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Subject: Vital Lacerda's Best Game (So Far) rss

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Jesse Dean
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CO2, by Vital Lacerda and published in the US by Stronghold Games, is a positional resource management game, where players serve the role of companies who are seeking to profit from ever increasing global temperatures by completing environmentally friendly power plants and projects that decrease the rate of CO2 growth and prevent the world from being rendered uninhabitable by greenhouse gasses. Despite the threat of an “everyone loses” condition, CO2 is very much a competitive game.



This is the second game designed by Vital Lacerda, whose other game was Vinhos a 2010 release that had a reasonably positive reaction from fans of heavier games and now sits comfortably in the Top 200. Despite the fact that they are by the same designer, they are very different games. CO2 is less grandiose, more interactive, and much easier to learn. The only real area of overlap is that both games require you to accomplish your goals with a very limited number of actions while taking advantage of bonus or free actions that allow you to push yourself farther than your limited base actions would allow. As a result, having a particular opinion of Vinhos is not necessarily a key predictive factor in determining if you will like CO2.

Functionality and Components
CO2 is probably the prettiest game released this year, and may very well be one of the best looking board games that I have ever seen. It has a very distinct style and look, which serves to differentiate it from the crowd without intruding into the functionality of the game.



CO2 is very functionally clean and straightforward. The game features an effective iconographic system, which allows players to quickly identify what any given card or track location does with minimal difficulty, though players who have trouble with icons may find CO2 more difficult to pick up as a result. The player colors are also well-defined. I have yet to have any difficulty playing the game in a wide range of lighting conditions.



CO2’s playability is further enhanced by the game’s excellent player aid. Almost all of the game’s rules are featured on this player aid, and it even includes a flowchart that is not featured in the rulebook and serves to provide an excellent overview of how the Carbon Emission Permits (CEPs) interact with the market. On the whole, I have found it invaluable in teaching the game, and it also serves as an excellent rules reference when needed.

Exploiting Opportunities
CO2 is largely about creating opportunities for yourself when other players are least able to take advantage of them or creating opportunities in such a way that other players are forced to help you in the process. Generally, whichever player is best able to do so will be the one who wins the game.



This is built into the game most obviously in the way the three core actions related to each other. These three actions, Propose (A Project), Install (A Project), and Construct (A Project), naturally lead into each other and, with the exception of Propose, all require that there is a project in the previous state in order to move on to the next one. Performing any of these actions, except for the last, does not give you any sort of control of the resulting project; by proposing a project you let other players install that project; by installing a project you let other players potentially construct that project. Of course, there are ways to mitigate this, both by taking advantage of the strategic state and by exploiting the specific tools that the game provides you to serve as weapons against the other players.

These weapons are generally not needed for the Propose or Install actions, as they both are easy to do and lack any difficult requirements to enact. The Construct action is different. Each one requires a prerequisite depending on its associated expertise type and also has a cost in both money and tech cubes. By controlling the amount of opportunities available for other players, by influencing what projects you propose and install, and how often you perform these actions, you gain a direct influence over the types of options available for other players, and how much they will be able to impact what you are able to do. It is very easy to lose sight of these weapons, however, as the advantages provided by constructing a project are significant, though not in the ways that most players initially assume. The victory points provided by the project typically are not that significant, because the money, which are effectively victory points, cost to build them and because the effort use to get the required tech cubes could be used to get things that directly provide victory points. The secondary benefits associated with the project, however, are significant because they allow you to gain additional expertise, they give you a chance to take control of a region, and because they give you access to UN goals.

Money, Tech Cubes, and CEPs
There are three resources that both constrain and enable your attempts to follow the action flow: Money, Tech Cubes, and CEPs. Each one has a distinct role in the game and is rather unique, both in how it is produced and how it is used.

Money is the most easily acquired of the resources, but is the most essential. Constructing a project typically requires a significant amount of money, and if you want to manipulate the CEP market at all then you will need money for purchases. It is also useful because every $2 is worth 1 victory point at the end of the game. This can end up being a significant amount of victory points at the end of the game, either in its base form or in the form of CEPS, particularly if market manipulation results in the CEPS being particularly valuable by the game’s end.

Tech cubes have two uses. The primary one is to enable the construction of projects, with individual projects needing anywhere from one to four cubes. The second is to purchase UN Goal Cards. Each of these cards features anywhere from two to four different project types and can be purchased by a player who uses their card action and a tech cube to do so. Each one gives an amount of victory points that depends on how difficult it is to meet its conditions. These victory points are extremely significant. They are one of the main reasons that building projects is worthwhile from a straight victory point perspective, and the fact that there is a limited supply of them means that it is one of the best ways to differentiate your position from that of the other players.



CEPs are used primarily for project installation. In order to install a project, you need to either spend a CEP from your own supply or from a region that you control. Beyond that they have no direct in-game effect directly, but indirectly they have a big effect thanks to the presence of a CEP market. The market is one of the two primary ways to get a CEP. On a player’s turn they can spend one of their free actions to either purchase a single CEP from the market or to sell one to the market. Every time the market empties out the price of CEPs increases. Every time one is sold the price of CEPs goes down. Thus it is easier to tank the price of CEPs then it is to push them up, though if players gain a lot of CEPs from project installation or spaces on the tech track, this dynamic can change, and players could find the prices rapidly shooting up. It is also difficult for a player to identify if it is to their long-term advantage to crater or inflate the price of CEPs since some of their available CEPs, based on region control, may or may not be present at the end of the game. When not accounting for long-term advantage if becomes an easier decision, as high-priced CEPs can create a big incentive to sell, cash in, and take advantage of the money gained to construct a project.

Expertise and Scientists
Expertise represents the amount of knowledge a player’s company has into one of the five (Recycling, Biofuel, Nuclear, Solar, and Forestation) different types of projects. Each of these types of expertise is represented by a single expertise track that indicates how much expertise is required in order to construct a project of that type, the quantity of income, and special benefits that are acquired when you reach the appropriate spot on the expertise track. The advancement based benefits are generally available, but you only get income, which may be in money or victory points, if you are either first or second on the income track.

This creates an interesting dynamic as players are frequently pulled in a variety of different directions. The bonuses that are most frequently concentrated at the end of the expertise tracks encourage you to continue to advance along the same track while the desire to gain new sources of income and the ability to construct a wide variety of projects encourages you to push into new tracks. And of course, as you see other players begin to nip at your heels in the tracks that you have advanced farther on you are encouraged to push forward again, resulting in a parallel source of competition to that which is taking place on the board.

There are two primary ways to get expertise. The first is to construct a project. Every time a project is constructed, the player will get a point of expertise of that type. The second is through the use of scientists.

Scientists are utilized through one of the three free actions a player receives in a round. They can be moved from your supply to an empty project or from a project to a summit. Each of these options essentially serves as a gateway for getting more expertise. By going to an empty project you gain the ability to slowly gain expertise, as at the end of a player’s turn they get a single point expertise of a type that matches the expertise associated with one project that one of their scientists is currently place on. Having multiple scientists on projects does not provide any special expertise benefit beyond flexibility, however, which is where summits come in. Each summit has a number of spots, each associated with a different type of project. At the end of any turn in which the spots are completely filled, each player gets bonus expertise based on their placed scientists and the different types of expertise displayed on the summit tiles.

The expertise gained from scientists on projects is the bulk of the expertise income you will get in a game, but the bonus expertise gained from summits can also be very significant, particularly if you are fighting over the first and second spots on the expertise tracks. Since it can sometimes be difficult to complete a summit yourself, unless you have accumulated additional scientists, this requires you to be able to correctly read what your opponents are going to do. By creating situations where you encourage other players to join you in summits, you can gain a significant amount of bonus expertise at little cost to yourself.

Scientists also allow you to interfere with the ability of other players to advance or complete projects. If you have one of your scientists on a project, they will be unable to implement or construct a project unless they pay you to move your scientist off. When you do so you not only get the money but are also able to either take them back to your hand, and get an instant bonus expertise, or are allowed to immediately move them on to a summit. This effectively free scientist move that this provides is significant enough that it is actively beneficial for you to get in the way of other players or, sometimes, pay for someone else to move their scientist so that they are inclined to help you complete a summit.

The Importance of Geography
CO2’s action takes place over six continents, each of which has two primary defining characteristics. The first of these is the three types of projects that can be proposed in them, and their relative importance. This feature is not tied to a particular region, however, and is based on a set of tiles that are randomly placed at the beginning of the game. The number of slots that are available for projects also varies with region, ranging from 3 for Africa to 6 for Asia, with the number of maximum available CEPs for each region varying based on the number of slots. Beyond these differences, each region is functionally identical, though these differences are enough to create a plethora of interesting strategic considerations.



The primary consideration is regional control. The player who has constructed projects that best meet the needs of a region will get rewarded with control of a region. This allows them to use CEPs from that region as their own when installing a project as well as giving them the financial value of all CEPs left in the region at the end of the game. This frequently results in some level of strategic tension, as players attempt to expand into new regions while still defending the ones they already control, particularly if the controlled regions are ones that have a particularly large amount of inherent CEPs, and thus both options and potential points.


The secondary consideration is the disasters. After the CO2 track reaches a certain level, disasters start occurring each turn. When a disaster occurs each player has to pay a tech cube to that region. If they are unable to, they lose points. This requirement is avoided if you have a completed project in the region, so players are forced to decide whether building in a region that is scheduled to have a disaster on the following round is worth interfering with their current plans, or if they would rather lose a tech cube. Once tech cubes are supplied to a disaster-hit region, the decisions become even more complicated as each player can use one of these cubes when they build in that region in order to construct a project, creating an additional strategic wrinkle when deciding on the best location to build a project.



The third consideration is how your goals, as defined by your company goal and lobby cards interact with the constraints by the three of five limit of projects in any given region. This consideration provides much of the mechanical variety in the game as the lobby and company goal cards provides real player differentiation and a variable game set-up that ensures that particular multiple-continent combination strategies will not continue to work from game to game.


Card Management
Playing a card is the last of the three free actions, and is the one that a player will most likely feel constrained by. There are three types of cards: lobby cards, company goal cards, and UN goal cards. The first two are secret and are only applicable to the player themselves. UN goal cards are a source of competition as players will compete for them in order to get access to their significant amount of victory points.

Players start the game with a hand of lobby cards, each of which provides the player with one of two bonuses depending on whether they play the card after meeting a special condition or simply choose to discard it for the second bonus. Players will frequently play to these cards earlier in the game, and I think that is generally the correct decision. It becomes a little bit trickier later in the game when playing one of your remaining cards could potentially interfere with the acquisition of a UN goal card. Generally, I think that if you are approaching the point in the game where you are going to start collecting UN goal cards that you will want to probably discard your remaining lobby cards in order to get the secondary bonus. The risk of not getting the VPs from a UN goal card is too high to let the desire for a slightly better bonus to get in the way.



Company goal cards represent a way to get bonus victory points at the end of the game. Each one provides a way to get a significant amount of victory points at the end of the game, providing a greater strategic framework to a player’s in game actions. If the player ends up in a position where they consider their victory condition to no longer be feasible, then they can choose to trade the card in for $8, though I think in most situations this will be a bad choice. The bonus points provided by can easily be 10% of your total score, and failing to get that many points can seriously impact your chances of winning. Luckily, most of them are easy to achieve, to some lesser or greater degree, if you plan properly, and they provide enough of a strategic dimension that I think they are a good addition to the game.



UN goal cards provide bonus points in exchange for a tech cube assuming that the players have a constructed project of all the types indicated on the card. While these points are not quite on the same level as those provided by the UN goal cards, acquiring these cards should be a major part of every player’s strategy as the direct amount of effort required to get them is typically minimal; players should be able to include an attempt to get these into a larger overall strategy without significantly effecting their ability to win. Of course, with other players also competing for the same goals then getting them becomes all about successfully maneuvering around other player’s plans and successfully gaining setting up a position where it is possible to get complementary cards before other players can get their hands on them.

Innovation, Reimplementation, or Retread?
Earlier this year I wrote an article about a categorization method for board games based on how mechanically innovative they were. In it there were four categories: influential innovators, which pushed the boundaries of board games and effected design in a significant way, incremental innovators, which implement some new and real innovations but were not significant enough to have a big impact on the hobby, reimplementations, which took an older design and but new and interesting spins on it, and retreads, which are mostly older ideas that are combined and packaged in a slightly different way. Starting with this review, I will be taking a look at how each game fits into this framework and what I find to be particularly innovative or uninnovative about it.

CO2 is both not quite like any other game, and very similar to other games at the same time. It is perhaps closes to an area control game, but area control is such a small facet of the larger goal. The expertise tracks are essentially tech tracks, and there are hundreds of games out there with market mechanics. Despite this, I think that each and every mechanic is clever enough and adds enough interesting twists to make this game clearly in one of the innovator brackets. I suspect it will not end up being an influential innovator, simply because of the fact that there is no single defining “lightning bolt from the heavens” style mechanic that will make people sit up and take notice, but there are enough interesting and new things going on that I feel quite comfortable describing it as an innovative game.

While there are a few things that I find to be to be particularly innovative, I think that the item that stands out the most for me is the market, and how directly it is integrated into every aspect of the game. The combination of how the prices of the market are impacted differently by purchases and sales, with sales always driving down the price, but purchases not impacting the price unless the market empties out, it leaves a lot of potential room for items that are not directly relevant to the market, like the expertise tracks and implementing a project, to directly impact the market by drawing CEPs out of the market and into other parts of the game and makes it so things like installing forestation projects are actually a very effective way to drive up the market price of CEPs and thus making it worthwhile to install forestation projects even if you are not directly interested in constructing them yourself.

This integration and the designer’s obvious intention to make the game as interconnected as possible clearly caused him to come up with new and interesting ways to implement subsystems that could very easily otherwise have seemed tired and derivative. Instead they are fresh and entertaining.

Ultimate Opinion
I quite like CO2. The game is slick and well integrated while still offering plenty of sharp edges you can use to significantly impact the positions of other players. Being able to predict and work around the actions of other players is an important part of the game, and setting up yourself so that other players will want to interfere with you so that you can encourage them to advance your plans while also advancing theirs is enough that I find myself continually intrigued by how individual games play out.

CO2 is not quite my favorite game of 2012, but it was in a tight competition with two other games to determine the eventual victor. It is an effective and fun game and it is clear that Vital Lacerda has learned a lot from both his design of Vinhos and reactions to that design. It is able to effectively and efficiently combine multiple subsystems together in a way that is both fairly easy to teach while also providing a significant amount of player interaction. The player interaction is sufficient that the game features a significant amount of interplay variability despite only having a small amount of variation in player set-up and player powers. I can highly recommend to those who like the more interactive heavy eurogames and it is one I expect to be playing quite a lot of in the near future.
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Huzonfirst
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Thanks for the typically comprehensive review, Jesse. Unfortunately, I don't share your enthusiasm for CO2. The lack of control with building power plants really bothered me. I'd probably play it again if requested, but it's by no means a priority.

I'm not the biggest Vinhos fan in my group, but I still thought it was one of the best games of 2010 and miles better than CO2. Different strokes and all that.
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Larry Levy wrote:
The lack of control with building power plants really bothered me.
Do you really mean the lack of personal ownership, Larry? Cause all those projects and proposals, no one has a claim on them.
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Clyde W
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Larry, didn't you only play it once and with five? Gotta play the learning game with 3.
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Larry Levy wrote:
Thanks for the typically comprehensive review, Jesse. Unfortunately, I don't share your enthusiasm for CO2. The lack of control with building power plants really bothered me. I'd probably play it again if requested, but it's by no means a priority.

I'm not the biggest Vinhos fan in my group, but I still thought it was one of the best games of 2010 and miles better than CO2. Different strokes and all that.

Typically games that require you to manage the incentives of other players and play off that will have a lack of total control of everything you do on the board.

Also, if the other players at the table play less than rationally it can feel chaotic. Tower of Babel has had that problem for me.

Agreed, different strokes and all that, personally I love this type of interaction in a game and while I think that lack of control is a perfectly valid gripe with games that rely on incentive management, I cannot wait to tear into my copy of CO2. My wife made me put my Xmas game order under the stupid tree so its taunting me as we speak.
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ktice wrote:
Larry Levy wrote:
Thanks for the typically comprehensive review, Jesse. Unfortunately, I don't share your enthusiasm for CO2. The lack of control with building power plants really bothered me. I'd probably play it again if requested, but it's by no means a priority.

I'm not the biggest Vinhos fan in my group, but I still thought it was one of the best games of 2010 and miles better than CO2. Different strokes and all that.

Typically games that require you to manage the incentives of other players and play off that will have a lack of total control of everything you do on the board.

That thumbsupthumbsup

And it's typically something I love. I agree with Jesse also that the most striking aspect of CO2 is the tight interconnection between everything. And I also agree that it is Vital's best. Given my love for Vinhos, that says a lot cool
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Thanks for a great review! Definitely keeps this one on my radar.
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Good review, Jesse - and no surprise. Love the beauty of the game artistically and mechanically. What is your opinion of the amount of mathy feeling in the game? Compared to (say) Power Grid - is ones success based on the ability to compute ahead in CO2?
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adamw wrote:
Good review, Jesse - and no surprise. Love the beauty of the game artistically and mechanically. What is your opinion of the amount of mathy feeling in the game? Compared to (say) Power Grid - is ones success based on the ability to compute ahead in CO2?
Way less than PG.
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Great review on my new favorite game, I've played twice and GMed twice.

When I explain the game I make it clear that the projects belong to the governments, so don't get hurt when some comes in and installs "your" project, or builds "your" plant.

This is a competitive/cooperative game, fail to realize that and you fail the world 500ppm of CO2.
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adamw wrote:
Good review, Jesse - and no surprise. Love the beauty of the game artistically and mechanically. What is your opinion of the amount of mathy feeling in the game? Compared to (say) Power Grid - is ones success based on the ability to compute ahead in CO2?

What Clyde said. Having the right amount of money and cubes is important, but what it is more important is noticing emerging patterns in play and determining which opportunity is the right one to seize.
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clydeiii wrote:
Larry, didn't you only play it once and with five? Gotta play the learning game with 3.
Played it once, but with 4. The game isn't particularly hard, so I don't see the point of a learning game. It's just that in the latter half of the game, when resources are more readily available, you have no real control in building the things you need to (a point that's been made by several other folks on this site). Consequently, all you can do is take advantage of the position left for you, which feels unsatisfactory and led to frustration. I guess there's more to it than that, because the game is well rated, but most of us didn't see the potential. Maybe the fact that I dislike games like Chicago Express, where people get off on some sort of group dynamic, means that I should avoid CO2. Just a thought.
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Larry Levy wrote:
Maybe the fact that I dislike games like Chicago Express, where people get off on some sort of group dynamic, means that I should avoid CO2.
I never knew this about you, Larry. Have you seen my It's not yours list? Do the examples there also have little appeal?
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I just looked at the first page of your list, Cary, but there are some of my favorite games there (Tikal, Steam, Brass, and many more), so that's not it. My issue isn't an inability to accept temporary ownership; my issue is chaos and lack of control. In CO2, the first two stages of plant construction do not represent ownership (if the last stage isn't completed, the benefit of the plant can't be achieved, so you can't lose what you never had). My concern is that there are sizeable benefits for actually constructing the plant and the best way to achieve that is for your right-hand opponent to let you do it. In the second half of the game, the benefits for constructing the first two stages are only occasionally tempting enough to set-up your opponents, so the whole thing felt very strange and the winner was determined in a somewhat arbitrary fashion. Now this is based on one whole play, so I'm no doubt speaking out of ignorance. But I've also seen enough agreement on these points from people who really like the game that I'm not so sure that I'm completely off base. It just may not be the game for me (although I wouldn't be averse to giving it another shot, to see if there are subtleties I missed the first time).
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How do you feel about Web of Power/China, where almost every move opens up opportunities for the next player?
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Oh, that's fine. You're still accomplishing stuff, so you judge whether the benefit for you outweighs how much you help the next player. And, of course, there's plenty of moves in WoP that don't benefit the next guy. I'm not necessarily wild about games like Medina, where the whole freaking thing is about denying opportunites to your LHO, but that's just because I usually prefer dynamic games over claustrophic ones.

But in CO2, if I really need to build a Type X power plant, there's just not much I can do except hope that the stars align properly and one falls into my lap. I can build Stage 1 of such a plant, of course, but that requires that one of my opponents is desperate enough for the (relatively) small Stage 2 benefit that they'll do it and that none of the next players will convert it until it rolls around to me. The odds seem small. In fact, a number of us tried this in our game and I'm pretty sure it never worked. In the first half of the game, the benefits for Stages 1 and 2 were large enough that players happily did them, but in the second half, folks were usually wealthy enough to avoid setting up opponents. There was no danger of the "everyone loses" condition happening, so the whole thing kind of stagnated, with people just grabbing whatever scraps they could. Not the kind of ending that encourages you to play the game again.
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That is a significant review.
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Hi Jesse,
Thank you for the great review. I love that you loved the game. a great Christmas present to me.

Merry Christmas and happy new year to you, and also to all of you guys. All Jesse readers.

Keep your reviews coming.
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Great review, thank you so much!

I'm curious though ... as you are a fan of "brutality" in games per your bio, and Agricola is perhaps my least favourite game of all time (anything with utter choice denial as a fundamental mechanic), how does this one rate? I understand that you can mess with other player's goals (I'm fine with slight but not absolute screwage) but since this is still a semi-cooperative game to some degree, how does that all work together?

I'm very curious, and holiday money burning in my pocket to spend at my FLGS at lunch today.
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DaveyJJ wrote:
Great review, thank you so much!

I'm curious though ... as you are a fan of "brutality" in games per your bio, and Agricola is perhaps my least favourite game of all time (anything with utter choice denial as a fundamental mechanic), how does this one rate? I understand that you can mess with other player's goals (I'm fine with slight but not absolute screwage) but since this is still a semi-cooperative game to some degree, how does that all work together?

I'm very curious, and holiday money burning in my pocket to spend at my FLGS at lunch today.

I haven't played yet, but I have done a lot of research, so take this with a grain of salt.

The game is not really "semi-cooperative." Yes, you can all lose if the world becomes too polluted, but each player is trying to win, and the things that help you win also prevent the world from getting too polluted. So you can play perfectly selfishly and still be helping "the team."

I would say if you don't like blocking in Agricola, you should be wary of CO2. CO2 isn't the same, but it is all about looking at the other players' positions and selecting an action that helps you the most and them the least. This is similar to the thought process that goes on in Agricola when selecting an action, and you may find it frustrating if your opponents never seem to set you up with what you want but often seem to jump on the projects you are setting up. Try before buy would be my advice.
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Doug Adams
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Wonderful review, very well written. I enjoyed Vinhos, but this looks much cleaner, and the built-in incentive mechanisms look intriguing. Hope the solo game works as it appears to be a complex game to teach.
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David Janik-Jones
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In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods; they have not forgotten this | Transgender pride | Unconditional love, pride, and support | LGBTQ Ally | The Raven King (game publisher) ... that's me!
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QBert80 wrote:
DaveyJJ wrote:
Great review, thank you so much!

I'm curious though ... as you are a fan of "brutality" in games per your bio, and Agricola is perhaps my least favourite game of all time (anything with utter choice denial as a fundamental mechanic), how does this one rate? I understand that you can mess with other player's goals (I'm fine with slight but not absolute screwage) but since this is still a semi-cooperative game to some degree, how does that all work together?

I'm very curious, and holiday money burning in my pocket to spend at my FLGS at lunch today.

I haven't played yet, but I have done a lot of research, so take this with a grain of salt.

The game is not really "semi-cooperative." Yes, you can all lose if the world becomes too polluted, but each player is trying to win, and the things that help you win also prevent the world from getting too polluted. So you can play perfectly selfishly and still be helping "the team."

I would say if you don't like blocking in Agricola, you should be wary of CO2. CO2 isn't the same, but it is all about looking at the other players' positions and selecting an action that helps you the most and them the least. This is similar to the thought process that goes on in Agricola when selecting an action, and you may find it frustrating if your opponents never seem to set you up with what you want but often seem to jump on the projects you are setting up. Try before buy would be my advice.

Gah, I was afraid of that. Crap. No other way to put it. I really, really despise blocking in Agricola, and it's difficult to express my loathing for that mechanic in that particular game when I do play other games with some amount of being able to upset (to some degree) the plans of others. And while not a huge fan of the heavier Euros my loves for Troyes knows no bounds, but there again, absolute blockage really isn't possible. I'll definitely take your advice and get in a session or two before pulling out my credit card on this one, thanks.
 
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Chris Linneman
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Hmmm. Well, if you love Troyes, I could be wrong about CO2. I mean, your plans can be seriously derailed in Troyes by someone buying dice out from under you. My advice to try before buy still stands, though. A lot of engine-building Euro-lovers have expressed their dismay with the lack of control in CO2. If you are interested, read Ben McJunkin's excellent review on the Opinionated Gamers. He does a really good job of outlining what he loves about the game and what you may not.

http://opinionatedgamers.com/2013/01/15/ben-mcjunkin-review-...
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Eugene
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DaveyJJ wrote:
Gah, I was afraid of that. Crap. No other way to put it. I really, really despise blocking in Agricola, and it's difficult to express my loathing for that mechanic in that particular game when I do play other games with some amount of being able to upset (to some degree) the plans of others.
Can you give some examples of games you enjoy that do allow you to impact the fortunes of your opponents?
 
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