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Machi Koro

36 out of 43 gamers thought this was helpful

First of All…

I’m a power gamer, and I love this game! This isn’t just for families with 9 year olds.

Engine Building & Game Breaking

I love the engine building aspect of this game. Building your city is like putting together a puzzle that will eventually gain a mind of its own and finish itself faster than your opponents’ puzzle. One downside to this engine building, however, is the simplicity and lack of variety in the cards. “Breaking” the game was a quick and easy task. My method is to buy up the Ranches (the 2 cost with the cow on it), build my Station (for the dice rolling), and buy up Cheese Factories (3 coins/Cow establishment when you roll a 7). I’m telling you, this strategy seriously dominates. One major reason this is the best strategy is based on the 7. When rolling 2 dice, a final sum of 7 is the most probable outcome. This literally makes one able to calculate the best possible engine.

Take it to the Harbor

In my opinion, The Harbor expansion for Machi Koro is absolutely necessary. It takes this game to another level of gaming awesomeness. I will no longer play the base game alone for this one. The Harbor adds elements to the game that complete fix all of my previous problems. The cards are no longer all laid out to be dissected and purchased in the best order. Instead, the cards are all shuffled and put in a face down deck, coming out in random order based on a simple, but interesting dealing mechanic. Also, more cards are added that add complexity and card interaction to make many winning strategies possible.

Replay Value

With The Harbor expansion, the game has great replayability, due to the added cards and not knowing in which order they’ll hit the table.


Just cards and coin chits. It’s all that’s needed, but nothing spectacular.

Ease to Learn

Very. The base game is especially easy to teach to children, although they will likely miss some of the more intricate card interactions.

In Closing

Buy Machi Koro. Play Machi Koro. Buy Machi Koro: The Harbor. Add Machi Koro: The Harbor to every game you play. Enjoy yourself!

Go to the Guilds of Cadwallon page
28 out of 31 gamers thought this was helpful

I will try to sound more informative than harsh, but it will be hard for me to hide that this is my least favorite game from my 200+ collection.

The Gameplay

Guilds of Cadwallon cycles through a few rounds of flipping over District Tiles, placing agents, and collecting points. For the most part, that’s it.

The Theme

The rulebook comes packed full of Lore, from the Guilds to the setting; however, sadly, this lore is useless. Never in the game does any of the theme have any purpose at all, which is sad, because the theme is cool. The game could be numbers on cards and nickels for markers and the gameplay would feel the same.


Simply put, there really is no strategy in this game. Every turn, there is a calculable best play. That just takes a little thinking. There is no strategy to that. Also, there is a very clear start player advantage, because they get the first chance to take that obvious best placement. The worst part about the start player advantage is that, with the way the game plays, it’s possible that not every player will have the chance to go first. In a game my group played with 4 players, I was the last player in the first round and the game ended before I got a chance to take the start player position. I lost big time.

Final Notes

The art is cool and the theme is cool, even though it is sadly not applied. Those are the only good things I can say about this game.

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