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Race For The Galaxy: The Gathering Storm
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- This is an expansion to Race for the Galaxy, it is not a standalone game
- Adds depth and complexity to Race for the Galaxy
- Includes rules for 6 players
- Can also be played solitaire-style
- Adds depth and complexity
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This first expansion for Race for the Galaxy adds cards, a 5th player, and other ways to expand your universe.The designer will be releasing more details about this expansion closer to the release date. The information that is known is summarized by the designer. Each expansion adds one more player, more cards, plus some goodies besides cards. The first expansion includes solitaire rules. It also includes some blank cards and a contest card for players to submit a card idea to Rio Grande Games. Two slots have been left open in the second expansion for the winners.
From the Manufacturer
This first expansion for Race for the Galaxy adds cards, a 5th player, and other ways to expand your universe.The designer will be releasing more details about this expansion closer to the release date. The information that is known is summarized by the designer. Each expansion adds one more player, more cards, plus some goodies besides cards. The first expansion includes solitaire rules. It also includes some blank cards and a contest card for players to submit a card idea to RGG. Two slots have been left open in the second expansion for the winners.
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This item Race For The Galaxy: The Gathering Storm
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|Are Batteries Required||No||No||No||No|
|Item Dimensions||7.5 x 10.8 x 2.8 in||7.5 x 10.8 x 2.8 in||5.5 x 7.5 x 3 in||7.5 x 10.8 x 2.8 in|
|Item Weight||0.89 lb||1.54 lbs||1.1 lbs||0.9 lb|
Top Customer Reviews
The first major change this expansion makes is by adding goal cards. The point of the goals is to meet them with various configurations of your tableau thereby gaining bonus victory points. Example goals include first player to play a six-cost development or the first player to have five or more victory points in chips. Goals are shuffled at the beginning of the game and drawn randomly, so this adds to variability. However it also slows game play, as players are having to pay close attention to the state of their tableaus to ensure they haven't missed a goal. The goals are useful if you're looking to add new strategies or modify existing ones.
The next major addition (arguably the biggest) this expansion makes is a solitaire play variant against a pre-programmed AI or "adaptable robot" as the rules call it. The box contains special components and rules. I can't give my opinion on it since I've not actually played it. I prefer the expertly-coded Windows PC app from Keldon Jones which you can find online for free. Still, it may be worth taking a look.
This expansion also adds a drafting variant for two or three players in which all player drafts five cards in alternating directions until they're all drawn. This breaks the main deck into separate "private decks" that players draw from for the remainder of the game. This was the most intriguing change to the game for me, as this allows players to tailor their decks and it reduces the randomness inherent in the original game's blind card draw. This is a good change if you want the game to be a bit more strategic and allow for some long-term planning.
Minor changes include four new starting planet cards, nine action cards for a fifth player, 18 new game cards, and 18 blank cards you can use to make your own. The new game cards include new game actions and new 6-point developments.
If you're a veteran RftG player looking to shake up game play from the original, then this will do you nicely. The bonus point goals will definitely alter the way the game is normally played and well-known strategies will have to be re-visited. The solitaire game looks interesting. The drafting mechanic is probably the best change, but you don't need this expansion to play with it. You can download the rulebook from Rio Grande's web site to read up on it.
If you're looking to simply add more cards to the base game, this expansion will disappoint. The addition of a fifth player and new starting planets adds more of the same (in a good way), but with only 18 new game cards added, this expansion has much less value for players not looking to change the overall game play.
I recommend getting dragon shields for ALL the RFTG cards if you are adding expansions. That way you can't tell any difference in wear on the cards. I've loved them!
This is a perfect expansion for adding another player, and not really adding rules but just adding variety.
An expansion to this game I cannot play it without is The Gathering Storm (TGS). TGS is the first of three expansions for the game. As expected, it adds a few cards to the pretty large amount in the base game. These cards are pretty well balanced and fill thematic and mechanical "holes" in the base game. For example, some cards have keywords that can be relevant when scoring happens. This adds more of those cards, which allow more interesting combinations. What really stands out, however, are the goal cards.
The goal cards are a set of goals that are randomly dealt out each game. Two large goals each worth five victory points and four small goals each worth three are in each game. The large goals function like the Longest Road/Largest Army cards in Settlers of Catan, in that they can change hands during the course of the game. One is for largest military, for example, and another is for largest number of large developments. The small ones are for the first person to reach the goal. These add some serious considerations for gameplay, since sometimes a few points can be the difference in first and second place in scoring. And if your draws aren't getting you the planets types you want, you can try focusing on the goal cards so that you're earning points while you're waiting to draw the next rare minerals world, or big development.
To summarize, I wouldn't play RftG without this expansion. The other two expansions don't seem as critical, as I can easily see playing without the additional rules from the Rebel vs. Imperium or Brink of War expansions (Prestige points and takeovers come to mind). This expansion really made Race for the Galaxy a better game. So, if you own the game, try this expansion if you haven't already. And share your thoughts! Tell us what you think of this expansion, or any other expansion for any game you cannot see playing without!