Hello! Welcome to this Deranged Review. 's gonna be colourful, so be warned!
The Lantern Game (which is how I'll refer to it for now, as I can't remember the subtitles given to the various versions I've seen) is a really easy, tactical tile game that first came to my attention via contest on the BGG main page (#1). Yesterday I finally got a chance to try it.
I'll be giving grades on several aspects of the game, such as discussed here.
For ART, I look at the big picture, and how that picture looks. EASE covers ease of play and learning curve, FLEXIBILITY covers the amount of free will you have and is therefore linked to replayability. FUN might be deceptive, as it's a gut thang, but I'll try and specify in the text, and COMPONENTS should be self-explanatory. I'll not say a lot about rules and specifics - you can find those out for yourself.
The Game Itself: Triominos x Hanabi
Place tile, get card, exchange cards for points, most points wins!
-The design of this game is very clear and with a few of those little details that always make my day. The bright colours are easy to distinguish between and very bright, without in any way overloading the sensory organs.
It's bright and happy and devoid of conflict, and therefore the perfect fit for a game about colourful lanterns floating on the water.
-Rulewise, this game is about as difficult as Carcaassoonnee (#2). Tactics-wise, the game is slightly less taxing, as there's not as much forward planning involved in the tilelaying, but there's a bit of keeping track of cards going on.
I'm certain that after a while, the card-tracking-component will prove to be the main hurdle for victory, where you try to block easily available colours from someone else; but for the time being, the race is more about going forth than stalling others. Even later, Dick Dastardly should never stop to cheat, it's more about going forward in such a way that inconveniences another player without holding back yourself.
-The game is rather straightforward in its options, but once again, so's Mario Kart. You get a few tiles to choose from, and certain plays are better than others depending on which goals you are going for. So picking the best course for the moment is what drives the game.
It's one of those games where you can get better, even if it's rather intangible how - and pleasant to play even if you lose.
-'s bright and colourful.
The mechanics require you to pay attention mostly during your turn (while keeping half an eye open, of course), so you can safely chat away in the downtime. The game is beer-proof for at least three units, but as it takes about half an hour I'd advise against downing all three during a single game.
-The game has tiles which will last for quite some time and cards which will do likewise. Nothing extremely well-made, but certainly above mere average.
Bright and colourful design.
Little to no interaction.
Lanterns is a game with a low energy-curve. It is perfectly suited for quiet evenings with, well, with anyone you'd play Triomino's with. If you want something hilarious, visceral and epic, look elsewhere, for Lanterns is none of these things.
What it DOES offer is an elegant light tactical tile-laying game, with some nice choices along the way. I like it, and I can see myself playing it quite often, but I admit it's not for everyone.
As far as I'm concerned, it is soothing and relaxed, offers enough depth to keep me thinking without keeping me from a friendly discussion. I believe the game will do excellent with families, non-gamer partners and while on vacation.
As usual, please give your opinion in the comments .
Oh, by the way, I am Deranged. I like to have fun with (and around) boardgames, and have played many of them over the years. I've been furniture in my FLGS for years ^^. I tend to like old games; well, I tend to like good games, most of which have been around for bit ^^. I've written 78 reviews as of yet, which you can access here, and a handful of random topics discussed here. If you want me to write a review for you or recommend me a game, there's this neat little envelop near my avatar!
#1: So it does help.
#2: When in doubt, double ALL the letters.
Rachel Irene Lunan
Good review. I agree about the weight of the game and whom it would be best to play with; I think that speaks to why I was not impressed by it.
The Fiendish Public Servant
I was debating getting this as a Christmas gift for a friend, and your review has helped immensely with that decision. Thank you very much for your input
In a good way, I hope .
Cool review, I love this game, played it recently and found it to be very zenlike and peaceful, I think the colors and the pace of the game had something to do with that, I love it!