Having previously played and thoroughly enjoyed the charming game Ore-Some, by One Free Elephant, I was happy to be able to play a prototype version of their new upcoming title “Microbrew” at this month’s Edinburgh playtest group meetup.
The game is intentionally small, coming in a single metal box of the sort you might usually purchase as a container for mints. However, the game is surprisingly expansive and provides a gaming experience similar to that of a much larger full sized board game. I think this is an interesting design choice, and I somewhat approve of a game being both lightweight and portable without the designer through necessity having to compromise on depth of game.
The game includes little play boards for each player as well as a main gaming board, meeple, money trackers, assorted multi-coloured counters, and two different kinds of cards. At heart a worker placement game, the idea is to brew up various recipes for delicious beer, let the beer ferment adequately before bottling it up and selling it off to approving customers with the aim of winning them over as loyal customers to your blossoming brewery. This game dynamic works well in my opinion, and I enjoyed this game and would like to play more of it in the future.
The game is in its final stages of prototyping, and so I was mainly requested to give suggestions regarding the instruction manual. With a little bit more work the rules could be clarified and organised in a more clearly structured manner, which would make this an accessible medium weight game that can be played either in compact spaces such as a couple of aeroplane trays or a little train table, or on larger tables if more space is available. The game is tailored to be an excellent game for two players, however it can scale up to accommodate more players if required.
In conclusion, this is shaping up to be a great little game and hopefully it will soon be ready to play at games conventions and meetups.