David S.
United States
Palo Alto
California
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I won a $50 gift certificate and of course now can't help but buy a new game.

The tricky part is that I pretty much already feel like the family collection is pretty complete so I want to add a new game that will complement ones we already have. We tend to enjoy "fun" euros (as opposed to "dry" ones) and also like games with a good amount of theme (although theme is not essential if the game is fun -- for example we all like Splendor).

As far as worker placement type games we have (and like) Stone Age, Lords of Waterdeep/Skullport, and Agricola. We also have Troyes which I like a lot but most of the family feels is too thinky. Oh and we also have Lewis and Clark which is at least a partial WP game I suppose (and we all like too).

A few games that I've had on my wish list for a long time are Fresco, Village, and Dungeon Petz. I've watched Rahdo's video runthroughs and I still can't choose (he likes all three a lot!) If you were to pick one of those which one would you pick (and why if you don't mind saying)? Any other "fun euros" you might recommend, even if they are not worker placement games?

Thanks!

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Jim Hansen
United States
Naperville
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I haven't played Fresco, but I would for sure take Dungeon Petz over Village. Other than the novelty of your meeples dying, Village is just another cube pushing worker placement game. Dungeon Petz is a unique hybrid game that really brings out the theme. If you like fantasy and/or pets, DP is the way to go.
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MP Szakos
United States
Rochester
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I do enjoy playing Fresco - so I'll give it a thumbsup

Dungeon Petz, I'll give a so, so. Though I've read it's loved by many, the two times I played, it seemed a little mathy and tedious when trying to manage the well being of your pets.
 
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Samish Harmon
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Nehalem
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We find Village and Fresco both pretty dry, though we enjoy Village quite a bit anyway. The theme follows through in Dungeon Petz beautifully, but it is a bit more thinky (like Troyes, since you mentioned it). I'd still root for Dungeon Petz as the most fun!
 
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Daniel B-G
United Kingdom
Leeds
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These 3 each offer very different experiences.

Fresco is definitely the lightest of the 3. I've played it once and that was enough, but I have fairly heavy tastes. Personally I'd avoid it unless you have an avid painter in your group, if so it goes up a few notches.

Village is an excellent game, but what makes it so good is the narrative aspect. If your family tends to narrate what is happening to their pieces as they do things, or to tell little stories about what the mechanics just did, you are going to love this game. The stories are incredibly compelling with this game. The Death mechanic is what makes the stories come alive, you tell the unfortunate demise of your family members, whether they get involve in threshing accidents or drink stupid until one day they get made a councilmen only to die on their first day in office, it's always funny. Personally, I do not rate it at 2, but at 4, or even 5 with the expansion, the game is simply astounding. This is the most well played game of the 3 in my group, and whilst I don't really feel like I have much more strategy to explore, the game is just a lot of fun because of the narrative.

Dungeon Petz is the easily the heaviest game of the 3. I like it a lot, but I need to be in the right mood to play. It's very easy to screw up your planning and completely destroy yourself, which if your family has a good sense of humour will be fine, but if they don't it will be crushing. I've definitely not finished exploring this game.
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Michael Oliver
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Argyle
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We haven't played Village, but we love Fresco and really did not care for Dungeon Petz.

I felt like Dungeon Petz tried to make itself "more complicated" but really just made itself muddied and obtuse. I never found myself actually enjoying the game, and with most worker placements, I am usually enjoying myself from the first round.
 
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Kevin Garnica
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I've not played Dungeon Petz, but I played Dungeon Lords once. For what it's worth, I found that game to be terribly fiddly and masked in a lot of chrome. I don't imagine Dungeon Petz to be any different.

I own Fresco and Village. Both have good expansions available. Fresco is slightly easier to get into, but Village is more fun as a theme for me, personally.

Both have clever mechanisms to them. Fresco with the wake-up time and getting happier or grumpier workers; and Village with its time as a "commodity" that gets spent and your people die off.

Get the one you think would work best given their complexity levels. Village is a step more complex than Fresco, but neither is overly complex itself, I think.
 
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Tara Tallan
Canada
Scarborough
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I own Village and Dungeon Petz, and have played Fresco. I'll agree with the others that DP is more thinky, and also more stressful than the other two in that same "feed your people" way that Agricola has. But if you all like Agricola, then you will probably be okay with that!

Despite the dying meeples, Village seemed to me to be the most relaxing. I never felt like I was stuck with no good moves left to make, and there are many different paths you can pursue to victory. I haven't played the expansion yet, but I understand that it expands your choices even more.

I only played the basic version of Fresco, which I agree was very simple. But it seemed delightful and thematic to me, and I look forward to playing it again with the different modules which should introduce some more strategy.

I enjoyed all three games. For your family... I'd probably go with Village, because picking up cubes is a nice change from placing workers, and variety is good. But any of the three will be a good choice.
 
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John Sheppard
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Bellevue
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Fresco. Haven't play DP. Village...yawn.
 
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Gláucio Reis
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I own and like all three. I think they all have enough theme for a Euro. Since you mentioned worker placement, it's worth noting that only Dungeon Petz actually is a worker placement game. It's also the longest and heaviest of the three, so it's the one that least often hits the table.
 
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Michael Oliver
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GSReis wrote:
I own and like all three. I think they all have enough theme for a Euro. Since you mentioned worker placement, it's worth noting that only Dungeon Petz actually is a worker placement game. It's also the longest and heaviest of the three, so it's the one that least often hits the table.


Are you saying that your apprentices in Fresco are not workers? And that you do not place them where you want them to do their work?
 
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ronald fraigun
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Tujunga
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Fresco starts off as a fair game but just gets better and better as you add expansions.
 
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Gláucio Reis
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futiles wrote:
Are you saying that your apprentices in Fresco are not workers? And that you do not place them where you want them to do their work?

There we go again... shake
 
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Christopher Boat
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Ankeny
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I would vote for either Village or Dungeon Petz, but would totally skip Fresco.
 
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Matt Gustafson
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Warsaw
Indiana
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Fresco
 
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Jon Peoble
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Sahuarita
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If you trust Rahdo's opinion and find your tastes line up with his, Dungeon Petz is his number two game of all times, right behind Agricola. Fresco is his number 23. Village is unranked by him.

You can see his ranks here: Rahdo's Rankings and then click on "User Ratings" to sort them.
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Brian Frahm
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peoblej wrote:
If you trust Rahdo's opinion and find your tastes line up with his, Dungeon Petz is his number two game of all times, right behind Agricola. Fresco is his number 23. Village is unranked by him.

You can see his ranks here: Rahdo's Rankings and then click on "User Ratings" to sort them.


I agree with Jon on this from a "pure fun" perspective. Dungeon Petz has a more "fun theme" feeling to it than do Village or Fresco. I personally enjoy them in this order, but Village doesn't quite have a "fun" factor to it that Dungeon Petz does:

1) Village
2) Dungeon Petz
3) Fresco

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Bob Graffagnino
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Of the three, I enjoyed Dungeon Petz the most.

If I were you, my $50 would go towards Lost Valley: The Yukon Goldrush 1896. it totally lived up to the hype for me. Lots of theme and completely different than anything else that I (and you) own.

Other alternatives:

The Manhattan Project: Yes the theme is dark, but if you can look past it there's a great game there.

Las Vegas: My entire extended family loves this one. Sure it's a filler, but there's always a lot of laughing/cursing at the dice rolls.
 
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Alam Muammar
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most euro games push you to make decisions and as best as you can to play flawlessly, this aspect could make the game feel dry. I've played Dungeon Petz a lot and with expansion, you can feel the euro there but the theme will make it fun even you make mistake and play with alot of flaw. Unlike euro games you tend to regret when yo make mistake, in DP you just blame it to the pet

+1 Dungeon Petz
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David S.
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Thanks everyone! Looks like all three games get some love, almost equally actually. Grrr...I know this comes down to personal taste more than anything else. It's like trying to choose between three good restaurants. If I only had a chance to try them out before buying (video run throughs are helpful but not quite the same). I think I'll show this thread to my wife and kids and see if the way the games get described helps us reach a consensus. Again, I really appreciate the advice!
 
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Chris
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Birmingham
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the only one I've not played & don't own but I'll still say Dungeon Petz.

Fresco is so painfully... pleasant. it's interesting but sucks the life out of me when I play it. It's so mom friendly or something, with the ultra bland Queen artwork etc... Don't.

Village is great. twisty turny bits and getting shafted when someone takes thte action cube you really want etc. I love it, but I've a feeling Petz is just more everything.
 
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Morten K
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I wouldn't get any of them for what you're after. Instead I would get Lancaster which is a very good medium weight euro with both WP and a lot of interaction as you can kick out each others' workers (knights) which are then to be reallocated. And it has a really good bidding mechanism too. I'd get the small New Laws expansion right away too for more variability in the laws. Rahdo has a runthrough of it too but he doesn't like the take that mechanism of kicking out workers (which isn't that pronounced in a two-player game anyway) he doesn't show the full potential of it.

Someone suggested The Manhattan Project which is good too, but not as good as Lancaster. And definitely not as fun
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J M
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I have Fresco, and have enjoyed playing it (more so with some of the expansions activated/bought), but it is the epitome of Dry.
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Alison Mandible
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Cambridge
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Dungeon Petz without question. The more games I play, the more I appreciate how the pet "need cards" work in that game-- things very rarely go according to plan, but neither are you Just Out Of Luck. It's perfectly calibrated to give you more trouble than you expected but not more than you can handle.

I find Agricola more thinky than Troyes, though, so I'm not sure I can speak to whether your family would like Dungeon Petz in that regard. It is challenging, and during the needs phase people will often just sit and stare at their cards for minutes on end. But at the same time, *everybody* is going to be making mistakes and grappling with confusion. There isn't the pressure that comes from feeling like you ought to be playing perfectly and every little mistake is coming out of your score.
 
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Alain Baum
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Grevenmacher
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You can play Dungeon Petz online at Boite à Jeux, async only. It may give you a taste of what you're in for.
 
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