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Subject: Sunrise City - How good are your city planning skills? rss

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K S
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I backed this on Kickstarter the day it went up because I thought it sounded simple and fun. Yet as the campaign went on I wasn't sure, I tried explaining it and showing the videos to friends, no one was interested. So I wasn't sure. The campaign ended, I found out I backed it for 2 copies and now was worried.

Well tonight we got it to the table as my buddies who were over are huge Alien Frontiers fans and are counting the days until my copy of the expansion arrives, so they figured "eh ok this that Sim City-like game?" "Yup".

Now I am not going to go over all of the rules and gameplay, as there are now a number of fantastic videos covering this.

The rules are very well laid out a couple things I wish were slightly described more as I do have a couple friends who question the definition of a word used at times. This came about with a role card stating you gained a point for each building built adjacent to a community building. Yet how you score community buildings its all 8 directions so of course the conversation is adjacent any of the 8 directions around a tile, or only the 4 up, down, left and right? Well we figured it was similar to how you score zoning bonuses as those are only for those matching tiles up, down, left or right of the placed tile.

The components are stunning, absolutely incredible. The box is heavy and as soon as you pull the top off it you see why. Big thick chunky tiles with great artwork (my only hiccup here is the commercial/blue tiles look almost purple, but the purple tiles you can tell but the blue on the buildings vs the zoning tiles don't seem quite the same).

At first they didn't quite grasp the scoring idea until halfway through the first round when one landed right on 10 (quick scoring overview, every point you get you earn a point on the track, if you stop on 10 you get 2 stars or victory points, if you go to 11 or more you wrap around back to 1 and only get 1 star/vp) this changed it for them so much. They realized there is an incredible level of strategy to how you place buildings, where you bid, where you zone how you backstab your opponent or maybe help your opponent so they get you that 1 point to get you to 10. Love the scoring mechanism.

The gameplay is pretty smooth and very little down time, sometimes when bidding we hit little bits of analysis paralysis as we looked at our hands, then available zone tiles, etc. I was developing a curious strategy as when you place zoning tiles in rounds 2 and 3 the first player picks a direction (north, south, east or west) of the city hall which is the only places you can zone. While bidding most people only bid on the newly placed tiles so it gave a neat strategy as I noticed there were plenty of other good tiles to use away from the newly placed tiles where I wasn't challenged or just have free reign of without bidding there.

Overall not even done with the game my buddies asked if this was a Kickstarter game. "Yes it is." "Is it in stores yet?" "Not to my knowledge...I did have a second copy remember" "Yea, but not playing it wasn't an easy sell, you still have it?" "Nope, traded it away." "Dang."

So needless to say, yes its a good game, really hard to explain to someone without video, images or the game in front of you as I found out. But there are some excellent gameplay videos which is what eventually convinced me to keep one of my copies, I was going to trade them both off so I'd recommend watching those if you are on the fence. If you are looking for a game with very simple gameplay and style yet the strategy level grows as you try to get that scoring marker right to 10 as that extra victory point is a HUGE deal in the end we found out as I won 15 to 11 to 10. People were cheering when they found out if they placed a tile somewhere else got them to 10, and you could watch someone just cry when you built somewhere they weren't expecting ruining their 10 point move :-D.

One last note, it took 5 minutes to explain the gameplay to my friends and another 5 for them to grasp it

Gameplay: 8
Rules: 8
Strategy: 8
Components: 9.5
Replayability: 9
Overall: 8

PS my first review, seems wordy...I'll probably edit this up a bit.
Edit: Cleaned up some wording and made sure to note how fast this game is to teach someone in person
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Dundy O
United States
Milwaukee
Wisconsin
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"Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."
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Re: Sunrise City - How good are you city planning skills?
You don't need to edit it. It reads extremely fast. Good job!
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