"Heckmeck im Bratwurmeck" and Diamant win the awards for best fillers
of the newer stuff. Both seem to be nearly universally enjoyed. I
was impressed with how well Diamant does with as few as three or as
many as eight. It's a very different game with fewer, but still fun.
The King Arthur card game may be a slight step up from "filler" but's
it's a nice card game that should surprise noone that it's by Knizia,
very much his "feel".
I played Amazonas, Fjorde, and Tower of Babel all again. Each has
improved with play, Amazonas perhaps the most. Amazonas has more
going on than it seems at first and plays pretty quick anyway. Fjorde
takes more like 45 minutes than the listed 30, but has two very
different "games" within it that mesh nicely. Tower of Babel I
enjoyed more with fewer players, but now that the gameplay is a little more
apparent, I may enjoy it with more players. Still, it was the least improved.
Fiese Freunde Fette Feten remains my favorite. I'm up to five plays,
two games in a row two nights in a row. For me to play the same 90
minute game back-to-back is a real rarity. In addition to an
entertaining and engaging theme (if a bit more "adult" than many)
which produces nice narrative, the underlying game is clever,
interesting and has some real tactical depth. The auctions offer good
opportunities for tacitcal play, but the nature of the cards, the
multi-faceted goals and the multiple, sometimes conflicting goals is
what really makes the game part of this shine.
Jay says there will definitely be an English edition, though he
probably (certainly?) won't use the Rio Grande imprint. It sounds like
there will likely be some minor art changes (there is some cartoon
nudity), but Jay said he'd try to keep it to a minimum. One or two of
the life activity cards may need to be changed as well, since some of
them aren't quite a cultural match to the US.
I'll probably play again before the Gathering is over, but I'm eager
to have it in English despite now being fairly familiar with the
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