The Simplicity and Joy of Nature with Life in Village Green

June 16, 2021 | Sessions | 2 comments

Enjoy springtime in a cozy village as the scene is set for a countryside competition to crown the best in Village Green.

Nature-themed games seem to call to me these days! Village Green was another recent addition from a board game swap that I simply couldn’t pass up. The act of building up a simple and peaceful village area seemed cozy and perfect for this time of year. So I settled in and prepared to amaze the judges with my fine choices in gardens and architecture!

Game Overview

Game Name: Village Green
Publication Year:
2020
Designer:
Peer Sylvester
Artist:
Joanna Rosa
Publisher: Osprey Games
Solo Mode: Included in the Base Game

A village takes shape in a grid pattern where an award is associated with each row and column. It comes down to planning out exactly what to add to a village, and also deciding which sorts of awards it might win. All while enjoying a very picturesque and calm sort of scene!

Admiring the Lovely Details in Village Green
R

First Play

June 8, 2021

Complexity

2

Latest Play

June 8, 2021

Expansions

0

Setup Time

Almost None

Lifetime Plays

4

Play Time

10 Minutes

:

High Score

30

1

Game Area

24" x 16"

;

Low Score

18

Off to Market Foxby

A set of unique village cards with simply wonderful names provides the foundation for the grid. There really wasn’t a bad choice, yet Market Foxby sounded just perfect.

I’ve always loved the names of British villages. Chipping Cleghorn. St. Mary Mead. Much Benham. Market Basing.

Alright. So maybe they all come from Agatha Christie novels and short stories. Ha ha! Yet I immediately felt like Market Foxby fit right in and decided to call it home.

Clearly, this is also the best village because it boasts sheep. See them quietly grazing on the right? Perfection.

The World's Greatest Village with a Few Sheep from Village Green

Simple Scenes of Life

The artwork here is so very pleasant. Although flowers dominate the landscape, little slices of life can be spotted.

Notice the path in the middle? It meanders around very bright flowers to reveal a countryside cyclist. Watercolors have a soothing effect, and they can be enjoyed here.

Gameplay is very relaxing, although finding the right awards can be rather taxing! Impressing the judges is no small feat, especially with the meddling neighbors.

Ponds, gazebos, statues, trees, open spaces, and much more take shape to create a beautiful little area.

Some of the Very Pleasant Scenes from Village Green

A Reasonable Attempt

At first, I thought I had it all down to a science! My final score was pitiful, and I believe I made a few mistakes with the placement of my final cards. No matter. I learned!

One of the biggest negatives I’ve seen is in regards to the yellow used for the flower icons. I have to agree. These were never clear, and required a pause to analyze.

With that small annoyance taken out of the equation, I saw the simple joy in putting these cards together.

I had to choose green cards in addition to the right awards. Suffice to say the committee was unimpressed!

Setting Up the Village with a Potentially Illegal Move in Village Green

Winning Awards

Each play starts with 3 awards in play across the top. This gives some guidance on where to start, yet these might change over the course of play. Very tricky, indeed!

I had a lovely time controlling which awards I would work on… But it also wasn’t as easy as it seemed.

Some awards were risky and could lead to negative victory points with the wrong cards. Can you guess what happened? Mistakes were made. Ha ha! Still a lot of fun.

The decisions didn’t require a lot of thought, yet I felt like I was working on something important. All in 10 minutes!

Making Plans for Plenty of Tree Awards in Village Green

A Bit of Sunlight

Some natural sunlight streamed in during play and made my village look quite lovely! Market Foxby was always better than the rest, even when I was making bad choices.

Look closely, and you might see a few birds hanging out at the fountain. Once again, just a lovely little scene!

I found myself playing several times in a row as I tried to earn a score in the highest tier. Maybe not today…

This made me think about why I play games. Getting a top score early on can make it seem too easy, yet this was clearly a game more about the experience than the score.

A Bit of Sunlight on the Beautiful Statues and Fountains from Village Green

Cozy Village Life

My best outing for Market Foxby came from this pretty selection. Lots of structures and ponds, yet most of them aligned with the right awards. I knew how to plan! Maybe.

It was still a little tricky to figure out the yellow flowers, and even now, I keep looking at my photos to see if I put a card in a place it couldn’t go. Still learning, I suppose.

There are a lot of nature-themed games on the market, yet this one definitely stands on its own. So cozy!

I didn’t fully impress the judges, yet I found another fun game to enjoy. Next time, Market Foxby will be the best!

A Serene and Happy Time in Market Foxby from Village Green

Session Overview

Play Number: 1-4
Solo Mode: Included in the Base Game
Outcome: 21, 18, 30, and 26 (1 Win and 3 Losses)

Despite only being the runner-up in my best outing, I had a wonderful time! Maybe Market Foxby suffered from an Agatha Christie murder mystery… That probably threw the judges off a little bit. Ha! Much like the people on this bench, I was perfectly happy with the outcome. There was a dog playing in the grass, too, so naturally, I didn’t mind any low scores. There were a few things that took a little time to understand, yet I absolutely loved this session!

Fun with Green Spaces and Tiny Details in Village Green

%

1 Play

Affordability

Price & Value

10

Functionality

Challenges & Mechanics

10

Originality

Design & Theme

3

Quality

Components & Rules

8

Reusability

Achievement & Enjoyment

9

Variability

Distinctness & Randomness

7

+ Pros (Positives)

  • Each card looks gorgeous and depicts a calm scene to help make the play area turn into something lovely.
  • Being able to choose green cards and award cards introduces many strategies without feeling overwhelming.
  • Time flies by and typically lasts around 10 minutes, even with some downtime for calculating possible points.
  • All of the cards provide a nice assortment of variety without requiring an enormous deck to shuffle through.
  • Setup and cleanup are very simple and take up almost no time since play mainly involves 2 decks of cards.
  • With many different ways to score victory points, gameplay doesn’t get repetitive even with the same awards.

– Cons (Negatives)

  • The color used for the yellow flower icons is extremely difficult to see from anywhere but up close.
  • Some of the icons, mainly for the trees, look a little unpolished and don’t match the rest of the aesthetics.
  • A bit of luck is needed to match the right green cards and awards, although some of this comes down to strategy.
  • It can take some extra time to remember what’s going on in each column and row when choosing a new card.

More Village Green

Explore related posts about Village Green!

Victory Conditions

Score 30+ Points

  • Overall Goal Progress 67% 67%

Goals and Milestones

R

Score at least 25 points.

R

Score at least 30 points.

Q

Score at least 35 points.

Continue the Conversation

What do you think of Village Green? How has your village fared in the competition? I knew I was going to enjoy the artwork here, yet it can be easy to forget the joys of having a simple game with a relaxing theme. There was a little tension in terms of scoring well, yet it was barely noticeable. I mostly looked at the dogs, bicycles, and flowers!

2 Comments

  1. A small point but a surprisingly pleasing one: I really like the way that the cards tile together sideways simply by having the tree line at about the same height on each one. (Mostly.) It doesn’t make the art any more complicated to paint, and they were clearly willing to make exceptions as with the path and cyclist, but it means that most combinations fit together visually.

    Reply
    • I didn’t even notice this! This explains why the setting looks so organized without being obviously lined up. Thank you for pointing this out. Such a nice detail that I hadn’t considered. I’ll probably pay a lot of attention next time I play so I can appreciate this even more. Love that this is part of the design!

      Reply

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