With isolation and limited ability to go outside the home, I find myself in a position (along with the rest of you) of nervousness and boredom. One can only watch so much Netflix before you develop bedsores and a stiff neck! So, I’ve set myself a challenge to play at least one board game a day during this time and if possible pair it with a good beer, wine, or cocktail. Why not! Feel free to play along. Today marks day 10 of quasi-quarantine. Just so my readers know, I’m not actually in quarantine yet–I’m a pediatrician and am still going into work on my regular work days. So while I’m not technically stuck at home, I am in a high-stress work environment these days and really need game playing as an outlet when I get home.
Yesterday’s game is a favorite of my wife, Sarajo. In better times, we often take this two player competitive game to taprooms since it takes about as long as a pint of beer to play. Two if you are drinking fast! This is a small card game bysmall company Two Lanterns Games. I picked this up purely based on the art on the cover of the game. The art style has a 70’s Tolkien illustration vibe that really appeals to me.
The game “board” is set up with 8 cards from the deck set up in a row in the middle of the table–this is The Forest. Each player gets 3 cards in their hand (with a maximum limit of 8 cards) to start. Each character gets a toke for a pan on a fire to cook up mushrooms when needed. On each person’s turn you can take a card in the far left 2 spots–this is “at your feet”. You can also put a pan from your hand onto your play area; or you can sell sets of two or more mushrooms from your hand for foraging sticks. The sticks let you grab mushrooms from further into the forest so can be useful to snag the rare cards (like Morels) that also have higher value.
The overall goal is to collect and cook the the most matched sets of mushrooms before the forest is empty. There are a few special cards like butter and cider that can give you bonuses to points when used with certain numbers of mushrooms. There are moon cards which let you draw higher point value night mushrooms from a special deck. And there are poisoned mushrooms that can cause you to discard part of your hand!
To pair with this tasty game, we opened up a growler of Waconia Brewing‘s Cerveza del Lago: a refreshing Mexican style lager. I threatened to make Sj a special mushroom cocktail but she declined. Vehemently. Consider supporting your local brewery with growler sales to help them make it through the COVID 19 lockdown…and help you get through being home too much with your families!
Morels is a quick and fairly happy game to play. While it is competitive, each player is doing their own walk in the forest and cooking up tasty looking mushrooms, so there is very little in the way of direct confict. The worst it gets is when you snake that Hen of the Woods from the forest before the other player can get it! Love the art, love the limited time commitment! I also have the expansion Foray, but haven’t added those cards yet…I may yet try that for this series if I start running low on other games!
And there is the quick quarantine game for yesterday! Keep Calm and Play Games!
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