Monday, January 17, 2011

Stoned Age?

Played Stone Age again this weekend after a year or two hiatus and I sure do enjoy the gameplay.  The die-rolling is loads of fun and the rseource-collecting and buying is fun, too.  Like a very light 'Gric.

HOWEVER (and notice this is a big however), our game with two beginners who caught on really quick took two and a half frigging hours!  This game is TOO long.  I remember posting this in a review on BGG awhile back and people not-so-politely commenting that perhaps we were playing under the influence a of certain drug.  They claimed 30-45 minutes is possible for a game.  Really?  Prove it. 

It's too bad because I really enjoy Stone Age but it's way too light to last as long as a game of Age of Steam.  Anyone else found this?


  1. We played it yesterday with three players, all first time players of the game. It took us about 2 hours to finish the game. Which really is about twice as long than what I'd normally find acceptable for a game. But none of us had any problem with the duration.
    In fact, we loved the game, although we had to climb a bit of a learning curve at the start of the game. We also loved how there is little real down time in the game. So the 2 hours passed by really quickly.

  2. it really depends on the game.. some games take 3 hours and it feels like 40000 but some are 5 hours and are great the whole time :)

  3. Bjorn, we REALLY enjoy the game, too. The actual play of it is quite good. But I don't find the strategy is deep enough to warrant two hours. Having said that, I always seem to lose so who knows....

  4. At one time, Stone Age got played a lot in our game group, and over the 14 games I have play time information on, we averaged 84.29 minutes per play.

    Personally, I also feel that's way too long. I also don't particularly like the fact that there's really only one strategy: to collect cards. You have a little choice in what else you're doing (focusing on workers, huts, or whatever), but if you don't aggressively buy up cards (either collecting sets or multiplying whatever else you do), then you will lose.

    I also don't like how all this card drawing leads to a big "let's all take turns revealing what we've got and calculating score" phase after the game is over. I think it'd be okay if it were just a little bit of your score, but in most cases, the "card scoring" turns out to be the majority of your points.

    I do agree that playing with the mechanics of the game is pretty enjoyable, but I just hate the endgame.

  5. I find Stone Age usually takes 2hrs+ with new players, especially if they're new to worker-placement games, but we can get done in under 90mins with an experienced group (even with my non-too-speedy seven-year-old and analysis-paralysis-prone fifteen-year-old.

  6. Holy crap. I recently played this after a long hiatus as well and had the exact same experience. It took us 2.5 hours and was pure drudgery. I think the central mechanic of the game - that you can resolve all of your actions before the next player is to blame. (I also suspect even when played briskly the game may be too long. Perhaps 3 players is the answer?)