Special shout out to Jeremy Howard on this one, as he convinced me to give the game another play before getting rid of it. And damn the man but he's right. For now.
For those that don't know, Monumental is an epic sprawling miniatures based 4x deckbuilding game that basically involved deck building, a clever card display, and then a nearly unnecessary board and miniature addition to what is otherwise a simple game. Pretty....but overkill.
While I enjoyed the game, in the end I felt it was too much for what it was trying to be....and decided to move on (I say as much in the video of the week down below). Which is where Jeremy Howard jumped in. By telling me not to get rid of it. Which is good enough for me. So I gave it another play this weekend, at 2 players this time, which is a new player count for me....and I really enjoyed it. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed it before too....but I added in some of the content I hadn't played with, plus a player count I hadn't done, and the result was quite nice.
You see, Monumental has a great engine. It was never a lack of liking the core system for me, but rather the game was too long and the combat...lacking. And so I soured on it just enough to be willing to get rid of it. But at 2 players the game wasn't too long...and while the combat was lacking, we came up with a decent houserule that really simplifies that...at least for us.
Which results in a game who's core I still love, but the annoyances bother me less. It's deck building plus a card tableau that defines how you activate your cards each round. Simple enough. Plus some simple game mechanics around that that define your motives and other rules, and from there you just build and activate your deck. If you like deck building and don't mind an overproduced game around it, then I do recommend Monumental...but to quote Jeremy Howard..."I would never tell someone how to spend their money"....which is a lie, most of my youtube channel is doing exactly that. But in the case of Monumental I will say it's an expensive game built around a simple core. A good core....but perhaps not one worth the price tag.
Monumental stays....for now. But for something cheaper that will also scratch that itch, I recommend The Quest for El Dorado.