Agricola: Farmers of the Moor
by Gary Sonnenberg
Agricola: Farmers of the Moor
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Even though Farmers of the Moor adds more facets to the Agricola game, it seems to create a more relaxing experience. If you have ever worried about filling your player board, you’ll find that that aspect of the game is not as concerning with this expansion because you start with 8 spaces covered with new tiles.
The game and gameplay
Important note: This is an expansion that cannot be played without the base game of Agricola.Farmers of the Moor adds 3 special action cards, forest and moor tiles, fire tokens, many minor improvement cards, 14 major improvement cards, a hospital, and horses to the original game.
At the beginning of the game, you randomly select one of 9 layout cards that specifies where you must place the forest and moor tiles on your board.There are 7 actions on either the 2 (or 3 depending on the number of players) new action cards: take a horse, take 1 food, replace a forest tile with a field, remove a forest tile and get 2 wood, remove a moor tile and get 3 fire tokens, pay 1 fire token to play a minor improvement, pay 1 fire and 1 food to play a major improvement. These cards are available from round 1; they don’t replace existing action cards or spaces.
To perform one of these actions in Agricola: Farmers of the Moor, you don’t need to place one of your workers. You simply pick up the card and carry out the action of your choice.
You must still have an unplayed worker to take advantage of these cards. If someone else has already used a card that you want, you can pay 2 food to use it a second time that round.
At each harvest, in addition to feeding your workers, you now must also heat your home using either the fire tokens or wood. Each room in a wooden house requires one fuel (fire token or wood).
If you have renovated to clay, you need one less token than your number of rooms. If you renovate to stone, you need two less. If you are unable to heat your home, one of your workers will become ill. You must place him or her in the hospital.
In the next round, you may retrieve him (plus 1 food), but he cannot do any work until the following round. (The hospital is rarely used.)
Horses are worth 1 bonus point at the end of the game. There is no maximum limit (as the maximum of 4 with other animals) of points they can score. With the proper improvement, you can also use them as food, but this is seldom needed.
Ten of the new major improvements are placed under the majors from the base game. The other 4 are placed in two stacks. Thus 12 of these are only available after the cards on top have been implemented.
The numerous minor improvements interact with many of the new features included in Farmers of the Moor. Some of them are extremely useful in certain combinations, just as some of the original cards are in basic Agricola.
Pros and cons
There is more to think about when adding Farmers of the Moor, but it feels like you have more time to do so.
The new special action cards are extremely useful and valuable. It is as if you have one (sometimes more) additional worker each round that you never have to feed.
Having a pony in your house is nice, but when you have a stable full of horses, you know you’ve played a good game.
Scores in general are slightly inflated with this expansion from an average of about 35 in the base game to something over 40 with Farmers of the Moor.
You should have a lot of fun with Agricola: Farmers of the Moor, no matter which version of the original Agricola you prefer to play.
5 out of 5 footprints
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