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Travis R. Chance
United States
Fishers
Indiana
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Agricola is a very entertaining game, one that I enjoy playing with my friends. I won't go into the details on how you play (you can find the rules online), but I will try and describe why I like it.

I really like playing advanced board games, games that have complex strategy that may not be immediately obvious. Agricola, with it's variation in occupations and minor improvements, definitely gives you that variety. For the most part, all of the actions you do in the game (getting resources, expanding your family, and building) can all be enhanced with one of the cards. As there are over a hundred possible occupation and improvement cards (of which, you only get 7), your combination will almost certainly be unique. Add to this the combinations of your opponents, each of whom will try to optimize their own set, and the game will get even more complex. Another complexity adding aspect is that it's typically best to draft your cards, allowing you even more control over what you get. (This isn't in the official rules, but it does tend to make the game smoother).

Playing Agricola, you'll see just all of the options you can do (outside the cards, you have many options in actions every round). I find it quite enjoyable trying to improve your farm, and every game you can see how many points you scored to see how you improve (even with opponents). It's the options and the growth that make the game fun. The educational value mostly comes in the critical thinking of optimizing your actions. Is the wood worth more to you, or should you instead go for the additional room? What plans do your opponents have, and how will they interact (or interfere) with yours? There are definitely a lot of things that you can consider.
As for durability, the game is a bunch of cards, and there are a lot of little wooden pieces. The pieces themselves are very durable, but the cards may wear out after many, many games. Some of the pieces are small though, so you will have to be alert not to lose them.

Overall - Pros: Fun game with lots of high replay value. No two games (whether with 1 or 5 players) will ever be the same. Entertaining concept of growing your own farm. Some interaction with other players (depends on the cards). Interesting choice of expansions should you buy them. Great choice for anyone with time that can play with at least other teenagers. Intuitive gameplay once learned.
Cons - Can be a difficult game to teach, perhaps 20-30 minutes initially. Games can run long, perhaps to 2.5 hours, or 3 if you taught new players. Drafting can take up to 30 minutes (as the cards can literally break or make your game). Sometimes, if you plan badly, there's the horrible concept of letting your family starve. (or, in the game, getting a begging card).

it's a great game, but if you're new to board games, perhaps you might want to start with a simpler game (perhaps Settlers of Catan?).
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Andy Andersen
United States
Michigan
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Action Phase wrote:

it's a great game, but if you're new to board games, perhaps you might want to start with a simpler game (perhaps Settlers of Catan?).


Excellent advice. My wife and I tried this too soon and ended up putting it on the shelf. We're just about ready to try it again.

Thanks.
 
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D D
Spain
Tenerife
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Agricola was my group's first game, and we all love it . We played it every weekend for more than four months, sometimes 2 times the same day.

And the game is not long. The 30 minutes per player the box says is a fair estimate. Our last 3 players game last exactly 1 hour 15 minutes, with the normal (no family) version.

I'm glad you enjoyed it, its a very good game. Maybe a bit too much concentration demanding for some light nights, but wonderful like a challenge other nights.
 
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Karrde
United Kingdom
Portsmouth
Hampshire
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Orangemoose wrote:

Excellent advice. My wife and I tried this too soon and ended up putting it on the shelf. We're just about ready to try it again.

Thanks.


Before playing, me and my wife watched this videowhich helped a lot.
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Mathias H
Germany
Pendler zwischen Hessen und Rheinlandpfalz
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It is Scotts fault that I love Agricola, it is indeed a great Video by a crazy cool guy.
 
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