7 Wonders Strategy: Winning Picks for the Colossus of Rhodes Side “A”

An optimal set up for side “A”
“You gonna fook on me?” – Mr. Chow from The Hangover
You neighbors better hate Godzilla as much as you do, because hell has no fury like the Colossus of Rhodes. Built to battle, your neighbors bark up the wrong tree when trying to test your might. But how will you build such a dominating wonder? First it depends on which side you play. Besides beating up on people, side “A” enjoys owning a lot of resources.
Brown Town
Concentrate on these resources
instead of ore. You need wood
and clay to play Caravansary
and Forum in Age II.


Rhodes requires a lot of raw materials. You need two wood, three clay, and four ore to finish every stage of this wonder. Besides those resources, I recommend picking up stone too in order to play crucial cards in Age III. Two stone allows you to play cards like Senate, Arena, Town Hall, and Craftsmens Guild. With all the raw materials you will take in first two ages (along with other cards), I do not think you can use picks to take all the manufactured resources. If your draft works out this way, then you can benefit from Chamber of Commerce in addition to Haven; however, I think you will end up with too few cards in play that actually add points. You only care about Caravansary and Forum as far as commercial structures when playing side “A.” Caravansary will round out your raw material requirements. Without Caravansary, you will find your money running dangerously low or overcompensating by taking too many raw material cards. You must play Forum. Too many cards in Age III will prove unplayable because of their requirements without efficient access to manufactured goods. Try finding a card like Vineyard or Bazaar to improve your finances if you know you will not play Forum. Without Forum, you will end up purchasing manufactured goods from your neighbors for several plays in Age III. Take Loom to hedge against a no Forum situation. Loom allows you to play Haven and Strategists Guild in Age III.

Purple Nurple
Potential guilds you can play
You can tell the Hanging Gardens of Babylon player to step off with his or her guild playing capabilities. Side “A” of Rhodes can benefit from Craftsmens Guild, Strategists Guild, Magistrates Guild, Philosophers Guild, Shipowners Guild, and of course Builders Guild. Many of these guilds depend on your opponents’ decisions, but Strategists Guild and Shipowners Guild should score at least six points each. Remember that Shipowners Guild requires papyrus and glass, so you will need your neighbors help in order to play this card. If a pack in Age I or II provides no useful cards, consider taking a manufactured resource to increase your odds of playing some of these high scoring guilds. If nothing stellar presents itself in a pack, your frustration will turn you red.
The Kamehameha Wave
Aim to pick up these military structures.


The Colossus obviously trains at a hundred times gravity; therefore, you need to ride that Turtle Destruction Wave coming through the Mandraki Harbor. Fight. Fight. Fight! I want to see 16 to 18 victory tokens at the end of the game. I do not want to see 15 strength in military structures. You should never need that much power to take down the science nerds, commercial traders, or civil architects sitting next to you. If you do, then your neighbor has succeeded in tanking you and compromising your ability to win. Expect to play at least one military structure an age. I recommend playing two in Age I. I think it forces neighbors to concede military to you. By playing a military structure in Age II or completing the second stage of your wonder, a neighbor would need to spend a third of his or her picks in Age II on military structures just to tie (assuming you start Age II with two strength). If you take a military structure and construct your wonder in Age II, it puts you so far ahead in military strength that you should never lose. One military structure in Age III will suffice, preventing neighbors from stealing your victory tokens.
Put Civilian Structures in Your Sights
Worry about resources and military strength during the first two ages, but in Age III you will need to pick up a few blue cards in order to round out a good score. Part of your plan when setting up your resource base allows you to play cards like Senate and Town Hall in the last age. These two civilian structures will really help during picks where none of the higher point cards appear and you do not need to take more military structures. I recommend taking a civilian structure in Age II. This relieves some of the pressure to find high value cards in Age III. Keep your eyes out for Haven and Arena as well, since both cards should score about six points for you.
Summary of Picks
The following list highlights all the potential cards to look out for when playing side “A.” The order of the cards on the list does not reflect a particular card’s importance versus other cards.
Age I
  • Raw Materials, concentrate on everything but Ore
  • Any military structure you can play (no more than two)
  • Construct the first stage of your wonder
Age II
  • Forum
  • Caravansary
  • Foundry
  • Training Ground
  • Stables
  • Courthouse
  • Construct at least your second stage of your wonder
  • Haven
  • Arena
  • Craftsmens Guild
  • Philosophers Guild
  • Shipowners Guild
  • Strategists Guild
  • Arsenal
  • Senate
  • Town Hall
Note: I listed Training Ground in Age II as the military structure to pick up. You do not have to prioritize this card, but it does allow you to play Circus for free in Age III. You normally will not have resources to play Circus on your own with side “A.” In a six player game Circus makes up almost 40 percent of all military structures available in the final age. Taking Training Ground opens up your options. It allows you to stay flexible on when you take a military structure in Age III, plus keep you focused on taking civilian structures and guilds.
Also this strategy only pertains to side “A” of Rhodes. For information on side “B,” check out the next article on June 29th.
What do you think of this strategy for side “A?” Do not forget to comment.
Let us know what you think.
Additional Information
For more information about 7 Wonders check the product page on BoardGameGeek.com.
Interested in purchasing a copy of 7 Wonders? Try the following links.
Amazon: 7 Wonders.
If you live in the tri-state area, consider stopping by AU to pick up a copy and play with the staff. Most of them make up my play test group. We play usually every Monday Night.


  1. This is the best article so far, not only in writing but the strategic advice. I like how you are now splitting up the wonders sides A and B now. I would say something on Lighthouse of Alexandria but I hate that wonder.

  2. @ Fred:Thanks for the complements. I feel Alexandria and Rhodes allow the player many paths to victory, so I thought they deserved extra coverage. Of course you can always play any of the wonders however you want. Ephesus can play military over science and Babylon can not try to maximize Chamber of Commerce. The card distribution could also foil you in following these strategies. With a little luck though, the strategies that I outlined our in my opinion what I think gives the player the best chance at a high score in a six or seven person game.

Speak Your Mind