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Saturday, April 23, 2016

Don't Flip Your Lid

On this spring day we find ourselves returning to Sure Shot Coffee in downtown Fishers.  They have expanded their menu to include a variety of delicious loose leaf tea, served in nifty self-flitering cups. While the tables are small, this is a great place to relax with a great drink and your favorite small box game. This week, we brought the 1-4 player microdeckbuilder, Flip City.  Since the cards are double-sided, it takes up far less space than a traditional deck-builder, but still offers good variety in the game play. 
As in most deck-builders, each player begins with the same starting deck, which in this case is 9 cards.  Since there are two buildings on each card, it is important to be mindful of which side is up, but also to not look at your cards whilst shuffling.  It may sound a bit awkward, but we haven't had any issue with it.  Each card has a building (buy) cost, a flip/recycle fee, a cash (purchase) value and an additional function that acts as a unique ability.  Some cards have additional (victory) Points and others have Unhappiness markers.

Turns are simple and have two parts, Play and Build.  First, play a card from your deck and check it for additional rules/abilities that apply. You can play as many as you want, but watch out! If you have 3 Unhappiness icons in play, your turn is automatically over.  Once you decide to stop playing cards, you enter the Build phase.  In this phase, can either Buy, Flip or Develop. If you Buy, you can use your cash to purchase a card from the Supply.  To Flip a card, you use cash to pay the fee and then flip a card in your discard pile to reveal it's new side.  If you have enough cash, you can Develop - buy a card from the supply and pay the flip fee for it, putting it into your discard pile, flipped side up.  Play continues until one player has reached 8 Points or reached another win condition specified on an individual card.

Fun cartoony artwork and interesting card combinations keep the game interesting, but it can get frustrating when your shuffles don't go as planned and you end up busting turn after turn. Some cards, specifically the Residential Areas, tend to hijack your turn as you are required to play them if they are on top of your deck.  If you have 3 in a row (which both of us have encountered) your turn will automatically end due to gaining 3 Unhappiness.  It feels as though some of the cards may not be as evenly weighted as we'd like, but not so much that one would say one of the mechanics is broken.  With 2 win conditions, it feels like kind of a rush to get a couple different cards and a larger variety of combinations would have been appreciated.  Overall it is a fun, light weight deck-builder with great portability.  A bit long for a filler game (game play is listed as 30-50 minutes), but a solid choice none-the-less.  Thanks for reading and we'll catch ya on the flip side. ;)

Flip City
Overall Meeple Rating: 6.5/10


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