👥 1-5 players
🕗 100 minutes
In Scythe, you play a faction leader in 1920s Europe. Europe is divided by war and you will try to become the most powerful and richest ruler in Europe with your faction. You will do this by completing six goals, the player who has the most money wins the game.
In Scythe, each player plays their own faction. Each faction has its own starting area on the game board. The game board is divided into different landscapes, such as forests, lakes and mountains. These landscapes contain resources such as wood, grain, metal and oil. There are also villages and mines, and rivers between areas.
In the game, you will try to complete six goals. Once a player has completed six goals the game ends and the points are counted, the player with the most money wins the game. On your turn, you can choose from the four action cards in front of you. Each action card has two actions on the card. A top action and a bottom action.
The top actions allow you to move, produce, trade and strengthen your team. With the bottom actions you can place buildings and mechs, make upgrades and unlock bonuses. On your turn you must choose an action card, and you may perform 1 of the 2, or both actions.
You are going to try to conquer Europe with your army. You do this by slowly expanding your dolls. With the move action, you can take two (or later three) steps across the field, so you will slowly but surely move your army. With the action produce you activate two (later three) squares that you have control over. That way you will produce goods (which are necessary for performing the bottom actions) or grow your army. With the trade action, you can get two goods and with the strengthen action you increase the strength of your team, should it come to a battle.
The goods you collect are necessary to perform your bottom actions. This allows you to upgrade actions, so that you can, for example, take 3 steps instead of 2 or reduce the cost of the other actions. You can also place Mechs. These are a kind of machines that helps you conquer territories from fellow players. With a Mech, you can also move your troops more easily across the land. By placing buildings you unlock special bonuses and strengthen your position on the board. Finally, you can unlock bonuses that give you extra points, strength or other things, and get bonuses when your fellow players perform an action.
You can win the game, as mentioned, by completing 6 goals. A goal can be placing all four buildings, Mechs, or completing all upgrades and expanding your army. Whether maximizing your power or popularity or winning a battle. In short, there is a lot to do and to choose from, too much to do. To win the game you have to choose your targets and don’t focus on everything, then you won’t make it.
First of all; Scythe is beautiful. The game board, the artwork, and the quality of the various components and miniatures. There are many components, it’s a real box full.
All of this can feel a little overwhelming at first. However, the rules are clear and uncluttered. And the choices you make in your turn are easy to oversee. You choose 1 of the four cards and perform 1 or 2 of them, depending on what you want (or can).
The tricky thing about this game is that you can score points (money) in many different ways and you really have to make choices in what you are going to focus on. Different strategies are possible, and the game is therefore extremely balanced.
The turns move quickly, and we find the game to be very smooth and fast-paced. The game takes quite a long time, it lasts about 1.5 and 2 hours per game. However, it doesn’t feel long at all and time flies by.
The game is fun with both 2 and multiplayer. With 2 players you play faster, and you still play a bit more separately on the board in our experience. With multiple players, the game lasts longer and there is more player interaction. It’s both very nice.
In short, we are super excited about Scythe. It is an expert game, mainly because it is a strategy game. The number of choices in your turn is easy to oversee, but because you really have to choose a strategy, and stick to it, it is an expert game in our opinion.
For the player who is looking for a beautiful expert game, clear in terms of actions and components, but who requires a strategic way of playing, this is highly recommended in our opinion.