Ralph T
United States
Signal Hill
California
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"Osaki ni shitsurei shimasu" means "Sorry, I'm leaving/going before you." In a country that has a word for death by overworking ("karoshi") because people die from overworking, it's fitting that an obscure French game called about washing dishes is rethemed into a game about leaving work behind for your coworkers.

In this 2-4 player game every player is given six tiles with six different workers on them, ranging from the president of the company (the old man) to the part timer (the redhead), placed face down.



On your turn you perform one of two action: flip a face down worker tile over to reveal one of four workplace problems, or stack your tiles either by stacking the same worker of the same type, or stacking the same job of the same type. You can stack tiles onto another player's tile or your own. Thematically, the former is dumping your work onto another player.


The four types of jobs

The game ends when everyone has no more tiles to flip over and no more tiles to stack. Whoever has the fewest workers stacked (fewest jobs left to do) is the winner.

All in all the game takes about 2 minutes per player. It's possibly the faster filler I own. Even the 5 minute Hey, That's My Fish! takes considerably longer because of setup and counting at the end. In this game, all you do is compare tile stacks and you're done.

There is a lot of luck in the game in that you can manage your tiles very well, keeping the fewest workers, until you turn over the last tile and it matches the job of the biggest tile stack in the game. There's something less than a 1/4 chance of that happening (unless you have a great memory for counting tiles). However, there appears to be some way of the way you manage your piles to improve your chances of winning. But the sudden reversal of fortune is entertaining. I've played the game 15 times in a month. I still think my strategy could be improved. There is a chance for a player to decide who wins or loses in the very end depending on who they play their tiles on, but no one will have hurt feelings when the game is as short as it is.

In the end the game could be played with 24 playing cards, 1-6 in four suits, though each number would need to be marked on their facedown side so that players could make sure they each had the 1-6 cards. But the components, cute art and thick tiles, and the unique office theme make the game a worthwhile addition to a collection. Who hasn't left work when things were busy? Who hasn't had someone dump work on you just as you thought you were going home?

I've played the game with Americans and Japanese, and find that because they have an expression for "sorry I'm leaving work early" as they dump their tiles on you, this game is better experienced with Japanese players. (We need a universal catch phrase for "I'm outta here" that doesn't sound like it's stuck from the 80s.)

If you're ever in Tokyo, stop by the [geekurl=http://www.mobius-games.co.jp/]Moebius Games[/geekurl] nearby at the Suidobashi station stop if you want to pick this unique gem up. It'll run 1800 yen. It's the fastest filler you can teach and play and fills the spot for whenever you expect someone to arrive "any minute now."
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Raul Catalano
Italy
Pordenone
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I love when someone makes a review of new and interesting games. After the gazillionth review of Agricola or Puerto Rico your little fun game is a breath of fresh air.

Thanks ! thumbsup
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Jason Matthews
United States
Alexandria
Virginia
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My kids love this game. The 4 year old was really able to grok it as well.
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