play continues until a player has achieved their 8th point card, then the round finishes and end of the game points are tallied.
You receive points for your Point Cards, Bonus Tiles, Exploration Tiles and as always, one point for every non-yellow cube.
This was a blind purchase. I have the other two and love them and I knew I wanted to complete the set. I didn’t need a reason to buy!
When first opening the box, it seemed a little more complicated than the other two but one I read the rules; I realized it was even easier.
Game Build Quality
The quality of components is up to par with the other two installments. The rules are just the one sheet again so it is not complex.
The location cards are the same quality as the player cards.
Everything fits nicely in the box.
This time, I went with a pre-order bundle and got the playmats to play all of it together. They are gorgeous!
You will find the artwork like the other two. This one has cards and so you will recognize the artwork from Spice Road. The illustrations are now of men and woman preparing their new world.
The four location cards used in the game all create one large picture.
I did not realize this when I purchased Eastern Wonders. But, when I received A New World, I now notice that the box art connects. Side by side shows a beautiful panorama.
This one is just as much fun as the others and is just different enough to not be repetitive. I enjoyed the added mechanic of worker placement with the original Century engine.
As I predicted, this one comes with three other rule sets. You can play this one four different ways. There are rules to play by itself, with Spice Road, with Easter Wonders OR all three together!
We have tried it with Spice Road which I thoroughly enjoyed since Spice Road has been my favorite. I cannot wait to try the other two ways to play.
Age Range & Weight
Plan B always rates the Century games 8+. I find this slightly low. I know it all comes down to the maturity level of each person but I would probably rate 10+.
The actions are simple to understand. If the game is played with players of equal age, it would not matter so much but played with a diverse age group could put younger players at a disadvantage.
The biggest part of this game is grasping the strategy.
I love these games so much. They do not complicate it to learn yet there is so much strategy packed in. That truly makes a great game in my opinion.
I preferred Spice Road over Eastern Wonders but A New World may now top them all. I enjoyed the simplicity of Spice Road and A New World brought that back.
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