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Seasons Board Game

by Seasons

RRP: £39.99
Price: £34.98 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Only 13 left in stock.
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  • Seasons is a game of cards and dice which takes place in two phases
  • Become the kingdoms most illustrious mage
  • Playing Time: 60 mins
  • Ages 14 +
  • 2-4 Players
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Seasons Board Game + Seasons Enchanted Kingdom Expansion Card Game + Seasons Path of Destiny Expansion Pack
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Product Information

Technical Details
Item Weight907 g
Product Dimensions28.6 x 7.6 x 28.6 cm
Manufacturer recommended age:14 years and up
Item model numberSEAS01USASM
Number of Game Players2-4
Number of Puzzle Pieces1
Batteries Required?No
Batteries Included?No
  
Additional Information
ASINB008A2BA90
Best Sellers Rank 73,783 in Toys & Games (See top 100)
Shipping Weight1.8 Kg
Delivery Destinations:Visit the Delivery Destinations Help page to see where this item can be delivered.
Date First Available12 Aug 2012
  
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Product Safety

This product is subject to specific safety warnings
  • Warning: Not suitable for children under 36 months

Product Description

Product Description

The greatest sorcerers of the kingdom have gathered at the heart of the Argos forest, where the legendary tournament of the 12 seasons is taking place. At the end of the three year competition, the new archmage of the kingdom of Xidit will be chosen from amoung the competitors. Take your place wizard! Equip your ancestral magical items, summon your most faithful familiars to your side and be ready to face the challenge!

Product Description

In Seasons, players assume the role of one of the greatest sorcerers of the time, participating in the legendary tournament of the 12 Seasons.Seasons is a game of cards and dice which takes place in two phases:The first consists of a draft. The goal during this phase will be to establish a strategy for the rest of the game with nine cards that can be selected (Each card has a specific effect and earns victory points).Once the draft is complete, each player must separate its three 9 cards in packs of 3 cards. He will begin the second phase of the game with his first pack of three cards, then gradually as the game progresses, he will receive two packets of three cards.Then comes the second phase of play at the beginning of each round a player will roll the dice seasons (1 dice per player + 1).These cubes offer a variety of actions to the players:- Increase your invocation (maximum number of cards you may have placed on table)- Harvesting energy (water, earth, fire, air) to pay the cost of invocation maps- Crystallization energy (during the current season) to collect crystals. These serve both as a resource to rely on some cards, but also many points of victory in the endgame.- Draw new cards ...Each player can choose only one die per turn. The first player will choose among those launched, then the following among those remaining and so on. At each turn, the dice indicates how many remaining cells (1, 2 or 3 boxes) the marker of the seasons ahead.In addition, all the dice are different depending on the season. For example, there is not the same energies to a particular season. Throughout the game, players will therefore have to adapt to these changes.At the end of the game we add the points of victory on the cards given the number of crystals possessed. The player with the most victory points wins.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Picked this up just based on ratings I've seen. Initially we played it with 4 players, and we found it really confusing. All the game mechanics are interlinked and one can't easily be explained without knowing how the others work. Terminology takes a bit of getting used to. With "Power Crystals" read "Points". After a couple of playthroughs (with 2 players) it all became clear.

This is quite an American style game in that one person can be in the lead from the start and the others don't really have any chance to overtake, which can be quite frustrating the losing player. There can also be quite a lot of luck involved. However I think this is the kind of game a person could get really good at by learning tactics and knowing good combos of cards.

A lot of the cards have on-going effects and the player needs a sharp focus to remember all the things the cards do on his or her turn.

Lovely themed game and nice artwork. Probably better with 3 or 4 players. Shame there is no option for 5 or 6 players.
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By Yuval Sarabia Viera on 27 Feb 2014
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My new favourite board game. I play with my partner and it is great. I am looking forward to try it with more people.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Markinusa on 2 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase
The note on the box says this game takes about 1 hour to play. Well, ok. If you all already know the rules. If you are all starting off, or even if you have new players, this is going to take a good two hours to play.
As to the game itself, if you tend towards the geekish, or are a big fan of Lord of the Rings-type books etc., then you'll love it. Plenty of weird and exotic sounding names to get your head round, never mind the fanciful powers that each character has. The premise is good but you’ll need to play a couple of times to understand the types of cards that you need to play and certainly any experienced players would easily beat any novices.
I guess I should congratulate whomever came up with the idea, as the playing of the game is demanding enough, never mind thinking it up in the first place.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By kimberley Palmer on 30 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase
We bought this game to play over the Christmas break. I was such good fun and made our Christmas that little bit more special. It was easy to understand, once we played it a couple of times.It really brought out our competitive side. If you struggle understanding the game I would advise you to watch a introduction on how to play the game on you tube .
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 55 reviews
47 of 48 people found the following review helpful
Impressive Game Best with Two Players 15 Nov 2012
By Clinton Hill Foodie - Published on Amazon.com
Durability:    Educational:    Fun:   
My fiancee and I have had a lot of fun over the last few months getting into more and more complex "euro-style" board games. We started off (as most do) with The Settlers of Catan, Carcassonne and Ticket To Ride and have since moved on to Dominion, Agricola, Lords of Waterdeep: A Dungeons & Dragons Board Game, Twilight Struggle Deluxe Edition, A Game of Thrones: The Board Game Second Edition and Pandemic, among others. Seasons has become one of our favorites lately, and I think it's something we'll likely continue to play for a long time.

The game itself seems complicated at first, as it combines a lot of different mechanics. There's card drafting, card interaction, hand management, resource management and dice drafting among others, so at first it can seem a little overwhelming if you're not used to similar games. The rulebook is well-written, though, and we jumped into our first game within 10-15 minutes of opening the box and punching out all the bits.

The bits themselves are worth mentioning - this is a gorgeous game with very high-quality components. Each card has wonderful art, the dice and big and weighty, and the boards and other markers are made from heavy-duty cardboard that will likely hold up over time. While component quality doesn't necessarily a good game make, it's a very nice added benefit in this case. Everything fits well in the box, even with the cards sleeved.

One of my criteria in general when looking at new games is how they play with two players. I love group games, but most of our game time is spent with just the two of us, meaning any game that supports two players should be *good* with two players for me to really consider buying it. Seasons fits the bill well, and in some respects is best played with only two people. Our games take about an hour, and the game is balanced enough that it's rare for one of us to really crush the other (which tends to limit the fun). As we've grown more comfortable with the cards and their possible interactions, the game has gotten more and more fun. The rule book recommends starting with a limited set of cards, but we'd jumped to the full set by our second game, figuring the only way to really learn this stuff would be to use it. We never felt lost and were very quickly starting to see a lot of the possibilities that were open to experienced players.

Seasons probably shouldn't be your first game if you're just starting to get past Clue or Monopoly because of the variety of mechanics and interactions. If you've played and like Dominion or other card games like Magic, you'll feel right at home here.
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
a not very brief review of seasons 8 Aug 2013
By Jonathan Beall - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase Durability:    Educational:    Fun:   
a not very brief review of Seasons

Seasons is a game that features dueling mages, battling through four seasons and three years (for a grand total of 12 Seasons).

Gameplay - Planning

The game starts by players drafting a hand of cards which they will use for the rest of the game. Each player has 9 cards, and takes 1, and then passes the rest on to another player. Then each player takes 1, and then passes the rest on to another player. In this manner each player starts the game with 9 cards, but most of the cards have been seen by other players at the table.

Then there is a planning stage, where you have to divide your cards by year. There are three years in the game, and you get three cards per year. This leads to a decision of "what do I need right now" versus "what could I use later in the game".

Once this planning stage is complete, the actual game-play begins.

It should be noted that though the above drafting and planning doesn't take a lot of the game time they are key activities -- the entire rest of the game will unfold in large part based on the effectiveness of your card-playing plan.

Gameplay - Battling

Each turn begins with a player rolling the dice that belong to the season of time that the mages are in. These dice will represent actions that can be taken on that turn. There is always one more dice than players at the table. The player is rolling for the entire table - dice are not re-rolled until the next turn (which may be in a different season).

Each player takes one of these dice, which represent their turn action. Then each player takes a turn, using the action on their dice and then playing a card as they want to (each card has a cost associated with it, so a player will need to plan to gather the supplies necessary to pay for that card in order to play it).

Once each player has taken their turns, the die that has NOT been selected by any of the players will have an indication of how many spaces the wheel of time will move - in short, determining how quickly time moves and whether seasons will change.

There is a different set of dice for each season, and therefore a different set of options. Players are trying to collect elements (there are four elements possible to collect) in order to play cards in front of them. Each season makes one element more plentiful (more likely to be rolled). This is the pull of the game - players need to maximize their turn in any given season, even if the season isn't giving them the elements that they need.

Once the seasons have been moved through, the year changes. Once the year changes, players get to add the cards to their hand that they set aside for that year. Then play continues much as before. Dice are rolled, actions are taken, cards are played.

Players accumulate points by playing powerful cards (cards in front of them have victory points associated with them), and by moving their marker along the "crystal tracker" - which is essentially just a means of keeping score of overall points. At times players will sacrifice points on the tracker to play more powerful cards - since cards add points, and the tracker adds points, it is the combination of the two that will determine the winner.

This is combination of the scoring in a tableau-building game (like Race for the Galaxy or Fleet) with the scoring track found on many games (like Carcassonne or Ticket to Ride). The scoring track specifically reminded me of Carcassonne, but this is only one of the ways of accumulating points.

Component Quality

This is a bit of a mixed box for me.

On one hand, I love the dice. The colors are bright, they are well etched, and the symbols are clear and consistent.

On the other hand, I really don't card for the quality of the cards. They feel a bit thin to me for continued use, and though I love the artwork on some of the cards they feel a bit busy. There is vibrant artwork on the card front, with the cost necessary to play the card, and with the text explaining the card's abilities. I find this aesthetically to be too much information on any given card, and specifically found myself wishing that the art was simpler and more minimalistic. The card text and symbols are not overwhelming on their own, but combined with the art on each card feel a bit crowded.

The scoring track is crowded and a bit odd in its shape, though this wasn't important to us I can see how the structure of the tracker could throw people off aesthetically.

The dice are best in class - they are chunky and weighty and well structured. It is a shame that the cards don't have a similar overall quality to them. They just feel like they need to be weightier.

Review of Gameplay

There were a few surprises for me in this game.

I anticipated that this would be a game where a lot of cards are drawn through the game, and this isn't the case.

Your initial cards, and the way you portion them out by year ends up being a huge part of how the game plays out. Make no mistake about it, this is a programmable game. The dice add a bit of a surprise element, but only in how many elements are available and what actions are available at a given time. In addition, since all players are choosing actions from the same dice roll there is not much randomness to it. If there is a "bad" roll of the dice, it affects every at the table equally.

In addition, there are cards that are more powerful than other cards. The outcome of the game is going to be determined in part by some random card draws. Each player is trying to play their hand the best they can, but there is a certain element of luck to the game.

A third surprise to me was how important the initial planning ends up being. This is essentially a game about planning what you can do on any given year from before the gameplay actually starts.

Luck in Seasons

Oddly, the dice aren't as tied to the luck factor in this game since all players are using the same dice. In addition, luck is mitigated a bit from the way cards are drafted by being passed around the table. Where there is a surprising amount of luck is in any card draws that happen during the game. If you are able to draw one card, and you draw a great card your whole game could shift. If you draw a card that doesn't help you in your strategy then the benefit of being able to draw a card is mitigated.

Pros and Cons and Pros and Cons

Pros
- Seasons plays great as a two-player game
- Luck is mitigated in part by the structure of card drafting and dice rolling.
- Though Seasons is a robust game with a few moving parts, the game itself is intuitive and was extremely easy to learn. The symbols are consistent, and the gameplay is easy to understand.
- This game is fun. It doesn't take itself too seriously, and mainly features rolling big colorful dice and playing cards with vibrant art.

Cons
- The theme feels pasted-on. I expected that this game would be saturated with theme, and instead the theme feels like an afterthought. Technically this is a game about battling mages, but if I hadn't read that in the rulebook I wouldn't have known.

-Seasons most likely will slow down as players are added. I have only played this as a two-player game, but it isn't a game I'm rushing to the table to play with 3 or 4 people.
- Card draws are completely random during the course of the game. This can make or break a close game.
- Artwork on cards is busy, and the cards feel thin.

Overall, there are a few things to know about Seasons.
1) it is fun to play, and easy to learn
2) it is programmable. you plan your game, and then you work your plan.
3) dice rolling features prominently, though the game makes everyone play by the same dice roll.

Seasons is a pretty game, and the gameplay is intuitive and easy to learn. I wish the component quality was more consistent, and the theme was better executed, but I'm happy to have it as part of my collection.
48 of 53 people found the following review helpful
An exciting card-based game with beautiful components and tense gameplay 17 Sep 2012
By Daniel L Edelen - Published on Amazon.com
Durability:    Educational:    Fun:   
Seasons is an exciting, tense, card-based game that imagines players as wizards battling each other for three years, using elements of nature and magic artifacts in their fight. The player's tools are large, custom dice and beautifully illustrated cards that work in synchrony to create chains of powers and abilities that build throughout the game. Seasons combines play mechanics found in some of the best games of the last decade, including 7 Wonders, Magic: The Gathering, Dominion, and King of Tokyo.

***LOOK & COMPONENTS***

The art and graphic design of Seasons blends Art Nouveau and old Yes album covers by Roger Dean. In short, it's spectacular.

The dice, each about an inch square, are engraved with symbols that correspond to elemental energy in colors that match the seasons:

Blue = water/winter
Green = earth/spring
Yellow = fire/summer
Red = air/autumn

The dice contain the following symbols in different configurations:

* Energy symbols
* Numbers corresponding to crystals, the game's victory points
* A ring that allows for converting energy into crystals
* A star for increasing the number of cards a player can summon to the tableau
* 1-3 dots, which signal how many months to advance the month/season counter on the game board
* A rectangle, which allows a player to draw a card from the draw pile

The round game board is more of a player help, with an area in the center to mark the three years over which the wizards battle, and an outer ring in the four seasons colors, with numeric gradations 1-12 for the months. Between the year marks and month/seasons ring is a conversion table graphic for transmuting energy into crystals.

The game board packs needed info into an unobtrusive size and serves the role well. Nicely designed.

The score card, on the other hand, is something of a mess. Score markers are typical Eurogame wooden cubes that correspond to player colors, marking 1-99, plus markers for increments of 100. Though the card starts out with rows of numbers in increments of 10, this pattern diverges at the top, which foils a simple 10-point move by sliding up a row. In a game with such attention to design, this seems a misstep.

Plus, it is all too easy to jar the scorecard and knock the cubes around, especially if they are stacked because of tied scores. Given how often players will adjust scores--a nonstop process in the game that consumes more time than it should--a better scorecard is needed. Something along the line of the dial-based scorecards in King of Tokyo might make more sense.

The scorecard tracks crystal points during play. At game's end, prestige points from cards and bonus play use are included in the tally.

Player cards have numbers across the top to show the number of cards that can be in the player's summon tableau. Below that is a 0, -5, -12, -20 prestige point penalty mark and a list of bonus actions a player can take: exchange two energy types, increase the number of cards summonable to the tableau, transmute (exchange) energy for crystals. Taking a bonus incurs an increasing penalty each time, tallied at game's end.

The game's 100 power cards drive it. Each cards exists twice in the deck. Two forms exist: magic items and familiars. Resembling Magic: The Gathering or Yu-Gi-Oh cards, but with the unmistakable Seasons artwork, the cards contain the title of the card at top, along with any final tally prestige points (in purple for magic items or orange for familiars). Below the artwork, the cost of the card is shown. Cost is usually in crystals (sacrificing VP) or energy, with the needed elemental energy types depicted in icons. Some costs scale up with the number of players.

The card text reveals how the card functions. Some cards have multiple functions, some stack, but others may force a player to choose a use. These functions are the heart of the card--and the game.

In the lower left corner of the card is its effect timing. A squat arrow means it takes effect once. An arrow in a circle means a continuing effect. A cog allows players to "tap" the card and use it. Cog cards exact some price to play each time, usually in energy.

Lastly, cards include a number at the bottom in tiny text. This allows players to find them in the rulebook for rules clarifications.

***GAMEPLAY***

Seasons offers three levels of play based on which cards are used. The advanced game uses the entire deck of 100 cards. The basic and intermediate games restrict cards.

Each player receives nine cards. Like the game 7 Wonders, players pass their hands around until all have drafted a deck. The deck is then split into three cards per three years, with years two and three marked with corresponding marker chits. This splitting requires planning, because effects from cards played earlier will stack as time passes. Some cards have repeated effects that would benefit from early play. Others are end game cards.

The greatest truth about this game: Players MUST know how the cards work. Must. Definitely a game that demands repeat plays.

The second great truth about this game: New players will do almost everything wrong in that first game. Plus, they will be brutalized in the process. Count on it. Especially if they're the sole newbie playing against--*ahem*--seasoned players.

The dice are set around the game board to match the season color. The number of dice used is the number of players plus one. The game starts with the lead player rolling the dice for winter. That player selects which die to keep after the roll, and each subsequent player does the same. The unselected die's dots determine how many months the month counter will advance, slowing or hurrying the game, so strategy is involved not only in what a player takes, but what is left behind.

Each player in turn then resolves the symbols on the die selected.

Players roll the same color season of die unless the month counter crosses into a new season, which means rolling the next color.

Each season/color of dice favors an element (noted above) and disfavors another (the opposing season on the game board). Good players will factor this into their initial card distribution. For instance, autumn is last, so any cards that rely heavily on air energy are going to be harder to summon unless the player works contrary to the season and manages to get that energy, such as taking a bonus play of converting energy 2:2.

When the month marker passes into the second winter, each player's second set of cards is added to the hand. Cards from the previous year remain in-hand.

Dispensing of hand cards is critical, since each unplayed card at game's end is -5 prestige points.

A player can perform as many actions on a turn as the die, played power cards, energy, and crystals permit. In addition, some cards allow a player actions on another player's turn.

Keeping track of all the card interactions is the major downside of the game, since with four players in an advanced game the sheer number of things happening at once can get out of control. Newer players will have their heads spinning, and ensuring all the cards get their chances to act and score correctly can be nightmarish. Seasons has the potential to be one of those games where the score may end up more of a guess than a reality.

Once the 12th month of the third year passes, the game is over. All prestige points (both positive and negative) from cards and bonus use are added to the crystal tally. Highest number wins.

***THOUGHTS ON PLAY***

The rules of Seasons are simple. The game can be explained in less than 10 minutes--and possibly five with hardcore gamers who understand the basic mechanics underlying the game. It's one reason why the suggested player age is a low 10.

However, because the cards contain so many actions that chain actions, despite its simple rules, Seasons can be an in-play management nightmare. Analysis paralysis is assured, even among players who normally don't suffer that affliction. So much is happening in the player's hand, the other player's tableaus, and with forecasting moves and seasons, the input is almost overwhelming, especially for people who have not played the game at least a half dozen times.

As noted, knowing the cards is ESSENTIAL. Until a player does, winning because of a well-designed plan is almost out of the question.

One problem here, as with many games that feature cards with functions, players need to understand what their opposing players' card tableaus do. Sadly, that's extremely hard to do in Seasons if the cards are not well-known, because it is not easy to read other players' cards. Fewer players might make this easier, but spreading out for more players positions players farther away. No remedy seems easy. Even then, managing your own tableau is hard enough. Trying to grasp another player's and how it will affect yours will hurt your brain.

Veterans of the game will whittle down playing time, but a four-player game may last three hours, as players may spend a lot of time considering how cards interact.

For that reason, and for the added chaos of a fourth player, I suggest that Seasons plays best with two to three.

Seasons is not for the faint of heart, either. This can be a high-screwage game. Many detrimental cards exist, which means that a player's best laid plans can be ruined with a single card. In the case of a session I played, I got hit with an opponent's card that forced me to discard one of the two power cards I had built my entire strategy around. This happened in the first year, and I was energy poor for the rest of the game, which killed any chance I had to win. A better player may have overcome this, but perhaps not. Those who can't handle getting brutalized with a devastating opponent play, this is not your game.

In other words, Seasons' lovely exterior hides a harridan's heart.

***CONCLUSION***

Asmodee has a hit on its hands. People talked about the look of the game long before its release, and with the exception of the clunky scorecard, everything comes together beautifully. Because the game's pedigree contains elements of several top games swirling inside it, Seasons could be the game of 2012 so far.

With brain-burning tactics and strategy, beautiful components, hybrid Eurogame/Ameritrash gameplay, and unlimited replayability, Seasons is a winner in every regard and a fine addition to any gaming collection.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Aesthetically pleasing and well-designed game. 4 Oct 2012
By S. Lee - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase Durability:    Educational:    Fun:   
If you're a casual gamer and came across this game (and my review), I heavily encourage you to go to Boardgamegeek.com and tap into the wealth of resources over there including in depth video reviews of this and other popular boardgames. I will summarize the highlights of this fun little gem.

The premise is you're a wizard entered into a 3 year tournament to gather the most crystals. A central calendar-like board dictates your turn options for each season while the deck of 100 cards (doubles of 50 different spells and minions) alter the flow of the game and interact with your opponents.

QUALITY:
The production value is pretty good down to the box insert that holds all the materials in place when you close the top. Dice are nice and chunky, markers are clearly colored, and print quality is bright and crisp. My only gripe is that the cards feel a little thinner and if you get a lot of games in, you may want to consider a pack of card sleeves to keep them in shape.

The art is excellent and captures a whimsical sense of magic in the game and is spread throughout the entire contents. I enjoy these types of appearances as it eases beginner/casual boardgamers into the hobby without getting too abstract with colored-pieces (Meeples if you know the reference) or overburdened with too many parts (ever play Axis & Allies?). The one caveat is parents will need to understand that the art doesn't reflect the game and is not say "Magical Pokemon."

GAME:
The game mechanics are great because there's a variety of interactions between card combinations, players, and the randomness of the dice. There's a pre-game phase that has players planning out their strategies ahead of time to represent the 3 separate years of the tournament. With only doubles of 50 cards, each card played becomes valuable and unique, veterans will surely gain an advantage over novice players by seeing as many different cards as possible. Also, the company has gone to lengths to publish a basic FAQ into the rules for potential disputes over what effect does card A have on cards B,C,D.

Play through the first time was about 90minutes actually as my group has a lot of slow-readers i.e. OCD, power-eking, squeeze as much juice cutthroat players :). It was a breeze after that clocking in 50-60minutes for a relaxed game.

HIGHLIGHTS:
-great, single package!
-variety of play through game mechanics
-well designed, colorful components
-plays fast

LOWLIGHTS:
-cards a little flimsy (get card sleeves)
-buyers may assume it's a "baby's game" because of the art
-experience reflects learning curve (guess you'll have to keep playing more)

FINAL THOUGHTS:
Great tidy game that I may use to gateway new players into other core style games that stands completely on its own. Card strategy if you branch into Magic the Gathering. Non-violent resource gathering ala Eurogames. Lots of options if you wish to traverse into Ameritrash games.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Flaws to Be Aware Of 20 Jan 2014
By J. Weiss - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I've played this game several times with groups of friends. The general consensus is that while the game is fun and has interesting mechanics and great artwork, the game suffers from lack of player interaction. Turns can take a while, especially with inexperienced players, and because your actions rarely effect the other players in any meaningful way, most times people will get up, move around, start text messaging etc. This happened in every game I've played so far. We played "Colosseum" a different (and fun) game for contrast and there was a world of difference. People were bantering, trading, laughing and getting very competitive. I almost felt bad for the dead air when seasons came out. One more complaint- the terminology is sometimes irritating. Cards are "power cards" for no apparent reason. Victory points are "crystals" or "prestige points" for no apparent reasons. There are no physical crystals included in the game. The card by which all players track their victory points is frustratingly small. I've seen lots of positive reviews here and not one mentioned these things. This game, which has solid gameplay buried down there somewhere is likely to gather dust. When I suggest a game of seasons the general reaction is "mehhhh how about X instead"
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