Friday, December 21, 2012

Game Review: Acquire

Well I finally gave Acquire a whirl.  I didn't really like it.  I don't really think I understood it while playing and after some thought I still don't. 

Basically the game is about investing in hotel chains and working at ways for them to merge.  The method of tracking hotel size is a scrabble like board. Connected chits create the hotel size.   But much of the play come from merging hotels in which special rules com into play.

While playing I made the comment that there is no end game.  I am wrong in saying that there is an endgame but it is very similar to the main game.  Basically while playing and buying up the stock for a chain you don't want to be adding to the chain size as it increases the cost.  You may want to increase the size just a bit before merging but most often others will do this for you.  At the end of the game this changes as you are trying to increase the size of the mega hotels you control to get a higher pay out in the end. 

One of my problems with the game is hotels themselves function like closed systems once they reach a size that they can not be over taken.  Basically they are money black holes until the end of the game.  I guess this is meant to simulate fluidity.  I was not a fan of this aspect, I sort of wish I could sell off my shares mid game sort of having a trade and hold aspect to the game.

My second problem with the game is the tiles themselves.  It seems like you don't have a high degree of control of what happens with the board.  We were playing 6 players so it may be stretching the game; but the board would change dramatically between rounds.

Finally the financial theme of the game was lost on me.  The end of the game payout seemed almost random I had split control of one company and second in another.  I was given money for it but I really don't understand.  I know I was not playing well and had little idea what I was doing.  I came out sort of in the middle of the pack moneywise.  I don't think I should have, I should have sucked, why didn't I suck.

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