Isaak
United States
San Francisco
CA
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I enjoy writing reviews, usually for games that I love a lot. I like explaining why I think it's elegant or well-crafted, and I like reviewing games that haven't had too much attention. But Scary Tales is an exception. I'm writing this review to caution people from the experience, and a little bit to demand an explanation. I'm no Kinizia fanatic, but this game seems below a world-renowned game designer. It's poorly thought out, the art is half-hazard, and the mechanic is barely functional.I've divied out my points in what I like and expect from a game, and why this one failed. That way, readers can decide if the mechanic I enjoy is something they too are looking for, or if they disagree and want to go for something else.

Before I rip it to pieces, a quick overview:
Scary Tales is a two player game where you battle using different fairy tale characters. You gain certain symbols with the cars, and another person tries to beat it. There's some dice rolling involved to determine random symbols.

What I Expect from a Strong Game:
Clear rules that walk me through the basics, point, and FAQ of the game.

What I got in Scary Tales
Terribly written rules that leapt from point to point, had no overview, and were excessively long and poorly laid out. This is a fifteen minute game. I should get the rules in five minutes or less.

What I Expect
Especially for two-players, I expect an interesting mechanic that mixes it up and is creative. For two-players, I want a little more complexity to compensate for the loss of strategy without a third player throwing a wrench in your plans.

What I got:
An alternating mechanic that had no planning or skill involved, reached the "end-point" of the game on every turn, and had no consideration for a two-person dynamic. Nothing was creative, there wasn't anything new, and it felt like a recycled game of War with fancy cards.

I Expect
Good theme and art to engage with. Useful pieces.

What I got
Terrible art and pointless pieces. Fairy tale characters are not copyrighted, so they can bastardize them all they want. And they do. The art is like a draw-your-own cartoon image of Snow White and a gnarly giant; everything is exaggerated and nothing is subtle.There is basically no shading, and the large, blocky coloring adds even more to the rip-off Disney sense of the art. I don't mean to insult the artist--I think this is what they were aiming for. I think it was a poor choice. They could've gone for a detailed, more classic drawings, or more cartoony, but better done art if they wanted to keep the Disney homage. As far as pieces, the dice does randomize the symbols you get, but it rarely matters and seems superfluous.

I expect
Tension and suspense, even if it's just through luck or speed. A sense that I can win if I plan things right.

What I got
It barely seemed to matter what I was doing, and there was no sense of threat of winning or losing. There was a little I could do to strategize, but not much. I think I would've done just as well had I just flipped my cards over one at a time.

I could continue, but at this point, I think the main reasons I really disliked, and was disappointed, by Scary Tales is clear. If these expectations aren't yours, or you eventually, after slogging through the rules, enjoy a light, Disney-themed game, I wish you the best. Otherwise, steer clear.

Happy Gaming!
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Chaplin
United Kingdom
Nottingham
Ice-choked tower, Mondavia, Nanglangka.
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
It's a shame, because the idea of fairy tale characters battling it out is a great one.

What they should have done is also allow mix-and-match gameplay between the decks in different releases. Oh, and made a decent game, too, might have helped.



1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Count Ringworm
United States
Iowa
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
i first heard about this game in a trade magazine our LGS was giving out. sounded really cool, and i've been looking for a quick 2-player CCG like game.

this review, on top of the complete lack of any sort of buzz (or even interest) here made me decide to pass on this one. lots of other good stuff coming out soon that i want to get- Agricola expansion, AToE Something Wicked, Battlelore heroes. no need to waste gaming dollars on this.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Isaak
United States
San Francisco
CA
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
You're right! It could've been pretty cool to see a creative battling of fairy tale characters. I think it's been done (badly) now, but it had potential. I think having some sort of deck-building could've added a lot, but there has to be a strong base game to make deck-building worth it.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Isaak
United States
San Francisco
CA
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Good call, Ringworm. Blue Moon, another Kiniza trick-taking card game, is worth it if you're interested in this style. I would not waste your money on this one.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
kSwingrÜber
United States
Ridgefield
Washington
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmb

pffft... Knizia... I'm not surprized
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Yehlan Krosz
msg tools
Well i felt the need to give a proper review as the one posted I feel doesnt properly describe the game and only seems to cling to that fact they didnt enjoy it.

In regards to the rule book: I must agree the rules were a bit overwriten but even skimming through them for less than 30 seconds (though i am a bit of a speed reader) I was able to understand the game since it is very simple.

Gameplay: The game is again simple so the mechanics are simple its rated for players age 13 and up and is supposed to be a 20 minute game approx. I think it is both simple enough for players even younger than 13 but as most games that have a combat mechanic usually get rated 13+ I can see why the age is set as it is though its not really a violent game. As well being only a 20 minute game also means it must be simple enough to be quick and i think they did a good job with that.

I will admit after the 6 games myself and my GF have played since we bought it today we did have a couple in which one of us had no chance of winning as there are a few cards that require essentially 4 dice to beat and you only start with 3 (a card called the fairie as well as some other boosts make it possible to succeed but luck of the draw is not always good luck) and for those games It was disapointing but overall was still fun.

Artwork: We bought the game in part because a couple friends of ours loves the scary tales comics so made us consider buying the game and we did. The game being what it is makes using disney art for one immpossible as they would never support there art in a game that essentially pits there innocent lovable characters against each other in combat. As for the scary tales art I enjoy its simplicity and I feel its perfect for the game but in the end if you dont like the art you probably wont buy the game but if you do like the art then you might buy the game.

Strategy: This game isnt dominion or magic the gathering or any other card game that requires intense strategy and as i love both the games I just mentioned I wont argue that the strategy compaired to them is almost non-existant. But at the same time each character has a different one use special ability that you have to decide when to use, which boost cards you want to use and when, as well as several other options that come up that do involve strategy even though in some cases your choice is very simple. Using all your power cards too early can leave you open to getting overrun as we had happen in the games which we didnt have the right boosts when a card requireing 4 symbols pops up and all you have is 3 dice and an empty hand.

Overall: This is a VERY simple game and very fast and for those 2 reason its great as a quick time passer which is why we bought it and is perfect for it. At a price tag of less than $20 per set (we bought 2) your getting in my opinion more than what you paid for in the end compaired to a few games ive seen going for $65+. If you want a quick and simple card game that you could easily teach to your kids if you have any or just for you and a friend or spouse to pass some time its well worth it. We havnt tried it with more players but it is a game that even if you buy more of the sets you MUST have even numbers of players which is a bit of a drawback. But myself and my GF enjoyed it and i expect to probably play a few more games of it tonight but in any case before you buy most games if you can playtest it somehow first its always better than going into a game blind.
14 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roland Wood
United States
Visalia
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Now, now Yehlan, you're just new, friend.

Once you've earned your avatar and a few microbadges you'll hate games like this one too...
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chas Bernard
United States
Michigan
flag msg tools
badge
mbmbmbmbmb
Reason #45 to like BGG: Reviews that save you from buying a game several years later on eBay.

Also like the Reiner Knizia comments. There are some of games I like very much (Blue Moon, Lord of the Rings); however, some of his games appear as if he has dashed off a quick design idea and handed it over to a game company where "in house " designers complete the design/development/rules...with the results seen here.
 
 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.