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The Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game» Forums » Reviews

Subject: My Dresden Files review rss

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Ken Savage
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Like many people, we picked this up from Kickstarter. I must admit that it was my girlfriend's choice. Since I knew nothing about the books or universe - I was pretty "meh" about the idea of getting it (we have so many games, I only go for games that "wow" me now). However, I went into it with an open mind and here are my thoughts. Also to note, most games we play 2 player (including all times we've played this) - this game advertises as being for 1-5 players.

First impressions - box and components quite are quite good. There's room for more expansions in the box. This is great in a couple of ways. One, it shows that the developers know that us players like to have expansions nicely stored. And two, the developers are passionate about the game to want to plan for expansions! All the artwork looks nice, card quality is decent - so no complaints about the production quality at all.

The gameplay is pretty simple. You have 4 types of card, each deals with a different "enemy" card on the field. So "attacks" target "foes", "take advantage" targets "advantage", "overcome" targets "obstacles" and "investigate" targets "cases". Simple enough and these mechanics are solid and work well. But in a way, it oversimplifies the game. It really removes a lot of decisions from the player. I have "this" type of card, I need to use it against one of "those" cards on the field. If I can't use "my" card, the only thing I can do is discard it - so other people can use "their" cards. Since drawing new cards from your deck really doesn't happen often, what you have in your initial hand is pretty much what you'll be playing with. While we did have some decisions to co-ordinate when playing with 2 players (where we both have 9 cards each and 2 stunts), I can only imagine this game would get a little bit duller with more players. With 5 players, I'd only have 4 cards to play in the entire game. While it is good that the game length would stay around 30-40 minutes with more players, I can only imagine that the game wouldn't be as much fun as an individual would have very little to do in the game. On the other hand - no matter how many players, though, you do need to communicate work closely with other players in order to win. That is a good thing.

I also have an issue with the immersion side, if you have 1 or 2 players (which this game is advertised as). In order to get behind the theme of a game, you should be able to identify with your character. But I wasn't "Harry Dresden" here, I was "Harry Dresden, oh and Mouse as well". Now I'm not thinking about playing my character, I'm just thinking about my first character will do this to help setup my second character for his turn. "Needing" to play 2 separate characters, in a thematic game like this, is a little bit of a letdown for me.

Overall, I don't think this is a bad game but I don't think it's a good game either. It's certainly not an exciting game, more of a maths problem to be solved. The theme seems a bit tacked on, for me. Then again, I don't follow the books. I love the theme of Firefly and I've heard the same accusation of "tacked on theme" there, which I really disagree with. So I think that this game would appeal better to people who follow the books.

I'd probably play this again if asked, but don't think it's one that I'd suggest playing. So, given the BGG rating system - I slot this in as a 6/10
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Bill Reed
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Thanks for the review. I'm curious about your girlfriend's opinion as she seems to be the one that follows the books, or did I misunderstand you?
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Ken Savage
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wmreed wrote:
Thanks for the review. I'm curious about your girlfriend's opinion as she seems to be the one that follows the books, or did I misunderstand you?

She doesn't read them either.

She does have a couple of friends that do follow the books and really enjoy and talk about them, that's what piqued her interest in the game. When we do get a chance to bring her friends over and introduce them to this game, I'll drop a post to describe how/if they enjoyed it.
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Julia Bohle
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Not sure yet...
I am the girlfriend and found the game a bit meh as well. However, I enlisted the help of a Dresden Files fan to get me the books and I'll see how I feel after reading them.

The game itself is very nicely made, I like the quality of the components and the art a lot. I am just not sure yet, that some of our other games don't scratch the same itch for me, and make it easier for me to connect with the theme.
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Bill Reed
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Thanks for the follow-up
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Matt Tucker
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I'm enjoying the puzzle a ton. You can plan most of your moves but if you rely on the luck it can make for a rough ride...though sometimes it's worth it.
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