A Very Merry Christmas: Dissent Games Solo Greetings cards

Dissent Games have come up with an interesting idea and one that I’ve not come across before, solo games on greetings cards. I really like the idea, for one, of a card that doesn’t go straight in the bin post birthday/Christmas/anniversary etc etc, and secondly of a little, quick game you can play in a few spare minutes.

Plastic Currents is a very attractive card, having a Japanese Coy Carp pond look, which when buying a card is important. Game play involves attempting to remove plastic, represented by tokens or sweets, from the squares on the card through the rolling of dice. I’m going to be honest it took a couple of read throughs of the rules to double check that I’d got them straight. As someone brought up playing solitaire and patience endlessly, the quiet repeated actions didn’t bother me and I found it quite mindful attempting to clear columns. My one criticism is that there isn’t a scoring process; I would have like a “complete in x moves and you’re David Attenborough on Boaty McBoatface with a big net”. It did feel slightly like a metaphor for plastic pollution as the game rotated round and around seemingly endlessly, but I got there in the end.

Roll & Colour is a Christmas design where you colour in the front of the card. The design is pretty, though obviously more interesting once coloured in. Again, there’s a mindful element to this game as you roll dice to pick a column, row and colour. Slightly counter intuitively the aim is to have different coloured stars in each square. I had a disagreement with my partner as to which would be more attractive, all different colours or the same colours in blocks. Certainly, having the same colours in blocks or in a pattern could give a more satisfying and cohesive game play experience and final image. This card did have a scoring mechanism, and I achieved a perfect score, however, because there are only 3 bands of scoring, if you make just 2 mistakes it pushes you into the worst scoring band. As you can only play once this feels a little precarious, though the aim is to end up with a pretty card, so it doesn’t matter a tremendous amount.

Overall, I’d say that if you like quiet, mindful, process, solo games, then these are very sweet and an interesting idea. You can order them on Kickstarter from 29th October, so keep an eye out! Dissent Games is a female run UK company and well worth supporting so look out for her upcoming game Library Labyrinth. 

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