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Sagrada: The Great Facades - Glory Board Game Review

WBG Score: 8.5

Player Count:2-4

You’ll like this if you like: Sagrada, Roll Player, Azul

Published by: Floodgate Games

If you’re not familiar with The Great Facade expansions for Sagrada, then, much like a window, let me enlighten you. Each one (there’s three overall) has a number of modules included which you can mix and match into your game. This new expansion brings the total to 10 modules that you can add to your game of Sagrada! I’ve not tried them all together but I’m sure that one day, someone will decide to play a game with ALL the modules and I can tell you now, that won’t be me……well maybe not………okay now I really want to try it. If anyone fancy’s donating me the Life expansion I’ll do it and write about it here once my brain has recovered!

Strife Dice

Just like the other modules you’ll be given some nice new dice to play with and yes they’re grey, but you can trust Floodgate to make even grey dice beautiful. They’ve got this lovely marbled sheen and they look great.

When you play with strife dice, set ten aside next to the round tracker and then set up the rest of the dice according to player count. This will also include more of the strife dice. Shuffle the strife tiles and pick one at random and place it for all to see. Place out one strife tool card and one strife public objective then fill the rest of the slots with regular objectives and tools.

Now when you pull dice from the bag only take two per player then add one of the strife dice that you’d set aside on the round track. Play continues as normal with strife dice acting as their own colour but all the usual restrictions apply. However, the tile you placed down earlier will give the strife dice their own restrictions. Have a look at the picture for some examples of how they work.

This expansion was pitched to me as the one that makes Sagrada more difficult. The first time I used the strife dice I wondered what people were talking about. These were no trouble at all and that was with us using all of Glory’s modules. I was beginning to think I was being strung along by people’s descriptions. Then I played my second game and I’ll tell you what, whoever named them Strife Dice needs a pay rise because that name is spot on. Our tile this time said that two grey dice couldn’t be in the same row. One of our objectives said that we needed two grey dice in a column. It was scorable but it needed some careful planning and that was without everything else that needed to be taken into account!

I love what these add to the puzzle and they definitely up the brain burn factor. How much depends on the combination of the strife tile you pick, and the public and private objectives but I think even with the most forgiving combination there’ll be enough to up the challenge. I love that they’ve made it so that you definitely have a strife die every round. There’s sometimes nothing worse than adding expansions into a game and barely seeing any of the content come out. Having said that, when you pull out a handful of strife dice, then have to add another you can’t help but curse your luck. It’s a great idea to always add a strife tool and a strife objective every time you use them, it means you’re always able to make full use of them for scoring and manipulating.

Pioneer Objectives

These are new public objectives and you’ll add three at random to your game in addition to the usual three in a regular game. These come in a variety of flavours such as, being first to complete certain areas of your window or completing a row with different coloured dice. However, rather than scoring for everyone at the end of the game, the player who achieves an objective first will claim the card and score these points at the end of the game. They won’t get replaced once they’re claimed so be quick.

Sagrada for me has always been a heads down type of game with players only looking up to select their dice and occasionally berating other players for taking the ones they wanted. The new objectives work to change that dynamic by adding some interactivity to the game along with a race element. In the base game there wasn’t really a need to watch what other players were up to but now you’ll find yourself scanning other people’s boards to not only see what one they may be working on but also how close they are to achieving it. They add a new level of tension and excitement to Sagrada as you look round and see another player close to getting the same objective as you and you wonder who’s perfect dice is going to come out first. Let’s not forget that they’re also going to be adding to the puzzle as a whole as now you’ve got another thing to factor into your window along with the public and private objectives.

These are a great addition to the game, and the fact that they are in addition to your normal public objectives means that I’ll probably be adding them to every game now.

Rivalry Public Objectives

As the title suggests, these are another type of public objective that can be shuffled into your normal objectives deck (so you can use these with the pioneer objectives) These are competitive objectives with the person who achieved the most of each getting most points etc. I’m sure we all know the deal with how these sorts of objectives work. Much like the pioneers objectives these add to the interactivity and how much you’ll be taking in other peoples boards. There may be a bit less of that with these ones just because you won’t be able to see as quickly how well players are doing with them.

Again, these are fun to have on the table and make end round scoring a bit more exciting as you watch each other count how well you’ve done on them in the hope that you net the big score. These will get shuffled onto the main objective deck so they won’t get picked out everytime, but I’d be tempted to keep them separate and make sure one goes into the line up each time.

Flourish Private Objectives

During set up deal two to each player, once they’re chosen their window they then decide if they want to keep one, both or none of them. For each one they keep they get an extra favour token. Completing these will score you the points at the end of the game just the same as regular private objectives. However, if you don’t complete the ones you kept by the end of the game you lose the points value printed on them!

Do you want to make Sagrada more stressful? This is how you make it more stressful. Every objective in Sagrada is important and you always want to do as many as you can to get the best score, it’s literally the whole point of the game! But if there's one you can’t do you can just as easily forget it and focus on getting more points from so other ones. These flourish objectives you NEED to complete because losing any of these points could easily lose you the game. Much like the pioneer objectives these really up the tension in the game, but a different type of tension, because you decided to keep the card/s so now losing those points is all on you. The longer it takes to get them finished the more that touch of panic sets in as each round you eagerly look to see what dice are pulled from the bag and what’s rolled just praying that the right dice come out. When you’re on the end of it, it’s horrible as your mouth begins to dry and you start to curse yourself for being too cocky and taking both. When you’re on the other side however you get some weird sense of pleasure as you see your opponents squirm and frantically check their objectives constantly hoping that they’ll miraculously be able to achieve them…..or maybe that’s just me embracing my inner moustache twirling villain!

I only have two of the great facades but this one is currently standing as my favourite so far. If I have one problem with it it’s that there are no rules on how to use the private dice pool from the 5-6 player expansions (which, if you’re wondering, is my favourite expansion for Sagrada) which is a shame. There’s a couple of threads on board game geek which deal with that so go and check those out if you want to use the private dice pool.

See right through you.

I was told that this gives the game more bite and ups the challenge of Sagrada and I’m definitely not going to argue with that! So I’d definitely seek this expansion out if you feel the base game needs a bit more bite. I'll always want to play with the pioneer objectives and maybe a rivalry objective. If I’m playing with people who have played before then I’ll also be looking to give out the flourish objectives as well, just maybe not during the hot weather, no one needs to sweat THAT much. I really like the strife dice but, like the rare dice from Passion they may be an as and when addition. I may even alternate between them and the rare dice.

After the 5-6 player expansion this is the one I would recommend you pick up next if you want a bit more challenge from Sagrada or if you want to make the game that bit more interactive. You could always throw all of Glory’s modules in and use it as a starter game to break your friends' brains before the big game of the night to help you secure a victory and Glory!. Huh, maybe that’s where they got the name from?

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