Board Games

Non-Bookish Saturday Post: Calico

I ran a survey in the previous post of this type : Non-Bookish Sunday Post: Lost Ruins of Arnak. There were so many people who stopped by, but only six voted in the poll, and I wonder why!

Either way, the majority of the six votes voted for the first Sunday of the month. I know that it is not yet Sunday where I live but I think it seemed appropriate to start the year with this type of post. Hence the name change.

I had my eye on this game for quite a while. I do not remember now when and where I saw it first, but the colours and the components seemed very attractive to the eye. I only learnt the game mechanisms after I purchased it.

I will not draw out this post by going into too many tangents but this is another game (like the last post) that we have not been able to play just one round of and move on. Every time it feels like there is but one better move that might have altered the entire result.

The game is quite simple and in one or two small ways reminds me of Azul (another game I own which I might review next month). It is simple but deceptively so, as it is easy for anyone to get into a zone and over-focus on one thing and miss out on any other opportunities that might come their way.

There are three ways to score (as shown in the picture above). The picking up and using of the coins is not as complicated in the least

  • The cat is only interested in the design. If the design fulfils the cat’s criteria, a cat with the points printed behind it will take residence on your quilt.
  • If you line up three or more of the same colour you get a button. Each button is another three points
  • Finally, we have the central scoring mechanism (pun intended). There are six options, out of which for a single game you use only three. They list out a seperate requirement. The letters refer to either the design and/or the colour. My best quilt till date will clarify further. I removed the buttons and the cats to show the achievements around the goals. I achieved all three for the first time ever. I found this image to be the best way to explain to anyone who gets confused about the design and/or aspect.

Finally, the game comes with scenarios that can be used for any game between 1-4 players but I have been personally working on them as a solo mission. It works pretty great as a solo game, and the scenarios are pretty hard to achieve. They dictate which cat, which set of goals, how many/much of them, how many buttons and how many total points to have at the end to name a few of the options. The replayability in any form is enormous and I have played it more often than all the games I have owned for five years longer- which is saying a lot.

The same designers and publishers have made a less constrained version as a new release this year called Cascadia. The theme is different and it seems to play differently but since I haven’t actually tried it myself, this is all I can say about it.

I love the ‘aha’ moment on a player’s face when it clicks as to how they can manipulate any given goal requirement to their benefit. It is highly satisfying. I recommend it to people who like quiet introspective games with outbursts of protests when people realise a mistake they previously made 😀

Have you played this? Do you like it? Would you suggest I buy Cascadia too? My semi-gaming interested husband liked the scoring mechanism enough to actually suggest we should get that too!

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