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September 1666. A careless baker in Pudding Lane forgot to put out his fire and it spread creating an inferno which would destroy 13,000 houses and make 70,000 of London's 80,000 population homeless. The Lord Mayor fails to act and it is down to the trained bands of militia led by a few worthies to fight the fire and finally put it out. To do so they must decide which districts to demolish to protect others. These same individuals own much of London and making such choices is painful. In the end though it is an opportunity for many. Someone is going to come out of this with the most property intact and someone will be seen to do the most to fight the fire. Could that someone have enough influence and popularity to become the next Mayor?
The players are men of wealth and standing who own property around London. They can use the trained bands to fight the fire, use demolitions to destroy blocks of housing to prevent the fire flowing or turn a blind eye and allow the fire to spread and damage rival's property. Victory can belong to the player with the most property left but putting out fires can give you a boost. In addition each player will have several hidden objectives which might include helping another player or protecting parts of the city.
|By||Oridyne||From||Staffs in United Kingdom|
The artwork on the board and cards is very good, the Hero of London card looks a little odd though. My board has warped slightly but this does not adversely affect playing the game.
The components are well thought out and suit the theme of the game, the rules are a little complicated but once you start playing they make a bit more sense. The game plays for a set number of turns as you build a deck of fire move cards based on the number of players with fire intensity cards dispersed in the deck. The idea is to protect your houses, whilst helping to put out fires across London. Each player also gets 3 secret missions to protect specific districts of London, if these areas still have house on at the end of the game the players scores the value of that card.
Unusually each player starts with some Victory points, this total is slowly eroded as play progresses as each of their houses that burns down reduces their score by 2. This game was immense fun and the gameplay fits the theme really well, we managed to get a few of the rules wrong (there are a lot of things to remember).
On a Players turn they move the Fire, then they can take 4 actions either moving a Trained Band or their Landowner pawn or both (1 space per action), or put out fires in contained areas and Finally they take a new Fire Movement Card to take their hand back to 5 cards. This is the main part of the game and as this progresses the fire spreads through London damaging areas as it goes.
At the end of the game players total up what points they have left on the score track, plus any fires they have put out and any points from the areas on their mission cards.
I really like this game, but I think it will take a few more plays before we get all the rules down, a player aid would have been a useful addition to the game to remind players of the options and fire movement rules
These volume discounts are in addition to sale and special offer prices.
1 1/2-2 hours
Spirit Games (Est. 1984, Lefglow Ltd) - Supplying role playing games (RPG), wargames rules, miniatures and scenery, new and traditional board and card games for the last 36 years
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