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Subject: A Look in the Box: FUSE rss

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Mark Palframan
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Jupiter
Florida
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What follows is a review of the components for FUSE in addition to a look at exactly what you'll see when you rip off the shrink wrap! You can find my other “A Look In The Box” reviews here.



When FUSE first came out, images on BGG were sparse. What I really wanted to know was: what comes in the box? Is it too big? What do all the components look like? As it turns out, FUSE was the inspiration for this review series.



As it turns out, the box for FUSE is just the right size. The cardboard is thick, and there's no need to cram pieces in as tight as possible. It's also not overly roomy. I've left my simple cardboard insert in my copy to hold all the pieces snug without needing to use extra plastic baggies. If you sleeve your cards, they will probably not fit in the box with the insert.



FUSE comes with a decent enough rulebook, and on the back of the rulebook is a log so you can keep track of what difficulties you played and how well you scored. While this is a nice addition, it's not one that I personally have used (I just log on BGG). Another thing to consider is the fact that if you ever plan on trading this game away, when you write on the progress log, you're writing on the rulebook itself, which might be a turn off for a potential buyer.



Besides the rulebook, there is a cloth bag, dice, and a deck of cards. The bag is a bit rough and stiff, and I've found that it is necessary to fold the top of the bag down in order to easily and quickly grab dice during the game. Should the bag have been made from a different material? Maybe, but it definitely shouldn't have been as tall as it is being so stiff. A stiff bag with a flat bottom also might have worked since the bag could have stood on its own, and players could simply reach in when needed without picking up the whole bag.



The dice are etched, which is nice considering the abusive tossing that takes place. So far my dice have held up just fine. It's interesting that the dice are not arranged in the typical manner where opposite sides add up to 7. Maybe it was done for balancing, but the dice are big and chunky enough that I doubt this would cause major problems.



Last are up are the puzzle and FUSE cards. After only a few games, my cards are starting to whiten on the edges. The cards also bend and curve easily. The cardstock and finish is a bit lacking considering the abuse that cards take as they are slid across the table rapidly throughout the game. I recommend sleeving if you see many games of FUSE in your future.



FUSE is a mixed bag (heh) for me. The graphic design is nice, the box is sturdy, the dice are custom with thematic numbering, but the bag and cards seem like they were chosen without much thought, despite the custom writing on the bag. I've found the game fantastically fun, so I'm willing to look past these inconsistencies, but I'm a little disappointed that Renegade didn't at least beef up the card stock. FUSE is an excellent game with some great and some OK components.
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Byron S
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Ventura
California
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I don't remember what I ate last night
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but I can spout off obscure rules to all sorts of game like nobody's business!
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I've sleeved the cards, and they fit in the insert just fine, just in the other direction as you have them stored
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