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Subject: Azul review by Shorty's short reviews rss

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nick fury
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[ImageID=azul]

I recently got a chance to play a prerelease copy of Azul by plan B games, here are my thoughts on this game

WHAT IS AZUL:

Beautiful colored tiles lie in their factories ready for you to take and create your mosaic, but which ones do you take? Azul is an abstract tile laying and drafting game that relies on careful planing, astute observation of your opponents moves, and thinking several moves ahead.

During your turn, you draft all tiles of the same color from one of the factories on the table, the rest go into a common pool in the center of the table, that can also be drafted from. The first player to draft from this common pool will also get a point subtracted from their score however, they will get to go first on the next turn. Azul is easy to learn, fun to play with complex strategy and planing and a bit of luck thrown in.

WHO IS THE GAME FOR:

Strategy players.
Families.
Good game to teach novices.

QUALITY OF COMPONENTS:

As with their other offerings, PlanB has created another game with high guilty components. The beautifully made plastic tiles come in 5 vibrant colors that are visually appealing as well as having a fantastic tactile feel to them. Each tile is finished in a high gloss finish, giving them a ceramic glaze look and feel. The player boards are equally colorful and are made of a nice guilty cardboard finished in a gorgeous satin finish.

PROS

Great abstract game.
well made components.
Challenging and competitive.
High replayability.

CONS:

May take a game or two to pickup on how to draft tiles effectively.
Can be pron to Analysis paralysis.
Scoring tiles can be a bit confusing at first.

TIME: 30 to 40 minutes
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2-4
AGE 8+

DIFFICULTY:

Easy rules that can be learned quickly but has deep strategy that keeps you engaged.

FINAL THOUGHTS:

I love games with a minimalistic feel, great components and rules that a quick to learn and easy to remember and Azul has hit the trifecta with all three. This is a extremely fun and challenging game, that delights all the sense, visually appealing as well as tacitly pleasing, it engages you from the moment it hits the table. The rules are simple, you draft tiles from the factories, represented by round boards, in the center of the play area, each having 4 tiles. These tiles are then placed on your player board, but be careful, if you draft more tiles then spaces available on your board, those extra tiles become negative points against you.

There are 5 rows on your board for tiles and each row with a different number of slots to fill, starting with one and ending with 5. So careful planing is a must, and paying attention to your opponents moves will be critical for your future tile drafting. Once you have the appropriate number of tiles in your row, you can the move one of those tiles to the scoring side of the board, while the rest return to the tile pool.
These are the basic rules of the game, there are others, but I will let the reader discover those on their own.

Azul is a fun game, which engaged me the moment I started playing, It is a feast for the eyes and extremely challenging for the mind. Easy enough for beginners as well as children, but highly challenging for advanced players with its deep strategy. There is a certain element of luck to this game, mainly having to due with the tiles that are available on your turn, but even this luck factor can be overcome with advanced planning and careful strategy.

Game play is fast, however analysis paralysis is a possibility due to the nature of having to think several moves ahead. Also, there is an element of take that to the game, which is due to the tiles being left at the end of a round that exceed the next players available slots causing them to get a lot of negative points. So if your a player who likes to play cutthroat, you can leave your opponents in the dust.
Setup is fast allowing you to jump in to the game within minutes and the rules are quick and easy to teach.

Needless to say, we had fun playing Azul and I wanted to play this game again immediately when we finished, as I realized the mistakes I had made in our previous game and I wanted to try out an new strategy I had in mind. WARNING: this game is highly addictive.

I can not wait for this games release later this year and I will buy it to go in my collection.
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Adrian Besaw
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So c-c-c-c-old!
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Sounds like another hit from Plan B Games!
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Heath Washburn
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Does it bother OP or anyone else that players never complete the mosaic on their player board? It's very satisfying in a game like Sagrada when you complete the entire pattern on your player board. Just curious how that unfinished state would feel. Thanks!
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nick fury
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Hi Heath,

Good Question. Actually this did not bother us at all, as the mechanics of the game do not require you to complete your mosaic. You score points by having tiles next to each other. For instance, if you place a tile and complete a row, you score points for all the tiles in that row. You also score points of tiles touching each other.

So, completing the mosaic is not the objective, but completing rows and columns is.

Hope that helps
 
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P B
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How is Analysis paralysis regarded as a CON? THAT is a selling point for me!
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Mateusz Członka
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Do you know the size of the box?
 
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Michael Young
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mczlonka wrote:
Do you know the size of the box?


I'll try to get exact dimensions but it's a bit smaller than 12" x 12" x 3"
 
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John Rudolph
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Did you play it with only 2 players, and if so, how well did it play that way?
 
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Tactilely rather than tacitly perhaps.
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nick fury
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I have not played it 2 players, not sure how much it would change the game
 
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nick fury
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Sobo wrote:
Tactilely rather than tacitly perhaps.



LOL, good catch, yes that is correct
 
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Palau Life
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Putzmanrudy1 wrote:
Did you play it with only 2 players, and if so, how well did it play that way?


We only play it with 2P and we enjoy it greatly. We don't play it with a heavy 'take-that' style, but if you enjoy that, you absolutely can play like that. Great little game!
 
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