Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Coming Attractions

Just a quick note to say that I have a backlog of gaming stuff to write about, and hopefully it'll all be appearing here soon: I've gotten in more plays of Tzaar (which is not to say that I've improved at the game any), I've been back over to both Sandy Hook and Milford, I had a visit from a gaming pal from New Jersey (plus his better half), and I even twice got to play a hot-off-the-press preorder copy of Agricola.*

Regarding the last-mentioned, I'll just say that I enjoyed the experience, mostly, but I really need to play again before I can feel like I have a handle on the game. Agricola is somewhat complicated, in that every turn players have many, many options to choose from, and I don't feel like I'm yet skilled enough to be able to judge it fairly. I mean, was the game a struggle at times because I was playing inefficiently, or will it always have a frustrating aspect to it? I have faith that the answer is the former, but even so I'd need to try it again before I could say for sure. It also needs to be seen whether the huge number of choices feels more manageable with familiarity; there were definitely moments when I felt that the possibilities were overwhelming (I still don't know what half of the major improvements do) but this also might be a result of inexperience.

I do feel enthusiastic about the game, though. It's fun (or at least the parts when my farmers weren't begging on the street were fun), it left me aching to try it again to improve my performance, it's beautifully produced, and it does a wonderful job of evoking its theme.

(picture courtesy of Z-Man Games)

* For those of you who have the good sense not to keep tabs on something as frivolous as board gaming news, Agricola, just-released from Z-Man Games, is the game which for the past ten months has been the cause of a tremendous amount of noisy lovelorn sighing from those who have been lucky enough to be in the same room as a copy in English (the German version, published by Lookout Games, has been around since October).

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