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Subject: Cottage Garden - review after a few games rss

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Jeroen 3h
Netherlands
Zwolle
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First things first, is this game like Patchwork but for more than two? I don't know since I never played Patchwork, so I won't make any comparisons between the two.

What is Cottage Garden?

According to the publisher:
"In Cottage Garden, you compete in the art of gardening and are working two beds with a variety of flowers. Whenever no unplanted box is visible on a bed, you have completed it, then you count your points and replace it with a fresh, unplanted bed. You gain points for all of the visible plant pots and planting bells."

In reality you spend your time looking at the adorable cat tokens you can use to fill up the leftover spaces in your garden.

The first edition contains a few errors in the rule book and gardener board but they are easily fixed with the stickers you get with the game. Though it's sloppy, it's not a huge issue for me. The real problem with the rule book are the unclear sentences. If you really want to know how to play it have a look at the excellent play through by Michael Wißner (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gnpDsTv_ebE)

Quality and looks

The garden tiles and tokens look fantastic. I really love the watercolor art on the tiles. They are made from sturdy cardboard so no complains there. There is absolutely no box insert so either use plastics bags or be prepared to sort out tokens every time you play.

The actual gameplay

The game can feel like a multiplayer solitaire where every player just takes a tile, places it in the garden to fill it and score it. This does mean it can played a solo game so that is a big plus for this game in my book.

And while the interactions is limited there are a few things that you can do to mess with the other players and give the game a bit more depth.
For example you can:
- get your cube in the 20's space first or second to score a beehive (bonuspoints)
- trigger a early refill by using a cat token
- scoring a flower bed early by using cats and getting the flower bed that is in the reserve which might have more flowerpots or plant covers.

The game is also very suitable for casual gamers who like to help each other out with getting the most points from a garden or to play with children. The rules are pretty simple and there is no in game text.

Final verdict

Cottage Garden is a beautiful game with simple rules and little downtime. While the interactions between players is limited, it is definitely not a multiplayer solitaire.

I'm giving this game 4 out of 5 flowerpots.
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Melissa
Australia
Parkville
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Jeroen, which sentences in the rulebook did you find unclear?
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Jeroen 3h
Netherlands
Zwolle
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melissa wrote:
Jeroen, which sentences in the rulebook did you find unclear?


Melissa, it's all clear now but when first reading the rules the section about the beehives stood out. I feel it could have been a lot easier if they would have just called it a two and one point tile instead of "each beehive is worth one point".
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