As we are putting the finishing touches on our latest Small World expansion, it seems to be the right time to discuss one of the most important aspects of the Realms: Its scenarios.
Twelve in total, there are enough to appeal to both expert masters of Small World and novice players alike. Thanks to the geomorphic nature of the Terrain tiles, each scenario can be customized for a varying number of players, with many of the scenarios scaling well up to 6 players!
We asked Philippe Keyaerts, the game’s designer, to share his thinking as he developed the Realms scenarios. Here’s the first installment in a number of posts that discuss some of the various “Realms”.
Days of Wonder: Philippe, what new rules did you implement in the scenario Go East?
Philippe Keyaerts: The board map of this Realm is approximately rectangular, with a river running North – South through its middle. All races must enter this Realm through the Westernmost side of the map. Each time they occupy one of the Easternmost regions, on the other edge of the board, they score 1 bonus point.
DoW: This must feel like a Rat race, with everyone running towards the precious East!
P.K.: Since everyone starts on the Western side, there is a lot of pressure on that side. The Easternmost regions are the richest and the safest (at least initially, since one must cross the entire Realm and the river than runs through it, to reach them). And as always in Small World, there won’t be (enough) room for everyone…
DoW: What advice would you give to the players who venture in this scenario?
P.K.: I won’t give any advice; I think it’s a lot more fun to go East (or not!) on your own and discover things on the way. There are just two things I would suggest players remember: After a Decline, a player’s new Race will always enter the Map through the Western front. So that side is never quiet. And, like always when there are rich Regions on the map, if a player is left alone conquering them, she’ll get a good leg up on her victory!
DoW: Thank you for this first walk through the Realms, Philippe. We look forward to traveling with you again soon.
The Small World Realms expansion is expected to be available in better game stores throughout Europe in June and in North America in early July. Retail price will be $35/€33.