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Subject: What I do and don't like about Agricola rss

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Jake Smith
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Seattle
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Why did I buy Agricola?
I didn't...it came with my fiance like Super Mario World did with my SNES. Life is great sometimes.


What do I like about Agricola?

The tension.
- There are never enough actions to do everything you want to do. Some of your goals become obviously unrealistic early on as the necessary actions are unavailable. Others drag on and on in the back of your mind as the game goes on coming tantalizing close to becoming achievable but never quite becoming valuable enough to be worth committing resources to.
- Not having enough food to feed your family come harvest time will almost always lose you the game, as begging cards are both highly punishing and handed out with extreme prejudice. The early turns challenge you to tiptoe as close to the brink of starvation as you can while firing up your feeding engine and growing your family for the extra actions.

The theme integrates brilliantly.
- The mechanics just make sense given their thematic placement. You plant crops and new crops grow for you to harvest in the next few rounds. You pasture a mating pair together and over time their offspring will fill the pasture up (assuming you don't eat them first!).
- At the end of the game you (hopefully) have an adorable little wooden farm full of pastured animals and rows of crops. I've found that this reaches out and grabs both brand new and experienced board gamers.

The game scales well from 2-5 players.
- The addition of special actions of variable power levels as the player count rises does a great job of tuning the availability of resources to preserve the tension that makes the game so great.
- The additional actions also make certain resources available much earlier than normal at the higher player counts. This makes playing a five player game feel different enough from a two player game that I enjoy playing both for their own merits.

It plays fairly quickly.
- With two experienced players you can easily play a game in under an hour.
- On the opposite end of the spectrum, the last game five player game I played clocked in at around two hours, including teaching two new players the game. The simplistic set of actions available at the start of the game are quick to explain, with the remainder of the upcoming actions left to be gone over one by one as they come up. The level theme integration is a tremendous help here, too, as it makes remembering the rules much easier for new players.

Every game feels a little different from the last.
- The hand of occupations and minor improvements you are dealt (or better, after all the players know the cards and have some idea of perceived power level, draft) adjusts the relative values of each action space from player to player from game to game. A space that you never touched in the three games prior can suddenly become the linchpin of your strategy.
- The game runs a good mix of strategy and tactics, and the tactical opportunities will fluctuate from game to game with the other player's actions. Actions will occasionally become too valuable to pass up, whether that value fits in with the strategy you've adopted or not.

The artwork is wonderful.
- Klemens Franz does a remarkable job here of making what could be an extremely bleak theme feel both warm and inviting and true to the period.


What don't I like about Agricola?

It doesn't come with animeeples!?!
- Actually a friend purchased the latest edition, and his copy did, in fact, come with animeeples, so this has been addressed. They really do add a whole lot to the game.
- Vegiemeeples add less to the game but are still cool.


Final Thoughts
I think anyone who has an interest in board games has played Agricola by now, but I would recommend it to all three of you still holding out. It is a perfectly designed game, and I have basically nothing bad to say about it.
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David B
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My list about what I dont't like about Agricola is a bit longer than yours.
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Coen Velden
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pfctsqr wrote:
My list about what I dont't like about Agricola is a bit longer than yours.

Pics, or it didn't happen.
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Tom
Canada
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A great description of a great game.

And I concur; You definitely want to play with the animeeples
 
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David Larkin
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Not just animeepls but googly eyed animeepls

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Jake Smith
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Those are hilarious.
 
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Shawn Garbett
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Zark wrote:
Not just animeepls but googly eyed animeepls

I know what my weekend plans are now.
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Mike Norris
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...and J-Pop too!!!!
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Raina rocks!!!!!
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theintangiblefatman wrote:
Final Thoughts
I think anyone who has an interest in board games has played Agricola by now, but I would recommend it to all three of you still holding out.

I am one of the three???? WOW!!!
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Dr Who
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I wish I was one of the 3 that never played this tripe.
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Iori Yagami
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DrWhoWho wrote:
I wish I was one of the 3 that never played this tripe.
Tripe? That's VERY thematic for medieval 'feed your family' game. whistle
I tried to play it monkey-mode on boiteajeux.net and it's easy, yet I always lose, and it looks kinda bland. Eh, what else to expect from Euro? (OTOH, Tzolkin seems colourful wow).
 
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