Represented by purple Meeples, the Artisans add a new layer of strategy in Five Tribes. With their help, players will be able to have precious or magic items crafted. Some of them are worth Victory Points, while others unlock special powers.
Although my copy of Five Tribes is criminally underplayed I had been thinking a lot about what the Sixth Tribe’s power might be. When you have such a well-balanced game you have to playtest the hell out of adding new mechanics but I’d been thinking about:
For each thief you take that many coins/points from each other player. Pretty simple, thieves are thematically appropriate, it’s a bit aggressive (though you can already assassinate other player’s meeples so I guess it’s not a drastic shift). It’s more powerful the more players there are, you might need to balance it with a bonus from the bank with lower player counts.
For each smuggler draw that many cards from the top of the market draw pile, keep one, replace the rest. Maybe score some coin too? If it’s just a single card that feels a little underpowered.
Introduces a sandstorm marker: if playing with Sorcerors at the beginning of the game a randomly selected tile is hit by the sandstorm, that tile it impassable, you can neither pick up nor place meeples from/on that tile and at game end and it is worth no points if someone has claimed it. For each sorceror you may move the sandstorm to a tile that distance from its current tile (similar to the assassination distance rule). As a variation it could be identical to the assassination distance rule in that it’s from the activated tile. An additional variation could be to ‘scatter’ any meeples on the tile hit by the sandstorm, they’re moved to adjacent tiles (you wouldn’t then be able to claim that tile).
For each nomad you may exchange the places of that many meeples on adjacent tiles (so for the simplest example, in the case of two nomads you can swap the places of two meeples on adjacent tiles). I have a feeling this could cause serious AP but equally I think additional placement manipulation is a neat power. Not sure if Nomads makes sense as a name but I couldn’t really think of anything better!