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Subject: Dr Funktastic Reviews Village rss

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Dr. Funktastic
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Village

The 2 following ratings do not factor into the rating of the game, because for instance, forgiving games are not necessarily better than non-forgiving games

1) Forgiving Rating ( 1 - 10 ) (Multiple mistakes are not detrimental to your chances of winning --> One mistake could cost you a victory.)
8 – During my first few plays of Village I didn’t think the game was as tight as I do now, but it really is pretty tight and fairly unforgiving. I believe this change points out the fact that it has a subtle bit of depth and a pretty decent learning curve to realize many of its meaningful nuances. Mistakes against seasoned opponents can really cost you.

2) Complexity ( 1 - 10 ) (Mindless Fluff --> My brain has melted and is oozing out my ears)
6 – This is a nice medium weight game. It is simple enough to pick up, begin playing, and be confronted with an interesting decision. It however is not a light game, AP can occur, and experienced players tend to have a sizeable advantage over noobs.

Rating the Game

Components vs cost ( 1 - 5) (I paid good money for these onion paper cards??? --> These gold coins are real gold!)
3.4– For right around $40 you get 4 sets of 11 meeples, a set of 4 black meeples, some painted wooden disks, a bunch of painted wooden cubes, cardboard coins, cardboard components that represent the different craft/work items used in the game, and two drawstring bags for blind draws. At the cost the cardboard stock is expectedly of high quality. My biggest beef with the game, concerns sticking on the darn stickers which are required for game play so this grueling chore cannot be avoided. Make sure you do this the day before game day. Further, there are no extra wooden cubes, we have never needed them all, but all the black cubes are required, it would be nice if they threw in a few extra black cubes.

Fun ( 1 - 20 ) (I would rather gouge my eyes out with a spoon than play this game --> Is that a stripper over there, meh Is it my turn yet?)

16 – Using 14 as an average (70% or 7/10) Village is a fairly fun game, and fun in the end is a huge part of what game night is about. One of the most pleasurable parts of the game is in the death and dying of your family members. I often find myself speaking in faux British accent when one of my family member’s time comes, “AH Conrad, He will forever be known as a great traveler, exploring the countryside” or when someone’s time runs out as the result of producing a cart. “AH Barth, a fine wainwright he was, died bolting on the last wheel.” Another fun aspect about the dying of family members comes when explaining the rules to new players… “when your time disk crosses that bridge, one of your family members dies…but often that is a good thing” HUH? The game is also enjoyable because of the myriad of meaningful choices, the visible decay of cubes, and speculating if your opponents are going to take the cube you must get next turn. Finally, the market (we love markets) provides much in terms of battling the wits of your opponents, it is absolutely necessary to keep your eyes on the market place, and the produced items of your opponents.

Obtaining Victory ( 1 - 10 ) (Every victory is a product of the same sequence of events --> A multitude of paths to victory)

6 – A bit under-average here. As plays mounted, we seemed to have our general formulae for winning, or countering our opponent’s strategies. Near the end of the game, almost every play concerned only obtaining the greatest difference in victory points, which hopefully earlier strategic play presented as valid opportunities for advancement. There are indeed many ways to win. We have had total victory in market often paired with an advanced family member in the council, near total victory concerning a wary traveler and perfect execution of death. I have toyed with winning using clergy and mass, but haven’t been able to do so yet.

Teaching and Learning ( 1 - 5 ) (It is easier to prove that there are an infinite number of twin primes --> ABC easy as 123)

4 – The rulebook is a pretty nice one. It is an easy game to get the gist of right away, and a pretty easy one to teach as well. I’m wary of giving it a full score of 5 because there are still questions that come up during game play that are either forgotten because they rarely occur, or because it has never been addressed, and we need to nose into the rulebook or hit the BGG forums.

Scale-ability ( 1 - 5 ) (Works only with less/more players --> Works great with any (published) number of players)
3.5 - This game is published as 2 - 4. I like the game at 2, and less as the number increases. Two people can crank out a game of village is just over 30mins, which leaves ample time for multiple plays and multiple chances to learn and discover more of the many subtleties the game has to offer. I like it less at 4, because for one, it takes a bit longer and more downtime sneaks in, but mainly because it becomes a bit more chaotic.

Access-ability ( 1 - 5 ) (Must be played by the hardest of hardcore gamers --> Easily played by my wife)
4 – This is a pretty easy game accessible to most, I may even step out on a bit of a limb and label this one a gateway to worker placement. I think the reason some people haven’t added it to their collection and thusly won’t play are its common theme, coupled with a pretty common mechanic, with nothing really new to offer…except that pesky grim reaper.

Overall Score

(3.4 + 16 + 6 + 4 + 3.5 + 4) = 36.9
7.38


This rating feels pretty close in 2 player format. I would argue it’s a bit lower at 4.

I have started rating games with this rubric because I am a theoretical mathematician and work in the comfortable confines of numbers and number theory. I am enjoying the process of trying to see I can objectively establish subjective emotions about games. I am by no means a writer. I would love more of your input.

Please note that I make no reference to theme, and replayability. I firmly believe that all themes are pasted on, and are what you as the player make of them. When I play Glen More, I choose to play Glen More as a Scotsman making whiskey and building my clan, because that is the theme of the game. Furthermore, I think all games are replayable, and that a game evolves with those playing it.
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Paul Oakes
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Don't want to appear pedantic, but your comment

I choose to play Glen More as a Scotsman making whiskey

will annoy any Scottish readers. They make Whisky, Whiskey is Irish and elsewhere. They're as relaxed about this as calling them English, or someone from Tennesee would be about being called a Yank.
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Dr. Funktastic
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Thanks for the heads up...definately didn't know this!

I'm looking forward to getting home from work and looking in the rulebook to see if its spelled whiskey or whisky there!

Edit: Looks like its spelled whiskey in the rulebook...guess they didn't know either.
 
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David Jensen

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I have been pouring over the reviews of this spiel winner. Would finally like to find a worker placement I enjoy. Troyes is my favorite right now.

As it turns out the reviews are so varied. Often games with a lot of choices tend to rank very high within the first year the game is out or receives attention such as from Spiel des Jahres. Then once the mechanic is understood - or a dominating strategy is understood the game quickly dies off. Is there one clear path to victory? Can it be countered?

So. I prefer games with some decent player conflict and want to avoid the 'play solitaire' better than your opponents games. I wouldn't be asking for 'chess' level of conflict, but something along the lines of 7 Wonders or many other worker placement games. Where there is a little tension that if you don't go first you could be in trouble. How much player conflict?

My birthday is coming up and I'm debating on getting another game to add to my meager collection. Since I don't have a worker placement game; I thought it might be worthwhile to add one. Especially since my fiance seems to enjoy them.

Thanks.
 
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Clyde W
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Washington
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A) I don't really think of this game as a standard worker placement.

B) Get any of Uwe's WP games over this one. I prefer Agricola over Le Havre and Ora et Labora, but I own all three and they're all super fantastic. Village is simply not in the same league.
 
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Dr. Funktastic
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notyetsuperman wrote:

As it turns out the reviews are so varied. Often games with a lot of choices tend to rank very high within the first year the game is out or receives attention such as from Spiel des Jahres. Then once the mechanic is understood - or a dominating strategy is understood the game quickly dies off. Is there one clear path to victory? Can it be countered?

Note that this is where Village got the lowest score.
It became apparent after several plays that a certain sequence of actions out weighed others...but this maybe just within my circle of gamers...perhaps the game has evolved differently in other circles.

notyetsuperman wrote:

So. I prefer games with some decent player conflict and want to avoid the 'play solitaire' better than your opponents games. I wouldn't be asking for 'chess' level of conflict, but something along the lines of 7 Wonders or many other worker placement games. Where there is a little tension that if you don't go first you could be in trouble. How much player conflict?

I'd say the player conflict is fairly minimal in this one. The most damage you can do to your opponent is within the wheelings and dealings concerning the market. There is much nuance here, and it does take quite awhile to do well. Other than this, there isn't even blocking moves, as players can occupy the same buildings, the only blocking that can occur is in claiming of cubes...

What I wrote above might seem a bit negative. I think the game is a good one, and has a nice hidden depth to it, that really won't show up until after a few (perhaps 5 or so) plays.

Perhaps action selection is more accurate than worker placement

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Brent Wilson
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notyetsuperman wrote:
I have been pouring over the reviews of this spiel winner. Would finally like to find a worker placement I enjoy. Troyes is my favorite right now.

As it turns out the reviews are so varied. Often games with a lot of choices tend to rank very high within the first year the game is out or receives attention such as from Spiel des Jahres. Then once the mechanic is understood - or a dominating strategy is understood the game quickly dies off. Is there one clear path to victory? Can it be countered?

So. I prefer games with some decent player conflict and want to avoid the 'play solitaire' better than your opponents games. I wouldn't be asking for 'chess' level of conflict, but something along the lines of 7 Wonders or many other worker placement games. Where there is a little tension that if you don't go first you could be in trouble. How much player conflict?

My birthday is coming up and I'm debating on getting another game to add to my meager collection. Since I don't have a worker placement game; I thought it might be worthwhile to add one. Especially since my fiance seems to enjoy them.

Thanks.


If you're looking specifically for "Worker Placement" you're in the wrong place. Go buy something like Stone age or Agricola.

I love Village a lot better than both of those though. The "gimmick" in village (in my opinion) isn't time at all, but in the way that resource collection is connected to action selection-- depending on how the cubes deal out, you might want to take a certain action because you want it's effect, or maybe you want that cube. The cube collection gives considerably MORE interaction than 7 Wonders, but it's less painful than Agricola since there are more than one cube in most of the action pools and you can trade resources to take "wild" actions.
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