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Finally back in business

Antti Koskinen
Finland
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It's been a long pause for boardgamingfinland but finally I'm back in business now that we've moved to a new location and I have a room dedicated for work and gaming. I kicked it off with three friends and three fun games.

First game of the night was Hamsterrolle which is at the moment unavailable at the market and I suppose Zoch is not going to republish it any time soon. It's a pity since Hamsterrolle is a very entertaining dexterity filler with gorgeous components. The game takes maybe 10 minutes and filling the wheel with wooden pieces is challenging enough to keep it interesting for several plays. I can't recommend Hamsterrolle as the beef of the game night but fortunately there's plenty of other games to play when you need meatier game.

One good candidate as a meatier game is Principato which we played next. I've had the game for some time now but have been unable to play it because of the boxes lying around waiting to be emptied. I had read the rules a couple of times and Hessu68 had played the game once before so we had the game running in no time.

There's several reasons why Principato is interesting from the boardgamingfinland point of view. Firstly the designer Touko Tahkokallio is a friend and a Finn and there aren't too many Finnish designs in the international board game market. Secondly I really liked the game after reading the rules; it seemed that there were clever card mechanics and enough meat in the game for a hobby gamer.

Principato is actually quite straight forward type of game where on your turn you have two actions of three possibilities. You can activate a card you own, you can change a card you own to one of the general stock or you can take a joker resource. Players build an engine which generates points from military and or culture and the one who does it best wins the game. This sounds very euroish and that's just what Principato is - a solid and streamlined eurogame.

I liked it but it took a tad too long with four players for what it is. I'm pretty positive that playing time can be reduced once everybody knows what they are doing but there is always the AP danger in a game like this. For all of you who are fans of engine building Principato might be what your looking for.

The last game of the night was Dominant Species which has been sitting on my shelf for nearly a year since I last played it. Unfortunately year was too long and after three hours of playing we finally noticed that we had played one crucial rule wrong (each player controls animal and species refer to cubes players have on the board not like species refer to a player and all his cubes like we played). One mistake can have severe consequences and we decided that the way we had played had ruined the game and there wasn't a reason to finish the game.

I probably should try to get Dominant Species on the table soon so that we could have another go with the correct rules. I like the game and the concept but there's not enough time to play the game very often these days.
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