This week’s backpack pick is Fairy Tale: A New Story from Z-Man Games.
This is the second edition of Fairy Tale and is being distributed by Z-Man Games. In this edition there are 10 new cards, bringing the card total to 110 cards, and there is a variant rule from Richard Garfield that pertains to team play. The game is for 2-5 players and can be played is about 20 minutes or so. The basic game, uses only 80 cards and is only for 2-4 players, but the expert rules uses all 110 cards and increases the player count up to 5 players. The game also has rules for playing as teams.
Fairy Tale is a quick-playing card drafting game where players compete with one another to draft cards from various factions to earn victory points. Sounds simple enough right? Each card has a faction icon that it belongs to and also a card type. These faction and card types can affect certain cards’ scoring abilities. Each card not only has a point value attached to it, but it also has an ability that can cause cards to flip, putting them out of play, including your own cards.. Plus you draft more cards than you play each round, making every card choice very important.
Over the course of 4 rounds you will draft 5 cards each round. Once you draft the 5 cards, BUT, you are only allowed to play 3 of them and the remaining 2 cards and discarded face down. As cards are played, they are placed face up in front of you in your play area. These cards remain in play until the end of the game. Each card as it is played has it’s effect resolved. This can result in cards being flipped or unflipped. You want to have your cards face up for them to be worth points. Some cards have Friend Icons on them, where the point values are determined by the quantity of a friendly card you also have played. Other cards have point values determined by the quantity of a specific card you have in front of you.
There are some cards that have a conditional score value attached to them, meaning they are only worth points, if you meet the requirements.
At the end of the 4th round, all face-up cards in your area are scored. The player with the most points wins.
This is a very satisfying card drafting game. It is a lighter-style game that can be played almost anywhere because it does not take up a lot of room. This is a quick-playing game with enough strategy to keep players engaged over multiple games. The basic rules are fine to teach new players, but you want to play using the expert rules. Using the expert rules brings in those 30 extra cards that give the game what it needs. #backpackpick