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Subject: Arwen the Cat Reviews Trajan rss

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Bryce Journey
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Arwen the Cat Reviews Trajan



Hi. It’s me. Arwen the cat. Meow, meow, meow…whatever.

I figured I’d help my loser humans review some of their board games so they can get back to doing something constructive, like worshipping me. This one’s called Trajan and they’ve been playing it quite a bit lately. When the humans told me they were going to play their first Stephan Feld game, I thought they actually said something about “stuffing food” down the cat, which I’m always down for. But it turns out Stephan Feld is a person and doesn’t have anything to do with stuffing food into my belly at all.

Concept – The humans tell me this game is about the successful Roman emperor Trajan. I’m not too interested in history myself, except for the Egyptians, who really knew how to treat their cats. So, I’m not too impressed with this concept. The human male thinks a game about a non-Julian emperor is pretty cool though. Yip-pee for you, Bryce. Humans get excited about weird stuff.

(Do I look excited?)

Components – The human male says this game features a variety of high quality wooden pieces for a variety of uses. That’s good. More pieces in a game means there’s more pieces for me to bat off the table and lose. The only thing I don’t like about the components is the box itself. It’s too small. I like larger boxes that I can stretch out in. I can barely squeeze myself in this one. At least the box is sturdy and hasn’t split yet from me lying in it.

(Can't quite get comfortable in this box)

Gameplay – The human male says “the Rondel is an ingenious and elegant action selection device that only increases the strategic value of an already highly strategic game.” I’m not sure what that means but I’m pretty sure the human male is just trying to sound smart. Don’t let him fool you, though. I think this game is pretty chaotic. There’s something different going on in each part of the board – gaining tiles from the Forum, increasing influence in the Senate, expanding the military might of the empire, building things, shipping goods, and gaining those Trajan tiles, whatever they are. But the nice thing about this is that no matter where I lay on the board, I’m sure to mess something up that the humans are trying to do. That’s pretty awesome.

(This is a good spot to lie down)

Fun Factor – The human male says “the plethora of tactical options at my disposal results in a plethora of fun.” There he is trying to sound smart again. The human female says, “I like that there’s a whole lot of different ways to beat my overly-analytical husband.” You go, girl. Personally, I don’t think this game sounds like much fun at all. You remember all those things I listed in the Gameplay section that players can do on the board? You have to do them all while trying to keep the populace happy! Evidently people want to be fed (understandable), watch circuses (I always root for the lions), and enjoy (non cat-based) religion. That doesn’t sound like fun! That just sounds like a lot of stress!

(I don't like stress)

Replay Value – The humans say they expect to continue to enjoy playing this. The random arrangement of construction tiles and and the different starting Shipping cards, Trajan tiles, and Bonus tiles players receive at the beginning of the game means the game is sure to be a unique experience each time it’s played. As for me, I hope the humans do continue to bring this to the table. There are several different colors of Action tokens I haven’t tried tasting yet.

(What? There's something on me, you say?)

Human Rating – The humans say the combination of original and strategically engaging gameplay makes this a good 8.5/10.

Cat Rating – I think the game deserves a little higher than that. I really like all those pieces I can scatter all over the place, so let’s go with 9/10 for cats.

That’s all I can think of to say about Trajan. Arwen out.

(I leave you with a picture of ma butt)
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Bryce Journey
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Hey, humans! If you enjoyed my review, I, Arwen, have put together a subscription GeekList for my other reviews. You can read those too if you want by following this link:

Arwen the Cat's Board Game Reviews Subscription GeekList
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Rich Charters
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Fun, creative review. I somehow trust the cat! Thanks for posting.
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Drew Bowling
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Okay, I'm just going to go out there and say it:
I read your reviews (so far this and the Kemet one) solely because of the cat and the writing, not really because I'm interested in those games.
The silly thing is, I actually notice these games now because of the reviews.
I think that's what is called a success.
Now I need to find out how to steal your cat.
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