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  #1  
Old 04-04-2012, 03:23 PM
twiccan twiccan is offline
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Default Fealty (Universal)




This is an iOS implementation of a "Euro-style" board game. Similar in style to games like Tigris and Euphrates or Carcassonne, in that you lay pieces, which give you influence points over various (or all) types of terrian on a modular, grid based, map. IMO, this is more approachable than the other games I mentioned above, however (and the iOS version makes it even MORE approachable), but still with alot of strategic depth and fun and engaging gameplay. More thoughts below:


I've never played the physical game, as I don't buy abstracts since I would never get my wife to play them, but this is the perfect type of game (for me, anyway) to come out on the iPhone.

The game itself is very engaging. The "influence" mechanic seems very simple on the surface, but it gives way to deep strategic and logical decisions. But it's also got that element of variety and surprise that all the great Euros have. You know WHAT is coming, but you just don't know when. Also, given that out of the nine pieces on each side, not all of them will be used in any one game (eight will be used in the standard length game and six in a short game)it keeps you guessing even more, which keeps you engaged in the moment until the very end. Also, the map tiles being randomly drawn adds another layer of variety, since the terrain layout plays integrally into the strategy of the game.

As for the iOS implementation, it is spot on in presentation, ease of play, and even teaching you the game. After the interactive tutorial, I was more than ready to start playing on my own. I even managed to beat the AI (on easy mode, lol), even though it was a very close game. That brings up another thing I enjoy about the game itself. It's one of those "not over 'til it's over" kind of games. The score goes back and forth each turn, but you don't feel like you are just on some yoyo ride with no rhyme or reason, since you can see each turn WHY the score is shifting to the winning player's favor. Lastly, the app does an excellent job of calculating the current score, and even shows you how each potential move will affect things while at the same time making it very easy to go back and try different moves before commiting to your choice.

Last edited by twiccan; 04-04-2012 at 03:26 PM..
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  #2  
Old 04-04-2012, 03:31 PM
sladeums sladeums is offline
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Default Game Impressions

I picked this up this morning.

never played the tabletop either, but only heard good things.


here are my first impressions:
Pros
- easy to learn. includes a simple, decently made Tutorial and a Rules section
- strategy seems like it could be rather complex and had my head a bit twisted
- AI is reportedly very strong
- pretty quick games ... 2-4 players, game length is fixed at 6 or 9 turns (depending on variant selected)
- post game you can review your completed match and scoring turn by turn. it also saves a history (unsure of how many) of recent games completed

Cons
- $5 can be a leap of faith for a skninflint
- somewhat spartan design ... not really any eye candy here
- lacks some "flash" that could better convey physicality of the board game pieces
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  #3  
Old 04-04-2012, 03:53 PM
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LordGek LordGek is offline
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Other than the history, is there any sort of win/loss or best score tracking?
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Old 04-04-2012, 04:06 PM
funambulist funambulist is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LordGek View Post
Other than the history, is there any sort of win/loss or best score tracking?
@LordGek: Not that I can see.

I agree with twiccan's review and sladeums' comments -- this is a good game folks!

Only negative IMO is the layout and design of the iPad version is not nearly as polished as the iPhone version. The use of the larger screen real estate is ill considered and clumsy, almost an afterthought. (For example look at 'Screenshot 5 of 5' above...)

Last edited by funambulist; 04-04-2012 at 04:22 PM..
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  #5  
Old 04-04-2012, 04:45 PM
PapaT PapaT is offline
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Any feedback on how tough the "Tough" AI is?
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  #6  
Old 04-04-2012, 04:58 PM
sladeums sladeums is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PapaT View Post
Any feedback on how tough the "Tough" AI is?
i believe all of us who have posted so far are newcomers to the game, so our opinion on that might not be very relevant.

pre-release buzz was the AI was too tough and had to be toned down.

that said, i've not tried the Tough but will be happy to report back later.
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Old 04-04-2012, 05:57 PM
PapaT PapaT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sladeums View Post
i believe all of us who have posted so far are newcomers to the game, so our opinion on that might not be very relevant.

pre-release buzz was the AI was too tough and had to be toned down.

that said, i've not tried the Tough but will be happy to report back later.
Thanks - I'll look forward to your assessment. It's just that I've bought a few board games that even as a new player the AIs are very weak. Hopefully, it seems from your post that Fealty may have a strong AI.
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  #8  
Old 04-05-2012, 11:36 AM
Tinsel Tinsel is offline
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I watched a review of the physical boardgame, and I have a question about this version. In the physical game, the cards themselves do a good job of visually representing what they do and where they claim their influence.

In either the iPhone or iPad UI, are these visual representations there? Or are they always replaced with the clumsily worded "forests within 3" etc?
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  #9  
Old 04-05-2012, 11:41 AM
sladeums sladeums is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PapaT View Post
Thanks - I'll look forward to your assessment. It's just that I've bought a few board games that even as a new player the AIs are very weak. Hopefully, it seems from your post that Fealty may have a strong AI.
so outside the tutorial, i've played like a dozen matches.
all but one against Tough AI.

most of those games i was getting slaughtered points wise about 2-1.
but my last 3 games have all been decided by 5 points or less.
one of them i won.

these matches were all using the 'simpler' (Missives) set of pieces, though;
as the other pieces in the game (Suns) have more complex special abilities that can require significantly more thought to use effectively.

my initial assessment is that the AI is certainly competent,
and will give you good practice as you grow and learn the game ...
but i would imagine that multiplayer is where the real challenge will lie.

so at this point i would call the Tough AI challenging, but nowhere near impossible.
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  #10  
Old 04-05-2012, 11:47 AM
sladeums sladeums is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinsel View Post
I watched a review of the physical boardgame, and I have a question about this version. In the physical game, the cards themselves do a good job of visually representing what they do and where they claim their influence.

In either the iPhone or iPad UI, are these visual representations there? Or are they always replaced with the clumsily worded "forests within 3" etc?
if you look at screenshots above, every single place you see a number in circle - - when you press and hold on the circled numbers it floats up an image of the card associated with the piece.

i didn't even realize those boxes there (like in screenshot one) were supposed to actually represent cards until i watched a review for the tabletop.
given all the unused screen real estate i really wish they did attempt to display physical cards you could manipulate in the game.
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