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It's Alive!» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Raising the dead... and possibly some new gamers on the way rss

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Giannis Sofianopoulos
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Agios Dimitrios
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Having played quite some games of It's alive!!! with about 15 different players most of them non-gamers (aged from 25 to 70) I came to the following conclusions:

1 It's a great gateway game, with simple rules and quite fast paced

2 The artwork makes it appealing and interesting to everyone

3 Each play doesn't drag for too long, so no-one loses interest

4 Even unexperienced players can grab a win

5 It plays great with 5 & 4 players, quite good with 3, don't bother with 2

6 oooh a fresh hand!



Gameplay in brief


Image by: Guantanamo


It's Alive!!! as most of you already know is a game where each player takes the role of scientist trying to be the first to create life by collecting (8) body parts for his great project.

It's a simple kind-of-auction game, where taking turns each player
either raises a card from the "main cemetary" which he either buys, auctions or sells for half it's price (rounded down)
or goes digging in other player's graveyards paying double the cost of the body part he so dearly desires


Image by: CaptainJax


The game ends once a player collects all 8 different body parts anouncing "IT'S ALIIIIVE!!!"

The mechanics are so simple that if someone didn't get it during the explanation, is sure to do after the first round.




Artwork


Image by: gangster1930


From the box to the body parts and for the slab to the screen that each player takes to hide his money and body parts.
The artwork is very good with clear lines, vivid colours and aesthetics that fit the subject perfectly!



To the cemetery!


Image by: Runehardt


The gameplay as mentioned is quite fast paced with plays taking from 20 to 30 minutes. There's not much space for AP as the game itself is light and what everyone has to do is very clear each turn.

All non-gamers that the game has been tested on, enjoyed it and to my suprise wanted another go as soon as the first play ended. For 2 of them it was the game that made them take up boardgaming!

The verdict is that it's guaranted value for money, as it's cost is exactly proportional to what the box contains. But most importantly to what the game offers: Lots of fun for gamers or not and high replayability as each play's duration lasts that much so you don't get tired of it.
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Manuel Pasi
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I have had the very same experience, where newbies and non-gamers practically begged me to play another round of "It's Alive!". Fantastic gateway game and very cool for all groups...
And to think that originally they wanted to release it with a farming theme where you bid for corn et algulp
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Matt Borg
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Excellent review of an excellent game. The only thing I'd suggest was slightly unfair is this;

"5 It plays great with 5 & 4 players, quite good with 3, don't bother with 2"

My partner and I have played loads of two player games, and I think they work just as well as games with larger crowds. We take stats from every game (who won, total points, total coins etc) and it seems pretty equal over time.

Our experience is that gameplay for 2 players is more like 15-20 mins, but your mileage may vary.
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Yehuda Berlinger
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PasiMax wrote:
And to think that originally they wanted to release it with a farming theme where you bid for corn et al:gulp:


They did? That's news to me :-)

FWIW, I like the game best with 3, like it a lot with 2 and 4, and don't really like it with 5.

Yehuda
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Jackson Pope
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If it wasn't one of Yehuda's early versions then I can confirm that Reiver Games didn't consider a farming theme either!

Cheers,

Jack
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Giannis Sofianopoulos
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Agios Dimitrios
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Shade_Jon wrote:

FWIW, I like the game best with 3, like it a lot with 2 and 4, and don't really like it with 5.
Yehuda


Ok, maybe I was a bit biased for 2 players. Almost every 2-player game is with my wife, and since we prefer a bit more "heavy" games. This one gave me a "ping-pong" feeling. I'll give it another go though. Personaly, I really enjoy it with 4!
 
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