Last Light - Board Game Review - The Soul of a 4X -

Last Light – Board Game Review – The Soul of a 4X

The Broken Meeple
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Last Light – Board Game Review – The Soul of a 4X

Last Light is a fast-paced 4x game with 3D planets and a rotating board in which players playing asymmetrical alien factions simultaneously gather light right before the heat death of the universe.

Each turn, players select an action card, then all players take their actions simultaneously, exploring planets, mining for resources, gaining new technologies, and commanding fleets all while racing to the center of a rotating board to the last known white dwarf star to gather light for their civilization to survive.

The first player to gather 20 light has what they need to overcome their rivals and lay claim to the last light in the universe and win!

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00:00 – Introduction and Promo
01:08 – Background and Basic Overview
04:12 – The Good Things
08:30 – The Bad Stuff
19:08 – Summary, Verdict & Player Scaling
23:12 – Please Share and Support The Show

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  1. that confirms my impressions of the game. It appears to be quite sterile and bland. The board itself.. the artist thought this was a good idea? Supernova does something similar.

    I think Galactic Emperor does a pretty good job in boiling down TI4 in 90min.
    But it also sacrifices all the fluff and idiosyncracies TI offers.

    A game doesnt have to be clinical. Except its an abstract game.

  2. Still would love to try this one. However, you more or less addressed my concerns as well. The board seemed too basic; the components (even the deluxe) look only OK. I love the idea of the game… but was afraid it would just boil too much down. Seems like he tried to channel some Cosmic Encounter with purposedly unbalanced factions as well… which works great in that game… but not so sure here. Especially since defense doesn't seem like it is an option. There is a reason why there aren't many "quick" space 4x games. More and more glad that I saved my money and didn't feed into my FOMO. Which is what I am struggling with again now with FLOE… Time will only tell I suppose.

  3. The reprint will address many of the "balance issues" and some other minor grievances from the community, but I doubt these fixes will change your mind. Thank you for the review.

  4. My problem with this game is the fact that it advertises itself as a "4x Game in an Hour." Even with it taking a bit longer (1.5hrs to 2hrs) that part doesn't bother me. It's the 4x piece that bothers me.

    Is it a 4x game? Technically, sure okay. But just like was said in the video, the eXplore, eXpand and eXploit pieces are all a bit dull or weak. To me, this feels like an intense and chaotic area control game. In that sense, I think this is a really fun and unique area control game! Just like with Smallworld, you just need to go into it with the expectation that you most likely won't hold onto your planets and ships very long.

    But to try to sell this as a 4x game, I think that is what hurts the game. People have certain expectations for 4x games and this game just doesn't quite scratch that itch in my opinion. Again, I think this is a really good game! It's just not what I would consider to be a 4x game. Even though it technically checks all the boxes, there is a certain feel that 4x games provide, which I don't get from this one.

    Also, I got the deluxe version that includes the 3D ships and asteroids and other fun pieces. I think the planets from the standard version should be deluxe pieces. You can get upgraded planets, but why? I personally don't think they look all that more exciting than the originals. Plus, the 3D planets do get in the way. I would have actually preferred that they used flat cardboard tokens to represent the planets. It would have been much easier to see and to see around.

    I also agree with the chaotic randomness of the faction abilities. This has been a big pain point for many people and the standard response is that the game is random and chaotic in nature, so it all balances out in the end. I'm sorry, I don't agree. I've played a few times and could definitely feel the advantage and disadvantage from having better or worse faction abilities, regardless of the randomness of the rest of the game. For a crazy area control game, I'm okay with that. But for a 4x game where you are supposed to represent a unique faction that is making its own unique mark in the universe, this is a big miss for me.

    As for the "expansion," the fact that it only provides pieces to play 5-8 players seems like a tease to me. That is literally ALL that it is. That's not an expansion in my opinion, that's just an upgrade kit. An expansion to me would include additional pieces, mechanics, and rules that you don't see in the base game. But everything in the expansion is found in the base game, you just get more of it so as to play up to 8 players.

    As for actually playing 8 players…nope! I did 5 players which was probably as high as I would ever want to go. Playing 6 players might work but it will definitely start getting extremely crazy. I watched an 8 player game once and it was just non-stop battles. You couldn't hold onto ANYTHING. I didn't actually play, but I'm glad I didn't because I would have just gotten frustrated. When it is THAT chaotic, you truly have no control over your fate, so why even bother? Especially when it is supposed to be a 4x game, the idea in a 4x game is that you are crafting a unique faction and empire. You're not creating hardly anything when your ships keep getting blasted and your planets keep getting taken over.

    All in all, I do think that this is a fun game and I would gladly play it again, up to 5 players. But I would play it under the premise of it being an area control game. If I and my buddies wanted to play a 4x game, I'd rather play something else. Personally, I actually do LOVE Eclipse and think that it is a fun 4x game, one that not only checks the boxes but actually provide the 4x feel of being a unique faction within the universe, even if everyone was playing as the humans.

  5. Never played it, but now not fussed!

  6. most honest board game reviews on YouTube. amazing!

  7. I’m disappointed that you would play any space game other than empires of the void II

  8. 100% agree with the larger expansion box. Publishers are just taking advantage of completionists when they leave open spaces in the box. And they unnecessarily increase cost (excessively larger boxes increase cost in terms of material and shipment)

  9. You should try Empire of the Stars.

    Its a 4X (but no player elimination) fast-paced boardgame where each turn one of 7 different roles is chosen by the active player. Like Puerto Rico, each player get a turn acting the chosen role and the active player gets a privilege.

    It has a build in timer, so the game wont last forever 😊

  10. Thanks for the review Luke. I would try it but this video made it clear this is not a game for me.

    BTW, good idea to include a chart next to your rating. A 5/10 = not a complete dud, simply average…which is what a 10 point scale should be !

  11. I’m right there with you as well as Shelfside on this. Bought and had high hopes, even tried to house rule, but alas it still fell flat to other game we own. While not space, my fav short 4X still March of the Ants by far.

  12. I played 8p in an hour haha. Not sure why it is taking that group 3 hours

    I will agree that player count is chaos. The game turns into a party 4x game hybrid. Ton of fun!

  13. So glad I stayed away from this game. This was hyped way too much and really glad you have reviewed this as definitely not a game for me.

  14. Nice review, what a shame, the game sounded pretty nice at the beggining and then, is went down and down.

  15. Thanks for this video! This game has been getting a lot of hype. I was very much on the fence about getting this one, but something just didn't feel right (never played it). Your video is the first one I saw with some proper critiques. I'll be skipping this one.

  16. That really is my fave red dwarf scene of all time 😂

  17. I presented the balance issues to the designer and he said its by design that some abilities are meant to be better than other to encourage bashing the leader.

  18. My experience is captured in this video. Sold it after a 7 then 3 player game. Way over priced for a mediocre game. Thought the large game was particularly not worth it – over two hours then we just packed it up unfinished

  19. I haven't seen it in person, but whenever I see reviews of this games, I can't help feeling it looks like a home-made prototype. The huge, empty black fields with regular borders, the lollipop planets…

  20. Honestly that is the weirdest thing i have heard. So make 2 boxes? Imagine if every publisher did this insane thing. Who thinks of getting a biger box to then just throw out a box. That is why inserts are invented. It also makes more waste and it is not free to make extra boxes. No company in their right minds would ever do that. Honestly i am shocked you even thought of this. #insanity

  21. Luke, I think you just got kicked off the Dice Tower network. But I agree, not interested. Your honest opinion is much appreciated. Thx!

  22. I think the main reason to have this game is for the 6+ player count. I’ve played this a lot 6-8 players, and typically it’s 70-90 minutes. I have no idea how people get 3 hour games of this if they’ve understood the rules.

    There are so few non-party games that support these high player counts. For that, Last Light fills a unique spot in my collection with the playtime, play style, and player count.

    That said, I’d probably never choose to play this with 5 or fewer players because I agree with your major criticisms. For the price, the component quality isn’t impressive. I had to get a 3d printed insert to fit the base game plus expansion into the main box. The game tray bins were a complete waste of money.

  23. Luke seriously just said "dulled down to a point"…

  24. Another excellent review! I was waiting for this one soo long. This game almost got me, but the price (especially for all-in — I love the best looking one IF I decide to get it) was just too much. And how am I glad now. SOLO I really would miss. I was already afraid about the little token fiddly ness. And you also confirmed the missing X-ploration, when I was thinking hard (even now with LL V2-campaign) to back this or not. And do I agree with you on the look of the map! Love your work Luke

  25. Totally agree about the speed enhancements. Overpowered.

  26. Thanks for the review. I was really interested in this game before it was released, but most of what I have heard about it over the past few months has cooled my jets for it.

  27. Very frank and informative review – thanks.

  28. Yeah, dice tower Roy or not, it didn't look like a game for me. The silly choices about the components was one thing. Over the top and underwhelming at the same time, but then a lot of red flags about gameplay popped up as well.

  29. This cements what I was thinking already, I will stick to Eclipse Second Dawn. Quicker, funner and much more meaning powers

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