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March of the Ants
$78.50

March of the Ants ALL-IN Kickstarter Bundle!! You want this game… enough said!

This bundle includes the March of the Ants base game as well as the Minions of the Meadow and Empires of the Earth expansions!  IN addition, I’m tossing the wooden centipede brood mother meeple pack, the wooden Centimeeples pack, the ant meeples pack and the sun/moon and leaf wooden markers from the first campaign into the kit for fun! I don’t know about you, but I need every darn wooden bit there is when I get a cool, new game… 😉 That’s the upstart way!  Hahaha…

And, in true Upstart fashion… I have to mention that Tim Eisner and the crew at Weird City Games are absolutely wonderful human beings!! I met Tim at BGG CON a few years back and we’ve stayed in touch over email since then… with plans to reconnect once we both find ourselves at the same convention again. [My family’s annual reunion trip has been colliding with BGG CON for the years since that first time I went… painful!] Anyway, Tim is a fantastic designer, artist, and publisher… and he’s an all-around solid human. It’s people like him (and so many others) that make this community amazing.

True confession… 4X isn’t generally my thing.

March of the Ants is a really fun, wonderfully thematic, Euro-style, 4X game with a penchant for brutal ant battles that end in heartbreak and teeth-gnashing! 😢😤

To be honest, I don’t really prefer 4x games as I find the “open” nature of the choices waters down the “stratgery” for me. I like a bit more structure; and I suppose that has something to do with enjoying the fact that everyone has a limited number of options and the person who exploits those options the best, wins!  Sure, that happens with 4X too… but since many 4X games are just so boundless… I feel like there are just too many choices and the “tightness” of the decision-making decreases. I suppose I just like to know that we are all operating in the same box… and that that box is a tad smaller than a limitless sandbox! 🏖

[Interestingly, I am not a huge fan of asymmetric games either… for basically the same sort of reason. I prefer that all players have the same (non-boundless) options… and the winner is the person with the optimal, limited-options strategy!  Anyway… what I prefer or don’t prefer is irrelevant… although it’s helpful in reading between the lines of my game write-ups to see if you might enjoy a game I am in love with ❤️👍]

Anyway, I’m not sure if I would call March of the Ants a classic 4x experience… and for that reason (and many others) I find myself really, really enjoying it! 😉

Rounds and phases… we got this!

The game is played over 4 rounds… with an option to go 5 rounds if you’d like a longer game experience! Then, each of these rounds are divided into 3 phases – worker phase, soldier phase, queen phase.  Seems straightforward enough 😉  Each phase ends once two players pass; rather than choosing an action.  This keeps things lively… but on the other hand, if your game group has an “agent of chaos” personality who just likes to disrupt things a tad when they get bored or tired… that person can shut down rounds pretty quickly once another player chooses to pass. Ouch! 🦹‍♂️

Worker phase… action, reaction, onward!

Each action in the worker phase has a lesser reaction adjoined… After the main player takes their action, each player may choose to take the given reaction. This requires everyone to stay engaged and follow the other players’ actions… but of course, we’re all used to that!  Haha… after all, we are boardgamers! I won’t get into the specifics of the reactions here… but just know they are less powerful than the primary action. Think of Puerto Rico and the action selection mechanism therein… just without the tiles to choose from.

Explore – Turn over a new tile and move ant(s) into the new area. As an example, the player taking this action places the new tile and moves their ant(s) into the new hex. Reaction players get to move one larvae from their larvae chamber into a hex they already inhabit or into The Great Tunnel (a common area where things get started). 🌏

March – As you might imagine… this gets your ants moving!  Ants hooooooo!!! 🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜

Forage – Draw cards from the deck… 🌳🌳🌳

Play a card – Pay (larvae/ants) to play a card from your hand onto the table. Ant component cards (head/thorax/abdomen) are played onto your player board and given ongoing bonuses to different actions.  Colony Goal cards are played into the colony Goal Card Stash and provide end-of-round point bonuses if certain goals are achieved! 🎴

Rest – This action ends that player’s active turn-taking. Each time the continued play passes them by (when it would have been their turn), they earn a food token. Once a second player rests, the round ends. Beware the tired Agent of Chaos! They want to go to sleep and they don’t care how close you are to winning!  Hahahah… 💤

Soldier Phase 💂‍♂️💂‍♀️

After the second player passes… it’s time to do battle! Contested hexes (more than one ant colony represented) and hexes with centipedes battle it out for Arthropodian dominance! There are some specific rules on how this works (of course), but I’ll leave it to the rules to sort out the nitty gritty. In short order, while ants CAN coexist peacefully in a given hex, if certain parameters are met (ants wandering around aimlessly in the hex), battle begins! Furthermore, whenever a centipede rears its head in your hex… get ready to RUMBLE!

The battle parameters are pretty straightforward but the cost (both to winners and losers) can really deal a body blow to your plans. Of course, you can go with the “peaceful coexistence” strategy (a popular choice for me).. but if that strategy starts to lead you to victory… you’d better start looking over your shoulder! Those pesky other players are likely coming to take you down.  Yes Jeff and Doug… I’m talking to you!!! 😤😉

Queen phase

Harvest resources from collection sites on the board, feed you colony, decide if your Queen produces food or larvae. Then everyone gains one colony point for every hex they occupy that is adjacent to The Great Tunnel. Now, move the round marker and get cracking on the next worker phase before you start to think too much about the fact that ants will eat their larvae if they are short on food! 🥓Zoinks! Uh, let’s get that worker phase started, shall we?

Components

The cardboard hexes and The Great Tunnel are both beautifully illustrated… the flavor text amplifies the already immersive theme… and the wooden bits are amazingly COOL! I mean, what solid human wouldn’t beam with pride displaying their collection of multi-colored, wooden insects?!? You’ve got your entomologists, your board gamers, the people at Orkin…. you get the idea!

Expansions!

Each of the two expansions (included in this bundle – of course) add in delightful new mechanics, new cards, and added depth to the experience! SOLID!!!  Plus, Minions of the Meadow adds-in some sweet new wooden meeples… ALWAYS a welcome addition in my universe! Read below for additional details on the expansions… I have to get these new games listed… so I need to conserve carpal-tunnel points… hahaha.

 

Ages: 13+
Players: 1 – 5
Play Time: 70 minutes (no range! Just 70! 😉)
Designers:
Artists:
Publisher: Weird City Games
SKU: Weird City Games 001
MSRP:
$109.99 and up (without the myriad
wooden add-ons) on eBay at the time
of this listing (APR 2020)
Our Price: $78.50 (with ALL the bits!)
Link to BGG:

 

6 in stock



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Description

March of the AntsMarch of the Ants… Minions of the Meadow… Empires of the Earth… and EVERY wooden component Kickstarter add-on! We are done here.

As spring dawns the great thaw begins.

Deep beneath the lush meadow grasses the queen stirs in her nest and the colony comes to life. Soldiers venture forth, battling centipedes while clashing with opposing colonies for territory. Workers dig an ever-expanding network of tunnels in their tireless search for food. The first larvae hatch and it is clear this generation will be different: the young colonies rapidly evolve into a multitude of new forms. The ants march out to claim the meadow as their own.

In March of the Ants, you create the shared Meadow board by sending your ants to explore it, revealing and strategically placing two dozen unique tiles like Fern, Pebble, and Nest of Centipedes.

Populate new territory by breeding larvae and marching your ants onto collection sites. Will you engage competing colonies in battle, seeking to claim the land for yourself? Or will you establish peaceful, symbiotic relationships and share the spoils? All of this must be done while carefully managing the resources in your underground nest.

Forage for Event Cards like Strange Appetite, Cold Snap, and Fungal Outbreak to impact the entire board – or just one unlucky opponent.

Mutate your colony with special Evolution Cards like the Trap Jaw head, Weaver thorax, and Leaf Cutter abdomen. What weird and wondrous path will your colony’s evolution take: advanced Workers, fearsome Soldiers, or a fertile Queen?

Emerge triumphant by scoring Colony Points as your ants explore and control the Meadow. Search for Colony Goals like Epic Stores, Followers of the Eyeless, and Extensive Tunnels to plan your route to victory.

March of the Ants takes strategy underground…literally!

In Minions of the Meadow colonies gain powerful new tools to aid in their conquest of the meadow. Major Workers invite players to explore, expand and battle, Aphid Farms grant majestic rewards, Parasitic Evolutions thwart the best laid plans, Tactics increase the allure and spoils of battle, and the fearsome Predators are drawn to the greatest colonies.

Major Workers – Each Colony can breed Major Workers, larger ants who evolve with your colony. Use their powers to scout the best territory or lead your armies to war.

Aphids – Send your ants to find aphids and form a symbiotic relationship. Herd them to new hexes where they will have space to grow and provide greater harvest.

Tactics – Play Tactics like Feint, Ferocious Expansion and Savage Cannibals to catch your opponent by surprise and turn the tide in battle.

Parasitic Evolutions – Infect your opponent’s ants and corrupt their most powerful evolutions, forcing them to share their gains with you.

Predators – Summon forth the Centipede Broodmother and the Trapdoor Spider, terrible beasts who roam beyond the meadow.

Return to the meadow to build your colony in Empires of the Earth, the new expansion for March of the Ants.

Empires of the Earth introduces two new mechanics and card types as well as 18 new game bending Ant cards, brought to life by some of the best board game artists in the world!

Sculpt a Darwinian Edge
In Empires of the Earth players draft Mutations to jumpstart their colonies with asymmetric abilities. These Mutations let players craft their strategies from the start of the game, and kick the game into high gear from the very first turn.

Build Your Nest
Expand your underground empire with Nest Chambers, a brand new card type that will let you use your nest inhabitants to unlock powerful recurring abilities.

More of Everything!
Empires of the Earth includes 18 new Evolutions, Events and Colony Goals that will let you diversify your strategy and grow your colony in exciting new ways. Maintain a delicate peace with the Peacekeeper head, or spread spores with Cult of the Gray Queen.

A Rich and Diverse Colony
To celebrate the world of March of the Ants, we reached out to our favorite artists from around the globe. This new mini-expansion to March of the Ants includes 40 cards featuring art from Vincent Dutrait, Mr. Cuddington, the Mico, and more.

Additional information
Weight 6.2 lbs
Dimensions 11 × 8 × 6 in
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