Review: Well-Loved Board Game Castles of Burgundy is now an app

Let's get ready for the hot action of the Renaissance!
Enlarge / Let's get ready for the hot action of the Renaissance!
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The burgundy castles has long been one of my favorite strategy games, a 90- to 120-minute tile-laying game with a complex scoring system that is often referred to as a "point salad", which means you can get points from so many different ways that it may seem like there is no logic. I mention it from the beginning because I think it's a fair criticism of this style of play. Again, Burgundy castles This is the best implementation I've seen of this type of scoring, especially as the designer Stefan Feld, specialized in this type of game, connects the different types of tiles in several ways, creating a game that scratches the – balanced and consistent.

Digidiced now Burgundy castles on Steam and on mobile platforms in a great application that uses new illustrations and allows a quick game against the opponents of AI. Despite some oddities in the first version, it's a solid introduction to the game for new users and a fluid experience for the local game, although I want to see a smarter "hard" opponent and perhaps a system of placement of tiles more rational. Online multiplayer games may still require some work, especially with respect to how the application handles the timed game and an occasional bug that occurs when the game changes (which is a sufficient concern to suggest delaying the game). purchase the app if you prefer to play online versus local games or solo).

The CoB players each work to fill a personal chart of 36 hexagonal tiles (plus one already filled in at the beginning) by selecting tiles of six different types, matching them to the colors on their own board, placing the tiles next to any have already built, and then earn points and / or other rewards from each placement. Each tile color has a different function in the game and scores differently, hence the criticism of salad points. There are several levels of bonuses in the game to fill a specific area of ​​your board, which is worth more points if you do it earlier in the game, or to fill all the hexes with a specific color over the entire tray.

The game is played in five stages, each with five rounds, and you get two actions each turn, although you can also win some "free" actions by playing some tiles. Each player achieving a minimum of 50 shares during an entire game, Burgundy Castles is not a fast game. But this isa true thinker of the game because you are trying to build a long-term plan while keeping an eye on what opposing players could do, looking for a position on the track of the order of the round and weighing the winnings short-term points compared to the potential for bigger bonuses as the game approaches its end.

The implementation of Digidiced is more than enough, but it must certainly be refined, now that it is in the wild. Once you know the game, you will want to increase the speed of the application on Fast, because it is much too ridiculous to Medium and unsustainable to Slow, the two-player games against the AI ​​taking more than half an hour on this slowest setting. Some users have also reported heavy use of the battery from the tablet versions of the application, but I have not had this experience even playing with the HD setting.

The application has an essential cancellation function for many reasons, the main one being to allow you to test a move. Because the scoring is a little complicated, you can try several moves to see which of them earns you the most points before you commit. However, the cancel function only allows you to restart your turn instead of just going back to the last move, which can be a bit tedious.

Although the illustrations are pretty and sharp, the application inherits the disconnection of the basic game between the images of building tiles (very bland and brown) and their functions. There are eight types of buildings of this type, and each plays a unique role in the game: you award two gold medals, allow you to select a tile of a specific color on the main draw and you allow to place a tile on your personal board without using any action. . There is nothing obvious in the mosaic model that lets you know what each mosaic is doing, which means you have to press the mosaic (on the mobile) and hold it until you get a mosaic. pop-up window explaining all this. Finally, you will begin to remember most of the tile functions by their images, although I still find the Watchtower (four points, no other bonuses) and the Warehouse (selling all your commercial assets of one color) are too similar.

The online game gives you some options, including fast games compared to classified games where you have up to 24 hours to play. If you play a game, however, the app does not warn you if you play in a different game, even if you play a local game and play in an online game with a timer running. When you change the game, the application also repeats everything that has happened since your last turn – even if you "watch" the movements of these opponents – playing multiple games at once is even more annoying than should not be. (This is particularly true because sometimes switching from a game to the list of games in progress is the only place where I encountered a bug, the screen said "Loading" but never loaded anything).

There is also no live timer on the screen while it is your turn; you can only see your remaining time for a shot in the list of games running, but not once you enter the screen for a specific game. It also took a few laps to understand that the application indicated the "Elapsed Time" icon because the next player had already been started from the game for missing a previous round.

I've mainly played solo games, because of some problems that I've mentioned with online gaming, and I've found the Burgundy castles To be a good distraction and a reminder of how much I appreciate the game of table. The most difficult AI setting can always be a bit predictable, and depending on how the tiles are drawn at random, this can range from a moderate challenge to easy to beat (including taking the first place in the order of the turn at the beginning of the game), but it is never enough that I found myself indifferent to playing again.

Since playing physically against real opponents can easily last an hour and a half or more, getting Burgundy Castles in digital form is a boon for all who love the game. With some updates from the game part online , the application would be an easy recommendation for those who love the original game.

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