Tapestry Board Game: Arts And Architecture Expansion

Tapestry Board Game: Arts And Architecture Expansion

RRP: £39.99
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Choose from a variety of new capital city mats, a new advancement track featuring new types of cards and tiles, plus more civilizations, tapestry cards, tech cards, and landmark cards/miniatures in this second expansion for Tapestry. Players: 1-5 Playing Time: 90-120 Min Age: 14+
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Dice Tower

Rating

  • Artwork
  • Complexity
  • Replayability
  • Player Interaction
  • Component Quality

You Might Like

  • Adds a new track
  • Advanced options for seasoned players
  • New ways to use buildings

Might Not Like

  • Won’t fit in base box
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Description

Choose from a variety of new capital city mats, a new advancement track featuring new types of cards and tiles, plus more civilizations, tapestry cards, tech cards, and landmark cards/miniatures in this second expansion for Tapestry.

Players: 1-5

Playing Time: 90-120 Min

Age: 14+

Arts and Architecture is the second expansion for Tapestry, a game designed by Jamie Stegmaier of Viticulture and Scythe fame. Tapestry is a highly abstracted civilisation building game that utilises many mechanisms but chiefly involves advancing on 4 different tracks in order to take actions. The higher on the track you get the more expensive advancement becomes but the actions are also more powerful. Onto this base was layered the Plans and Ploys expansion. Whilst adding some novel additions and tweaks, Plans and Ploys was for the most part a “more of the same” expansion. Arts and Architecture on the other hand brings some genuinely game changing stuff to the table which alters Tapestry considerably. Let’s take a closer look at what’s in the box

Back On Track

The biggest addition is a whole new track. Yes that’s right, Tapestry players now have 5 advancement tracks to choose from! The science die is replaced with a new 20 sided science die that includes the appropriate new track symbols. The Arts track sits below the main board but functions in the same way as the original 4 tracks. Pay resources to advance and collect landmarks if you’re the first player into each era. Also like the original tracks, Arts gives standard rewards such as tapestry cards, income buildings and resources, whilst also having its own unique rewards. Through Arts one can collect Masterpiece cards which give their bonuses at the beginning of each income phase, like a mini civilisation bonus. These masterpieces are cumulative so focusing on the Arts can be a competitive and powerful new strategy.

The other improvement available only from the Arts track are the Inspiration tiles. Players can use these to overlay their income tracks and improve the rewards received each income turn. They specifically increase the points available from each income track rather than the resources.

Capital Ideas

The expansion provides 5 new asymmetric civilisations to play as. All of which have new and interesting abilities and powers but I’ll let you discover these on your own. The new capital maps are also novel in that they’re “advanced” capital city maps. Where the original maps all consisted of 9 square grids with random obstructed squares the new ones each do things a little differently.

For example Cloud City has 9 districts which are each a different size and shape, but it does come with its own ability which lets you move two previously placed income buildings each income turn. The Caverns top 3 grids must be filled before buildings can be placed on the middle tier and the middle completed before the bottom. It also doesn’t give any points for columns but makes it up by awarding 2 points per complete row in the top and middle tiers and a whopping 3 per bottom row. So on and so forth, they each provide a unique twist which is another neat way of adding even more asymmetry to Tapestry.

Cards For Yards

This expansion also adds cards to just about every category. There are 5 new landmark cards for players to draft at the beginning of the game. Along with the 3 landmarks on the Arts track this makes 8 new miniatures added to the game. In true Stonemaier fashion these new sculpts all tip the hat to previous Stonemaier games which is kind of fun.

20 new tapestry cards enter play and some even possess a new type of power. As opposed to “When played” or “This era”, new “Continuous” card powers are available to you for the rest of the game or at least as long as that Tapestry card remains visible. In other words if you overlay a “continuous” effect card, you lose the effect. Another nifty addition to certain Tapestry cards are building plots. These give you somewhere else to place your income or landmark buildings other than your capital mat and they give unique rewards for doing so.

Finally Arts and Architecture adds 11 new cards to the tech deck. In a similar vein to the building plot Tapestry cards, some of these new tech cards allow you to place landmarks on them in order to upgrade them. In fact the prerequisite for upgrading to top tier is that they must have a landmark on them.

Final Thoughts

Well that’s everything that this second expansion adds to Tapestry and it’s a decent amount. The 5th track is obviously a major update and can change the game considerably. The masterpiece cards and inspiration tiles give huge scope for point scoring and plenty of opportunity for extra synergies between all the many moving parts of the game too. Competition for landmarks is eased by the addition of the Arts track, especially at lower player counts. It’s much easier to fill your capital, particularly if playing with Landmark cards, so the addition of extra uses for buildings on the cards is a much needed ingredient.

Extra rules are negligible in Arts and Architecture and most are printed directly on the relevant component so it adds very little complexity whilst providing a large dollop of variation. In a game like Tapestry which is all about asymmetric combinations and synergies, this is a really really good quality for an expansion. Replayability is increased dramatically. Of all the extra content available for Tapestry I would say that Arts and Architecture adds the most to the game. There really is no reason to play without it even with new players. Everything it does, it does well and to better the base game.

Zatu Score

Rating

  • Artwork
  • Complexity
  • Replayability
  • Player Interaction
  • Component Quality

You might like

  • Adds a new track
  • Advanced options for seasoned players
  • New ways to use buildings

Might not like

  • Wont fit in base box