2016 is a brand new year and with it comes brand new games to try which is always a good thing, especially when it also comes with a chance of defeating a good friend who has been having something of a winning streak. That friend is Lewis A.K.A WeirdFTW on twitter who has been doing rather well at a rather intriguing game called Cauldron.
Weird started off the evening with a proclamation regarding his recent good fortune while playing various different characters in a game called Cauldron which may have been a slight error in judgement as he put somewhat of a large target on his back for the duration of the evening. Cauldron from creator Artem Safarov is a brilliantly designed game that sees you brew potions to gain more magic but in order to advance you have to spend some of that magic that you have worked so hard to gain.
After randomly selecting our characters I became the Witch with an expert brewing ability that seemed very interesting although I didn’t really use it and A little helper ability that I used as often as I could. The Little helper ability worked really well with harvesting the ingredients that I needed to brew my potions and the fact that I managed to cast a spell in order to get a free cellar right off the bat helped more than you could possibly imagine.
Playing the game was Lewis, Mel, Adam, Ben and Myself with the majority of us newcomers to this magical world of potion making and consequently it took a while to set up and took a while for each of us to take our goes. In fact we were taking so long long that other gamers managed to finish there games while we were only able to complete a few rounds but that might have been because we were messing each other up a lot and we also spent a fair bit of the magic we had gained.
Somehow I managed to draw potion cards that all required similar ingredients which combined with two of the three being quick ones, it meant that I could brew the potions a lot easier and had less risk of the ingredients being stolen. Having two cellars definitely improved my chances of retaining the ingredients that I needed for my potions although I had to watch out for the eagle eyed ben who was very quick to remind me that only one ingredient went in each cellar. The reason behind this was the fact that I am notorious for my slow decision making, especially at board games that I am approaching for the first time.
Early on in the game I threw down a spell that saw several ingredients disappear form the board as I had hoped it would speed things up and cause some more competition for certain pieces which would allow me to sneak through what I wanted. Casting such a spell caused a strong reaction from my fellow potion brewers which I thought was pretty interesting although I must apologise to Mel for royally messing with her potion making abilities.
However that was not the only dramatic thing to happen to that game as Lewis would lose not one but two of his three potion cards by the end of the game which even I thought was pretty harsh which is saying something. Although I did find it finny when I managed to match Lewis’s dice rolls three times in a row before he beat me by one pit on the 4th role which was bad as I was one seat anti clockwise from him and thus had to wait until last to have my go.
What was good about Cauldron was the strategy behind it as you had to carefully manage your resources and the magic you gained, spending it at the right time in order to advance further while making sure you were in a good position relating to other players.
There were some things that needed clarification which slowed down the game but fortunately for us the game’s creator responded to us pretty quickly via twitter which was very nice of him. Overall I will have to say that I really liked this game and I would highly recommend that you give it a go if you get the chance as I am sure you will have a good time playing it.