You all travelers lookin’ for some gold in these here parts? Well, you’ll need to look pretty darn hard, but hey, at least you’re bound to find some wood, copper, and silver along the way. These all resources are mighty valuable, so use them wisely, and make sure to stay ahead of some of those other pioneers so you can find the best of the best. Head out, it’s time to roll west!
What Is It?
A roll-and-write game (which reimplements the board game Gold West) where players roll dice to collect wood, copper, silver, and gold to stake claims, finish contracts, claim Boomtown offices, and ship, all for various victory points. They can bank 1 resource on their turn and on a neighbor’s turn to use at a later point, but it’s best not to wait too long! Players are also rewarded in certain areas for being the first to a spot, or for having the majority. The player with the most points at the end of six rounds, wins!
Who Is It For?
I’ve never played Gold West, but from what I hear from others who have played both, it does share a few similarities, though stripped down, so fans of the board game may very well like this too if they want a quicker or lighter version.
The game box says 14+, but I think that the gameplay is simple enough that ages 10 and up could grasp it quickly; overall it’s pretty family friendly.
Dice – These are d12s which is cool and unique for a roll-and-write. They are overall really darkly colored though and the resources don’t stand out on them, which is disappointing.
Rules/Box – The rules are well written and easy to follow, and also include good examples! The box fits everything nicely and is good quality.
- Dry erase and comes with markers
- Cool dice
- Variety of options on boards
- Quick to learn and play
- Doesn’t feel very thematic
- Not enough competition in a 2 player game
- Often not enough control/decision. There’s not enough to mitigate your roll, so you’re at the mercy of the dice a lot, and sometimes don’t feel like you have much choice
I’d probably only give this on a 2/5 on difficulty. Overall, it’s pretty easy to play, again, because you’re mostly at the mercy of your roll which can often not leave you with many options (like when you roll 4 wood on your first turn, like me). There’s some light decision making on what to do with your resources when that doesn’t happen, but it’s not brain-breaking.
So, I am usually head over heels for roll-and-write games, but this one wasn’t my cup of tea. I thought you didn’t have enough control, and coupled with that, there wasn’t a huge reason to diversify in most games (especially with 2 players), it felt like it was always a better strategy to focus on one or two sections of the board.
In the end, I felt like this game was okay, but nothing I’m dying to play very often. It was just a little bit one note for me, but maybe if you’re familiar with Gold West you’ll get more out of it than I did, so definitely check it out if you’re a fan of that.
*I was provided a copy of this game to do this review*
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