Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Mark's #41: Africa

"Wow, Reiner Knizia has a new big box game coming from Goldsieber... maybe it'll be the next E&T!" And so, with that conversation (or conversations much like it) repeated over & over, you have the origin of the intial poor reaction to Africa. What Dr. K. did instead was create a point optimization game with a push your luck element that plays like a charm.... but isn't the 2nd Coming of Euphrat & Tigris.

Since I'm not a big fan of E&T, that didn't hurt my feelings much. And I've learned (much like Cafe International) that there's a lot more game under the "fluffy" surface of Africa. (Just try playing Joe "Nomad Relocation Program" Huber.) I'm still in shock that it made it onto the "real" One Hundred list.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Dave Arnott said...

Actually, I think more than false expectations, what really caused people to pan this game was that most tried it with the full five players.

Now I adore this one, this game of little successes, and it made my list of 15... and also onto the 100 (cool beans)... but it actually kinda sucks as a 5-player. And the 4-player is just okay.

No, this is definitely a 2-3 player game only, which, I suppose, is certainly a good enough reason *not* to think of it that highly. When the box says 2-5 players, who would possibly imagine that 4 and 5 would be the *sub*optimal numbers?

But boy do I dig with 2 or 3.

5:53 AM  
Blogger Jasen said...

When I last played it, it just seem *too* balanced (I got a similar impression when playing Merchants of Amsterdam). You could nearly do anything and still be in the running. Perhaps this was because I played with a full contingent of 5 players though. I'll have to try it again with 2 and 3. Thanks for the tip Dave.

3:01 PM  

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