First Play Thoughts on Patchwork

After listening to everyone enjoy Patchwork for over a year, I finally bit the bullet and purchased a copy for us to try out.

Patchwork is another game in Uwe Rosenberg’s small box two player line of games. We’ve enjoyed our time with Agricola All Creatures Big and Small but we haven’t tried the others.

In Patchwork the players each have a 9×9 grid and they are trying to best utilize and fill that space with pieces of quilt. Think Tetris only the pieces are not moving, you are just filling the board with oddly shaped tile pieces representing the patches of quilt.

In the center of the table is a board with a track for players to track their time spent patching in a section of the quilt. Each tile has an hourglass symbol with a number, that number represents the spaces that you move on this time track, the game will end when both players reach the end.

The really neat part about the game, other than actually placing the tiles, is the way that the tiles are purchased. The 33 regular patch tiles are arranged around the time board in a circle randomly. At the start of the game the players find the 2×1 piece and they place the neutral token to the left clockwise of that piece. What this shows is that the three pieces clockwise from that neutral token are available for the active player to purchase. When the players purchase a tile the token moves into that space thusly moving around the tiles in a clockwise manner.  It’s really a fantastically simple way to limit what is for sale to the players and can make for some fun choices about whether to buy or just take income and stick your opponent with the unwanted choices.

There is an interesting income mechanic and also a way to get 1 spot patches on the time track but we’ll save all that for another day, I just wanted to give a brief look at this and our play.

I had warned Kerensa last night before our play that scores would be low and that we may see negative numbers. It’s just that kind of game, the end game scoring is simply the number of buttons in your possession(this is the currency), minus empty spaces multiplied times two.

I mean, come on, does this look like a 4 point quilt?!?!

This one is fun, it’s light, but yet it has some really fun and fairly important choices to be made during game play. We’re suckers for tile placement anyway, some of our favorite games are tile placement, but this one may have a chance to shoot to the top if Kerensa doesn’t get too frustrated over the scoring and spatial elements. Look for more on this one in the future!!

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