The Tao of Gaming

Boardgames and lesser pursuits

Spiel des Jahres twitter-like thoughts

Wow — three unknown games, a la Carte (a game I’ve had for a decade, and barely played) and Roll Through The Ages. I guess I should try Fresco, but I’ve heard nothing making me think it’s great.

No doubt I would be outraged at the injustice done to some other deserving games, if I could get outraged at the SdJ. I’m not surprised Flimsy Harmonica didn’t get a nod, too heavy. FITS‘ absence is somewhat shocking (assuming it’s eligible).

I don’t think I’ve played any other game in the last year that I would expect/hope to be a nominee. Germany is still a major hub, but no longer the 800lb Meeple of the gaming industry. (Which reminds me, I did enjoy the BGTG Podcast about the decade in review). If I’m trying to describe “Typical German Game” then the adjective that comes to mind is “Inoffensive.”


Written by taogaming

May 31, 2010 at 8:43 am

Posted in Ramblings

Tagged with

7 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Actually Dixit is probably my favorite Spiel des Jahres nominee in the past several years that I think has a chance to win. One of the best party games in a long time.


    May 31, 2010 at 9:46 am

  2. I find Fresco to be a little better than inoffensive 🙂 It is not terrific, but it is good (with everything on).

    Dixit is a great game. Of course its mechanics are well known, but still. Like it a lot.


    May 31, 2010 at 9:46 am

  3. The only real surprise for us SdJ watchers is that Tobago didn’t get a nomination. Most folks I’ve chatted with had it as the favorite to win the award. Fresco now looks like the one to back, but it sure would be cool if Matt could pull off a victory for his very good Roll Through the Ages.

    By the way, FITS was nominated last year.

    Larry Levy

    May 31, 2010 at 1:36 pm

  4. Though I’m also very surprised that Tobago wasn’t on the nomination list, my initial enthusiasm cooled pretty rapidly. I still like it, but it wasn’t quite the home run it first appeared. (It’s on the SdJ recommendation list, in any case, along with several other notables like Endeavor and Samarkand.)

    I now need to try Fresco, but worker-placement isn’t a mechanic that excites me. (Nor do I think it’s a good fit for SdJ–too fiddly.)


    P.S. Glad you liked the podcast!

    Mark Johnson

    May 31, 2010 at 2:56 pm

  5. Larry, I fear I’m with Mark – worker placement isn’t going to win SdJ. I actually think it’s the least likely of this year’s nominees to win.

    As always, I’ll stick with my pre-nomination prediction so long as it’s a possibility. But if Dixit doesn’t win, I’m almost certain it will be A la Carte.

    Joe Huber

    May 31, 2010 at 10:45 pm

  6. Well, I haven’t played Fresco, just read the rules. I don’t think it’s a true Worker Placement game, since there’s no limit on the number of workers per action; still, I guess it could FEEL like one and the programming could be a bit demanding. It certainly didn’t seem that challenging when I read the rules, but I agree, it’s awfully unusual for the most complex nominated game to win.

    However, the other games just seem so unlikely. There does seem to be a path being built towards an A la Carte victory and everyone I know who plays it winds up laughing. But a 20 year old uber-fluffy design winning the SdJ? That could put me off my handicapping for a decade!

    Maybe I’ll just wait for the award announcement and keep my mouth shut till then.

    Larry Levy

    June 1, 2010 at 12:26 am

  7. I like Fresco, but until yesterday I had only played with all the optional rules “on.” Yesterday I played with only the base game, no optional rules.

    I personally liked it better with optional rules, but the game certainly worked. It was more straightforward without the optional rules.

    I’m not sure how I feel about ‘dumbing down’ a game so it’ll be a contender for the SdJ, but also including the “rest” of the game as optional rules. It’s a clever idea, and I guess I can’t blame Queen for gaming the system. A precedent has been set by the SdJ judges over the last several years which I’m not too fond of, so maybe I should applaud Queen and the designers of Fresco for attempting to supply both a SdJ contender AND a deeper game all at the same time.

    Seth Jaffee

    June 1, 2010 at 1:48 pm

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: