Author Topic: Cinque Terre Board Game (a little image heavy)  (Read 2280 times)

Offline franks

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Cinque Terre Board Game (a little image heavy)
« on: July 03, 2016, 06:15:41 PM »

By chance our first play of this game ended up being played, almost to the day, of my 20-year anniversary of a visit to Cinque Terre back in 1996. That visit was one of the highlights of a cross-Europe adventure.

Vernazza was my home base for my stay in the area.

The steep hillsides along the Italian Cote D’azur are dotted with vineyards, lemons and olive groves as the game describes. Walking along the trails to the villages gives a feeling of remoteness from the crowded cities in northern Italy.

This is a fairly brief overview of the game and not intended to explain the rules of play. There are some video play-throughs available that we found quite useful.

This game is very often compared to Ticket to Ride but I find this to be a good step up in complexity with more to keep track of.

The set collection mechanism is extremely similar to TTR, though the main mechanism in Cinque Terre is pick up and delivery. In the game you collect a series of produce cards to harvest or buy various crops along a route then deliver / sell them into the 5 villages to fulfill produce orders.

Board set up just after our first turn. There is a glut of Zucchini.

Another strong similarity to TTR is Produce orders (think routes) that need to be completed. The produce orders come in two varieties in the game.

Larger Produce orders, (think longest route). Players get one of these dealt to them randomly at the start of the game that they keep hidden until the end of the game. If these orders is filled they all score the same 30 points. If the order is unfinished there will be variable and diminished scoring.

Large orders have stars on the back and are kept in hand until the end of the game

There are also smaller and simpler Produce Orders that are open on the table that players race to complete. These are important factor in the game and when a combination of 5 regular (open) produce orders and/or MPV bonuses (described next) are claimed in one players pool, this is the trigger for the last round of play. Orders that are not complete at the end of the game will get negative points.

During the game players can score (MPV – Most Popular Vendor) points. These are scored if a player completes a row of goods sold to a given city. In the example below Karen collected the Corniliga MPV marker and placed into her play area.

These might be considered to be like the Longest Route bonus in TTR. Note: the MPV points can be scored during game play. 

Player’s tableau where they keep track of what produce is sold in which village

MPV - Most popular vendor bonus tiles

In the game set up there is a neat dice mechanism where a series of dice, for each commodity, are rolled to determine the value of the goods at a particular location. This adds a great amount of replay to the game.

Dice colours match the goods

Thoughts and first impressions:

The graphic design of the overall game, while pleasing and colourful, can at times be a little jarring. There seems to be a lot going on visually, (especially the scoring track).

There are a few quirky rules that were a bit confusing but after two games, I think we now have it down quite well.

We found our first play surprisingly brain-burny* with lots to keep track of. We played with open hands in our first game to help us along. *I have self-proclaimed 'brain burny' to be a Gamer Geek word.

With only a couple of game under our belt, we think this a brilliant game that deserves more attention. If you ever get the chance, give it a go!

Despite the glaring similarities to Ticket to Ride we feel this game stands strongly on its own.

Perhaps it’s no coincidence that the best way to access Cinque Terre is by train!

images are from publisher, mine or public domain, (as far as I can tell)

« Last Edit: July 06, 2016, 12:07:41 AM by MrNumbers, Reason: Fixed game name »

Wanna play Carc? Can we add just one more expansion?

Offline Decar

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Re: Chique Terre Board Game (a little image heavy)
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2016, 12:06:44 AM »
Thanks for sharing this with us Franks - it definitely looks interesting, the artwork looks great. I will have to search for a copy I can play.  The dice/price mechanic looks intriguing too.

How does it stand up 2-player? 

How long were the games you played?

Offline jungleboy

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Re: Chique Terre Board Game (a little image heavy)
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2016, 01:44:01 AM »
The designer (Chris Handy) is the designer of the two Pack-o-Games micro-game sets. I'm waiting for the 2nd set from Kickstarter and I can't wait to take it on the road!

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Offline Andrew the Ambo

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Re: Chique Terre Board Game (a little image heavy)
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2016, 03:01:45 AM »
I played it a couple of years ago.
Keen to play it again.

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Offline franks

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Re: Chique Terre Board Game (a little image heavy)
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2016, 09:42:59 PM »
How does it stand up 2-player? 

How long were the games you played?

Great so far as two player. The route is wide open with not much in the way of blocking. The biggest race and interaction seems to be with the open Produce Orders, you want to be the first to get certain open orders so you would monitor your opponents progress on their board to see what they might be working to collect, (remembering that they will have their large order and possibly another blind order in their hand).

Also when a open order gets completed that gets scored immediately at the end of the turn faze. After that is done you pick up another blind order card into your hand and have the option of keeping it or placing in the open field. Again like TTR, some times you can pick up an order you might already have the resources to complete or conversely you could pick up an order that your opponent could completed. in that case you have to weigh, do I take this in-hand where I might have to do some work to complete or do I lay it down in the open field for easy points to the opponent. Any unfulfilled orders give negative points at the end of the game if not completed.

With more players it might be possible that resources could get tighter if everyone were stocking up on a specific commodity. It would also be more challenging to watch everyones resource boards. Community Users on BGG, with limited votes, mostly recommend this as a 2 player game, if thats worth much.

As for length, the first game took quite a while (guessing 2 hours) with some rules referencing. 2nd went much quicker. I didn't look at the time but I would say up to 90 minutes. The BGG reference says 60 minutes and I can see that time after a few plays. 

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