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Travis R. Chance
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Okay. This game is out and about, the reviews and opinions are flying like blue ice; so why not stop and chitty chat about this title, its pros, cons, whatevah.

This won't be a review covering the obvious--the rules are simple; read 'em your damn self. Instead, I will offer some musings, my experience after about ten games, and shizz likes that. I am a little tipsy whilst DJing a crowded bar in Brooklyn on a rainy-ass night. So take this for what it's worth. There are drunk girls about, merriment to be had, and I am inspired to drunkenly compose feelings on a card game. *90's rap pose!

To begin, I am a huge fan of DS; I consider it a consummate game--not a term I throw around lightly, whatsoever: "consummate." If I could play this game once a day, every day, I would do so without compunction. Naturally, when I saw a card game I was intrigued. $30x later and you are now reading this drivel.

My first games of DS the CG were with my ladyfriend, who is no gamer by any means--yet awesome at card games. (Info tidbit: any game with an auction element, she calls, "eBay.") We shuffled up and played while watching The Office (American). And, well, she frickin' bashed me... like infi times. This is important, as my initial opinions on this game were based entirely on 2-player games... where I was bashed by a non-gamer girl. It is also important that I bolster my own rep here by saying, I win at DS a lot... and against good players. So... yeah, what's the math on this?

I found the game okay; a decent filler, and something she liked, as she was doing the bashing. The strategy seemed a little too direct as a 2-player game--which is to be expected. Turn order was clutch; you can kind of pick and choose your battles accurately, safely. But I liked the game, even at this juncture.

Today I took the game to a local weekend Meetup here in the city. We were hoping to play reg DS, but, alas, no dice not that the game uses them); today was a day for Munchkin, Fluxx, and other such gaming dung. HOWEVER, three of us managed to squeeze in a game DS the CG whilst waiting for something else to happen.

Immediately, I saw the difference in dynamic. "Special" action cards that seemed lackluster with only 2 players suddenly became scary. In short, we had a good time. The other two gents were of the same opinion: "not bad." And, oh, I lost again!

Turns out, we finished while many a game was still going on. This left us in another limbo of sorts. So two of us recruited a full game of six and got nassy in a second game.

As with the 3-player game, the difference was uber-palpable. The commitment to rounds felt brutally critical, fun, and strategic. Some players seemed to not get the clip of the game at first, but learned a little too late that being meek meant losing. We had a few AP players that ruminated for what seemed a small eternity on crap that rarely mattered, but, regardless, it was fun. There was a loud caterwauling emanating from our table that had people looking at us like fools. Animals were being suppressed, eliminated, all kinds of fur and scales, and wet squishy exotic pet matter was everywhere.

In the end, finally, I won the day! And by a landslide! (My strategy was, take a few early rounds, and steal a couple later ones via heavy commitment--I am still surprised I pulled this off; Annelids as your first card shouldn't bully people out of contention, but it did). A good time was had by all; many remarked, I would buy this game, no doubt--though some were puzzled by the SRP, as it was a bit steep for a game like this (in general).

After about an hour, I was still in a limbo of sorts--Munchkin mania! I managed to shoulder a few dudes playing Jungle Speed (wtf!!!) into another game: a resounding 6 players again!

In short, a good time was had by all once more. Many laughs, guffaws, and twists to keep us all enthralled. This time, I lost, and horribly so, but I was still happy with my my 1-5857656363654 record, so... whatevs.

My opinion on this title: it's good. It's rummy with teeth, a nice filler that feels more substantial based on the number of folks you can get to play. Not a single person, even a notoriously jerk-ass guy who most avoid like reverse sunscreen on a apocalyptic summer day, thought it anything short of fun, clever, and interactive. There's enough here to make it something more than litter box-grade filler that you play when your uncle Terry comes into town in his minivan... huh?

Yeah, it's good, fun, strategic. My only qualms are:

1.) The price is a bit steep for what comes in the box. I get it, "Chad birthed this!" Still, give us like a kidney stone of something, brah! Most games like this fall into that $20ish margin. And I even went all FLGS on my purchase, so don't step!

2.) The whole "suppress" and "endangered" meaning basically the same thing is a little silly. Sure it's thematic and flexes mad Thesaurus muscles, but it's one in the same, a little confusing, and is the only blemish in an otherwise elegant little design. (Insert Chad disagreeing... here!)

If you love OG DS, don't come to a game of this with expectations beyond the art dept. cutting corners; it ain't the same game!!! But that's okay; it's its own thing, and does a fine job at it.

This is a perfect game to play with those lacking the nerd germ; a fine little gateway gem that I recommend like Doritos and chocolate ice cream (try it, then scoff).

Okay, that's all! Begin contrarion posturing in 5!

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Sean Franco
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Action Phase wrote:
2.) The whole "suppress" and "endangered" meaning basically the same thing is a little silly. Sure it's thematic and flexes mad Thesaurus muscles, but it's one in the same, a little confusing, and is the only blemish in an otherwise elegant little design. (Insert Chad disagreeing... here!)

Well, one is a verb and one is an adjectctive. Suppressing is something you do, while being endangered is a game state. If nothing else, a player can suppress a healthy animal or an endangered animal; how can the words be one and the same at that point?

Good read.
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Travis R. Chance
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Sean, I got that; my point is use tenses of the same term for simplification. Generic gaming example incoming:

"target a tapped card; then rotate another card." You could say "target a tapped card; then tap another." Or "target a rotated card; then rotate another."

There is a verb tense of endangered, as well as an adjective tense of suppress; why not strip it down and use the various tenses of a single term?

Having two terms, outside of the confines of grammatical sweetness, gives a head nod to 2 different things. Trust me, this confused at least 6 players yesterday: "wait... if you endanger something can you..." And most of these people had glasses, so they were def smart.

PS (you took the contrarion bait; FOR SHAME!!!!!!)
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Sean Franco
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Action Phase wrote:
There is a verb tense of endangered, as well as an adjective tense of suppress; why not strip it down and use the various tenses of a single term?

The distinction of words is to provide clarity for the distinction of actions and game states. As much as you feel that "suppress the suppressed card" is not redundant, I think more people would find that a little less clear in intention. If it's already suppressed (one may ask), why suppress it again? "Endanger an endangered card" is even less elegant with its lack of clairity.

Action Phase wrote:
Having two terms, outside of the confines of grammatical sweetness, gives a head nod to 2 different things. Trust me, this confused at least 6 players yesterday: "wait... if you endanger something can you..." And most of these people had glasses, so they were def smart.

It does so because the two terms do indicate two different things. (And really... I've met tremendously stupid people in glasses. You might need to develop a different yardstick to measure comprehension with.)

Action Phase wrote:
PS (you took the contrarion bait; FOR SHAME!!!!!!)

And you tried to gloat about it. Hmm.
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Travis R. Chance
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Sean, in times likes these, I ask you, what would Peter Steele do? Would he troll, ending his sentences with prepositions while waning all Dickens in a thread celebrating a game? You seem to have missed the point, the plot, and fancy yourself a clever one. Perhaps write your own thread, using your time, opinions, etc. My suggestion about this was based on the reaction of multiple players, a group consensus if you will, which I shared because I found it interesting. Do I think it matters in the end? Not as much as you do.

My motivation to share this was two-fold:

1.) I liked the game

2.) Tequila

Troll on!

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Michael J
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I would rather the terms be more clear, myself. I wasn't sure which was which when playing for the first time. How about "eliminate"? Seems clear you are killing off an animal there.

Anyway, I've enjoyed this game each time I have played, but agree wholeheartedly that the game is best with more than two.
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Darrell Hanning
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Action Phase wrote:
Sean, in times likes these, I ask you, what would Peter Steele do? Would he troll, ending his sentences with prepositions while waning all Dickens in a thread celebrating a game? You seem to have missed the point, the plot, and fancy yourself a clever one. Perhaps write your own thread, using your time, opinions, etc. My suggestion about this was based on the reaction of multiple players, a group consensus if you will, which I shared because I found it interesting. Do I think it matters in the end? Not as much as you do.

My motivation to share this was two-fold:

1.) I liked the game

2.) Tequila

Troll on!



I for one am puzzled by your reaction. You asked a question about the terms the games rules use, you got a well-reasoned and clearly explained answer, and proceeded to argue with the merit of it - without actually pointing out any flaw in the answer, itself.

I gather from your populist spin on the English language that you see yourself as some sort of leading-edge...something, but you failed to refute the reasoning offered, and then act as if it wasn't important enough in the first place, even though you were the one to bring it up.
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Travis R. Chance
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DarrellKH wrote:
Action Phase wrote:
Sean, in times likes these, I ask you, what would Peter Steele do? Would he troll, ending his sentences with prepositions while waning all Dickens in a thread celebrating a game? You seem to have missed the point, the plot, and fancy yourself a clever one. Perhaps write your own thread, using your time, opinions, etc. My suggestion about this was based on the reaction of multiple players, a group consensus if you will, which I shared because I found it interesting. Do I think it matters in the end? Not as much as you do.

My motivation to share this was two-fold:

1.) I liked the game

2.) Tequila

Troll on!



I for one am puzzled by your reaction. You asked a question about the terms the games rules use, you got a well-reasoned and clearly explained answer, and proceeded to argue with the merit of it - without actually pointing out any flaw in the answer, itself.

I gather from your populist spin on the English language that you see yourself as some sort of leading-edge...something, but you failed to refute the reasoning offered, and then act as if it wasn't important enough in the first place, even though you were the one to bring it up.


Had you chosen to quote my first reply, wherein I offer an example, then maybe you wouldn't be puzzled. Or if you took into account the seeming tone of dude's second reply, which, as the OP, felt a bit matter of fact, then perhaps you would understand the bite in my following reply--I understood why suppress and endanger were being used; I simply pointed out that, in general consensus, it came across as confusing--as it did with Michael J in this very thread.

I wasn't looking for an explanation; I simply said it was one of two criticisms about an otherwise well-executed little game. The comment it is less elegant is a bit off when, literally, we have more people saying, yeah, this was a bit confusing, than not. So in this regard, no; the reply was not dead on the money. It was a recitation of basic language of which I was aware. It was, somewhat the same as what you are attempting now: to illuminate a part of the whole that bolsters your opinion vs. taking the longview.

My first reply was intended to be funny, making light of the review and dude's abundantly obvious answer. HOWEVER, I can see how it was taken differently. For this, and only this, I offer an apology of sorts to dude. Furthermore, I don't fancy myself a leading-edge on anything; this is the way I write/talk. I am not out to wow the world with my use of semi-colons and commas; it's just grammatical graffiti to me. If you're keeping score at the punches being pulled, put 1 on the placards for yourself for assuming you know me based off of a thread on a board game website.

Once more, this derailment in semantic banter, though I have taken a part in it, is not the point of this thread. I like the game, again. I wanted to share that, as I had a handful of people at said meetup have apprehensions on purchasing it. I thought I would encourage those on the fence to pick a side; not bicker about the obvious difference in verb and adjective tenses to words.

Coo'?
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Peter Dahlstrom
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Great review! Both fun to read, sprinkled with wit & bite, and excellent at conveying how the game feels - bravo!

You changed my mind on the game, and I'll now be picking it up.

PS - Thanks for the warning that the terms "suppressed" and "eliminated", while correct, may be confusing to players, and deserve a sidebar during the explanation.
 
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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It's a shame that all the follow-up conversation has been about the suppress/endangered bit*, which is too small of a nit to worry about. The game itself is very good. I've read elsewhere that it's too light for gamers, but it's been received very well by my own circle of five relatively serious gamers. The review does a good job of presenting that case.


* My own view of suppress/endangered is that if your playing partners are insects/spiders/amphibians, you'll need to substitute a single word, but if your group is comprised of mammals or moderately bright birds, they should be able to handle this without undue difficulty.
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Travis R. Chance
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While I was most certainly a contestant in this episode of "trolling semantics," I agree: the game is great fun, which is what is really important here. Really, I can't recommend it enough, light or heavy gamer. It accomplishes its goal quite well!
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Sphere wrote:
My own view of suppress/endangered is that if your playing partners are insects/spiders/amphibians, you'll need to substitute a single word, but if your group is comprised of mammals or moderately bright birds, they should be able to handle this without undue difficulty.


This comment is GOLD!
 
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