Thank you Funhill Games for sending us this board game to review!
While I haven’t played the board game version of Kings of Israel, I have played and enjoyed the electronic version of it. With the success of Kings of Israel, it’s not too much of a surprise that the Wisdom of Solomon Kickstarter was successfully funded with many of its stretch goals met and added to the final product.
In this $45 board game you can play solo or with up to five players. Your goal as one of Solomon’s governors is to build structures and expand his influence throughout the kingdom. During each turn, a player must send their Workers to the Merchant, Trader, Temple, Foreman, or out into the Land of Israel to gather resources.
The resources are needed to collect temple tiles and acquire buildings from the foreman. Once a player constructs all of their buildings or the temple is finished, the game ends and the player with the most favor wins the game. Favor is the currency of the game and is needed for buying resources and is given as a reward with the temple tiles.
Other rewards include Fortune cards which have many temporary or permanent bonuses. Each player is given a couple to choose from at the beginning of the game. Until you know how the game plays it’s hard to determine which card is worth keeping or discarding. Wisdom of Solomon is quite complex and has a steep learning curve. I highly recommend looking over the rule book before purchasing or playing the game.
The age recommendation is for teens and adults and I must concur with that rating since my newly teenage or not-quite teenage kids found the game more confusing than enjoyable. If you have a group of older teen or adult friends you’ll probably have a better time. Though it’s intimidating at first, the game gets easier once you go through the first couple of rounds.
The build quality of the board, cards, and game pieces are nice. The artwork on the cards and game board are well done. I like the inclusion of Bible verses on the Fortune cards. The resource blocks and buildings are made out of wood. Many of the pieces are small and losable/ingestible so be sure to keep track of them if you have toddlers or pets nearby. The drawstring pouch is handy for storing all of the pieces neatly in the game box.
If you don’t mind a bit of a learning curve and have open-minded friends and/or family to play with, Wisdom of Solomon is worth looking into. The solo mode is a nice addition as well. I’m hoping it gets an electronic version that costs a lot less to play and enjoy. Until then, I’m sure the Kickstarter backers will be happy with the end result.