I had held back a little bit on teaching Sophie (11) and Noah (9) Amazonas. For Euro-gamers, the mechanics are easily grasped and reminiscent of other games (e.g. Ticket To Ride, El Grande, and Tikal) but there are enough rules and complexity of mechanics that I thought maybe it was at the edge of their ability. But I thought maybe I would give it a try anyway.

The end result showed that I’m an idiot and know nothing about the capabilities of my children. In fact, I would suspect I would have a harder time teaching this game to a non-gamer than a child-gamer. They quickly picked up on the mechanics and offered many examples when it would be good to play the native card to thwart the ill effects of the negative cards like the forest fire and monkey thief. They also fully grasped wanting to bid as high as possible when the native specimen token was up for grabs but tempered that will bidding only what they thought was necessary so that they didn’t pay too much for it. I held nothing back during play and offered only a few tactical tips during the game.

The final score was Me (13), Noah (12), Sophie (10).Sophie’s score would have actually been higher but she built a very costly expedition hut for 5 gold coins when she could have used a waterway to build more efficiently. I didn’t see it until the turn after she built so don’t start giving me any flak about letting her ‘step in it’.

You can buy Amazonas from the great people at Game Surplus.

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