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Islebound» Forums » General

Subject: I think I want this game... rss

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April W
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Hi all!

So, I'm really close to buying this game. I've watched some video on it, looked at reviews and such, and I'm pretty sure it's something I'm going to love, but I want to be certain before I order because I don't like buying games I won't love.

The only other Laukat game I own and have played is Artifacts, Inc. and that is an okay game but for me it's lacking depth and falls into that "not a filler, but not meaty enough" category. You also don't really feel the theme of it, which was a big disappointment considering I love the theme. I just want to make sure Islebound has more going on than Artifacts. From the looks of it the theme is more prominent.

I guess what I'm asking is, do you get a well rounded experience during this game's playtime? If you've played Artifacts, Inc. how would you compare it to that game?

Thanks for helping me decide!

-Soleia, Pirate Queen of the great Abyss
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Anthony Faber
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I've played both games, and I like Islebound much better. Like you say, Artifacts Inc. is a very light game, though too long to truly call a filler. Islebound is more medium weight, but it's not really hard at all.

Moreover, Islebound feels much more immersive to me - while it's a straight ahead euro, it really feels like you're travelling around, collecting pirates and raiding islands. Artifacts Inc. always felt like placing dice for points, not globetrotting for artifacts.
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April W
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maxlongstreet wrote:

I've played both games, and I like Islebound much better. Like you say, Artifacts Inc. is a very light game, though too long to truly call a filler. Islebound is more medium weight, but it's not really hard at all.

Moreover, Islebound feels much more immersive to me - while it's a straight ahead euro, it really feels like you're travelling around, collecting pirates and raiding islands. Artifacts Inc. always felt like placing dice for points, not globetrotting for artifacts.

That's exactly what I was thinking. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
 
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April W
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Also, does anybody know if this game is likely to go up in price after it's release? Would I be better off pre-ordering now rather than risk it going up? I feel $30~ is a pretty good deal.
 
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Jawby
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I don't think the price will go up but it will definitely vary by vendor. At least for a little while. Keep in mind that there will be supply and demand with the pricing so now would be a good time to order, or definitely wait for the second printing so that prices will go down again.
I hope this helps and isn't confusing.
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Steve Cohn
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$30 is a good deal for Islebound! Given the success of the recentNear and Far campaign ($500K+, Red Raven Games biggest to date!) and adding to that Islebound is now coming into backers hands and will likely start getting more buzz due to more people playing it, I would not be surprised to find out it picks up steam quickly and could become harder to find, which, of course, will lead to an increase in price!

Above and Below started going up in price and became hard to find during the Near and Far campaign--potentially due to the additional bits for Above and Below Kickstarter being available during the Near and Far KS. A new printing is on the way for Above and Below, but for a while during the Near and Far KS, A&B was $60+ for base game and nearing $100 for KS version, if one could find it at all. The reason I point this out is Red Raven Games seems to be on a roll, gaining in popularity and this could make some of Ryan Laukat's games harder to find in general, especially the quite popular ones!

All that said, I want to be sure you know Islebound will not give you a "Merchants and Marauders Lite" feeling. I'm a fan of M&M and Islebound both, but for very different reasons. Islebound is quite euro-y in that you are managing your resources: money, fish, wood, pirates, sea serpents, etc. You do use these things to build/gain assets (buildings) and possiblly take over towns by force of strength (or negotiation)--not unlike M&M in some cases--and while you get a feeling of being "pirate-y" sometimes, even to the point of fulfilling missions or bragging (literally!) about how great you are, still quite different from M&M.

Great games, both. Glad to have both in my collection as they are both fun adventures at sea, but in different ways.

Hope that helps!
~Steve
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April W
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OchreOgre wrote:
$30 is a good deal for Islebound! Given the success of the recentNear and Far campaign ($500K+, Red Raven Games biggest to date!) and adding to that Islebound is now coming into backers hands and will likely start getting more buzz due to more people playing it, I would not be surprised to find out it picks up steam quickly and could become harder to find, which, of course, will lead to an increase in price!

Above and Below started going up in price and became hard to find during the Near and Far campaign--potentially due to the additional bits for Above and Below Kickstarter being available during the Near and Far KS. A new printing is on the way for Above and Below, but for a while during the Near and Far KS, A&B was $60+ for base game and nearing $100 for KS version, if one could find it at all. The reason I point this out is Red Raven Games seems to be on a roll, gaining in popularity and this could make some of Ryan Laukat's games harder to find in general, especially the quite popular ones!

All that said, I want to be sure you know Islebound will not give you a "Merchants and Marauders Lite" feeling. I'm a fan of M&M and Islebound both, but for very different reasons. Islebound is quite euro-y in that you are managing your resources: money, fish, wood, pirates, sea serpents, etc. You do use these things to build/gain assets (buildings) and possiblly take over towns by force of strength (or negotiation)--not unlike M&M in some cases--and while you get a feeling of being "pirate-y" sometimes, even to the point of fulfilling missions or bragging (literally!) about how great you are, still quite different from M&M.

Great games, both. Glad to have both in my collection as they are both fun adventures at sea, but in different ways.

Hope that helps!
~Steve

Thanks for the comparison to M&M Steve! I was wondering how similar the games are, and am actually happy to hear there is a difference because, while I love M&M, I don't really want a game that is too similar to what I already have.
 
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April W
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Jawby wrote:
I don't think the price will go up but it will definitely vary by vendor. At least for a little while. Keep in mind that there will be supply and demand with the pricing so now would be a good time to order, or definitely wait for the second printing so that prices will go down again.
I hope this helps and isn't confusing.

Yes, it makes sense. Thanks!
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Anthony Faber
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OchreOgre makes a good point - this is a ruthless optimization euro through and through. It's not an Ameritrash game or story based game really at all.

Now, as I said above, it has much more of an immersive feel than many euros (and Arifacts Inc.), in part because of the great artwork and in part because of the way your ship and crew interact with what you are doing, but the gameplay itself is that of a well designed, tight, straightforward euro.
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John Burt
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+ what Anthony and Steve said.

I haven't played M&M, but my impression of Islebound is that it is very thematic, due to the artwork and gameplay, but the theme is kind of like a cute cartoon pirate movie for kids: the piratey violence is abstracted and mitigated. We like it a great deal and play it often, though we're mostly into mid-heavy euros and care less about theme so take my opinions with a large grain of sea salt.
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April W
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quill65 wrote:
+ what Anthony and Steve said.

I haven't played M&M, but my impression of Islebound is that it is very thematic, due to the artwork and gameplay, but the theme is kind of like a cute cartoon pirate movie for kids: the piratey violence is abstracted and mitigated. We like it a great deal and play it often, though we're mostly into mid-heavy euros and care less about theme so take my opinions with a large grain of sea salt.

Heh. Sea salt. I don't mind Euro's but I do like the more "themey" ones. Abstract makes me want to cry.
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Giuliano Bartolucci
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But Red Raven games are quite abstract indeed...
Maybe, if you like "immersive" games, you should give Above and Below a try for its being a crossing between an Euro game and a Tale teller with its Adventure Book
 
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April W
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giulibartolucci1204 wrote:
But Red Raven games are quite abstract indeed...
Maybe, if you like "immersive" games, you should give Above and Below a try for its being a crossing between an Euro game and a Tale teller with its Adventure Book

I have considered A&B and may give it a try at some point. I would probably enjoy such a game.
 
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Steve Cohn
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Above and Below is indeed quite immersive. It's more of telling/building a story as you go vs. a true euro. You can quite reasonably play the game from a "straight-up euro" point of view of managing resources, buying buildings and maximizing your revenue... snore Sorry, I made myself doze off a bit even thinking of playing it that way.

(Don't get me wrong, heavier euro's are also great, Tzolk'in, Castles of Burgundy, Ora et Labora, Belfort, La Granja are all among my favorites; but I must admit sadly that games like Trajan and Brass are sitting on my shelf, quietly judging me for not getting them to the table...)

But it's kind of a dull way to play (I have tried it) compared to the adventures and encounters one could be having instead/in addition to. A&B is often compared to Tales of the Arabian Nights, which I am given to understand is more an activity than a game (I say this with full admission that I have never played TotAN), while A&B is a game with story in it/around it. I hope that makes sense.

Islebound is also a story-ish game, in that you are building your own story, telling/making your own legend as you play. (Not because there is a story-book in the game, there is no story-book in Islebound as there is in Above and Below) The "story" you are "telling" (neither of which is overly required as part of the game) is all your own. You sail from port to port, building your own capitol, your own legend, based on what you do and how you play. Above and Below has the pre-drafted stories to tell you what is happening along the way as you explore the new land.

It's interesting to think that three very different games, Artifacts, Inc., Above and Below and Islebound (and The Ancient World, and City of Iron 1 and 2e, and Empires of the Void, and...) all came from the same guy. The same very talented guy!
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April W
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Yes, and see what appeals to me about Islebound is making my own story. I love games that are all about making it my own, building my own engine, doing something unique from the other players.
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