Hello, all! Today I'm reviewing a game called Stick. It has apparently been around for awhile, so I'm a bit late reviewing this. It has been very popular with the younger crowd for years. I've recently had the opportunity to play it and wanted to share my thoughts.
Okay, first I want to talk about the components. Well, component. You can't beat wooden components. I don't have anything against plastic per se, but it just feels like its higher quality. That's just my personal preference. Anyway, apparently there is not uniformity in the pieces, though I suspect this might just have to do with different editions of the game.
As for gameplay, there is a lot of free-form parts of this game. It encourages you to establish your own narrative (both a pro and a con; more on theme later). Most iterations require a bit of space, so expect to not be sitting around your game table for this one. I'm a little put off by the aparent lack of either written rules or a decent FAQ. Honestly, I can't see where the designer was going with this. For that matter, I'm not sure who the designer is, which is just as well, because I wouldn't want my name associated with the game, either. Although, to give credit where credit is due, the component itself seems to be a pretty effective tool for arbitrating rules disputes.
And then we get to theme. It's a fairly standard Eurogame trend to have little or no theme, and the same goes for this one. The game itself seems to encourage establishing your own theme session to session, though. In the two sessions I've played, the first was themed "Bad Pirates vs. Ninja Monsters". I had quite a bit of fun with this one. The theme of the second session, "Knights", seemed thin by comparison. So take that as you will; if theme is important to you, this might not be the game you're looking for. Or it might be perfect.
To wrap up... would I play it again? Yes. Definitely not on my top ten, however. It just lacks the hallmarks of a decent strategy game. In all honesty, I would rather play Settlers or something. I admit, though, I might not have given this game the chance to shine. My next session may go better, since the second one I played, "Knights", devolved into a rules dispute that required a quick exit from the playground. Played this one? Let us know what you think about it!
Happy April Fool's Day!