Do you ever wish you could go back to the 17th century, when all you had to worry about was your crops and your livestock? Agricola brings back the simple pleasures of life on the farm, casting you in the role of farmer as you build the most beautiful and prosperous farm in the land. It’s not all peaceful pastures, however, as you’ll have to outmaneuver your fellow farmers if you want to feed your family and earn enough victory points to win the game. With quaint little wooden pieces and a gorgeously drawn game board, Agricola is a family-friendly game that celebrates the little things in life.
Growing Your Household
Agricola begins with each player being given a farming couple and their own little two-roomed hut. As players take their turns throughout the 14 rounds of the game, they will move family members around to different actions space in order to acquire resources and build their household. These actions will be any of the simple duties of running the farm, from building fences that keep out predators to collecting firewood.
The more family members you have, the more you actions you can take, so having kids can definitely help you build a more prosperous farm. However, more kids means more mouths to feed, so you’ll have to plan your family carefully if you want to stay above water!
Only one family member is allowed to occupy an action space at a time, so you’ll need to develop a strategy to block your competitors from getting the resources they need while ensuring your own farm’s growth. The 14 rounds of the game are divided into six harvests, during which you’ll grow more food and breed more animals. The better fed you keep your family, the more victory points you’ll win.
Occupations and Minor Improvements
Agricola comes with optional Occupations and Minor Improvements cards for a more advanced play. While younger kids will usually forego these cards entirely, more advanced players can use three different levels of these cards to make each game much more varied. Playing these cards will win you extra resources and special bonuses, while giving you a more fixed strategy to follow in order to win the game.
There are a great number of strategies you can use to win the game, which will depend on what cards you hold in your hand. You may find that focusing on building your farm is all you need to succeed, while sometimes sabotaging your opponent is necessary to keep them from having too plentiful a harvest.
Agricola Later Editions
The Revised edition of Agricola features an updated rulebook and gameplay that bring the game into the 21st century. It also uses differently shaped wooden pieces to represent the resources that you’ll grow, as well as a more balanced deck for streamlined gameplay.
The All Creatures Big And Small edition of Agricola brings the game down to only two players while emphasizing the animal aspect of the game. This edition casts you as an animal breeder in charge of growing your livestock into a happy and bustling pasture. There’s also an Agricola expansion that makes the game playable by up to 6 players. This expansion features additional room tiles, occupations, and major improvements that revitalize Agricola and make it perfect for family gatherings.
Live Long And Prosper With Agricola
Agricola is playable by anywhere from 1-5 players, so it can be enjoyed by the whole family or just on your own. Playing time depends on whether or not you choose to include the optional Occupations and Minor Improvements cards, so it can last anywhere from 30 minutes to two and a half hours. Agricola is definitely the kind of game that can be the centerpiece of family game night.
Agricola is suitable for ages 12 and up, so parents and kids can easily enjoy playing the game together. If mom and dad are looking for a more advanced game on their own, they can add on the optional cards for some extra competition. All in all, Agricola is a fun strategy game that makes the most out of its vintage agricultural theme.
But it today!