My Imperfect Game Rules Queue
How many sets of game rules can you keep in your head? I think my queue is about…10 games. One goes in, another one has to go out. At some point, Kemet fell out of my brain.
I picked up the Ta-Seti expansion a few weeks ago and this was the first time I got to play with it. It’s really neat! Too bad I can’t remember how to be effective in the baseline game.
Ta-Seti adds five modular mini-expansions to the game. We played with three of them: black pyramids (with a whole new set of powers), the path to Ta-Seti (which is a second map on which you move a new kind of unit and pick up bonuses), and some new battle and Divine Intervention cards. The expansions we didn’t add have to do with changing how turn order is determined — basically it’s the player whose ass got kicked the hardest and most frequently — and changing the victory conditions (I didn’t really pay attention to that last one).
The most consequential feeling change was the new black pyramid powers. There were already three sets of sixteen powers to know (a big part of the stuff that fell out of my head), so this fourth set of 16, and how they might interact with the other 48 powers, was uh a bit much to work out.
The Path to Ta-Seti is nifty, really nifty. Every time you move a troop on the map, you also move a new unit type (a priest) on the pathway. Many of the paths give you an instant little benefit: additional prayer power, or a new soldier, or kill someone else’s unit. Whatever. Then you stop at the next village or temple and decide either to take the goodie sitting at that spot, or push on. Eventually you can walk to Ta-Seti itself, which has a permanent VP waiting for the priest. Additional little impermanent bonuses, as well as the option to train up your priest units with specific skill sets that benefit whichever troop they’re attached to later.
So the big thing I forgot was that you can’t really be conservative in Kemet. If you’re not careening into each other you’re not earning victory points. It’s super slippery and aggressive and you can’t even get mad at each other because everyone’s in everyone else’s face all the time. There were only three of us, so the interactions were less complex, but that’s a good way to (re)learn the game.
I wonder why more games haven’t done anything with the crypto-scifi Stargate type setting. Fantasy techno-Egypt is pretty zany and great.