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Subject: So I don't have Evolution yet ... what should I get? rss

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Wim van Gruisen
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I was thinking of getting Evolution, looked it up and found that there has been a Kickstarter for Evolution: Climate, and that I missed it.

So I'm considering my options now.
* I could get base Evolution
* I could just get Evolution: Climate.

But what if I would like to have both games? I see several options here, but don't understand the effects of them all.
* I saw that there is an Evolution: Climate upgrade kit, but that seems to be made for people who already have the base game. This is also the more expensive option.
* In the Kickstarter campaign (update 4) I also saw that there is a hack to play the base game with the components of Evolution: Climate. Do you get the whole base game then, with all the cards, or do you get an abridged version of it? For instance, I saw that the base game has 24 species boards, where Climate has just 20. And the base game and upgrade kit have 217 Trait cards together, Climate has just 177. Climate has 40 wooden markers as well, eight fewer than the base game.
* Instead of an upgrade kit to Evolution: Climate, is there a sort of downgrade kit that I can get when I buy Climate, so that I can also play the base game?


I'll probably wait till Essen to get the game - I saw that North Star Games will be present there. But I would like to know the options anyway.
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C&H Schmidt
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Climate contains all the cards the base game has, just some of them have extra information on them that isn't needed in the base game -- this is why the upgrade kit needs to replace them, and the reason that the total card count of base game + upgrade kit is higher than in Climate.
But again: The cards that you play with will be the same number either way; the upgrade kit replaces some base game cards.

I guess they reduced the number of species boards because experience said not that many were needed? But I don't actually know this.

If you are already interested in Climate, I personally would probably just get that. If you still want the actual base game cards, you can order just the cards for cheap from the NSG online store.
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Byron S
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You'll be able to play the base game of Evolution with the Climate components, there will just be some icons and effects that don't mean anything without the climate track. The difference in the number of cards is that several of the base cards have modified text for Climate, so that if you have base+climate expansion, you have copies of the cards both with and without the climate changes. You shouldn't play with both, you just have the option to play with either.

So Option A:
Buy standalone Climate
+cheaper
+all in one package
-playing base game requires ignoring some text and icons on the cards

Option B:
Buy base Evolution + Climate upgrade kit
+easier to split plays with/without the climate board
-more expensive
-double copies of some traits with/without climate modifications that you need to keep track of

Option C:
Buy base Evolution + Climate Standalone
+very easy to play each separately
-way more expensive
(probably excessive)
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Wim van Gruisen
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Thank you - edit: both of you. The pack of base game cards would thus be that 'downgrade kit'.

Question to North Star Games: Will you be selling the base game cards in Essen?
 
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Greg Darcy
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Actually, for the Kickstarter I went with option D I opted for Climate + Base Cards + Flight expansion. My Intention is to leave Climate intact and use Flight + Base together, removing Flight if I want just Evolution. Time will tell if I chose wisely.
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Dominic Crapuchettes
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Whymme wrote:
Thank you - edit: both of you. The pack of base game cards would thus be that 'downgrade kit'.

Question to North Star Games: Will you be selling the base game cards in Essen?


We will. I can't guarantee how many we'll have, so I'd recommend Coming to the booth on the early side in case we run out.
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Sara Bear
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Here's how I have it. I have Base. The person I got it from in math trade, looks like they included a whole another shrink wrapped set of Base cards, because the open set are curved side to side.

Currently playing with them that way, though.

Flight was in the mat trade too, box opened, but everything inside unopened, unplanned.

I figure we can put the extra set of cards with Flight, so we don't have to Unix them w we want to play. If the curved cards bug me, I'll eventually do something about it. I don't want to intro the game to people with them.


So, I ordered Climate Upgrade, AND a six dollar set of Base game cards. Comes with base rules, too. We mix these in with Climate, and we're ready to go with the food, cubes, bags, and species boards. Honestly, with the variety of game modules/expansions being released, it might make sense for me to have the food, regular Watering hole, bags, cubes, and species boards packed in a box of the right size, labeled Evolution Core Components, and then have the modules for each game expansion packed in a way that can be grabbed, too. But are compact for throwing together in a larger container, when necessary.

I'll be putting this extra set of Base cards I got in with the Climate Upgrade kit. We'll have that, the Flight kit, mixed with Base cards, and then the currently curved set of Base cards, with rules. The big rules are the biggest problem in all this, for packaging up smaller. I would so appreciate it if companies started including or making rulebook that could break down smaller, for portability, and repacking the game as suits our situation. These 12 x 12 rulebooks . . . Are big. But, they do show a lot, smaller dimensions rulebook equals thicker rulebook, among other obvious issues like showing gameplay layouts etc,.

Forgive my digression. I'll figure out how to make it work for me, printed faq s aren't the smallest, either.

What I'm doing currently is putting the rulebook in an accordion binder, along with faq s and game aids. This comes with me to game nights, but it separates the rules from the game. It lets you pack games like Evolution, and Pandemic the Cure, much more compact. That last one I have in a King of Tokyo expansion box, which is less than a quarter of the size of the box it came in.

Guess I need to buy that 12x 12 accordion file I've been wanting. Check, the original watering hole put in there, too, with the rules, would let me pack the game more compactly. Maybe the long Climate Watering Hole, too.
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Francois L-C
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GregDarcy wrote:
Actually, for the Kickstarter I went with option D I opted for Climate + Base Cards + Flight expansion. My Intention is to leave Climate intact and use Flight + Base together, removing Flight if I want just Evolution. Time will tell if I chose wisely.


I did the same thing. When I kickstarted Evolution:Climate, I bought another pack of the base cards, for Flight and/or whatever next expansion(s) can show up in the future. I really don't like having to sort cards to play both expansions, so for me it was the best option. You just have to open the box and choose whatever deck you want to play with.
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Ben Rubinstein

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How well does Flight integrate with Climate? Is it a bit wonky, because none of those cards have climate interactions?
 
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Chris Berry
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epilepticemu wrote:
How well does Flight integrate with Climate? Is it a bit wonky, because none of those cards have climate interactions?
You can add the flight boards and watering hole without messing up the game balance. Just don't add any of the cards/events from flight.
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Dominic Crapuchettes
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epilepticemu wrote:
How well does Flight integrate with Climate? Is it a bit wonky, because none of those cards have climate interactions?


Exactly correct. Here is what I just posted earlier today to a similar question:

Climate is a stand-alone game. It was not designed to be played with Flight or any other expansions, and to be honest, I doubt we'll ever create an expansion for it. 9 professional game designers/developers worked really hard on the card balance (logging 100+ games each) along with 30 outside playtest groups (logging 10+ game each). Several thousand playtests have been logged in total and I'm scared to death of messing with the balance!

But with that said, I have played Climate using the Avian species boards, the Flight boards, and the Cliff and it works very well. In fact, it's a lot a fun. But definitely don't mix in the trait cards. That would make for a much more random game with too much luck of the draw.
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John Rudolph
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Since Climate is coming out, would it be stupid for me to buy just Evolution and skip Climate all together? Not sure how much climate adds to the original game.
 
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Francois L-C
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From what I know from the bunch of review that are starting to come in (as I still don't have my game yet), climate adds a lot to the game play, since its a third variables to check out (that your species can die from), and it's another dimension of the game that you can influence to mess other players strategies (or vice versa). IMO, Evolution:Climate is what Evolution should have been initially, so I'm really glad that Dominic, the designer, add this really cool dimension to the game, as it's thematically strong and gameplay-wise it adds a lot.
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David A
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Putzmanrudy1 wrote:
Since Climate is coming out, would it be stupid for me to buy just Evolution and skip Climate all together? Not sure how much climate adds to the original game.

I wouldn't say "stupid." It all depends on what you want and what you're looking for. The base game of Evolution is a fantastic and fun (fantastically fun?) game that I don't think you can go wrong with!

Climate brings a whole new element to the game that both ups the challenge level, but (IMHO) also ups the fun! The added element of worrying about the effects of the Climate in addition to the efforts of your opponents and the food supply might be a little daunting for some players and that's both understandable as well as being OK.

In short, it's all up to you. When in doubt, check out YouTube for professional reviews and examples of both games!
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Thanks for the response. Does Climate make it more complex? My wife doesn't like overly complex games.
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David A
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Putzmanrudy1 wrote:
Thanks for the response. Does Climate make it more complex? My wife doesn't like overly complex games.

That's a little tougher to answer since "complex" is rather subjective. By it's nature of adding actual climate effects to the game it is inherently more complex, but not in a "crunchy" sort of way. It's more complex in that you have more to consider in each round, but not in a way like, say Game of Thrones or even Shakespeare can be.

As a general rule, Northstar Games makes games that are more about having fun with some thinking rather than focusing on deep thought and hoping the players have fun.

Does that make sense?
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Francois L-C
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Putzmanrudy1 wrote:
Thanks for the response. Does Climate make it more complex? My wife doesn't like overly complex games.


I would also add that when owning Evolution: Climate, you effectively also own Evolution 2nd edition base game. So to make the game more approchable, you can introduce it slowly to newer players like this:

1) Just play base Evolution. Forget about the climate icons and the climate track that you can use just as a watering hole as the base game.
2) Add it the climate. Now you use climate icons and the track, but don't use any events yet as these can shift the effects drastically and you want new people to be able to easily predict what could happen to help them.
3) Add in the events and play the full game.
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Thanks for the responses and yes it does make sense David. Sometimes in games she tends to over analyse games and makes the game bog down. Doesn't sound like that will happen here.
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GregDarcy wrote:
Actually, for the Kickstarter I went with option D I opted for Climate + Base Cards + Flight expansion. My Intention is to leave Climate intact and use Flight + Base together, removing Flight if I want just Evolution. Time will tell if I chose wisely.


Verdict?
 
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I'm lost. I want to play Evolution and have fun with my friends. Some of my friends prefer more casual games (the game of choice at the moment is Monopoly Deal) while my other group enjoys more complex games (Smash Up is the current favorite).

I really want to get one of these Evolution games. I've read the rules and many reviews, and conclude that each of these scratches a slightly different itch. Since I've never actually played any of them, can someone please confirm or correct my understanding?

Here's what I hear:

- Evolution: The Beginning cuts out some of the decisions in order to make things go more smoothly. It would help my friends with analysis paralysis. It also cuts out some of the unnecessary physical pieces, leading to a reduction in cost. Unfortunately, it's only sold in Target and I live in China (no Targets).

- Evolution + Flight is a lot of fun. It is more complex than E:tB, since players have additional choices, such as how much food to add to the Watering Hole, whether to build a new species (not automatic each turn), and when to develop the Flight trait. I get the feeling that it is even more confrontational than the base game Evolution. The level of confrontation is a key factor in my decision, as my wife generally prefers less direct confrontation. (I know Evolution will always have a certain level of confrontation, but I hope to keep that minimal - at least while she's at the table.)

- Evolution: Climate standalone looks like it is certainly more strategic than E:tB and the base game. I'm not sure how it compares in complexity or in confrontation to E:F, but would really like to hear some opinions. To me, it seems that the climate control will actually take on a cooperative aspect, at least as a way to gang up on a player who appears to be in the lead. (Is this true?)

Lastly, should I consider future expansions in my decision? (If so, I would guess that either E:F is the best option, or none of them will be compatible, right?)

Thanks all!!
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Personally, I'd say if you're not entirely sure, I'd go with the base Evolution game. It's a good mid-point between E:tB and Climate and, if you (and/or your group) really like it, you can add Flight later.

Seriously, IMHO, you just can't go wrong with this game!!!
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Thud105 wrote:
Personally, I'd say if you're not entirely sure, I'd go with the base Evolution game. It's a good mid-point between E:tB and Climate and, if you (and/or your group) really like it, you can add Flight later.

Seriously, IMHO, you just can't go wrong with this game!!!


Good advice. I feel like I should have seen that one coming, but it wasn't even on my radar.
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Dominic Crapuchettes
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Cheddarific wrote:
I'm lost. I want to play Evolution and have fun with my friends. Some of my friends prefer more casual games (the game of choice at the moment is Monopoly Deal) while my other group enjoys more complex games (Smash Up is the current favorite).


While I agree with David - that you can't go wrong with the Evolution base game - it sounds like a better choice for your friends might be Evolution: The Beginning. I'm not sure. Evolution: The Beginning is definitely more similar in complexity to Smash Up than Evolution. Evolution is a step up with regards to depth and complexity. So if you end up getting Evolution, make sure to let your gamer friends know ahead of time.

As for how to get Evolution: The Beginning... you got me there! Do you have a way to get Evolution in China? You can pick up any of these options if you go to Essen. Other then that, you're a little bit on your own with that issue.

Cheers!
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