Just one day until winter solstice. Today was not only dark, but cold as well. I put on another sweater and played the Qinghai-Tibet scenario of Snowdonia.
The arrival of the Snowdonia Deluxe Master Set was one of the highlights of this year. The 2018 Kickstarter campaign was excellent and I was really looking forward to the huge box with all these extra scenarios and trains and wooden pieces. Of course I read about the mistakes and errata but I think rules are for losers anyway. That said, I don't think I won it yet. But I digress. Brrr, yes, it was a cold day so I chose the railway that's partly laid on permafrost. You have to reinforce the tracks, the workers need oxygen if you want to get anything done. The weather can be killing. And on top of that there were rumours of the Abominable Snowman. Fortunately there were some seasonal trains to choose from. I picked the Son of God, he looked overpowered to me. I could use that blessing.
I've never played Snowdonia before I backed this deluxe edition. It's a very smooth running eurogame. Not much upkeep after setup, so rounds don't have to take long. But every round the choices how to best make use of your limited workers are a puzzle with a lot of wrong answers. I like the original "training mode" solo variant that is simply beat your own score, as I still suck at the game. And it has a timer that puts pressure on you anyway. The game comes with a new bot designed by Dávid Turczi though, so once I know what I'm doing I can fake multiplayer and lose in a completely new way.
The oxygen as an extra (limiting) resource made sure I had some interesting times in China. I would have ended below zero points if the Son of God had not auto-scored a lot for me. When I finally met the Abominable Snowman, it turned out I could bribe him with coal to work for me. With this extra labourer I made good progress.
Still lost, of course. Another abominable score today. But I forgot all about the darkness around me.
Update: the complete series: