Impressions from the review of Tavern's Tales by mikeyoski
Game is simple, but at times counter-intuitive. Especially at the beginning, when one feels simply confused. Experience comes with time. Then you can really feel the game and understand what’s going on.
In this game you have to think about how to use your actions most efficiently. It will be hard at first as you have few cards at your disposal. With time our party will grow, as well as our options. To maximize our plays, we have to use character’s abilities. To do this you need to know the cards and interactions between them. A well prepared combo can do a lot. That needs experience. All the time you learn to look for the best, the most efficient interactions between characters. That’s why learning curve is quite steep. New player has very little chance of defeating more experienced player.
You have to plan ahead, use cards optimally. You have only 9 turns, so an error in calculations (ex. we lack one card to finish planned activity) can result in making playing a desired action impossible, hindering our chances to get additional points.
Scoring rules force us to do certain actions. Firstly, we have to gather as diverse team as possible. Secondly, we need to gather the most quest tiles, using certain talents.
Flavor? There will be some crack here. People generally react differently to arts, which are supposed to build atmosphere. Personally I am amazed. I love to watch quite brain-melting cartoon Adventure Time with my daughter. We can see such simple graphics there and encounter a theme where Finn and Jake, just as our noble go on various adventures.
Character’s names only add to this (Mscigniev The Charming is our favorite). I’m once more amazed and buy it without hesitation. Everything builds game’s atmosphere.
However, I ran into an opinion that it reeks of infantilism and is very childish. So, some will like the arts and some will not. It is worth considering this before making a purchase.
We have to deal with random factor, but it is not particularly annoying. It comes out in two ways. First, during randomization of quest tiles. Sometimes there won’t be a single quest that fits us. Then we have to grow our company (or use one character’s ability). Each table provides some more randomness. It happens that we can’t find character with desired features that are within our “financial” reach (this also can be dealt with one character’s ability). To sum up, random factor in this game is not that much disrupting.
Scaling. It’s good. To be fair it’s good in all setups. Of course it plays differently with two players, when we can plan ahead and differently if we are playing with more people.
Replay value. Not bad. All thanks to random set of quest tiles and random order of character cards.
Play time. Game is quite dynamic and doesn’t last long. Waiting for your turn is not boring, unless you play with some kind of optimalist who can effectively stall the game.
Introducing two game variants is an interesting idea. Advanced variant is much more interesting, give you more space to come up with ideas and introduces negative interaction. That’s why basic variant is good only for first plays.
Tavern’s Tales is quite light title, but requires one or two games to understand what’s really going on. It has its own, distinct atmosphere. It is really worth taking a shot.
+ quite simple (but quite conter-intuitive) rules,
+ well prepared rulebook (with some bugs),
+ two game variants,
+ good scaling,
+ dynamic gameplay
+ art that builds atmosphere…
- which some people won’t like,
- poor inlay.
- Last edited Fri Aug 5, 2016 7:58 am (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Thu Aug 4, 2016 1:06 pm
Thanks for the nice review. We bought this game very recently. I think we are going to like it!
(Looks like the paragraph about flavor is double: in English and Polish)
Glad that you liked it and thanks for the purchase
We would appreciate if you share your thoughts after few gameplays. Also, thanks for pointing out the mistake in translation