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The Ladies of Troyes Lend Their Strength
The history of France is filled with fascinating women, and the city of Troyes in Champagne was a central backdrop to some of the medieval era’s most dramatic female figures. Jeanne de Champagne put down the Count of Bar’s rebellion and took on the church when she suspected Bishop Guichard of theft. As Queen of France, Isabeau de Baviere took an especially active role in ruling, representing the crown at the signing of the Treaty of Troyes. The devout and literate Marie de Champagne governed the Champagne region in place of her son during the Crusades. Each of these great women contributed to the lasting legacy of the city of Troyes, bringing stability and prosperity in troubled times.
In The Ladies of Troyes, an expansion for Troyes, players are invited to revisit this fascinating time for the Champagne region as these influential women help to lead your family to greatness. In this preview, we’ll examine what The Ladies of Troyes adds to the struggle for prominence in this great medieval city.
Bold Leaders and Fresh Challenges
Each of these three royal ladies were great leaders, but the ways in which they may exert their influence for your family differ. Jeanne de Champagne kept the city unified, and rewards players who invest in affairs related to City Hall. Isabeau de Baviere wielded her royal privilege with skill, so those who follow her lead would be wise to attend to the Royal Palace. Marie de Champagne’s close ties to the church make her an ideal patron for those who look to the Bishopric for strength. Each of the three new characters provides Victory points for focusing on a particular aspect of play.
Alongside these new and iconic female figures are a host of new occupations and occurrences. New Activity and Event cards bring your citizens fresh skills to employ and tough new challenges to confront.
Hire on a Master Tradesman to get the most out of the citizens in your employ, or simply make a wise Marriage to put your wealth to work for you in high places. Perhaps you’ll survive the ravages of a Harsh Winter only to find that you must settle the fears of the citizens upon the discovery of a demonic possession. There are many novel paths to power in the city of Troyes, and just as many new pitfalls along the way.
The Family Stands Firm
Loyalty can be hard to come by in the city of Troyes. The hired citizens that each family places within the the Bishopric, the Palace, or City Hall add to a player’s pool of white, red, and yellow dice, respectively. While these allies are essential, any of them can be bought out from under you by your rivals. Planning your rise to prominence in the great city of Troyes can be difficult when you can’t fully trust those on whom you must depend.
In light of this lack of trust, The Ladies of Troyes expansion introduces a purple die to each player’s pool, representing the head of that family’s household. Throughout this dance shifting of alliances, the esteemed head of your household will always hold strong. This leader’s loyalty cannot be corrupted with a few base coins, and the purple die can never be bought and used by your competition. Each player’s purple die is always their own, so it may be wise to leverage the Influence that you’ve built by focusing it on the head of your household. You’ll never have their strength snatched out from under you before they can be used to your family’s advantage.
What’s more, this versatile member of your clan may function as any color die that may be needed. Lead your troops to fend off Marauders as a red die, or seek to resolve a Civil War by utilizing the head of your household as a yellow die. This stalwart leader will function as a beacon of loyalty and stability for all that your family may choose to undertake both within or without the city limits.
Beyond the City Gates
The hustle and bustle within the city of Troyes reaches often reaches beyond its walls and into the surrounding countryside. In The Ladies of Troyes expansion, all of the families may each employ a guard that patrols the city walls. In gameplay, a player can opt to spend their dice to move their guard along the edge of Troyes. As the guard makes their way around the perimeter, they’ll encounter four Outdoor Activities,each affording a new opportunity for the player’s house.
Once an Activity has been encountered, your family can undertake that task any time by spending a die to activate it. You may choose to invest wisely to ensure that the next time your opponents purchase your dice, you gain a measure of Influence. Perhaps you’d like the ability to reroll your dice, or simply wish to gain additional Victory Points for building up the Cathedral. There are a wide range of Outdoor Activities, each with their own strategic advantage, and any family would be wise to patrol the walls and gain access to all the opportunities that the land bordering Troyes has to offer.
The Ladies of Troyes adds even more depth to the excitement and intrigue of the original Troyes. The Characters, Events, and Activities are excellent additions to the variety of the original game, and the wholly new mechanics to breathe new life into this struggle for dominance in a bustling medieval city. Look for The Ladies of Troyes available at your local retailer soon!