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SAKURA in KYOTO 2018 Back to Kansai
North Yorkshire
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We continued with Fresh Fish. I've got the re-issue by Angela Gaalema, bought in Essen & I was very pleased to unwrap it now. I was a little disappointed with the production, but I bear in mind this is Angela's first foray into game production. The golden tokens were missing some paint and the cubes could have been bigger. The rule book contains typos & missing lines, but it's clear enough with the errata sheet. Would I have done any better? Of course not, but I can't help but compare this production with the games by Oliver Igelhaut, or Corne Van Moorsel's early games. Angela's chosen a game with a big rep and I felt a little let down. The german self-publishers do have a lot more resources available to them; it's much easier for them to source wooden bits, and tile cutting. I want to encourage Angela, especially as she's keen to reprint genuine classics where possible and I hope her experience will lead to better things.

Fresh Fish is an easy game, until you hit the expropriation rules, the road tiles. They are actually very simple rules, two tests must be applied each time a tile goes down, but we found the examples in the rule tricky to suss. I had played the original Fresh Fish years ago, and remembered the principles involved. The game progressed well, and despite being crap at auctions, I was satisfied with my progress. I was able to secure 2 outlets one space from the resource centres, so I felt set fair for a win. I managed to send Richard's nuclear road all round the houses, but Ian was playing me a close second. Imagine my horror, at the end of the game, when Ian finally revealed his remaining money, and had most of it left! I was on 6 pts, Richard on 14 and Ian finished on...7 points! I couldn't believe the match finished that close. And I only had 1 coin left, so that gave me the win.

It's a very good game, not really the brain burner people say it is, and plays quite quickly. I was interested to note that the last outlet of each type goes to the remaining player without one for free. So you don't really need to bid much if you have secured plots and made the road turn elsewhere. You can sit it out and take free tiles. We played with the resources in each corner. I bet it plays differently with the resources in the board, with more options to join roads. Good game good game, play again soon.
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