Gold prospecting


I don’t remember exact cards that I had on the table that evening. I do remember we were with Merry at the dinning table, it was late, kids slept and we played card game. At some point I put into play a card and my eyes got wide open when I realized what combo I just built. Few cards that I had already in play plus this new one just merged into one smooth mechanism that was just fuckin’ brilliant.

Never before I saw such configuration. Never before those cards worked together. I couldn’t hide smile on my face. I knew I discovered something amazing, something never seen before.

The game we are playing was The New Era. My very own design…


I design all those combos you discover when you play. This combos are there not by accident. I put these all tricky cards into the game so you have fun discovering them and building cool mechanisms.

Yes, I put on purpose ‘You may repeat any of your action cards‘ ability into Egypt deck and yes, I know how amazing it works with this card that says ‘Spent 1 gold for 3 Victory Points‘.

Yes, I put on purpose ‘You may built without Fundament cost‘ ability into Common deck and yes, I know how cool it works with Roman deck where the Fundament is the only problem they have.

Yes, I know you will smile when your Daimyo’s Castle is combined with Farmers at Work. First one gives you 3 VP in production Phase, second one makes production card work twice in a round…

I know all those tricks. I know all those combos. I designed them for you. That’s exactly what my job is all about…



And yet…

And yet I lost about 80% of my test games against Palmer, my main tester for Imperial Settlers. I knew every damn card in every damn deck, I knew all combos and correlations and yet, he beat me over and over.

He was building totally new combos. He was using my cards in a way I could not imagine. He was building structures I did not predicted. He was taking my cards and he was gold digging – he was looking for ways to play the way I did not expected.

He was finding new cool combos and he was proving me that there is much more there than I thought.

He was gold prospector. He took my cards and looked for gold.


Playing card games is a gold prospecting. You play in hope to find gold. You play in hope to find unique combo, deadly combination of cards that you have never seen before. Whenever it is Race for the Galaxy, 51st State or Hearthstone – we all play over and over and we wait for this moment of discovery, this fulfilling moment when our eyes get wide open and when we realize we just did it – we found a combo that is mind blowing and will win the game for us. I love card games, my Merry loves card games and so many of you love them too. Creating this small engines, building structure and looking how it turns into beast that brings you victory. And every time looking for something new, for new set of cards, for new structure on the table, for new hand that will work just like crazy…

Imperial Settlers is for you. With 4 different factions, with more than 200 cards I give you, my dear gold diggers and prospectors, hours of fun and hundreds of smaller and bigger findings. You’ll take these cards and you will find all gold pieces I left them. And you’ll find more gold. Gold pieces I didn’t even know they exist…


P.S.  Few days ago, late in the evening I got SMS from one of testers. The game was already at manufacturer, testing was closed but he was still prospecting. He couldn’t stop gold digging.

He wrote: ‘101 pts.’

101 is a new score record.

That evening he found a gold.

And then he got back to digging…

2 thoughts on “Gold prospecting

  1. Kristo Vaher says:

    I cannot wait for this game! I love 51st State!

    But that aside, I’m really disappointed in Portal customer support, I placed multiple orders on your shop recently and I was told by you that the promos for Robinson will be available soon. So I eagerly waited, but in the meanwhile placed three orders for 51st State items and promos and also preordered your book.

    But your customer support decided to delay one of my orders, saying that I paid too much for shipping and that they will include new Robinson promos for free as a bonus for paying too much for shipping.

    But once the preorder date arrived for promos and the book, my order was not shipped. And it’s still not shipped today and by now the 51st State promo, which is the reason why I placed the order in the first place, is out of stock and it seems to be gone :/

    I don’t understand why this happened. In fear of losing out on Robinson promos that were promised as a bonus, I placed a new order for those promos specifically.

    But here’s hoping that Imperial Settlers will have better luck with its future preorders. I still hope to place a preorder on your site for Imperial Settlers as soon as possible.

    All the best,

    Your fan

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