Hey, gang! I hope everyone had a great holiday season and got to play a ton of games! (If you don’t follow along my exploits on Instagram, be sure to take a gander at my 12 Games of Christmas.) I’m currently cleaning up after an impromptu night of Champions of Midgard and staring at the icicles outside my window, wishing I was a viking warlord. Eh. These things happen.

But I’m back at it, plumbing the depths of Kickstarter to bring you some great game recommendations from some very cool independent publishers. This week’s Kickstarter Game of the Week is Spirits of the Forest by Thundergryph Games!

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Besides having obviously gorgeous artwork and visual design, Spirits of the Forest is a tight and deep abstract game that makes use of an interesting setup to fuel its strategy. At it’s core, it’s a set collection game where players need to draft cards so they’ll end up with the most of each type of spirit. Unlike many other card drafting games, however, the entire deck of cards is laid out at the start of the game. This means players have a full view of every possible move and strategy right from the start. Of course, you’ve got to be aware of what cards your opponent’s going for, and be able to adapt your strategy on the fly to counter their moves as the game progresses.

BUT – there’s a catch. Players can only draft cards from the outside edges of the board – this limits the plays that can be made, and adds an element of progression to formulating your strategy. Players can use their gems to essentially “claim” future cards deeper in the forest. This lets you stake out a path to achieving your strategy… or it could be used to block or bluff, depending on how you want to play the game.

I’m excited to get this gorgeous abstract game on my table, because I’m in dire need of more strategy games that can be enjoyed by younger and more experienced gamers alike. I have a feeling that Spirits of the Forest will be one of those games I’ll agonize over strategies for… only to be bested by a seven or eight year-old… haha!

Until next time, gang! Keep it plucky,
Nick

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