Gerard & Paula
Yes I am a fool for promo's (Fields of Green: Cabbages this time ) therefor I have written my first (and probably my last) review.
I backed this game on kickstarter, because I liked the theme, the gameplay and the artwork. I picked the game up at Essen and when I opened the box at home I was really surprised with how full the box was (although I knew about the great amount of KS exclusives).
I haven't played Among the Stars (and if I did, I don't seem to remember), so I can’t compare Fields of Green with that.
Lot's of other reviewers already described the gameplay in detail, I won't do that. A brief explanation; You start with a Water Tower filled with 3 water tokens, a Silo filled with 1 food token and 15 coins to buy stuff. Each round consists of 3 phases: Upkeep, Action and Harvest.
During upkeep you pick 6 cards out of 4 piles (Fields, Livestock, Facilities and Buildings), you can choose how you pick them. The only restriction is that you need to pick from 3 different piles. If you are new to the game, the rulebook gives some advice. In the 2nd, 3th and 4th round/year you also gain 3 coins, 2 water tokens and 1 food.
During the Action phase, you choose one card and give the rest to your neighbour (like in 7 Wonders), then you simultaneously build or sell your card or trade it for an extra Water Tower or Silo. This continues until all cards are build or sold, then the round/year ends and you go to harvest. For a two player game there is a variant for the upkeep and action phase described in the rulebook.
During harvest you have to make sure you can ‘pay’ for every card, so you need to have enough water or food. If you can’t provide enough water or food for a card, then you have to flip it over. You can activate it again in the next round/year by paying coins for it.
After harvest the next round/year starts, the game ends after the harvest fase of round/year 4. Player with the most VP wins the game.
The rulebook is clear, rules are explained well with lots of pictures. It even has a ‘Strategy Tips’ section, which might be useful for players who are new to the game.
The components are of very good quality. The artwork on the cards (cards are squares) is gorgeous and really fits the theme; it's spot on. The tokens and card pile indicators are made of nice thick cardboard and the wooden markers are great.
I have played Fields of Green with two and with three players and I like it both equally. As already briefly mentioned the two player game has a good variant for the card drafting mechanism.
What I like about the game, besides the theme and how it looks, is that it easy to set up and easy to play. You don't have to spend 'hours' to reread (don't know if that's an actual word ) the rulebook. You can start really quickly after reading the rulebook. Although it is easy to play, Fields of Green has enough dept, there are a lot of strategic choices to make to get your engine going. During the games I have played I have noticed that despite of the strategic choices you have to make, the games didn't suffer a lot of downtime. I guess this is because you play simultaneously and somewhat solitair, that might bother some people but that doesn't bother me at all.
The only 'complaint' I might have is that you might need a big table as your farm can become really large. But hey, if that's it
So, if you like a game you can set up easily, is easy to explain, still has enough dept and you like the theme or are not bothered by it, I suggest you should give this one a try.