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Raise Your Goblets» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Geki's Review - Raise you Goblets, a not so clever confrontation rss

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Geki
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Raise Your Goblets was being demoed at GenCon. We had a full round and got to discuss this extensively with one of the developers, who assured us that the gameplay will not be tweaked further. Keeping this in mind, this is my first impression, which I would hesitate to call a full review, but which I think could still be interesting to those of you that didn’t get the same chance to try it yet.

Unfortunately, something went wrong with my photos and the only one left is the very poor one that you can see below. With all of this said, here we go.



General overview:
Raise your Goblets has one clear design goal: to recreate the feeling of the Princess Bride’s duel of wits, and to do so in the scope of a multi-player game. On that regard, it quite succeeds, if you focus on the last moments of each round. However, from a gameplay standpoint, it is quite boring, since almost no action counts until those very instants.

Components:
The game comes with six goblets that, while quite simple plastic sculpts, are perfect for what they represent: only slightly smaller than real goblets would be, they are chunky and solid, they are smooth and nice to raise. The cards have nice (if cartoonish) art and a clear graphic design. While I am personally not a fan of glass beads in games, they work perfectly for this title, and I am not sure what else could have been used instead.

Gameplay and mechanical analysis:

After being publicly assigned a target among the other players, players take turns choosing 2 of these actions:
- adding 1 glass bead from their reserve (consisting of 2 poison, 2 antidotes and 3 wines) to 1 goblet.
- look into their own goblet
- make all goblets rotate to the left or to the right
- switch their own goblet with someone else’s.

While this might give the appearance of a clever double thinking, the inability to have any information until you check your own goblet (and therefore have complete information about it) makes for a generally random gameplay. It is quite fast, so it does not drag too much, but alas the general feeling is more that of a roulette than one of a canny duel of wit.

The round ends when someone (who must already have run out of wine) declares a toast: then, everyone takes one last action and the round is over. It is easy to see how turn order makes an exorbitant difference, since if you happen to play after the toasting player you will have no control over what will happen to your goblet, or even whether the goblet you have in front of you will still be there. You then reveal the content of your goblet and score points for
a) surviving
b) killing your target.
Obviously, someone dies if the number of poisons ingested is higher than the number of antidotes.

I found the gameplay quite dull, and the players’ special powers, far from solving this, made it worse: some of them are irrelevant (and thus boring), while others make the game actively less interesting: the King, in particular, takes 2 actions (instead of one) during the toasting, which allows him to add antidote and poison someone else, or simply check his goblet and decide what to do. While it must be noted that player powers are, indeed, still provisional and subjected to change, I think that their very notion (usually very attractive to me) makes the game even more random.

Variety/Replayability

I have no worries about this particular aspects. If what I wrote above appeals to you, the variety in character powers and the inherent shifty nature of social interaction/deduction games will certainly provide for a repeatable, worthy experience. Of course, not one that I personally look forward to, but to each their own.

Designer & Artist Corner


As far as I know, this is Tim Page’s first design, and I feel terrible to give a negative impression of his yet to be released game. I sure hope he has a bright future in front of him!

Nick Miles, the artist, is also uncredited on BGG before this, but I really liked his work, and I will follow further creations with interest.

Final Thoughts

I normally enjoy CMON productions, and while the quality of the components was certainly typical of their high standards, the gameplay was a serious disappointment. I am generally a fan of social deduction games (The Resistance: Avalon, even One Night Ultimate Werewolf) but this felt too chaotic, giving you very little to rely upon if you are trying to actually deduce anything.

I hope you enjoyed my review and I look forward to comments and feedback. For more reviews, both written and video, including other impressions on GenCon demos and releases, please check out my geeklist, here on bgg.

Thanks for reading
Geki
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Peter Mulholland
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What is the player count? I take it with 4 goblets this doesn't go higher than four then.
 
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Geki
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There are actually six of them, my mistake. There are additional variant rules to play with 7-12, but I did not try them. I'll edit the post
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Peter Mulholland
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geki wrote:
There are actually six of them, my mistake. There are additional variant rules to play with 7-12, but I did not try them. I'll edit the post


Thanks for clarifying.
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Ben Rubinstein

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Wait wait wait. Didn't this game fail a kickstarter like 6 months ago? With a different name and art? I'm 99% sure it is. Or else I'm going crazy.
 
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Jamie Hankins
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epilepticemu wrote:
Wait wait wait. Didn't this game fail a kickstarter like 6 months ago? With a different name and art? I'm 99% sure it is. Or else I'm going crazy.


It was originally called Toast! and was succesful on kickstarter... until it was cancelled after being sold to Horrible Games. People who backed Toast! on kickstarter will apparently have access to the Limited Edition version of Raise Your Goblets (not heard too much on that yet!)

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1872633448/toast-0/post...
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Peter Mulholland
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Wight1984 wrote:
epilepticemu wrote:
Wait wait wait. Didn't this game fail a kickstarter like 6 months ago? With a different name and art? I'm 99% sure it is. Or else I'm going crazy.


It was originally called Toast! and was succesful on kickstarter... until it was cancelled after being sold to Horrible Games. People who backed Toast! on kickstarter will apparently have access to the Limited Edition version of Raise Your Goblets (not heard too much on that yet!)

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1872633448/toast-0/post...


I backed it and was really keen to get it. Since then? I just don't care anymore. So many games have been and gone since then I'm just not excited enough. After the KS there was a huge patch of silence and it just got forgotten about.
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Ben Rubinstein

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Wight1984 wrote:
epilepticemu wrote:
Wait wait wait. Didn't this game fail a kickstarter like 6 months ago? With a different name and art? I'm 99% sure it is. Or else I'm going crazy.


It was originally called Toast! and was succesful on kickstarter... until it was cancelled after being sold to Horrible Games. People who backed Toast! on kickstarter will apparently have access to the Limited Edition version of Raise Your Goblets (not heard too much on that yet!)

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1872633448/toast-0/post...


Thanks for the clarification!
 
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Blake Man

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I really like the concept, especially as a drinking game.. but I do see how it seems to just be a game of luck. Do you think that a few house rules could be implemented in order to put some actual thought and strategy into the game? Since it seems like the core experience is there, just needs tweaking.
 
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Geki
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Blakemann wrote:
I really like the concept, especially as a drinking game.. but I do see how it seems to just be a game of luck. Do you think that a few house rules could be implemented in order to put some actual thought and strategy into the game? Since it seems like the core experience is there, just needs tweaking.


That's though. Maybe implementing some kind of simultaneous decision, instead of going clockwise?

But I'm definitely not a designer, so I have no idea whether that could be done.
 
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James Sinden
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geki wrote:

Final Thoughts

I normally enjoy CMON productions, and while the quality of the components was certainly typical of their high standards, the gameplay was a serious disappointment. I am generally a fan of social deduction games (The Resistance: Avalon, even One Night Ultimate Werewolf) but this felt too chaotic, giving you very little to rely upon if you are trying to actually deduce anything.


Having played this at Essen I feel like adding a notee that this is totally not a social deduction game... all information is out there from the start, so there is little deducing to do when playing as you know which other player is trying to poison you from the setup.

The game is more about memory and manipulation on how you take your actions with a heap of social interaction.

Personally I liked it, but I thought the price point (35 euros) too much for what is a light filler party game. If I can bag a copy for closer to 25 though I suspect I'll pick this up later.

 
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Geki
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jamessinden wrote:
geki wrote:

Final Thoughts

I normally enjoy CMON productions, and while the quality of the components was certainly typical of their high standards, the gameplay was a serious disappointment. I am generally a fan of social deduction games (The Resistance: Avalon, even One Night Ultimate Werewolf) but this felt too chaotic, giving you very little to rely upon if you are trying to actually deduce anything.


Having played this at Essen I feel like adding a notee that this is totally not a social deduction game... all information is out there from the start, so there is little deducing to do when playing as you know which other player is trying to poison you from the setup.

The game is more about memory and manipulation on how you take your actions with a heap of social interaction.



But you don't know what people are putting in the goblets. It would make no sense to simply always put poison in your target's glass and antidote in yours, so you have to deduce what other people are doing. Call it "double thinking" if you prefer.
 
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Aaron Wood
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I played a demo of this at BGG Con, and they gave us one last action around the table after the toast was called, excepting the player who called the toast. So it gave one last bit of control over the outcome, and while at first I thought turn order would have a huge impact, there's still a lot of bluffing and such, as just because player A switched goblets with me, doesn't mean that I'd necessarily want to switch them back if I play later in that last round. "Clearly I cannot choose the glass in front of you..."
 
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