Kickstart This! #308: Grand Austria Hotel: Let’s Waltz! Expansion & Deluxe Upgrade
Designers: Virginio Gigli (Coimbra, Egizia, Grand Austria Hotel, Lorenzo il Magnifico), Simone Luciani (Barrage, Council of 4, Grand Austria Hotel, Lorenzo il Magnifico, Marco Polo II: In the Service of the Khan, Newton, Tzolk’in: The Mayan Calendar, The Voyages of Marco Polo)
Artist: Klemens Franz (Agricola, Agricola Revised Edition, Altiplano, At the Gates of Loyang, Automobile, Bärenpark, Bohnanza, Caverna: The Cave Farmers, Caverna, Cave vs Cave, Clans of Caledonia, The Colonists, Endeavor, Glory to Rome, Grand Austria Hotel, Le Havre, Isle to Skye: From Chieftain to King, Lorenzo il Magnifico, Luna, Mandala, Mombasa, Newton, Oh My Goods!, Ora et Labora, Orléans, Patchwork, Port Royal, Riverboat, Snowdonia, Suburbia, Watergate)
Publisher: Lookout Games (1830: Railways & Robber Barons, Agricola, Agricola: All Creatures Great and Small, Agricola Revised Edition, Automobile, Bärenpark, Bohnanza, Caverna: The Cave Farmers, Caverna, Cave vs Cave, The Colonists, Endeavor, Glory to Rome, Goa, Grand Austria Hotel, Le Havre, Isle to Skye: From Chieftain to King, Mandala, Nusfjord, Oh My Goods!, Ora et Labora, Patchwork, Riverboat, Snowdonia, Suburbia)
Genre/Mechanisms: action drafting, contracts, dice drafting, dice rolling, economic, end game bonuses, events, expansion, hand management, once-per-game abilities, set collection, variable player powers, variable setup
Funding Status: At the time of this posting, Grand Austria Hotel: Let’s Waltz! Expansion & Deluxe Upgrade is already fully-funded. Pledges currently total more than 10x the initial funding goal with less than 1 day to go on the campaign.
Player Count: 2-4
Solo Mode: no
What It’s About: “In the thick of the Viennese modern age, exquisite cafés are competing for customers. Inspiring artists, important politicians, and tourists from all over the world are populating Vienna and in need of a hotel room. This is your opportunity to turn your little café into a world famous hotel. Hire staff, fulfill the wishes of your guests, and gain the emperor’s favor. Only then will your café become the Grand Austria Hotel. Let’s Waltz! is an expansion that adds five modules to Grand Austria Hotel.”
How It Works: “The game is played over 7 rounds. At the end of rounds 3, 5, and 7, there is an Emperor Scoring. After round 7, there is also the Final Scoring. The player who then has the most Victory Points wins.”
“At the start of each round, the start player (who has Turn Order tile “1”) takes and rolls all the dice, sorting them by the rolled number and placing them on the corresponding Action spaces. Then the start player takes a turn or passes (see “Passing”). On your turn, you take the following actions: 1) Take a guest from the game board. (optional); and 2) Take a die and carry out the corresponding action. (mandatory). You can also take additional actions.”
Die actions include acquiring resources like strudel, cake, wine, and coffee; Preparing a Room; Advancing on the Emperor or Money Tracks; and Playing a Staff Card. Additional Actions include paying 1 krone to add a pip to a rolled die number, paying 1 krone to move up to 3 dishes and drinks from the Kitchen to your orders, placing a wooden disc on a Politics card, and moving a guest with a completed order to a free room.
During Emperor Scoring at the end of the 3rd, 5th, and 7th rounds, players receive victory points for their placement on the Emperor Track, and then move their disc backwards on the track a number of spaces. At the end of the game and during Final Scoring, players receive points for the following: points as indicated on Staff Cards, 1 VP for each occupied room on the 1st floor (and 2 VP for each on the 2nd floor, 3 VP for each on the 3rd floor, and 4 VP for each on the 4th floor), 1 VP for each leftover krone, 1 VP for each leftover dish or drink in your Kitchen, and -5 VP for each guest in your Cafe. In the event of a tie, the player with the most leftover krone, dishes and drinks is the winner.
Comparisons: A short list of popular dice drafting games includes Blueprints, Coimbra, Dice Hospital, La Granja, Pulsar-2849, Roll Player, Sagrada, Santa Maria, Seasons, The Taverns of Tiefenthal, That’s Pretty Clever, Trismegistus: The Ultimate Formula, Twice as Clever, and Yspahan.
What Should I Pledge?:
$47 Fanfare: a copy of the new Let’s Waltz! expansion with all unlocked stretch goals.
$66 Ballroom Entry: everything in the Fanfare pledge level, plus an upgrade pack (which include 120 shaped wooden resource tokens, 120 new illustrated cards, 24 shaped wooden player markers, and an overlay for the action board).
$71 Anthem: includes the Grand Austria Hotel base game along with the upgrade pack (this pledge level does not include a copy of the new Let’s Waltz! expansion).
$117 Ode to Joy: includes everything in the Ballroom Entry pledge level, plus a copy of the Grand Austria Hotel base game and a Slipcase for both the base game and expansion boxes.
$6 Name Mention in Rulebook
$18 GameGenic Sleeves (250+, enough for all the cards in the game including stretch goals)
$58 Pre-Assembled Dice Tower
$42 GameGenic Base Game Organizer
$36 GameGenic Let’s Waltz! Expansion Organizer
$12 Printed Art Collage
$9 Slipcase (Box Sleeve)
$23 Custom Dice (17)
$177 Add-On Bundle, including Sleeves, Dice Tower, Both Organizers, Printed Art Collage, and Custom Dice
Both the Pre-Assembled Dice Tower and Printed Art Collage are exclusives. Among the stretch goals, exclusives include the Agatha Christie Celebrity Tile, 32 new Guest Cards, the Hotel Entrance Tile, and 5 Surprise Cards for Module #1.
All-In Total: In the continental U.S., you’re looking at $117 for the Ode to Joy pledge, $18 for the Custom Sleeves, and $23 in shipping for a total of $158. If you really want all of the cosmetic bells and whistles, then consider $117 for the Ode to Joy Pledge, $177 for the Add-On Bundle, and $23 in shipping for a total of $317.
Grand Austria Hotel: Let’s Waltz! Expansion & Deluxe Upgrade completes its Kickstarter on Saturday, November 21st and tentatively ships in July 2021.