Board Game Review: Myrmes

DISCLAIMER: I am reviewing Myrmes after one play (2-player). Why do I review games after one or two plays? Because It’s the first two plays that will determine whether or not I want to play it again! If I don’t like a game after those first two plays then I’m definitely moving on since there are so many other good games out there. Now on to today’s review…

The Ants go marching two by two, Hurrah! Hurrah!

Time for another Friday Board Game Review! Today’s game is one with an interesting theme: Building an Ant Colony!

In Myrmes you are in control of an ant colony. It is up to you to manage your workers, soldiers, and nurses to improve your colony as best as you can. Throughout the game you are faced with thematic decisions. Should you sacrifice a worker above ground to provide food for your colony? Should you leave a nurse behind and score points by completing an objective? Should you make more babies??? These are all serious questions, people! And when you play Myrmes you’ll have to make these sorts of thematic decisions! Over and over again!

Here’s a look at the board and components (image via BoardGameGeek.com):

It looks pretty intense! But is it any fun?

So after one play what did I think? Let’s find out…

The Upside:

  • COMPONENTS: This game has a bunch of components and they are almost all of very nice quality. The best, of course, are the little plastic ants even though they sort of look like spiders.
  • ARTWORK: I think some of the artwork on this game is outstanding! I really like the player mats with the ant colony. The artwork there looks really nice and it feels like you are underground in an ant colony.
  • THEME: I thought things fit the theme very well. It felt like you had to decide how to run a real ant colony.

The Downside:

  • COMPONENTS: While quantity doth not make great a game, quality can ruin one! The hexes that are placed onto the board look and feel nice, but they are not the same size as the hex grid on the board. Therefore they don’t fit properly.
  • ARTWORK: While the player mat artwork is really nice, the overall continuity of artwork in this game is non-existent. The player mats are so different from the board, which has about four different art styles (the score track leaves, the distressed seasons, the background, etc.). It just doesn’t seem to be the same style throughout all the components.
  • THEME: By fitting the theme of an ant colony I asked myself, “What’s fun about an ant colony?” Aren’t I supposed to be playing a game and having fun? Are ants fun? The most fun I ever had with ants was burning them with a magnifying glass.

So that was interesting. For the first time I listed the same categories as both upsides and downsides to the game. I suppose that goes very well with my mixed feelings about this game.

Designer Perspective – What I Would Change:

While I can understand the desire to make a game that so thematically fits with the idea of running an ant colony I just wonder why they actually designed this game. There was very little interaction and I often felt like I was just doing things to do them. As a designer I would have tried to inject more tension in the game. I think this would be best accomplished by having all players be part of the SAME ant colony. Either they could each have their own role (i.e., one player could be a worker, another a soldier, a third a nurse, and so on) or they could control one part of the colony. Then the idea of the game could be to contribute the most to the colony. You could compete over the use of the colony’s resources. Doing it that way sounds like a much more fun game!

Beer Pairing:

Back to work! So play Myrmes!

This is a difficult game to pair with a beer. But since the game felt more like work than fun I suppose I should pair it with a working man’s beer. So I’m pairing Myrmes with Working Man’s Lunch by Fullsteam Brewery. I’ve never had the beer so this pairing is based on name alone.

OVERALL RATING:

I didn’t really enjoy Myrmes. It was very ‘meh’ feeling to me. It felt more like work than like fun. The decisions weren’t very intense. There was nothing that stopped me from doing what I wanted. The interaction seemed minimal, though that could have been due to it being a two player game. And overall I can’t rate this higher than a 6 out of 10 according to the BoardGameGeek.com rating system.

Ok game, some fun or challenge at least, will play sporadically if in the right mood.

Ok game, some fun or challenge at least, will play sporadically if in the right mood.

About these ads

Posted on May 10, 2013, in Board Game Reviews, Board Games, The Boards and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

play without fear

on game design and play

Fail Better

Gil Hova designs and plays board games

Boards and Bees

buzzing about board games

Go Forth And Game

The People Who Make The Games Talking To The People Who Play The Games

Hyperbole Games

Blogging about board games and beer!

Ruby Cow Games

Casual Board Games

stonemaier games

creators of Viticulture: The Strategic Game of Winemaking

Cumbersome

Blogging about board games and beer!

Purple Pawn

Game News Across the Board

GameBugleGameBugle

Blogging about board games and beer!

iSlaytheDragon

Blogging about board games and beer!

Daniel Solis

Blogging about board games and beer!

Board Game Reviews by Josh

Blogging about board games and beer!

Giant Fire Breathing Robot

Blogging about board games and beer!

Inspiration to Publication

News from the Game Lab of the Bamboozle Brothers

inkscape tutorials blog

Inkscape Tutorials, News and Resources

Theology of Games

Two Geeks, Hundreds of Games, One God.

Wicked Boar Games

Updates about Wicked Boar Games

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 75 other followers

%d bloggers like this: