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Subject: General remarks on this game rss

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Marco Signore
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CAVEAT: this is NOT a complete review, it only points out the most remarkable good and bad aspects of this game.

I've played some games at Mamoonia, and before a complete review (there is just one decent review here of this game) here are some remarks. I start with the bad notes.

1) This game is too heavily inspired to Talisman and Wizards. It has the same questing system of Wizards, same demon system of Wizards, and the same cards of Talisman (even the card text is too similar). At a first glance Mamoonia seems an attempt to merge the card-drawing system of Talismn with the whole Wizards boardgame.

2) How much playtest has been done? Too little, it seems to me. There is a number of issues that could have been fixed with more playtesting.

3) The Encounter movement phase is absolutely obnoxious, especially when you play solo. Too long, too boring, it is easy to lose track of how many counters you have moved and which ones.

4) The rulebook is translated badly and written badly. I have downloaded the new version which is quite better, and I hope that it will improve play. But the rulebook in the box is a disaster indeed. It is written in a terrible English, it gives references to wrong paragraphs, it even misses some of the rules (e.g.: how many XP do you gain from each quest? Now I know it's 5, but there was no hint in the "first printing" of the rules. Furthermore, according to the rulebook there are numerical values on the quest cards, but actually there is none; this issue has been solved again with the new edition of the rules).

5) The character cards don't fit in the bases. We use miniatures to play. The counters have all the same back, and it would have been at least useful to sort 'em out with different backs. Same issue with the cards, especially quest cards. Gold is too easy to gain, and the gold counters are too few. Having a character sheet I think that the counters could have been used for something else...

6) Quest counters: some are hardly readable. Some have terrible colour mixing. Some are ok.

7) Map: where is the terrain key????

8) The game is generally a bit too long to be appealing.

Now the good things.
1) The components are overall very good. Sturdy, resistant, very beautiful map, the pictures on the character cards are eerie but beautiful (especially the White character). A pity you can't use them to play. Counters are (too) many and very sturdy.

2) The gameplay is not so bad as some persons here say. Compared to Talisman, Mamoonia is too slow, but compared to Runebound - well, I prefer Mamoonia.

3) There are some rules to be fixed, but overall this is a good fantasy boardgame. Yes, it is not a masterpiece, but in my humble opinion there is NO current masterpiece in the fantasy boardgame field. I think that this may be a nice game to be played with 3 or 4 persons. And most possibly even in 6 the downtime is not so terrible as it si, for instance, in World of Warcraft Boardgame (which, by the way, I really love).

All in all, I think that this game is underestimated just because it has no miniatures and has no famous name from some famous fantasy book. Yes, there are issues to fix - first of all please find a good translator for the game handbook - but overall is an average game, and IMHO it doesn't deserve such a low score here.
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