I really hate Chris Redfield
When I first received the game and went through all of the items in the box I was surprised and satisfied of the quality in making the game. The cards are of great quality and easily sleeved and the Tokens for water and food are of great craftmanship (they're really cool because they look like a drop of water and wheat) and I couldn't wait to try this new game of mine.
The creators of the game also had a great idea to have field cards to have a different border color depending on the power of the field, if it's an immediate effect it's white, if it's in the harvest phase it's green and if it's in the end of the game it's yellow.
I read the rulebook and was really surprised that it didn't have many pages and was well written and the rules are really easy to understand. You even got player aids card that summarize everything you need to know (you could play with only the aids without the rulebook). The game is played in 3 phases , upkeep; where you add water to your towers and depending on you fields you can have other effects, action phase; now the party begins, you draw cards, choose one and then you pass the rest to another player, this is why the game is so fun cause the strategy is in the drafting. Last phase is the harvest; this is where you collect food from your fields and also pay the cost of your different cards.
The game is played over 4 years (4 turns to be more precise) and each turn you switch the order of drafting (from clockwise to counter to clockwise and finish by counter) and the game is played at a good pace because for the upkeep and harvest phase each player can do them simultaneously (not the action phase because of the drafting) and this is another good point for the game, where the players have phases that they're completely independent from one another.
On our first playthrough, for the 1 year (turn 1), we had to check once in a while in the rulebook to make sure we did it right because it was to easy to play, didn't have to check it the 3 other turns afterwards. The only problem we had was with the Crop Circle card where it said that you moved a field from on place to another and we didn't know if the field that was moved was also considered newly built, but thanks to Artipia Games they answered really fast to the question (after our playthrough though) that it's considered moved not built.
At the end we had about between 15-20 fields built and I had devised a great strategy with the card Farmhouse, it's a whopping 7 money to buy but It give 8 Victory points minus the number of empty spaces within 2 spaces and an Equipment the Generator that activated the ability a second time at the end of the game. So I built everything around it and only lost 1 point because of an empty space. This is another great point to the game where you've got so many combos possible with different cards and also equipment, the possiblities are endless.
So to summarize everything, the game is easy to learn and play, it's not too long or too short, the strategies and combos are endless and it's highly replayable. And while playing the game I was so relaxed, when your playing it's almost zen like (the only other game that made me relax like that was tokaido).
I highly recommend this game to anyone who doesn't want to play something complicated, even if there's strategies and combos most of the time they just pop in you head because the cards are so well explained.
Hope this helps anyone who would like to get this game, this is a keeper