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Leder games Oath chatter
However, I was sitting on a great place to cycle cards, the Great Slums, and it just let me work the decks. I used the Oracle to go fish a vision out of the world deck (which was at least 12 cards down when I did), and started trying to assemble Secrets for that. However, someone else made a Darkest Secret play earlier in the turn I was going to go for it, and the resulting Vision panic made everyone start stocking up on Secrets. I was going to lose that race, so I started cycling the world deck at 4 each again for cash, and came up with a play to acquire 7 favor (plus 1 I had) on one turn. Now I'm the Oathkeeper, and the game suddenly took off.
Click through the Instagram post to see the final defense roll, the only time I used dice all game.
It was very much a social over military victory, concentrating on Hearth in the Great Slums to win over the masses. (after I couldn't win by Secret treachery!)
Saying that the value of different cards is contextual is a comment made about most games---so this is mainly a question of degree. The entire Oath system (Oath, Visions, board layout, economic layout/bank volumes) of this game is designed to make card value completely contextual. It really leans into you recognizing (or not recognizing) the relative value of a card or combo of several cards based on game state... but to a degree that I think is almost unparalleled in other games. It's the part that can make you feel good and clever when you play a game of Oath where you had a chance or an angle.
We played the second session last night. We had both Buried Giant in the Cradle and the Narrow Pass in the Hinterlands, which led to a bit more maneuvering. The first game winner had been heavy in Discord, so we had that added to the deck and it showed up. They had Boiling Lake at Standing Stones in the Provinces, along with another Discord denizen, which made them difficult to pry out and the Visions came out quickly, which made Searching outside the discard piles problematic. Indeed, the Provinces discard pile emptied out around round 5. I was the spoiler in that I stole away the Darkest Secret in that round, preventing the endgame rolls, and also emptied the Discord bank, which was loaded, utterly disrupting the current Chancellor. Soon after, another Exile took People's Favor, which was his Vision (mine was the often near-impossible Conquest), which led to the struggle over who's going to be the kingmaker/spoiler. We reached the end of the eighth round and the former Chancellor won with the Darkest Secret vision, so we're still on that Oath for next time. While the first session left the other three players a bit uncertain about whether they really liked it, I think this time cemented their feeling that this is a great game with a lot to explore.
Finally, I wanted to let you all know that we are in the early stages of designing an expansion for Oath. There are other projects which are taking up most of our studio bandwidth at the moment, so we won't have a lot of details to share for several more months, but there are some exciting things in the works!
Maybe that will change as more leaks out (and of course I'll be buying it for the Wehrle shelf), but I'm more interested in seeing a new design than extra stuff in a game that's truly pretty thick already.