Charity Challenge 2021 - Week 4 Night 2

We continue our Charity Challenge Week 4 sitting at $640 raised of our $600 donation goal. We’ve hit our goal but would love to keep on going! If you’d like to donate you can do so here.

Let’s get into the game!

The Choice

After losing to Rachel in Cascadia on Night 1 the ball is back in my court to pick tonight’s game. This time I’m going to pick a genre/type of game where I think I have an overall upper hand on Rachel and hopefully that choice doesn’t back fire on me.

For Night 2 of Week 4, I’m going to choose an engine building game, Fantastic Factories!

The Game

Fantastic Factories is a an engine building game where players are collecting resources to build buildings, those buildings in turn will create more resources. It’s a super approachable fairly pure representation of its genre and is a lot of fun. The official description gives the full details:

It’s a manufacturing arms race! Compete against other players as you try to build the most efficient set of factories in the shortest time. You must carefully manage your blueprints, train your workers, and manufacture as many goods as possible in order to achieve industrial dominance!

In Fantastic Factories, you race to manufacture the most goods or build the most prestigious buildings. There are elements of dice rolling, worker placement, engine building, resource management, tableau building, simultaneous play, and some card drafting. Each round is split into two phases, the market phase and the work phase.

During the market phase, you choose to either acquire a new blueprint for free or pay to hire a contractor. Blueprints are used to construct new factories during the work phase. Contractors can be used to reinforce your strategy by providing resources or allowing you to roll additional dice. You need to be mindful of what cards are available in the marketplace and the strategies your opponents may be pursuing.

During the work phase, all players simultaneously roll their dice and use their dice as workers to run factories. Factories start as blueprints and need to be constructed. Once constructed, each factory can be used once each turn. Worker placement can happen in any order and figuring out the correct sequence can enable a powerful chain of actions. Additionally, you can build training facilities that allow you to manipulate the dice values of your workers. Each work phase is like solving a unique worker placement puzzle in order to optimize your output of resources and goods.

Once any player has manufactured 12 goods or constructed 10 buildings, the game end is triggered and one additional and final round is played. The player with the most points wins (combination of building prestige and manufactured goods). With over 30 unique blueprints and countless synergies across buildings, each game is unique. Fantastic Factories offers a lot of replay value and satisfaction as players discover new factory engines with each game.

The Result

The reason why picking this game was so appealing for me was because I tend to click into gear faster with engine building games while Rachel takes a round or two to ease into it. This was oddly not the case tonight. One of the things you do in the game is run your engine to create goods, which are points. Rachel was doing this much faster than me, in fact she triggered the end of the game.

HOWEVER I had managed to build some of the monuments, buildings that score you higher points. It was really close in the end. I thought Rachel, with her humming machine was for sure going to get it done, but my monuments saved the day and I ended up winning 28 to 25. Far and away Rachel’s best score ever in the game and a good showing but I was glad to claim the win!