Tell someone that you’re playing a light civilization game that’s really fun, and you might as well tell them there’s a unicorn in your apartment’s laundry room.
One of the defining features of a “civ” or 4X game, whether video or tabletop, is its satisfying depth and heavy long-term planning. Translating that into something which is both strategic and fun in less than two hours seems like a fantastical goal.
Hyperborea hits that goal for me. The more I’ve played it since I picked it up at Gen Con, the more I think this was my favorite takeaway from the con. It’s innovative, beautiful, and fun — while it doesn’t hit all the deep notes that civ games do, it hits many of them in a different and interesting timbre.