Priests of Ra

Designer: Reiner Knizia
Manufacturer: Rio Grande Games
Artist: Franz Vohwinkel
Year: 2009
Players: 2 – 5
Time: 60 minutes
Ages: 12 and up

A challenging game of Gods, men, and their monuments from Reiner Knizia!

The game spans 1500 years of Egyptian history. The priests of Ra seek to extend their power and fame. They do this by directing farmers, warriors, merchants, and scribes. They cause others to build granaries, fortresses, markets, and libraries. And they erect a gigantic pyramid for the glory of the Sun God Ra!

The thing that sets this one apart from the games we usually play is it boils down to being an auction game. As a quick overview, each player has three bidding stones with a number on them. The stones are used to bid on groups of tiles that are placed on the auction track. Collecting these tiles are how you earn points. There are people, building, pyramid pieces and plagues.  The player that wins the auction receives the tiles and the bidding stone that is currently on the board, replacing it with his own. A player may only use each of his bidding stones once during an epoch, and the game consists of three epoch.

Most of the scoring tiles have two different sides, so the person placing them can choose which the think would benefit their strategy the most or provide the least help to others, although there may be the chance for a player to turn them over later in the round.

I think this is actually the only auction we play regularly, which makes it fun as a change from the ordinary. There’s also the whole risk issue. Do I win an okay group of tiles now or hold out toward the end, where I may get something better or may end up losing out with the epoch ending? Do I pass on an auction and let somebody else win something that will give them a bunch of points?

The rules are fairly easy and the scoring is actually printed on the board, so you don’t have to remember it. Alright, I have to admit to enjoying the Egyptian theme too.

For the record, I understand Priests of Ra is actually based on an older game, Ra, but I’ve never played it so can’t compare the two.

The copy we play was purchased by a friend and the above is my honest opinion. I am an Amazon associate.