Solo Session Report: Nusfjord

I bought Nusfjord last year but haven’t played in a while. I’ve been hard at work the past couple of days and needed a relaxing break, and few games evoke a relaxing atmosphere like Nusfjord. It took a bit to re-read the rules and clear the rust, but it’s not a heavy game, and I was quickly back into the swing of things.

I decided to play the A deck again since it’s been a while. There are still cards in each deck I’ve not even seen, and I definitely don’t have them memorized. Besides, you only use a random assortment each game, so it always feels like a new puzzle to solve.

It was a great setup. Lots of synergies to choose from, but I was immediately drawn to the Shipping Office and Slipway. Double discount on ships? Yes. Wet Storage and Dairy were also looking really good. Forest Lake Hut and Ship Holding Co. were also tempting but I never made it happen. I focused on buildings that immediately worked together.

My first goal was to fill my reserve with Angler’s House (worth 2 points for little cost, too) and build either the Wet Storage or Dairy so my reserve only improved each time I emptied. I went with Wet Storage first since the wood would help with ship-building. I grabbed elders early to help with building for efficiency and so the plates could empty and I could Serve Fish again for gold.

I built the Slipway and Shipping Office soon after so I could start cranking out ships. The Boatbuilder also got me another free cutter. Once things were rolling, it was amazing. Cheap ships. A reserve full of fish, wood, and a gold every turn. I also had some really good C cards come out that worked well with my shipping. The Manor also came out, but it’s not playable in solo (rewards you for having 6+ shares, but there is a max of 5 in solo), so I discarded it and re-drew.

However, by the end, as always, I felt like I needed 1 more action than I had. My final score was only 29 (30-40 is a good score according to the rulebook), which I suppose was respectable given how long it had been since I last played. I think my main mistake was wasting the resources on a schooner. I got some nice bonuses from the Shipping Line late into the game, but the costs for the schooner I’m not sure were worth it. Harbor Installation netted 10 points in the end but might have been more if I focused on sloops instead of the schooner. Still, a great, easy-going game and fast. Even re-learning it, I think I was about an hour tops for setup and play. I fussed over getting it back into the box neatly, though there’s no insert so you could just toss it all in with the baggies.

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