TABLETOP TWOSDAY – Soulaween – Play With Us Design – Review

Soulaween-BGG (1)

Though a limited board size, you are playing 1-1, so experience and thinking ahead is key… take your place, and let’s reap some souls!

Matthew Kearns

MeepleGamers

8.7/10
Soulaween-Matt (2)

Theme and What is it?

7/10

Collecting souls are the path to victory in the old game during Soulaween.  At the Death School in many years past, an accident caused many souls to escape and the result ended up turning that disaster into an annual game.  So come, take your place, and let’s reap some souls!

Gameplay Mechanics

10/10

Goal

Soulaween-Matt (4)

The goal of Soulaween is to be the first collect three Tokens gained by reaping souls.

Setup

Soulaween-Matt (3)

Place the play mat between the players and the Soul Pieces near the play mat.  Choose between Simple and Standard Mode of play and your character as applicable.

Turns

Soulaween-Matt (5)

Each player takes turns placing Soul Pieces with either red or green up and flipping over the adjacent Soul Pieces.  In order to reap the souls, four of the Soul Pieces must be in a row (horizontal or vertical) or in another manner per the character abilities.

Soulaween-Matt (6)

Initial Impressions

8/10

Such a tiny box, what could be inside to keep you entertained?  It also didn’t help that most of the text was not in English.  At first, I didn’t think much but the box is tightly packed with all you need in this neat little quick game.

Soulaween-Matt (7)

Game Build Quality

9/10

The components are made up of player character cards, tokens, Soul Pieces, and play mat.  All components are of a decent quality and should be able to withstand a lot of gameplay. 

The cards are not of a standard size, slightly longer than a playing card deck and their finish I would say is matte-like.  The tokens are plastic with a similar finish to the cards and thickness a little thinner than sturdy cardboard. The Soul Pieces are thick/chunky like oversized checkers with the screened figures in red and green.  The play mat is very thin, like the screened layer of a neoprene mat.

Soulaween-Matt (8)

Artistic Direction

8/10

The more intricate art is primarily conveyed on the player cards with more simple graphics on the tokens, Soul Pieces, and play mat.  The cards’ art is inspired from the subject’s original lore with an Asian flair to it. I wish there could’ve been more to it but it’s a small game with few components to it so its limited.

Soulaween-Matt (9)

Fun Factor

8/10

Soulaween is right up your alley if you’re looking for a quick game as a filler or something to start youngsters on strategy games.  Trust me it’s no picnic in the park — if you’re not paying attention to your strategy, even the youngest among us can win.

Soulaween-Matt (10)

Age Range & Weight

10/10

The age range of this game is 6+ and it hits nails the nail on the head with this one.  Surprisingly it isn’t set higher given the smaller components to the game but the weight/complexity and estimated duration of the game fits the age range perfectly.

Soulaween-Matt (11)

Conclusions

8.7/10

Soulaween is an alternative to Go/Othello/Iago and in a way Checkers as well.  The Simple game concept is quite easy as the rules are quick and straightforward, but that’s as simple as it gets.  Even with a limited board size, you are still playing mono-a-mono, so experience and thinking ahead is key.

In the Standard game, you’ve upped the ante introducing different player character abilities that impact how you can reap souls and means to win the game — this variant isn’t for the faint of heart and does take a bit of practice understanding the impacts of these small changes to the game for and against you.

Another plus about the game is that it’s small in storage space and in table space, lending it well for travel and play almost anywhere.

Soulaween-Matt (12)