This is the 7 Wonders vs 7 Wonders Duel game comparison showdown. 7 Wonders came along 10 years ago and it was so good that a second standalone game needed to come out that catered to the player counts that were excluded for the original. 7 Wonders Duel takes the incredible drafting strategy game around the growth in military, economy and science of a civilization of the original 7 Wonders and makes it available for a 2 player showdown. We dive deep into both. Learn a little about the games then check out our 7 Wonders vs 7 Wonders Duel notes and final verdict.
ABOUT THE GAMES
About 7 Wonders (2010): This is one of the best drafting games out there. Over three eras (rounds), players pass around cards and take one from a stack turn after turn to take actions that help either build up your empire and resources or help construct your specialized wonder of the world. Collecting the right sets or making the right investments get you victory points that will help you win by the end.
FOR MORE: 7 Wonders Guide | How To Play 7 Wonders | 7 Wonders Review | Games Like 7 Wonders | Buy 7 Wonders
About 7 Wonders Duel (2015): In Duel, players are not drafting cards simultaneously from hands of cards, but from a display of face-down and face-up cards arranged at the start of each round. A player can take a card only if it’s not covered by any others, so timing comes into play as well as bonus moves that allow you to take a second card immediately. As in the original game, each card that you acquire can be built, discarded for coins, or used to construct a wonder.
FOR MORE: Buy 7 Wonders Duel
7 WONDERS VS 7 WONDERS DUEL ANALYSIS
Theme: Exactly the same on purpose. The whole goal of Duel, and what you will see throughout 7 Wonders vs 7 Wonders Duel, is that it would take all the elements of 7 Wonders and put it in a slightly different gameplay container for 2 players. They did this successfully and the great rich time of ancient Greece thematics do not change.
Gameplay: This is the part of 7 Wonders vs 7 Wonders Duel magic happens. The problem with secret drafting games is that you cannot play with 2 players. This is because you would then be able to know every single thing everyone did and the whole point is to not know. And you have to figure out what the players on your left and right are doing once you get to 3+, and cannot be done with 2.
Mechanics: in 7 Wonders classic, cards are passed in 3 stacks (era 1, 2 and 3). This is done in one continuous flow until each stack is gone. In Duel, the eras stacks are instead formed into 3 different formations of cards where some are revealed and some are not. Like tri-tower solitaire, you have the option of taking only revealed cards which open up paths to other options depending on what you pick. Besides the draft, the other big change is how wonders work. Instead of having three stages of one, you have up to four wonders to build in a similar way, and these are chose by a wheel draft at the beginning.
Time Commitment: Both games are very quick but Duel is going to run about 5 – 15% longer because there are a few more things to think about in your choices and all actions of all players are not happening as simultaneously.
Player Count: Just to recap, this is what the entire difference in 7 Wonders vs 7 Wonders Duel is all about. Duel is built specifically for 2 players. 7 Wonders original is for 3 – 7 players. The fact that it has been able to accommodate such a wider group that your typically strategy game is part of what makes it great.
Cost: 7 Wonders Classic has a bit more going on, and larger box, so it is a bit more expensive. That being said, with all its expansions of other Wonder things that play off the original, they want you to buy the base 7 Wonders and will often have solid price drops.
Verdict For the Shelf: In the battle of 7 Wonders vs 7 Wonders Duel, the verdict is 7 Wonders (66% of the time) and 7 Wonders Duel (34% of the time). This decision is all based on player count because these are mutually exclusive, if you can play one you cannot play the other and vice versa. You are probably going to come into more situations where you fall into the 3 – 7 player count than 2 giving 7 Wonders classic the edge. It also fills a great void in the 5, 6, and 7 player count world that is hard to find an abundance of AAA quality in.
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