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Bugs: Recent Topics Paging, Uploading Images & Preview (11 Dec 2020)

Recent Topics paging, uploading images and preview bugs require a patch which has not yet been released.

Tiniest Epics, vol. 7: Sometimes crime pays, with or without the shootin'

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11 May 2020 10:00 #310180 by Jackwraith
You remember back in vol. 3, where...

Yes, it's an abstract Western game. No, you won't really understand it, at first. That's fine. It's all worth it.

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11 May 2020 14:24 #310181 by Michael Barnes
Yeah, what a weird game this is- it’s Gamelyn’s most compelling and interesting design, But it is also their least accessible, most complex, and messiest. I really think it would benefit from a 2nd edition, but I suppose it’s not likely- from what I understand this is their least popular title.

It’s a shame because it does some pretty unique things. The business about getting to use a building maybe one time is interesting as your next purchase over-writes it’s ability. The poker stuff is handled extremely well, and gives the game quite bit of dimension and atmosphere. The shootouts are fun, the stock element works...I really like this game a lot.

But it is wound extremely tight, there’s not a lot of room in the design. It has an almost ruthless pace. There isn’t a turn to mess around, every action counts.

It definitely has that aire of mystery! It’s such an odd,
Slightly awkward design...yet there are familiar hooks in it. Afterwards I’m satisfied but also slightly baffled- kind of like how it felt playing Martin Wallace games back in the 90s.
The following user(s) said Thank You: ubarose, Gary Sax, Jackwraith

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11 May 2020 15:21 #310184 by Jackwraith
That's a perfect description. In my first game, I came out of it thinking: "I really liked that. I'm not sure WHY I really liked it, but I did." But from the second game in, it clicked with me. The action economy is so tight that it's similar to Gamelyn's other "weird" game: Tiny Epic Quest, which only has five rounds, compared to TEW's six, but also has four moves and three actions per turn, as opposed to (usually) two. You can get that third guy, but it takes some thinking. There's value in changing the number or suit of your card to win the poker game at your other location and/or Town Hall, so you don't have to utterly sacrifice 50% of your actions in one round to improve them by that much in the next round. But it's a difficult enough decision when you might need X amount of Influence to pick up the building you really want in THAT round, having no idea what's coming up in the next. That's the tension that makes it really work, but I think it gets viewed as a restraint that doesn't appeal to a lot of people.

I still tend to think of it as kind of a Knizia: it seems opaque when you first try it, but then you see the depth and it really shines.
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14 May 2020 11:24 #310302 by BackBurnerGames
This was the first Tiny Epic game I backed when it appeared on Kickstarter, and my first exercise in patience. Gamelyn are the MASTERS at adding items into their small-box designs, but *just*enough* so that postage rates don't skyrocket, and they still leave room for quality components. Plus, they are one of the best publishers that give consistent updates during the fulfillment phase of their campaigns. Scott Almes not just a prolific designer, he also makes gmaes that are relatively easy to grok. Matching him with Gamelyn has produced a series of games that are near unmatched in their versatility, relatability, and fun factor.

Tiny Epic Western is my favorite TE game by far, and one of my favorite TE games to play solo (Quest and Tactics have been great, as well). It's much more of a brain-burner than I think people expect, and that's what I love about it. The wagon-wheel layout on the table also adds to the aesthetic, and is the reason it's one of the few TE games for which I'd consider buying the playmat. Man, I love this game.

I'm also an RPG designer, and I recently created a Wild West RPG using a unique card mechanic, but I'd consider using the mapped layout of Tiny Epic Western to create a space for the town setting. That's how much the artwork and graphic design really draw me into the world of the Old West. Love, love, love this game.
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14 May 2020 11:38 #310303 by Jackwraith
Yep. I mentioned that postage rate thing somewhere earlier in the series. I think it was Michael Coe talking on BGG at one point where he mentioned that an element of their design process is staying under a certain weight in order to keep shipping from becoming more of a cost. That's just smart design all around. It's a clear indicator of a process that works from beginning (concept) to end (getting stuff out the door.)

That's a great point about the layout being a wagon wheel shape, too. Forgot about that. There are just so many good, (ahem) little things that find their way into the TE series.
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17 May 2020 11:07 #310388 by jason10mm
Another great review. Any thought to doing their big 4x game (Heroes of sea, air, land? I think)? I'm curious if having so much more space to play with allowed them to really flesh out a game to the teeth or if it was too much and washed out the game design.
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17 May 2020 13:49 #310393 by Jackwraith
Thanks! I've actually never played Heroes. I know enough about it to know that it's basically TE Kingdoms in non-Tiny form. I've heard a lot of varying opinions, including some inconsistencies in the rules, which isn't the norm for Gamelyn productions. To your question, I have heard that there may be too much chrome and it kind of loses some of the tenets of the design. But I'm a fan of chrome-heavy stuff. I know someone in the area who went all-in on the Kickstarter, so I'll try to get a game in at some point. I've also been trying to trade for it for some time, but haven't had any luck.

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17 May 2020 19:26 #310397 by Gary Sax
ubarose really likes heroes of sea, air and land iirc, maybe she'll pop by. I think she put up a review on it?

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