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Subject: 1st and Goal falls 4th and Inches rss

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For the full review, visit fortwoplayers.com, a website dedicated to board gaming perspectives for two players.

Thoughts and Opinions
I don’t have an ultimate interest in American football, but I do appreciate the game and find enjoyment in casual watching from time to time. What I was looking for in 1st and Goal was a game that creates a more arcade-like feel: something like Tecmo Bowl on the NES.

Given that the game’s mechanics all revolve around simple dice rolls, the theme is captured well. The rules that govern events like field goals, time-outs, and offensive/defensive interactions are well thought out and there are rules that cover almost every aspect of football that you can think of: two point conversions, squib kicks, quarterback kneels at the end of the game, etc. However, for me, there wasn’t enough to keep my interest in the game outside of the theme.

Before you decide that 1st and Goal is right for you, I think you should ask yourself these questions:

- Are both you and your gaming partner invested in the theme of the game?
- If you are invested in the theme, can you accept that the game is not meant to be a simulation and as such there will be many situations that would never happen in the actual sport?
- Is it okay that strategy takes a back seat to a lighthearted, luck based game?

If you can’t get yourself invested into the theme, then the game is going to feel very flat. Each turn will just feel like a grinding circle of picking cards, rolling handfuls of dice, and adding up numbers . This is not helped by the fact that both players are identical teams and you lose the thematic element of an actual football games with different teams competing.

The game is most definitely not to be taken as a simulation and I think this is most evident from the lack of actual strategy involved in the game. The only impacting decision you will really make is deciding on whether to run or pass, and even then it feels like there’s a 50/50 chance whether the card you pick is going to help you make progress towards scoring or stopping the other team. Since everything is resolved through dice, there’s always a chance that a good decision still leads to a negative consequence. That’s not to say that actual American football doesn’t have its share of unpredictability, but 1st and Goal is almost completely luck based.

The bottom line that as a two player game, 1st and Goal will only provide you as much value as you put in. If you are able to accept what the game can and can’t do, 1st and Goal will provide you with a framework to play a theme filled, lighthearted dice game that definitely captures the essence of American football. If you’re looking for more of a simulation or something that involves more meaningful decisions or strategy, you’re better off passing on this one.

I definitely appreciated the theme, but I could not get past the feeling the game was playing itself. It felt like no matter which of my cards I chose from my hand, the result was going to end up the same Even though the game didn’t work out for me, I hope that the information presented here can help you make a more informed decision on if 1st and Goal could be a great fit for you and your gaming partner.

Expansion Discussion

I want to take a quick moment to talk about the many expansion sets that are available for 1st and Goal. Each expansion set comes with four teams and four sets of dice. On the back of the box, you will see that each of these expansion teams have different ratings for their defense, running ability, and passing ability. These rating directly corresponds to the numbers that will appear on the faces of each team’s dice.

One thing about the dice that might disappoint some people is that the dice do not look like the custom dice you receive in the box. Each of the dice are all blank and come with sheets of stickers that you’ll need to place on each face. Although mechanically it’s not a big deal, it does create an inconsistency in the aesthetics of the game that some players might not be fond of.

The expansion teams definitely enhance the theme of the game – it’s not just two identical teams facing each other anymore, you actually have a unique identity while you are playing the game that also adds another layer of strategy that’s missing from the base game. You will need to think about you and your opponent’s own strengths and weaknesses when you decide which plays to choose for each turn. True enthusiasts will now be able to take the game a step further by creating their own leagues, tournaments, etc.

If you understand what kind of game you’re getting yourself into and want to make the investment to purchase the game for you and your gaming partner, I think that you absolutely need to get at least one expansion set to add to the game. The amount of content in the base game is going to dry up quickly where as obtaining even just one of the expansion team packs can provide enough variety to expand the level enjoyment players will get.

Happy Gaming!
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Keiron
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gamingmosaic wrote:


The game is most definitely not to be taken as a simulation and I think this is most evident from the lack of actual strategy involved in the game. The only impacting decision you will really make is deciding on whether to run or pass, and even then it feels like there’s a 50/50 chance whether the card you pick is going to help you make progress towards scoring or stopping the other team. Since everything is resolved through dice, there’s always a chance that a good decision still leads to a negative consequence. That’s not to say that actual American football doesn’t have its share of unpredictability, but 1st and Goal is almost completely luck based.

The bottom line that as a two player game, 1st and Goal will only provide you as much value as you put in. If you are able to accept what the game can and can’t do, 1st and Goal will provide you with a framework to play a theme filled, lighthearted dice game that definitely captures the essence of American football. If you’re looking for more of a simulation or something that involves more meaningful decisions or strategy, you’re better off passing on this one.

I definitely appreciated the theme, but I could not get past the feeling the game was playing itself. It felt like no matter which of my cards I chose from my hand, the result was going to end up the same Even though the game didn’t work out for me, I hope that the information presented here can help you make a more informed decision on if 1st and Goal could be a great fit for you and your gaming partner.

I gave this a brief solo run through at the weekend whilst the Chiefs Lions game was on and felt pretty much the same way. I hope to play this FtF eventually but have a feeling that unless you play someone who calls plays like you might in the NFL it might just end up a bit random.
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