This game is a gem with a great balance of strategy, tactics and luck.
Strategy : you should be able to plan your whole « ideal » game when you get your first 3 cards and select your mage : will you go for this place of power ? or can this other place of power be an alternative, and how ? or will you go big on gold ?
Tactics : your plans can go awry and you need to adapt to your opponent’s actions when they deny you the magic item, monument or place of power that you targeted. Actually this is where all the « interesting » interaction resides in Res Arcana, much more than in attacks. Direct attacks are secondary, they often are the side effects of a strategy oriented to PoP such as Sorcerer’s bestiary or Sacrificial pit. And even so, attacking takes up a whole action and should not be made lightly in that regard, unless you want to delay your passing. Remember Res Arcana is a race.
Luck : this is a card drawing game, and although a deck of 8 cards seems very short, it does seem enormous when a key card is the 8th of your deck… You go for Temple of the abyss and yes, of course homunculus will be the 8th card of your deck, why should it not ?
In the contrary, can you kill the game in 3 rounds by pushing your luck on the monuments deck ?
How can you manage your hand and your discard so that you get the right card at the right time ?
I ckecked 2 of your games and even if you don’t draft, learn to recognize which cards are stronger. You can easily find some tips on the internet :
https://cardboardmountain.com/the-ultim ... egy-guide/
+ youtube tutorials
« Ultimate guide » might be a bit overrated (even more so since it reviews only the base version of the game) but it is a good start. Yes, Windup man (automate) is a trap, or at least I ve never witnessed a game where it was a winner. And with the 2nd expansion it gets ridiculously overpowered. There should be an option to ban it from the game, just as Agricola can be parametered with or without certain cards.
A good way to improve your skills is to play but also to watch high ranked players play, if you have a premium account. Res Arcana games are easy to watch and understand, as it is a rather quick game. Avoid watching games > 4 rounds.
Bonne chance !