Highly competitive, passive-aggressive, cutthroat dike building. Oh, and some sheep.
So you probably know Agricola or Fields of Arle, or any other Rosenberg’s game. Well, this is not one of those. You do heard sheep, and build buildings and features on your field, and breed the sheep, until everything is covered in wool and wooden fences. You sell sheep, to get money, to do absolutely nothing with it, apart from scoring points at the very end (ok, in a 2 player game they help a bit, but it’s not really a desirable option anyway).
But above (?) all this, there is flood, that’s coming quicker than you think. So you need to buy the dike. Here comes set collection aspect. You need 1/2/3/or 4 cards to build respectively that many ‘parts’ of the dike (in a 2p game). Once the 4th part is built, you add a block. And then you look if the tide is higher or not. If it’s not, you’re fine, and if you are the master builder, you get the money. If it is, you’re screwed and lose sheep – if you are not the master builder, with the lucky hand.
And again, with two players, there is only two of you who build the dike. And you have to ask each other for help, but you don’t have to help each other, because as far as it advances the dike, helping doesn’t give you any points. So here, build a lot of that bloody dike, and then lay back, and build buildings, and let the others suffer and drown.
Again, I understand why people like this game, and non of us is saying that it is a bad one. All we made out of it, it is not an enjoyable two player game for us.
Right, now first put some filters on : it is not a two player game and I do not particularly enjoy passive aggressive games, that punish you for poor hand. If I haven’t got the resources to build the bloody dike, I am not going to score points, therefore when the flood comes, I will lose sheep. Does Matt care? Nope, he built quite a bit, with my help (silly me…), and doesn’t give a sheep’s bum about the flood. And so I suffered, pretty much the whole game. I think I was expecting something like Uwe, but as much as it is trying to be, it is not Uwe. However, I feel like with 3 or 4 players the game would be totally different, as more people would contribute to building the dike. Or would they?
Had heard good things of this one, but none of the previews I had seen seemed to grab me. There was a lot to take in with the rules at first, but it was not too complicated once we got going. Unfortunately this one did not connect with me. I feel it would work better with more players, but at two players it feels like you both have to be constantly working on the dike otherwise one player gets way ahead on the scoring and it floods. Maybe I didn’t really understand all the nuances of the game, but for this initial playthrough, it was merely ok. Would like to try again with a full player count though.
*there super duper sheep and dog don’t come with the game, we could use them thanks to Nick at the Ludoquist!