Origins is strutting itself mightily right now and I can’t help but think that game publishers may have been looking to avoid this small time window for creating Kickstarter campaigns that would be ending in the coming days. That said, there were a couple that caught my attention and drew me in for a further look. The one that I would like to highlight is Fickle.
Fickle is the first Kickstarter campaign from BARD Games. The campaign highlights these two items right off the bat:
- The theme – fairies
- The artist – Amy Brown (known for her fairy art)
While the art is interesting, neither of these is why the game piqued my curiousity. The game mechanisms (designed by Gary Cotter) are what have me itching to be able to give Fickle a try.
First off, game customization. Fickle comes with 12 Fae Family decks (through stretch goals, even more decks will be avilable). At the beginning of each game, five of these decks are chosen to make up your game’s fairy forest.
Next is round play — there are five rounds in a game, in which each player will collect one Fairy. To do this, each player draws 3 cards. You will then sort those cards in an order of your choosing — flip the deck over — and pass to your neighbor. Here comes the interesting, push-your-luck aspect — That player will then look at the first card and then keep it (dismissing the other two) or dismiss the first one to look at the 2nd. Same option, keep the 2nd or press on to the 3rd Fairy –> that one you have to keep! Thus, player’s get to play some mind games with each other. By looking at your current tableau, I can tell which of these cards you would most likely want. So, do I put it on bottom…maybe enticing you with a different card on top? Or do I put it first, making you 2nd-guess — would my enemy really show me the best card first?!?
Each fairy family has a special ability, so not only are you trying to obtain High Favor Fairies (the ones with more end-game points) but at different moments in the game, certain abilities might be perfect for fixing a problem in your tableau or making sure your competition deals with some Fickle Fairies of their own.
These abilities will be important to manage and utilize to try and negotiate the game’s scoring. The goal is to have one fairy from each family in your tableau. For each family with just one fairy, you score the Favor points on that fairy’s card. BUT, if you have more than one…things go the opposite direction. With 2 fairies from a family, no points are scored (mild discord). With 3 or 4 fairies from a family, the highest point Fairy is SUBTRACTED from your total (super fickle!) So, why would you have that many fairies of one family? Well, you might be going for a Full Five Fae Fairy Family. If you get 5, all other fairies are ignored and you add up the points on all five of those fairies for your total score –> you have just Shot the Moon. Unless someone else achieves this feat, you will most likely be the winner of this game…but, it is High-Level Risky.
Fickle is a quick game, touted at 20 minutes; has some mechanisms that combine in a very nice package; and seems like one of those games that you will immediately want to setup for another try as soon as that first play is over.
If you see me (BoardGameCrockPot — John Crocker) at a board game night or gaming convention, let’s grab this game and give it a play!
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