7 Wonders Duel is one of our favorite games. It’s an intricate 2 player game that involves a lot of high level strategy and low level tactics. In this post, we share some tips to help you fine tune your strategy.
Tip 1: Base your strategy on your wonders
Your wonders are your special advantage over your opponent and should generally be the backbone of your strategy. You should always count how many of the following things your wonders have compared to your opponent:
- Military symbols
- Extra turns
If you have more military symbols on your wonders than your opponent, you know you have a natural advantage in this domain. If your wonders have more points than your opponent’s than you know you have a natural advantage if the game ends civically. Having more extra turn wonders gives you a huge advantage over your opponent, particularly in the military and scientific domains.
Of course, you should realize what advantages different sets of wonders can give you already during the wonder drafting phase. For example, if you get the opportunity to take Colossus together with Statue of Zeus and Circus Maximus, you have a very good chance of winning a military victory.
Tip 2: Go for economic monopolies
It took me a while to realize just how strong monopolies are in 7 Wonders Duel. If your opponent has no wood, and you have one wood, that’s annoying enough. Your opponent has to pay 3 gold for every wood they use. But if you can pick up the double wood card in the second era, you opponent will have to pay 5 gold per wood for the rest of the game. That’s basically a death sentence.
But you always have to keep in mind that your opponent might still pick up extra resources to break your monopoly, for example with Statue of Zeus of the yellow card that counts as either wood, stone or lame. And in the Pantheon expansion the God Baal can obviously be used to either defend or attack economic monopolies. Like with all other strategies, you shouldn’t over commit to it.
Tip 3: Don’t invest too much in science
Science is interesting in 7 Wonders Duel, as it can give you a progress token if you get the same symbol twice and you win outright when you obtain six different symbols. Therefore, taking science cards can often threaten your opponent into making awkward plays to defend you from furthering your scientific advantage.
Nevertheless, science is the weakest domain in 7 Wonders Duel. It’s usually just too easy for your opponent to answer your threats. So generally it’s good to primarily threaten them militarily and economically.
Tip 4: Card counting tactic to get specific cards
This last tip is more of a tactic than a strategy, but it’s very useful. You can often manipulate which player gets which card if you draw them in the right order.
For example, take the image on the left here. Suppose that it’s your turn and you really want to get the military card.Assume there are no extra turn wonders. Can you do it?
The answer in this case is yes. If you take the middle card first, you’re guaranteed to get the military card. Whereas if you take either of the cards on the sides, you’re guaranteed not to get it.
This same principle extends to much broader situations. Although it’s more complicated, in the image on the right the first player can guarantee that he gets the wood in the middle row. Do you see it?
The first thing you need to count out is that in order for the first player to get the wood, he needs to take the right card that covers the wood rather than the left card that covers the wood. And he can force this by taking the yellow stone card in his first move. By taking the yellow stone card, there’s no continuation in which he can’t take the right card covering the wood before the left card covering the wood is taken. (It’s a pretty long sequence so you’ll have to play it out for yourself if you don’t believe me.)