Jayson Myers
United States
Clermont
Florida
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Please check out my other reviews at:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/145695/item/2728438#it...


Conclusion:

Gold West is an abstract game hidden as an Euro game. The mechanisms do not flow or fit the theme very well. You sort of do "this" to score points or "that" to score points. I never really felt like I was a 49'er digging for gold. Instead, I felt like I was just doing things to score points. This holds the game back for me. Especially a game trying hard to have a theme.

The first time I played I was sort of bored. Sure, it all works and it seemed to be balanced, but I never felt overwhelmed with fun. I did like it more on subsequent plays, but not enough to say it is more than a 6. I think a lot of people will play this and say "meh, what is next?". It is a fine little game, but it isn't going to knock your socks off. Of course there is a fine game in the box, but not one you find yourself coming back to.

Mancala is something we see in a few games here and there. This creates a very interest decision in the game because you get more VP if you place your resources further away. It is nearly impossible (for me!) to see all possible outcomes when placing the resources but not setting yourself up for a camp/settlement can be very costly. There are a few ways to score VP and one way to lose VP (not building a camp/settlement). This game can be a little bit of a brain burner and it can be taxing. I couldn't imagine someone playing a couple times in a row.

Overall, the game works. It is even interesting. It is really hard to process all the different little decisions you make to score VP or max your VP without repeated plays. This game is all about scoring points and making the best of the resources you get after using the Mancala board. You must carefully plan out quite a few turns in an advance and boy can that be tricky. It isn't as easy as you would think as there are a few different ways to score and things can change on you pretty quickly. It wouldn't even hurt to consider what your opponents are going to do on their turn also. Major AP if you want it to happen. I would never play this with someone prone to AP. Never.


Keeper.




Components:

The components are sort of bland. Everything is wooden and generic. The color scheme used reflects the Old West, but leaves everything a tad bland for me. The game lacks any real art work (even the cover) and any real color use out of blacks and browns.

Everything is made of good quality components but nothing really stands out as being an eye grabber. Instead, it looks like a soulless Euro/abstract game which is what it is.




Rule Book:

The rules are fairly clear. They are a little tough to digest as everything doesn't really flow. Every little thing has its own little rule and you just have to digest it all to move on. The rules have good organization and you can follow along as you play to ensure you don't miss anything.

Flow of the Game:

I am not going to explain all the rules, instead, I want to give you a feel for the game.

On a turn, you will perform a "Mancala" action where you have 4 spaces and you choose one and pick up your resources and move it up dropping one off on each spot above it.

If there are still resources left, you can spend them. You can build a camp (one green or black cube), settlement (green and black cube), ship goods (if you have a cylinder of any of the three colors - each has its own track), go to Boomtown which helps you score points at end of the game, or gain an investment card if you have the required resources on the card (this gives you VP). If you cannot place a camp or settlement, then you put a camp on the board and place it in the Wanted space (worth negative VP).

When you build (or don't), you choose a tile on the board and flip it over. This tile gives you resource which you place on your player board (you choose which place and you gain VP depending on which space you choose).

Rinse and repeat.





Should I buy this game?:

If you are a fan of Old West games, this might not be an instant buy. If you like Euros that fall on the abstract side, then this might fit the bill for you. The game doesn't "flow" perfectly and is a mix and mesh of different mechanisms. I would squarely put this in the try before you buy category. This is a heavier game in the scoring doesn't really correlate with your actions so it takes another level of thinking. Not the deepest, but not for the feint of heart.

Keeper.
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Glenn Eikenberry
United States
Waukegan
IL
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Re: The Purge: # 1278 Gold West: Golddigging...no not that sort. We are 49'ers digging for gold
This is a super sharp looking game, with really clean, minimalist graphic design. The trees on the forest tokens, for example, look amazing. The cover is perhaps a little demure, it's overall stylish and super clean.
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A J
United States
Riverside
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Re: The Purge: # 1278 Gold West: Golddigging...no not that sort. We are 49'ers digging for gold
Thanks for the review! I'm surprised you chose to keep this considering how meh you felt about the game.
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Ponder Stibbons
United States
Tulsa
Oklahoma
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I give myself very good advice, But I very seldom follow it. That explains the trouble that I'm always in.
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Re: The Purge: # 1278 Gold West: Golddigging...no not that sort. We are 49'ers digging for gold
ayejae wrote:
...I'm surprised you chose to keep this considering how meh you felt about the game.
haha i agree. at a glance the Conclusion paragraphs read as "does not flow. boring. taxing. never never. keeper."
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Jayson Myers
United States
Clermont
Florida
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Re: The Purge: # 1278 Gold West: Golddigging...no not that sort. We are 49'ers digging for gold
Yes, It does have a few flaws that I brought up. I don't like abstract games, but this one appeals to me more than most.

It is borderline for me. Yet, I found myself unwilling to let it go.

I hope that one can see that I see a few flaws in the game, but overall I like it. The sum is greater than the parts.
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