Mottainai mini-review

We played Mottainai a few times now and I kept forgetting to grab a photo, so here’s two to make up for it.

Mottainai, early in game
Mottainai, early in game

Mottainai is a remake of the classic “Glory to Rome” card game. The gimmick here is that each card can be played in a whole lot of different ways (depending on your what you consider ‘playing it’, as high as 8), and you’re constantly planning ahead as to how exactly you will do it.

The items are quite powerful and change the game flow by a lot, and the game is a very interesting balance as to whether you want to push towards a finish and keep your points (and risk your opponent has secret points in hand), or you want to try and build up your engines for a higher score.

Mottainai, final scoring
Mottainai, final scoring

The only downside to the game is the slight learning curve to it. It’s very simple once you learn it, but first getting the hang of actions is a slight pain, followed by scoring rules after. Especially the backorder rules. Very clear if you understand it, very arcane until you do.

In our plays, we almost always end with the 5 items endgame condition, vs the empty deck endgame condition, but so far we’ve exclusively played with 2 players.

A really pleasant low-to-mid weight game.

Dead Panic review

Got to play¬†Dead Panic over labor day. It’s definitely more complex than Castle Panic, adding character powers, usable items, and a complicated winning condition involving collecting radio pieces, calling a van, then driving the van to pick up other player characters.

Dead Panic, very early in game
Dead Panic, very early in game

The big change is the winning condition. The zombies come endlessly, and killing them just pushes them back to the edge of the woods. The game is all about getting to the survivors, then collecting the radio pieces.

We played with 5 people which I think makes the game easier than not. We were completely out of items and using our last clubs by the time the van arrived though.

Dead Panic, a rather unfortunate survivor
Dead Panic, a rather unfortunate survivor

Fun game, I’m just surprised it didn’t come with more scenarios. Feels like it would be better if there were other alternate winning conditions, a la Robinson Crusoe.