Board game reviews, strategy tips & session reports
No. of players: 2-4
Amount of time to play: 60-90 min
Age requirements: 13+
Set-up time: 5 min
The King’s Golem expansion adds a few different modules to the Alchemists board game. You can choose which to add to your game depending how much you want to change the base game.
Alchemists is a fun and unique deduction game. If you have not played it before read my overview and review to understand the basics. This post is only going talk about the elements added in The King’s Golem expansion.
This expansion consists of four expansions; Startup Funding, Busy Days, The Royal Encyclopedia and The Golem Project. You can combine these most any way you like.
Startup Funding gives you the opportunity to choose your starting resources. That could mean getting more gold, ingredients or favor, but also more (or less) reputation, an artifact or information on the ingredients’ properties.
Busy Days changes the start player bidding track. Like the Startup Funding module, there is more to gain but it will cost you. Now you can gain reputation, information or gold. But it might cost you reputation, actions or other resources. The new track is replaced and changes every round.
The Royal Encyclopedia gives you another place to publish articles. You use the Publish Theory action space but instead of making claims about an ingredient, you are making claims about an aspect (red, blue or green). Publishing to this board gives you the opportunity to gain reputation and possibly a grant. As usual, your theories here can be debunked.
The Golem Project adds more boards and more complexity to the game. It requires you use the Royal Encyclopedia mini-expansion. It adds a new deduction grid and more actions you may take. You must animate the golem by giving it two specific ingredients. There is an opportunity to score more points but you risk losing a lot if you are wrong.
The King’s Golem is an excellent expansion for Alchemists. I love that it is actually four mini-expansions and that you can add them as you wish. Being able to customize the game based on player experience and familiarity is great.
Just like in the base game, the components for this expansion look great. The rules are easy to read and follow too. The updated app is still intuitive and easy to use.
I like all the different mini-expansions and think each has a use depending on how often you have played the game or how much you want to change things. None of them add too many extra rules and Starting Funding and Busy Days just tweak things a little bit.
The Golem Project changes the game the most and some players will like that. If you are experienced and want more complexity and a bigger challenge then you will like it. But for newer players it will add to this game’s learning curve.
If you have played Alchemists and are looking to add some variety to it, pick The King’s Golem up. The mini-expansions make it easy to add the ones you want based on your group’s experience with the game. This expansion definitely helps you cater to your group.
Score and synopsis: (Click here for an explanation of these review categories.)
Strategy 4 out of 6
Luck 3 out of 6
Player Interaction 4 out of 6
Replay Value 5 out of 6
Complexity 5 out of 6
Fun 5 out of 6
Overall 5 out of 6