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Garden of Minions» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Garden of Minions- First Impression rss

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EGG Head
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Garden of Minions is one the most recent solitaire games to be released. I don’t have a lot of time to play solo games but I do find them interesting. The designer, Kuro, is one of my favorites and since this seemed like it would be a relatively quick to play and had two of my ideal themes-gardens and minions(!) it was a must have. I also love the art design on most of the games from Asia.

The game consists of a small board with a score track and your garden plot. The game has 18 white dice which the player uses to fight the minions represented by the black dice as well as the boss monsters on cards. Trees are represented with cardboard discs. The goal of the game is to defeat the minions and monsters and establish 6 trees.


The game starts with 3 minions on the board. The player then starts rolling the white dice, one at a time and placing them on the garden plot. A die that is greater than value one may be split into 2 die and placed. When placing, players are trying to create unions (groupings of dice of the same value) and sealing a minion. If a player makes a union of 3 or more dice of the same value the most recently placed die levels up the next value. The rest of the white dice are removed. Any minions or black dice adjacent to the union are sealed if their value is equal or if lower removed from the board. Minions are weakened by 1 if their value if greater than the union. This earns the player a point. Sealed minions are out of the game and placed in the graveyard.

It is possible to chain unions by having groups of adjacent dice that are close in value. Chaining earns players bonus points equal to the value of the last union to level squared.


If the union levels up dice of value 6 a tree is placed. There are 5 types of trees to choose from, each of which has a special power. Trees stay on the board and occupy a space which cannot be used to place dice on anymore.

When a union is leveled a new minion die is placed on the board. If there is black dice left, none is placed. If there is no space left on the board to place a die, the player loses. I misunderstood the rules here initially and thought I lost when there were no black dice left.

When a tree is placed, a boss monster card is revealed. These monsters hamper the players and can only be removed by the player meeting certain conditions. If defeated they are worth bonus points.


The game ends when either the player cannot place more dice on the board or when 6 trees are planted. Note than not having a black die to place does not cause you to lose. If you lose you get no score.


My thoughts: Garden of minions comes in a nice portable sized box. It’s super cute. You have the challenge each time to best your score. Placement of dice and trees is key since as the board shrinks it becomes harder and harder to make the unions. The different boss monsters provide a lot of variation on the difficulty of the game. The game is interesting and it makes a nice filler as the rules are pretty easy. I like that it’s not that hard to win but it is hard to get high scores. Apparently the designer has had scores over 200. I’ve only played the easy version with no bosses to start. If you find games with lots of dice intriguing this one may be for you. The rules say to use an unused tree marker to keep score but I found a more fitting little friend to help with that.

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Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Thank you for the review. I'd love to get my hands on this one, but it was sold out something like 40 minutes after Spiel opened this year and I was still standing in the queue at the Japon Brand booth waiting to buy the game.

If anyone knows where to buy this one, then I'd appreciate a hint .

I love your scoring token .
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EGG Head
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mortenmdk wrote:
Thank you for the review. I'd love to get my hands on this one, but it was sold out something like 40 minutes after Spiel opened this year and I was still standing in the queue at the Japon Brand booth waiting to buy the game.

If anyone knows where to buy this one, then I'd appreciate a hint .

I love your scoring token .
Read from Simon there was a small possibility of at reprint at one of the TGMs
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Morten Monrad Pedersen
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lorna wrote:
mortenmdk wrote:
Thank you for the review. I'd love to get my hands on this one, but it was sold out something like 40 minutes after Spiel opened this year and I was still standing in the queue at the Japon Brand booth waiting to buy the game.

If anyone knows where to buy this one, then I'd appreciate a hint .

I love your scoring token .
Read from Simon there was a small possibility of at reprint at one of the TGMs


A reprint would be awesome. Not quite sure what the acronym means?
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EGG Head
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mortenmdk wrote:
lorna wrote:
mortenmdk wrote:
Thank you for the review. I'd love to get my hands on this one, but it was sold out something like 40 minutes after Spiel opened this year and I was still standing in the queue at the Japon Brand booth waiting to buy the game.

If anyone knows where to buy this one, then I'd appreciate a hint .

I love your scoring token .
Read from Simon there was a small possibility of at reprint at one of the TGMs


A reprint would be awesome. Not quite sure what the acronym means?
ah sorry Tokyo Game Market
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Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Thanks . Hope it'll become available in Europe.
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Simon Lundström
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It should be. I don't get to writing reviews these days, partly because I figure people will think my opinions are biased, but this is a really cool game. I played it again and again, trying to beat my high score, and it's a really nice combination of risk-taking and probability-calculating engine game.
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Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Zimeon wrote:
It should be. I don't get to writing reviews these days, partly because I figure people will think my opinions are biased, but this is a really cool game. I played it again and again, trying to beat my high score, and it's a really nice combination of risk-taking and probability-calculating engine game.


That's great news, thanks.
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Simon Lundström
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mortenmdk wrote:
Zimeon wrote:
It should be. I don't get to writing reviews these days, partly because I figure people will think my opinions are biased, but this is a really cool game. I played it again and again, trying to beat my high score, and it's a really nice combination of risk-taking and probability-calculating engine game.


That's great news, thanks.


Not so much "news" as a genuine forecast. This is a very good game, and it should have room. With that said, nothing's in the talks yet. Publishers are wary of solitaires. This is where you, the fans, come in.
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Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Zimeon wrote:
mortenmdk wrote:
Zimeon wrote:
It should be. I don't get to writing reviews these days, partly because I figure people will think my opinions are biased, but this is a really cool game. I played it again and again, trying to beat my high score, and it's a really nice combination of risk-taking and probability-calculating engine game.


That's great news, thanks.


Not so much "news" as a genuine forecast. This is a very good game, and it should have room. With that said, nothing's in the talks yet. Publishers are wary of solitaires. This is where you, the fans, come in.


Yeah, though luckily more and more games at least have solo playability.
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Simon Lundström
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mortenmdk wrote:
Zimeon wrote:
mortenmdk wrote:
Zimeon wrote:
It should be. I don't get to writing reviews these days, partly because I figure people will think my opinions are biased, but this is a really cool game. I played it again and again, trying to beat my high score, and it's a really nice combination of risk-taking and probability-calculating engine game.


That's great news, thanks.


Not so much "news" as a genuine forecast. This is a very good game, and it should have room. With that said, nothing's in the talks yet. Publishers are wary of solitaires. This is where you, the fans, come in.


Yeah, though luckily more and more games at least have solo playability.


Publishers are still wary of games that ONLY play solo. SOlo playability is always a plus, though.
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Morten Monrad Pedersen
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Zimeon wrote:
mortenmdk wrote:
Zimeon wrote:
mortenmdk wrote:
Zimeon wrote:
It should be. I don't get to writing reviews these days, partly because I figure people will think my opinions are biased, but this is a really cool game. I played it again and again, trying to beat my high score, and it's a really nice combination of risk-taking and probability-calculating engine game.


That's great news, thanks.


Not so much "news" as a genuine forecast. This is a very good game, and it should have room. With that said, nothing's in the talks yet. Publishers are wary of solitaires. This is where you, the fans, come in.


Yeah, though luckily more and more games at least have solo playability.


Publishers are still wary of games that ONLY play solo. SOlo playability is always a plus, though.


Yeah, I fully agree and didn't intend to imply otherwise.
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Starla Lester
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Zimeon wrote:
...This is a very good game, and it should have room. With that said, nothing's in the talks yet. Publishers are wary of solitaires. This is where you, the fans, come in.


How do we factor in? Or, what can we do?

There are 92 people on bgg with this in their wishlist, and that seems pretty promising for a game that isn't available for people to try, and for a game where there aren't a lot of copies running around to get word of mouth going.
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Simon Lundström
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I'd say, you can suggest for your publishers to take up the game. It's better that you suggest it than we do
 
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