17 September 2007

Many ways to play Ingenious

Ingenious started life as a board game by Reiner Knizia. Now there are several places that let you play it online, as well as a PC version that you can download and play offline. As I mentioned before, I downloaded the PC version. Since I don't belong to a big gaming group, playing computer versions of these games is the only way I can try before I buy.

Let me give you a brief outline of the rules. Ingenious is a tile placement game. Each tile consists of two hexes stuck together. Each hex has one of six symbols on it and each symbol is a different color. On each turn you place a tile so that it is touching the same symbol (for example, yellow circle next to yellow circle). You score one point for every matching symbol next to the one you placed. So if I placed a green circle next to a row of four green circles, I would get four points. The game ends when there are no more empty spaces for tiles. At that time, each player looks at the color on their scoring track that has the least points; that is your score. The player with the highest score wins.

Ingenious is a game that lends itself well to being played on the computer. It reminds me of a lot of the casual games that are popular on the internet right now. I don't think I would want to play it against bots that often, and that's not because the bots beat me all the time :-). This game just seems like it would be more fun at a table with live players. With games like this, I am not very good at picking the best move, so I get my enjoyment from chatting with friends. Still, the computer game served its purpose -- it let me test-drive the game.

I'm pretty sure that I want to buy this game now. It is moving to the top of my list. The rules are simple enough that the kids can play it without adult supervision. It is also perfect for our friends who are prone to forget game rules from one session to the next. The scoring is similar to the other Knizia game that I own, Poison. That will increase their comfort level. I can't wait to get this one in the house!

Places to play Ingenious online:


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