Tuesday, October 26, 2010

7 Wonders

Lot's of gaming has happened recently but the best was last night. My copy of 7 wonders arrived after being bought at Essen last week. It's got a lot of buzz at the moment and for good reason. It's a cracking game.
I had read the rules last week so we would be ready to give it a go and they seemed very simple. The rules themselves seemed to jump about a bit, but the basics seemed easy enough.

the game was punched explained and cards were sorted and dealt. The first age went very smoothly except for the fact I had no red military cards. I was trounced in combat on both sides but I had built a few civic building to generate VP's.

Age 2 started and more resources were available. Wonders started taking place but again I had a very poor military force.

Age 3 arrived and it all clicked. Well, we all realised that we couldn't build the third stage of our wonder. We had all passed up resource cards thinking we could trade them or already had them. I had 1 paper resource but needed 2 in order to complete my wonder. The only other paper was on the other side of the table! resources had been spread around the table. Guild cards were played to good effect in the final rounds and it was a close finish.

We all scored around 46 with the winner winning with 49. It was a very enjoyable game and I am now desperate to give it another go. I am sure this game will win a couple of awards this year and I expect an expansion sometime next year.

The other game we played was another new Essen release. Diver, Die, Deep (?) a push your luck diving game. It was quite fun but I was useless. Either diving too deep or staying under too long and running out of oxygen. It plays as a group push your luck that lasts several rounds. As a group you determine how much oxygen is in the tanks with hidden cards and each round you roll a dice for oxygen consumption. It gets a bit tense at times but sometimes you know you have made the wrong decision. A fun game that I would play again.

I also picked up a copy of Gosu, loving the look of the cards and box but need to read teh rules and give it a try.

Friday, October 1, 2010

A spot of Painting

A week has passed and Thunderstone hasn't hit the table. Instead Fresco got its first outing and it's a pretty good game.
When I first heard about Fresco the idea of mixing paints and keeping your workers happy sounded like a good theme. It was the strong "euro" in this years SdJ and I was on the lookout for something else to try with the kids.

At its heart its a worker placement game with a few twists. You decide the playing order each round by deciding how early your going to wake up your workers. First up gets to do things first but paints from the market cost more and your workers happiness drops. If your last out of bed you don't have much to choose from at the market but its cheap. Your workers are happy and you may even recruit a new one.

So after you have bought paints its then time to use them to complete tiles on the Fresco part of the board. You have to use up your workers and paints to complete these tiles. followed by the ability to earn money by painting portraits, mixing your base colour paints to make different colours and finally sending your workers to the theatre to increase their happiness.

so each round you have a few things to think about, mainly what time to get up, whether you are buying paints, painting the fresco or mixing new colours. All while trying to keep your workers happy.

The board and components are really nicely put together. All the tiles are good heavy card stock and the graphic design is beautiful. Layout of the board is well put together, visually it helps resolve each round. Queen games always seem to do well on their pesentation and design so I wouldn't expect anything less.

The first play went very well, its a smooth game to play with no real rules questions. It just seems to make sense. It's not very difficult to grasp, so I think its going to become my first gateway game to introduce new players.

The game also comes with 3 expansions. These add extra rules and things to think about to increase the complexity of the game. I haven't tried these yet but its nice that they added them into the base game instead of releasing them as a seperate expansion.