It is a sort of tradition of our Essen blog start one of the reports with Caterina sleeping. Who am I to ruin a so nice habit and so, here we are!
Me and Caterina are versatile players able to compete both with demanding Euros or entangling Americans so, after the hearth rending meeting with the Spiele des Jahres itslef today we bumped into a real Goblin! We were used to think goblins were little and grouchy creatures: this one looks much more like one of the Winnie the Pooh’s friends but we don’t presume to be always in the truth and we know that everything happening in Essen Messe is true and so … here Caterina and the Goblin (continue reading to see …)
We started with Parfum from Queen. A nice smelling, easy to play, not brain burning game of aroma and little bottles. You have to prepare aromas using smelling flowers according to what customers are looking for. You roll dice to get the fragrances and than assemble bottles and sell to customers. You get point both in the creation and in the selling of the perfumes. It is just an average game with nice mechanic in a well designed package with something to think about but not able to hit our hearts!
Since I’m a fan of Richard Garfield (one of the greatest designers ever) we stopped to play Treasure Hunters, a nice game built up around the drafting. You have cards in 3 colors, goblin cards and special cards. You have to compete in 3 area (ice, jungle and lava) with special award for the weaker and the stronger player. Than you fight against the goblin. You start with nice cards and than draft. The game is played in 5 rounds and than some final score. It works nice and you can play from 2 to 6 … more is better. My only complain is about the box: a big box (usual square Queen’s size) for nothing more than a deco of cards and an handful of tokens.
At Giochi Uniti’s booth we met the Zhanguo designers, thrilled about the presence of their game in the European’s masters. Jacopo, their son, decided to join me and Caterina in our travel. Looking for some game to play we dived into a Stinky Business. The game is not bad at all in spite of one of the worst explanation ever. You have to use your money to improve your recycling system both in efficiency and capacity. The game works fine without nothing of really impressive.
Essen Messe is something to huge to be really explored by anyone, in just 3-4 days. Ever year I find something from an almost unknown publisher/designer. This year we discovered Hack Trick, a nice oneVSone tricky game built up around the magic square, where the numbers in each lane and column sum always 15. The game works really fine and I’m sure wise teachers will be able to use in schools as math’s exercise and/or to teach problem-solving.
After that we started a game with Rhein, but I’ll talk about it in the next post!
Good play and best wishes
Caterina and Andrea