German-style board games

Pentru că toată lumea care-mi trece pragul mă întreabă în legătură cu multele „german-style” board games pe care le am, m-am hotărât să scriu un articol spre care să-i trimit.

Spre diferenţă de jocurile britanice sau americane în care accentul este pus pe conflict şi pe strategii militare, pe noroc şi pe eliminarea jucătorilor pe parcursul jocului, jocurile „german-style” pun accentul pe o interacţiune mai puţin agresivă, de multe ori indirectă între jucători, pe strategii mai degrabă economice, zarul lipseşte aproape de fiecare dată, iar jucătorii rămân până la sfârşitul jocului, moment în care se face clasamentul în funcţie de nişte punctaje, de multe ori destul de complicate. O altă diferenţă este şi faptul că pe cutiile jocurilor germane apare mare de tot numele designerului, iar la cele din State nu contează decât compania producătoare. Practic jocurile germane se bazează pe numele designerilor, mulţi dintre ei superstaruri în Germania, tot aşa cum filmele se bazează pe nume ca şi Steven Spielberg sau Will Smith.

Cele  mai importante premii care se dau acestor jocuri sunt  Spiel des Jahres, un premiu popular orientat mai mult spre jocurile de familie şi Deutscher Spiele Preis, acordat de presa de specialitate şi care premiază jocurile mai complexe.

Deşi acest stil de jocuri au început să se conceapă încă de anii ’60, big-bangul s-a produs la începutul anilor ’80, o dată cu apariţia a trei designeri, aşa numiţii „Special Ks”: Wolfgang Kramer, Klaus Teuber şi Reiner Knizia. Din 1986 până în 2000 aceştia au dominat piaţa europeană de jocuri, ajungând în Germania la fel de populari ca şi actorii şi cântăreţii şi au dus acest stil de jocuri pe culmile cele mai înalte. În 15 ani aceştia 3 au câştigat 18 dintre cele 26 de premii Spiel des Jahres şi Deutscher Spiele Preis puse în joc. Mai mult, au avut 19 jocuri prezente în top 3-ul Deutscher Spiele Preis, cel mai prestigios premiu care se acordă board-games-urilor, acestea totalizând aproape trei sferturi dintre toate jocurile nominalizate. Chiar dacă în ultimul deceniu jocurile lor nu am mai avut acelaşi impact din cauza comparaţiei permanente cu cele anterioare (spre diferenţă de cărţi, filme sau muzică jocurile nu se învechesc niciodată) şi a creşterii concurenţei din Germania, dar şi din restul ţărilor europene, aceştia au rămas cei mai populari designeri de jocuri din lume; de pe la sfârşitul anilor ’90 au început să apară tinerii designerii care au crescut cu jocurile celor 3K.

Nu au fost multe jocuri care au câştigat ambele premii, dar dacă căutaţi jocuri pe care să le achiziţionaţi şi nu ştiţi cu care să începeţi, nu veţi da greş dacă le cumpăraţi pe acelea, pentru că sunt şi complexe dar şi uşor de învăţat, şi strategice, dar şi distractive.

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Aceste jocuri care au câştigat ambele premii sunt:

Adel Verpflichtet sau Hoity Toity (Klaus Teuber, 1990, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

What do bored English noblemen do with their free time? Well, according to this Klaus Teuber Spiel des Jahres (1990) winner, they like collecting old junk and then showing it off. Players buy or steal various pieces of junk in the form of cards, trying to form the largest and oldest collection. Built on a ‘rock-paper-scissors’ mechanism, this game gives all players a couple of choices each turn. The trick is in guessing what your opponents are likely to do, and planning your choice accordingly — only after everyone’s decision is revealed do you know for certain whether you made the right one.

Coloniştii din Catan (Klaus Teuber, 1995, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

Jocul care pentru multe lume a însemnat începutul dragostei pentru „german-style” board games.

In Settlers of Catan, players try to be the dominant force on the island of Catan by building settlements, cities, and roads. On each turn dice are rolled to determine what resources the island produces. Players collect these resources to build up their civilizations to get to 10 victory points and win the game. Multi-award-winning and one of the most popular games in recent history due to its amazing ability to appeal to non-gamers and gamers alike.

El Grande (Wolfgang Teuber, 1996, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

In this award-winning game, players take on the roles of Grandes in medieval Spain. The king’s power is flagging, and these powerful lords are vying for control of the various provinces. To that end, you draft caballeros (knights) into your court and subsequently move them onto the board to help seize control of provinces. After every third turn, the regions are scored, and after the ninth turn, the Grande with the most points is deemed the winner.

Tikal(Wolfgang Teuber, 1999, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

Tikal is a game of exploration within the Central American jungles in search of lost temples and the treasures within. Players send their team of explorers into the jungle, exposing more and more of the terrain. Along the way, you find temples that require further uncovering and treasures. Players attempt to score points for occupying temples and holding onto treasure.

Carcassonne (Klaus-Junger Wrede, 2001, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

Carcassonne is a tile-placement game in which the players draw and place a tile with a piece of southern French landscape on it. The tile might feature a city, a road, a cloister, grassland or some combination thereof, and it must be placed adjacent to tiles that have already been played, in such a way that cities are connected to cities, roads to roads, etcetera. Having placed a tile, the player can then decide to place one of his meeples on one of the areas on it: on the city as a knight, on the road as a robber, on a cloister as a monk, or on the grass as a farmer. When that area is complete, that meeple scores points for its owner.

During a game of Carcassonne, players are faced with decisions like: “Is it really worth putting my last meeple there?” or “Should I use this tile to expand my city, or should I place it near my opponent instead, giving him a hard time to complete his project and score points?” Since players place only one tile and have the option to place one meeple on it, turns proceed quickly even if it is a game full of options and possibilities.

Dominion (Donald X. Vaccarino, 2009, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

In Dominion, each player starts with an identical, very small deck of cards. In the center of the table is a selection of other cards the players can “buy” as they can afford them. Through their selection of cards to buy, and how they play their hands as they draw them, the players construct their deck on the fly, striving for the most efficient path to the precious victory points by game end.

From the back of the box: “You are a monarch, like your parents before you, a ruler of a small pleasant kingdom of rivers and evergreens. Unlike your parents, however, you have hopes and dreams! You want a bigger and more pleasant kingdom, with more rivers and a wider variety of trees. You want a Dominion! In all directions lie fiefs, freeholds, and feodums. All are small bits of land, controlled by petty lords and verging on anarchy. You will bring civilization to these people, uniting them under your banner.

“But wait! It must be something in the air; several other monarchs have had the exact same idea. You must race to get as much of the unclaimed land as possible, fending them off along the way. To do this you will hire minions, construct buildings, spruce up your castle, and fill the coffers of your treasury. Your parents wouldn’t be proud, but your grandparents, on your mother’s side, would be delighted.”

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Din cauza riftului creat între cele 2 premii, Spiel des Jahres au hotărât ca din 2011 să formeze o nouă categorie pentru jocuri mai complexe: “Kennerspiel des Jahres”, ceva de genul „Jocuri pentru cunoscători”. Astfel şi în 2011 şi în 2012, au fost câştigate ambele premii, adică Spiel des Jahres şi categoria “Kennerspiel des Jahres” de la Deutscher Spiele Preis:

7 Wonders (Antoine Bauza, 2011, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

7 Wonders lasts three ages. In each age, players receive seven cards from a particular deck, choose one of those cards, then pass the remainder to an adjacent player, as in Fairy Tale or a Magic: the Gathering booster draft. Players reveal their cards simultaneously, paying resources if needed or collecting resources or interacting with other players in various ways. (Players have individual boards with special powers on which to organize their cards, and the boards are double-sided as in Bauza’s Ghost Stories.) Each player then chooses another card from the deck they were passed, and the process repeats until players have six cards in play from that age. After three ages, the game ends.

In essence 7 Wonders is a card development game along the lines of Race for the Galaxy or Dominion. Some cards have immediate effects, while others provide bonuses or upgrades later in the game. Some cards provide discounts on future purchases. Some provide military strength to overpower your neighbors and others give nothing but victory points. Unlike Magic or Fairy Tale, however, each card is played immediately after being drafted, so you’ll know which cards your neighbor is receiving and how his choices might affect what you’ve already built up. Cards are passed left-right-left over the three ages, so you need to keep an eye on the neighbors in both directions.

Village (Inka & Markus Brand, 2012, Spiel des Jahres, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

Life in the village is hard – but life here also allows the inhabitants to grow and prosper as they please. One villager might want to become a friar. Another might feel ambitious and strive for a career in public office. A third one might want to seek his luck in distant lands.

Each player will take the reins of a family and have them find fame and glory in many different ways. There is one thing you must not forget, however: Time will not stop for anyone and with time people will vanish. Those who will find themselves immortalized in the village chronicles will bring honor to their family and be one step closer to victory.

Village is a game full of tactical challenges. A smart and unique new action mechanism is responsible for keeping turns short and yet still tactically rich and full of difficult decisions. Also unique is the way this game deals with the delicate subject of death; as a natural and perpetual part of life in the village, thoughts of death will keep you focused on smart time-management.

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Până în 2008, când a câştigat cu Keltis, Reiner Knizia, nu a câştigat niciodată  Spiel des Jahres, însă este cel mai premiat designer la Deutscher Spiele Preis, cu 4 jocuri foarte interesante şi complexe: Modern Art (1993), Tigris & Euphrates (1998), Taj Mahal (2000) şi Amun Re (2003). Toate merită jucate, însă v-aş sfătui să începeţi cu:

Tigris & Euphrates (Reiner Knizia, 1998, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

Regarded by many as Reiner Knizia’s masterpiece, the game is set in the ancient fertile crescent with players building civilizations through tile placement. Players are given four different leaders: farming, trading, religion, and government. The leaders are used to collect victory points in these same categories. However, your score at the end of the game is the number of points in your weakest category, which encourages players not to get overly specialized. Conflict arises when civilizations connect on the board, i.e., external conflicts, with only one leader of each type surviving such a conflict. Leaders can also be replaced within a civilization through internal conflicts.

Alt joc extraordinar, care nu a reuşit să câştige Spiel des Jahres, din cauza complexităţii este:

Puerto Rico (Andreas Seyfarth, 2002, Deutscher Spiele Preis)

The players are plantation owners in Puerto Rico in the days when ships had sails. Growing up to five different kind of crops—corn, indigo, sugar, tobacco, and coffee—they must try to run their business more efficiently than their close competitors: growing crops and storing them efficiently, developing San Juan with useful buildings, deploying their colonists to best effect, selling crops at the right time, and, most importantly, shipping their goods back to Europe for maximum benefit.

The game system lets players choose the order of the phases in each turn by allowing each player to choose a role from those remaining when it is their turn. No role can be selected twice in the same round. The player who selects the best roles to advance their position during the game will win.

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Dacă vreţi să aflaţi mai multe despre jocuri există şi o Mecca a acestora – boardgamegeek.com, site pe care poţi să-ţi petreci toată viaţă dacă vrei să citeşti sau să vizionezi recenzii despre jocuri. Acest site are şi un clasament al celor mai populare board-games în acest moment, clasament realizat însă mai mult pe voturile americanilor.

Dacă vreţi să cumpăraţi astfel de jocuri avem şi noi o mulţi de magazine virtuale care le vând: cutia.ro, tarabadejocuri.ro, boardgames.ro, lumeaboardgames.ro, tabladejoc.ro sau boardgameshop.ro dacă sunteţi din Timişoara.

Spor la cumpărături!

2 Comments

  1. Euro nu are aceeasi savoare precum ameritrash-ul.:B Preferatele mele sunt Memoir ’44, Wings of War/Wings of Glory, Blackbeard. Cand vreau ceva de logica, nimic nu bate eleganta si profunzimea Go-ului. Dar mai am prin casa si Carcassonne, Mr. Jack – si chiar si Ticket to ride, fiica-mea creste mare, iar dupa Looping Louie, parca n-as trece-o direct la Memoir.

  2. De adaugat inca un site in lista: https://www.lexshop.ro/ – Iasi.

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