Recommend
25 
 Thumb up
 Hide
4 Posts

Flamme Rouge» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Flamme Rouge - cycling Dominion in reverse rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Welshy welshy
New Zealand
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
We had our first two games last night, back-to-back. To cut to the chase, we really enjoyed it. There was enough chatter around the table afterward that this was obviously a game we all enjoyed. What was noteworthy was that two of us are grizzled old gamers who can play some pretty meaty games, where-as one was a very casual gamer who enjoys an occasional bit of Mancala, Uno and Euka. So this has a little something for everyone.

The production values are top notch, and other than the typical complaint that the two miniatures are too similar to each other, all components are great. I resolved this with a black marker pen and writing ‘S’ on the base of the sprinters. Not the prettiest, but it works. I’m sure I’ll get around to doing a better paint job on them eventually, but note that the upcoming expansion has the lettering more prominently displayed. The ‘player boards’ seem a little excessive, but I suppose help keep your two decks separate, help identify to others who’s who and avoid the potential for confusion between your roller and sprinter decks… and to be fair, they are very pretty.

The race board itself has more details and I was expecting. I did enjoyed the random scattering of railway bridges, sheep and contemporary auto-mobiles scattering the edges. The jig-saw connections work fine and other than a bit of misalignment of the lines at the corners they are well produced. Having played a few games where this style of board can take an age to build due to either a befuddling array of components or complex table layout (Imperial Assault, I’m looking at you!) Flamme Rouge is nice and simple, so takes very little time at all. The black and white lettering and track layout cards all come together to help you build the track in very little time at all.

The rules are straight forward and I certainly agree with other comparisons suggesting that this is in the same ball-park, if suitably different to Ave Caesar or even a deck depleting version of dominion Aka: “Dominion in reverse”. I could also see comparisons to the Iellos’ “Hare and Tortoise” albeit there’s no betting and you’re always in control of your two cyclists. I can also see this compared with Formula D as a noteworthy racing game. Where-as the cycling theme doesn’t fall into the typically male-centric gamer themes and the art work is a real draw by being both quaint and retro. The rulebook is set out like a newspaper for goodness sake! J

Our first game was the recommended initial track (Avenue Corsa Paseo). With this gentle introduction we were learning the flow of the game and seeing how the pack riding mechanic works. With our level of experience (i.e. zero) we often got spat out of the back or accidently zoomed out the front of the pack and collected the dreaded ‘exhaustion cards’. By the end we were feeling like we’d played a game, but hadn’t really got challenged by much other than our own lack of ability to manage our own two cyclists. Without the hills I suspect the enjoyment and challenge comes out of the pack riding. Card counting and ‘meta-game’ with your opponents. This was all WAY above our heads in our first game.

It was apparent that on a plain, flat track that the game is to manage your team so that the sprinter can have a good crack at the finish line with his 9s. While this is certainly true, this is also what everyone is thinking - Suddenly a meta game unfolds guessing and second guessing what your opponents are doing in trying to manage their own team’s cards. This is further compounded by the hills and the fact that you (or they) may not have been dealt the cards you need!

The second game introduced us to hills. We picked one that looked roughly the same as the first and so end up playing La Haute Montagne. This beast sports a little up and down in the middle and a gruelling uphill to finish. These hills really saw us managing our hands a bit more carefully ON TOP of what we’d already learned about bunch riding in game 1. Shortly into the game, the rollers were gobbling up the hills with their low to mid-range cards while the sprinters where wheezing their way up each bump unable to slip-stream and not wanting to burn their high value cards. Everyone was trying to burn off their lower cards on the down-hill only to watch the sprinters zoom off on the flat… the grand finale hill climb saw our sprinters wasting their best cards with the punishing speed limitation with any remaining 9s nerfed to 5. Soon all that was left were 2s and 3s while the chase pack of rollers were gaining steadily on the sprinters.

The last turn saw the two players owning the leading two sprinters crack up into hysterical laughter as they looked at their cards. They had depleted their decks so much, they only had 2s to cash in with 3 squares to finish! These two jell-legged cyclists ended just short of the line while a roller managed to cash-in a 6 (nerfed to a 5) to squeeze in over the line for the win by a single square… This to be cemented a place in my heart for the game - I love it when an underdog wins.

Having finished the first game slightly luke warm, the subtleties start to shine though with everyone trying to card-count and second guess each other. Add some hills and you’ve got quite a bit going on. On top of this, the up-coming expansion with multiple lane widths, cobble streets and rest stops as well as the fan-made velodrome tracks and grand-tour campaigns, suddenly you’ve got an easy to learn family game with a lot going on!

Many thanks to this game’s Danish author and the Finnish publisher who printed their French themed game in Germany making a Welshman and two Canadians laugh so hard at a dinner table in New Zealand.
37 
 Thumb up
5.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
jonathan schleyer
United States
Manhattan Beach
California
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Awesome review! I've only played solo with the ai and it's great but can't wait to play with others!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Steve Blackwell
United Kingdom
Saltdean
East Sussex
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I absolutely love this game and am looking forward to the expansion too.

There is always space in my world of gaming for simple AND fun.

Leave the simulations to those that like to get into hard maths.

M B
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Asger Harding Granerud
Denmark
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Early Flamme Rouge prototype
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Thanks a bunch for the review. Really glad you took the time to share your thoughts

Happy racing
Asger Granerud
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.