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Mad For Madrigals
United Kingdom
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Fields of Green is the new card-drafting, farm-designing, engine-building game from Artipia Games. It’s a revamp of the popular Among the Stars, with much of the core gameplay remaining the same, but with a new agriculture theme and various additions and upgrades. However, having not played Among the Stars, I’ll just talk about this game on its own merits for the purposes of this review.

Fields of Green is the first project I’ve ever backed on Kickstarter and I must say I’m very pleased with how it all turned out. I loved the regular newsletter updates, the game arrived in good condition, well within time and having paid well in advance of the game arriving, it felt like I got it for free! I would definitely recommend this publisher for future Kickstarter projects. Great service!

There’s lots to like here. The card art is lovely and the theme is captivating – I know lots of people have knocked it, but farming beats outer space for me and my group any day! The gameplay is smooth and easy to grasp, and it really helps that there are only three times when cards are triggered: immediately after they’re played, at harvest time or at game end – there aren’t too many ongoing effects to keep track of. The harvest system works well and it is very satisfying to build up an effective engine, all helped by being able to select the categories of cards you want at the start of a phase. It can be difficult to keep track of resources being created and spent at harvest, however, so I recommend doing the first few harvests together, rather than simultaneously, so that everyone is on the same page and can catch each other’s inevitable misplays.

I’ve had the chance to play the game with two and three players, and I really like the variant for two players, which sees you creating a bank of cards to choose from, rather than a traditional draft. It creates some interesting decisions and tension, as you have more time to think about what cards might really benefit you, or that would benefit your opponent. In a two-player game, it’s also possible to keep a greater eye on how your opponents’ farms are developing and react accordingly. I feel that the game loses a lot of this tension with higher player counts – especially as farms get increasingly sprawling, it gets very hard to keep track of what you need, let alone what others do, so it tends to become multiplayer solitaire. I’m not knocking that, but for players who like lots of interaction, there is not much of it here!

My other complaint is with the cards. Various people I have played with have complained about the text being too small and difficult to read, particularly in lower light, and there is a lot of text to be read! Personally, I found it ok, but it’s worth mentioning, particularly if you’re planning to play with your great aunt!

Overall, I think it’s a solid game and I will be keeping it in my collection, but mainly for playing with two players, as I much prefer having the chance to plan and analyse than the chaos that ensues with greater numbers of players. 7/10.
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Slappi White
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I just got done counting and I think it was 398.......so close.
 
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Jason Webster
United States
Connecticut
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Nice review. You earned your Cabbage!!
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Joel Petersen
Denmark
Copenhagen
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Waiting in line for RFTG: Alien Artifacts since 2010
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100% agree, the 2 player version is far superior to 3 and 4 players.
 
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