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    Awards

    Rating

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

    You Might Like

    • 60% more civilisations
    • More ways to get landmarks
    • Spicier combat cards
    • Solo campaign mode

    Might Not Like

    • No new mechanisms
    • Wont fit in base box

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    Tapestry Plans And Ploys Review

    Plans and ploys review

    Plans and Ploys is the first expansion for Tapestry, the civilisation building game from Stonemaier Games. Tapestry pits powerful asymmetric factions against one another. Using track advancement, hex tile laying, upgrading technology and employing impressive building miniatures. What does Plans and Ploys add to this buffet then?

    Powers and protagonists

    Tapestry revolves around the 16 civilisation cards in the base game. The civ you play gives a powerful ability, reward or setup bonus and very much directs the strategy you’ll adopt. This expansion adds 10 new playable civilisations into the mix, each with unique and novel powers. You could be an Alien for example, and make unprecedented use of the space tiles. The Islanders let you place exploration tiles on your civ mat rather than the main board. The Utilitarians even assign set abilities to landmark buildings, you can trigger these abilities when you build said landmark in your capital city.
    Talking of Space as we were, Plans and Ploys adds 4 all new space exploration tiles into the game, as well as replacing the misprint in the base game. 3 of these tiles provide ongoing benefits by rewarding their owner every time they advance on a certain track. Original Space tiles only served one off bonuses. The fourth and final space tile addition gives its proud owner a new landmark building, The Monolith! This is one of three new ways to gain landmarks.

    Proliferation and pacification

    The second new way to gain a landmark is through the Entertain the Masses Tapestry card. The base game had Technology cards that awarded buildings but never a Tapestry card. There are 15 new Tapestry cards in all. Most notable, aside from the above, are the sneaky new trap cards. These cards like Retreat, Surrender and Double Cross offer additional options when attacking or being attacked on the board. This adds a bit of spice into the player interaction, the ploys part of the title for sure.
    It makes combat a little more interesting and unpredictable. The original trap cards could be played onto your mat too as Tapestry cards for a flat 10 vp bonus. The new ones offer unique bonuses if played this way, more like standard Tapestry cards.

    Planning and padding

    The third and final way to gain landmarks is the biggest mechanical addition to the game, the Landmark Cards. These cards are drafted in reverse turn order during setup. Each card has a landmark, obviously, and a prerequisite to meet before you can place that landmark in your capital. No one else can take your landmark building, it’s yours and yours lone. Aside from ensuring everyone gets a shot at one big building, these cards also give you something to aim for at the start. There’s the Plans part of the title!
    There’s a couple of non gameplay bits in the box too. There’s a bag for the exploration tiles which to be honest I’ve never used! 12 landmark tokens are included too. These can be placed over the circles on the advancement tracks that indicate when a landmark can be taken. The token can be removed when that landmark is achieved which effectively makes it easier to see which still remain at a glance I guess. Not exactly essential but there we are, they’re provided anyway.
    And that’s about everything included in Plans and Ploys. Well, besides my favourite addition that is. The last item listed in the expansion is easily overlooked because it’s not componentry. In fact there’s only a small subset of gamers that would be interested in this at all. It’s a rulebook with 5 playable automa scenarios. These scenarios make up the Fate of Atlantis campaign. With shifting setup and rule changes and cumulative scoring these scenarios put a seriously fresh spin on Tapestry for the solo aficionado.

    Problems and panaceas

    Expansions tend to fall into two categories. ‘More of the same’ expansions that add volume and variation to existing mechanisms. Or ‘New stuff’ expansions that bring entirely new mechanisms to a game. Plans and Ploys undoubtably fits into the first category. It adds a little more to most pre-existing aspects of the base game. Admittedly drafting landmark cards is new, but it’s not groundbreakingly new if you catch my drift. It feels like an expansion of little tweaks. Indeed the rulebook is dotted with designers notes explaining how each addition was a response to constructive criticism from players.
    It’s true that just about everything in the box improves the base game in small ways. Having said that if you didn’t enjoy the base game for one reason or another, chances are there’s nothing in here that’s going to fix that for you. No one module changes the game in large enough ways to tempt Tapestry detractors back i don’t think.
    Talking of large enough, the original Tapestry box was pretty jam packed with components. While the new civilisation mats and cards will live in the base box easily there’s no way of fitting the new landmark buildings in there.

    Plans and Ploys - Final thoughts

    Personally I love Tapestry so this expansion hits the mark nicely for me. While it’s far from essential to the game, the extra civs are fresh and add tons to the replayability. I’ll never complain at more tiles and cards either, in this instance more is definitely better. Personal landmark goals are fun and for a committed solo player the campaign mode is a dream. Yes Plans and Ploys will appeal to Tapestry fans and solo gamers alike.
    The expansion is modular but there isn’t any reason not to throw it all straight into the mix. There’s no complex rules to learn, it’s adds next to nothing to the setup and nothing to game time! What it does do is provide a focus for early game, give more opportunities to gain landmarks, spice up the combat element and offer even more asymmetric civilisations. If you enjoy Tapestry and want to freshen up the experience there’s plenty to do that here.

    Zatu Score

    Rating

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

    You might like

    • 60% more civilisations
    • More ways to get landmarks
    • Spicier combat cards
    • Solo campaign mode

    Might not like

    • No new mechanisms
    • Wont fit in base box

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    Excellent company, very responsive customer service team, and the games always arrive quickly and safely.

    Excellent company, very responsive customer service team, and the games always arrive quickly and safely.

    Great price (cheaper than my usual online go-to store) and fast delivery and packaged safely! Easy to use and navigate the website. Already asked someone to buy me my birthday present from here! Will definitely use them again

    Great price (cheaper than my usual online go-to store) and fast delivery and packaged safely! Easy to use and navigate the website. Already asked someone to buy me my birthday present from here! Will definitely use them again

    Competitive Prices in today's 2021 CCG/TCG Market. Great Card Shop option to purchase gaming cards compared to most Card Shops that lack a variety of inventory. Gives players a chance to buy and play these wonderful games. Excellent Customer Service. I'd drive here and visit the store if I didn't live that far.

    Competitive Prices in today's 2021 CCG/TCG Market. Great Card Shop option to purchase gaming cards compared to most Card Shops that lack a variety of inventory. Gives players a chance to buy and play these wonderful games. Excellent Customer Service. I'd drive here and visit the store if I didn't live that far.

    Good prices, good selection and preorder/restock options. Good communication. Deliveries are quick and nicely packaged.

    Good prices, good selection and preorder/restock options. Good communication. Deliveries are quick and nicely packaged.

    A large selection of games available to the UK

    A large selection of games available to the UK

    Have been buying from Zatu for a year now, always a swift delivery. Rapid answers to questions. A thoroughly awesome company. Highly recommended.

    Have been buying from Zatu for a year now, always a swift delivery. Rapid answers to questions. A thoroughly awesome company. Highly recommended.

    Really great, easy to order and very reasonable. Ships really quick to offshore uk! Have used Zatu a few times now and I'll definitely order from again to get our game fix 😊 I can barely wait for my next preorder to arrive.

    Really great, easy to order and very reasonable. Ships really quick to offshore uk! Have used Zatu a few times now and I'll definitely order from again to get our game fix 😊 I can barely wait for my next preorder to arrive.

    Great games, delivered quickly with wonderful customer service

    Great games, delivered quickly with wonderful customer service

    I'm in Ireland and ordered on a Friday and received on a Monday. Umbelievable, thanks so much. Very nice to deal with too!

    I'm in Ireland and ordered on a Friday and received on a Monday. Umbelievable, thanks so much. Very nice to deal with too!

    Both times I've ordered from Zatu, my order arrived promptly, in good condition, and with no real issues.

    Both times I've ordered from Zatu, my order arrived promptly, in good condition, and with no real issues.

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