... and boy did I have hopes for this one (see my excitement here). Not to say they have been crushed, ESPECIALLY after one play. But this game is very chaotic. The random event cards can be a bit devastating when picked at the right times. For example, by pure chance I drew a card before the final bidding round which allowed me to make two other players discard 3 adventure cards each. This effectively locked one player out of the last round of bidding and cost her the game. How arbitrary.
As well, I kept thinking of games like Ticket To Ride and Elfenland for which this game would share the same audience (and was definitely inspired by). Both of those games seem to have an arc and climactic, nail-biting endings. In this first game, I had played my winning cards by round 14 and couldn't improve my position anymore. I basically sat quiet through the last two auctions before I could claim the win. Hmmm.
Having said this, we were playing slow due to it being our first game and so it did seem to go on for awhile. But we were definitely entertained and the artwork is fantastic but I'm just not sure there is enough control or long-term strategy to make this last more than a few plays. I really hope I'm wrong because I could see this being quite a humorous, nasty little game. We shall see.