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Saturday, February 13, 2016

Fairy Good Indeed

Once upon a time, there was a happy ending "… and so, the valiant prince slew the evil dragon and saved the beautiful princess!"  But in the Land of the Dark Tales, it's not always that way, and not everyone lives happily ever after.  In the deep woods you can meet disturbing creatures that reject the light, ready to deceive with enchanted items and powerful curses.  Today we returned to Sure Shot Coffee to play Dark Tales and drink dark coffee. 
Before the game begins, the players randomly shuffle the 'A' and 'B' cards separately and randomly draw one from the 'A' cards and one from the 'B' cards.  The effects of the 'B' card only get resolved after the main deck is depleted and the players finish playing their hands.  There are also cards that toggle the gameplay between day and night.  The players first reveal the night, and the remaining day and night cards are shuffled into the main deck.  Throughout the game, only certain actions on cards can be resolved during the night phase and others during the day.  In this 2 - 4 player fantasy game there are two to three phases per turn.  In phase one you draw a card, and in phase two (which is optional), you can play an item.  The items may be obtained through the cards you draw throughout the game.  In phase three you play a card.  Since most of the items are more limited, you typically just draw a card and then play a card.  When the main deck runs out, no one draws any more cards, but you keep playing until one of the players, at the beginning of their turn, has no cards left in hand.  At that point, the game is over.  Once this is reached, the effects of the 'B' card are then applied to the players that fulfill the requirements.  If there is a tie, the tied player with the highest sum of items and cards in hand wins.  If they're still tied, the victory is shared.  
The effects of the cards are another aspect to this game that I enjoy.  There is plenty of diversity even in the base game alone.  I love playing cards that have an on-going effect throughout the turn sequence, especially if those cards work interchangeably during the day or the night.  Their affects can really help to accelerate the process of victory point tokens if you play them right.  Dark Tales is a good little card game.  It can be played in 30 minutes, and carries an imaginative theme.  The fantasy artwork on the cards is great and the physiology of the cards provide a unique, and almost tarot style experience.  One of the bigger aspects to this game is that it's really straight forward and easy to play.  It can be taught in about 5 minutes and then played in 20.  We've played this one a number of times and even though it's more of a filler game, it's a good filler game and if you like fantasy games you should look into this one.

Dark Tales
Overall Meeple Rating: 6.5/10

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