Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Utopia Engine

In brief
Utopia Engine is a great solo game that has a lot of replay value.  We also love that it is free and easy to take along when we go out.

Shay's full review

I was looking around at print & play games on BoardGameGeek when I found this game.  It seemed a little daunting to have a 12-page rulebook for a paper and pencil game, but I was intrigued.  The instructions are written very clearly and are easy to follow.  After two games, I put them aside and was good with just the adventure pages.

The story of the game is that you are trying to construct a device, the Utopia Engine, to stop doomsday.  First, you have to find the parts in six areas and then you must assemble them before the world ends.  You use two dice, a pencil, and some basic math to find and assemble the parts.

I love a good solitaire game, especially if it includes dice, and this game does not disappoint.  I made a laminated copy and we have it with some other favorite print & plays to break out when we are looking for some quick fun.

Rating: 8

You can find the download and more information on BoardGameGeek

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Sushi Go Party!

In brief
We both think that Sushi Go Party! is a great update of a really good game. Definitely recommended. 

AJ's full review
We're kicking this blog off with games at PAX Unplugged. We got 3-day badges and scored all the booths, so we're not gonna miss anything.

So, Gamewright. The family favorite in our house. In fact, we play their games so much that I won the Sushi Go! Tournament at the World Boardgame Championships in July.

Speaking of Sushi Go!, our first review is going to be Sushi Go Party!

First of all, there are dividers in the box, which is a plus. Sushi Go Party! is an enhanced version of Sushi Go!, where you BUILD YOUR OWN DRAFT DECK!  The cards are split into four sets: Appetizers, Rolls, Specials, and Desserts. You take a couple of each and shuffle them together to make your draft deck. Tiles of the cards are put around a SCORING SYSTEM! That, alone, would be an amazing game. But it gets better.

First, there are recommended decks, from the original cards to a two-player layout. Now for the individual cards: Temaki is like a mini-pudding -it's worth 4 points if you have the most, and -4 points if you have the least. It's not TOO bad... Tofu is a great idea. If you get 1, that's 2 points. 2 is worth 6 points. 3 is worth... NOTHING! Green Tea Ice Cream is a Dessert, so it scores at the end. For every 4 you own, you get 12 points.

The only problem I have found is that the lid is unstable, so if the lid pops while the box is on its side, well, you can imagine what happens.


Rating: 7/10

Shay's full review
Sushi Go! is a favorite in our family, so we were excited to find Sushi Go Party! at PAX. The basic idea, which is the same in both versions, is that you are drafting cards in order to make sets. Each player drafts one card from the hand they are dealt, then passes what is remaining to the next player. You do this until you draft the last card, then you tally up the points from your sets.

The Party version adds a scoring system, which is great, and some new varieties food to add more strategy to the game. This version also plays up to 8 players. We haven't played with that many, but that would definitely add a twist to the drafting because you would be far less likely to get the cards you need if you don't draft them immediately.

With the added cards in this game, you also create a menu (there are suggestions in the manual), so each game can be completely different by changing which items you include.

Initially, I wasn't going to buy this because we already had the original Sushi Go! game in our collection, but it was definitely worth the investment. We will also be keeping the original game to take with us when we are on the go because it is so much more portable.

Rating: 8/10

You can find more information on BoardGameGeek and Amazon.