Recommend
35 
 Thumb up
 Hide
6 Posts

Aquaretto» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Zooloretto/Aquaretto Combination Review rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Patrick Hickey
msg tools
mbmbmb
This review is going to assume you have knowledge of Zooloretto and Aquaretto as they play individually. It will not recite the rules of those games.

Zooloretto is one of my favorite games, but its always left me wanting more. Aquaretto is a recent acquisition for me, and I love it as well, but lets face it- its like Zooloretto+ in terms of gameplay. Slightly more complex, but still about the same length.

But when they're combined... its what I wanted from this game series all along. A longer game, with more strategic and tactical choices.

The Components, and Set Up

Obviously the components are the same as Zooloretto and Aquaretto, except combined. The key is to remember that you need only as many trucks as people, and that tiles must be kept separate. You also create two different "final round" piles, one for each game.

Set up is the same as if you were playing both games at once, except that you get only 2 coins to start, not 2 coins per game.

The Rules

Each zoo plays exactly like a regular game. The crossovers between the zoos occur in three places.

First, money is held in common between the zoos. You don't have to segregate your zoo earnings from your aqua park earnings.

Second, the truck system mixes the game a bit. When you draw a tile, you select which game to draw from. Individual trucks can only hold tiles from one game, with the exception of coin tiles which can be played anywhere. So no mixing zoo animals and aquarium animals on the same truck. At the same time, no one may select a truck until a truck of each type is on the board, and no one may play a tile on a truck in such a way that this becomes impossible. Got that?

Third, the Aquaretto Manager meeple benefits both zoos at one time.

How This Changes the Game

On one level, the game itself doesn't change. You're playing Zooloretto and Aquaretto at the same time, much as if you were playing chess against two different opponents. That's on the level of the rules of gameplay.

Its on the strategic level that this makes a difference. In terms of tile drawing, which bag you draw from becomes a question of major tactical importance. It is also harder to get rid of tiles you do not want- unlike in Zoo or Aquaretto alone, where you have all the trucks to use to throw away unwanted tiles, in the combination game you may only use the trucks of the appropriate type. This makes it harder for other people to mess with a truck they know you intend to grab, but also harder to avoid accidentally messing up a truck you wanted. You catch on to the differences in odds during tile drawing pretty quickly.

The mixture of money between the zoos also makes a big difference. Many people feel that Zooloretto is a bit starved for money. Aquaretto, by contrast, is designed so that hoarding money is a legitimate strategy. By combining the games, you can choose to use that hoard to benefit your cash starved zoo. I've found that you see a lot more animal purchases in a combined game, which increases the interaction level pleasantly.

Summary

I know this review isn't exactly lyrical or effusive. Its kind of bare bones. The list of differences between single game play and combined game play isn't very long, because its just a list of tactical or strategic differences. But the biggest difference of all isn't in strategy. It is in the fact that your game of Zooloretto is now twice as big.

If you like Zooloretto, chances are you like Aquaretto as well. Combining them doesn't just double your fun, it increases it exponentially. Give it a try.
8 
 Thumb up
0.05
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
You know, I hadn't thought much of it when reading it in the rules, but this actually sounds kinda cool.

I guess I didn't read them in detail, as I did not realize that you choose which stock to draw a tile from. It makes a lot more sense now, and I can see how it would be quite strategic.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Julie Taylor
Canada
Waterloo
ON
flag msg tools
Thanks for the review. I haven't see none yet that shows how the two systems play together.

I don't have either game yet. Would you recommend buying both then? Or is Aquaretto enough?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Neil
Canada
Toronto
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Thanks for the interesting review.

How long does the combined game take to play with, say, four players?


 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Patrick Hickey
msg tools
mbmbmb
That's hard for me to say. Our last game had four players and took about an hour and a half, but we also had That One Guy at our table who took absolutely forever to make a decision. Plus, only two of us were experienced with the combination game. Of the remaining two, one had never played Aquaretto, and the other had never played either Aquaretto or Zooloretto. So I'd expect that time to fall dramatically with experience and reasonably decisive players. I'm going to guess that it should take about an hour.

Too many of our games so far have been learning games for at least some players, so I can only estimate.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Patrick Hickey
msg tools
mbmbmb
It really depends. Zooloretto is the simplest game on its own. Aquaretto is slightly more complex, but not overly so. I'd pick one to start, and if you like it, get the other. Don't think that Aquaretto makes Zooloretto automatically obsolete- Zooloretto won all kinds of awards before Aquaretto was even around. Pick the one that you think best fits your group, or the one you think looks prettiest. Then get the second once you start feeling the need for variety or a bigger game.
 
 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.