Game: Stone Age
Publisher: Rio Grande Games
Designer: Bernd Brunnhofer
Stone Age is often said to be THE gateway worker placement game. I first saw it featured on Will Wheaton’s tabletop and for me in the very early stages of becoming a gamer, it seemed pretty complicated. Scroll forward a few months and Stone Age was out of print and hard to find so we never got the opportunity to try it. Eventually it was brought along to our gaming group and became flavour of the month with a few people importing German copies. We were eventually lucky enough to pick up a cheap local joblot of games on eBay and Stone Age was one of them.
In Stone Age, each player begins with 5 worker meeple who can be placed on the board in different numbers to perform different tasks. Typically they need to gather food and resources – for this you can assign a number of meeples in one go and then in the resolution phase you roll the same number of dice as you have meeple assigned. Different resources have different rarity and so you need to roll higher to get one piece of gold, for example, than one food or one wood. Other spots on the board give you a guaranteed result, such as a tool or assigning two meeples to ‘sleep over at the hut’ and make you a new meeple. You can also use resources to buy huts to score points or cards to help you with end game scoring.