- Zach MUnited States
With all the GenCon activity done with, I think it's time we got back to reviewing games! With the release of Welcome to and Ganz Schön Clever getting that Kennerspiel nomination, we thought it would be good to take a look into some new releases of this mechanic/family of games.
We will start off with Ganz Schön Clever. This is a 2018 game from designer Wolfgane Warsch with art from Leon Schiffer and will be getting a US release from Stronghold Games.
You can think of this as a modern game version of Yahtzee. You are rolling dice on your turn and using them to mark off parts of your sheet. You are not looking for specific combinations though, instead you are looking for specific numbers from each of the five colored dice (and one wild). Each section has different requirements for the dice, with yellow wanting specific numbers, blue wanting the sum of the blue and while, green wanting an ascending greater than or equal to, orange just using the number, and purple using the number but in an ascending sequence. Also, when you choose a die, anything that is less that it's number getting removed from your pool, limiting your options if you need that big number. When you aren't the active player, you do get something to do to cut down on the downtime. At the end of the player's turn, any dice they did not use are "offered up" on a silver platter to everyone else, allowing them to mark off something new. Finally, and I would say the big draw of this game, when you mark off certain squares, you will get bonuses, including rerolls, extra dice, and the ablity to mark off somethign in another section. These can chain off each other and get you some crazy combos for a lot of points. There are foxes that you can get that will score you extra points at the end of the game, based off what your LOWEST scoring section is. So make sure you do not neglect something, because you will feel it at the end.
Next lets do something a lot less complicated, Roll to the Top. This 2018 game is from designer Peter Joustra, with art from Steven Tu and is published by Cwali.
In this game, you are racing to fill out your sheet before anyone else. On your turn, you will roll up to 5 dice, which include a d4, a d6, a d8, a d12, and a d20. Then everyone can write those numbers down at the bottom of their sheet. Easy, right? Well, at the beginning, sure, but whenever you put a number on your sheet, ANY number that is on top of it has to be equal to or greater. So if you put that 15 halfway up, prepare to hope that the d20 gets rolled every time. Which it may not, because one more die gets rolled on a person's turn. This die will tell the next player whether to add, remove, or switch active dice with the inactive pool. It is totally up to the player which die they take, so what out for people who just need low numbers. Now, you do not HAVE to take any die that gets rolled, and you can add multiple dice together to get a desired result, but you will feel the gap widen if you only fill in one square and your opponents are filling 3-4.
Finally, we have something that really should be called flip and fill, Welcome To. This 2018 game is from designer Benoit Turpin, with art from Anne Neidsieck and is published by Deep Water Games.
So this is the only one with an actual theme! In this, you are building a subdivision in the 1950s era. there are 3 streets and, as with real life, they must be in an ascending order. This one also doesn't actually use dice. Instead, it has a deck of cards using a bell curve distribution for numbers 1 to 15. each turn, 3 numbers are revealed with a corresponding pictures showing what action can be used with that number. You can add a park, pool(but only in a space that can hold a pool), or a fence. You can also take a market action to increase endgame points for certain fenced off areas. You can use temp workers to increase or decrease the number by up to 2, and you can take a bis action to duplicate an already built house. There are 3 objectives that you can score, with more points granted to the first person to achieve these.
If you have any opinions on these games, or roll and writes, or Brigadier General Roland Wright please put them here. If you get them in we will talk about them on the episode, otherwise we will mention it on a future episode.
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Welcome To... is the only roll and write I’ve ever played. I demo’ed it at Origins and pre-ordered it as soon as I got back to the hotel. We pulled it out last weekend for game night. There were only 3 of us but everyone loved it. We were only going to play once to see how everyone liked it, but we had to play a second time. It’s an interesting genre; way more complex than it looked on the surface. I don’t feel like I need to get more roll-and-writes in my collection, but the one will definitely get its share of plays. (If anyone was wondering I came in dead last both games, not even close. In Blood Rage, too, to close out the night.)
Keep up the great work!
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- Lance Coffee(lcoffee)United States
Certainly not everything, but here is a Geeklist with many Roll & Writes / Flip & Fills / Flip & Writes / Rando Writes.
Roll and Write games
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