Gather your crew, arm your cannons, and let’s sail together to the unknown…. This is Tiny Epic Pirates Review
PLAYING TIME: 30-60 min
PUBLISHER: Gamelyn Games
Round Structure and Gameplay
Tiny Epic Pirates is the latest pick-up and deliver game from Gamelyn Games.
You are the Captain of a Pirate ship and your goal is to become the richest of the High Seas by burying treasures in secret locations.
Each turn you will move your captain meeple on an action wheel (rondel) and perform the action indicated that will allow you to plunder to get resources, sell those resources, crew up, fight, search or bury the treasures (by activating your captain bonus action)
You will choose your action using a rondel system that forces you to choose your actions in clockwise order. The only way to skip an action that you want to take is to allocate one of your deckhands, removing them for the current bonus slot.
The actions on the rondel are always the same every game but their position is randomized at the beginning of the game and that’s huge because some sequences of actions can favor you on certain things and others can force you to find a sequence that suits you the most.
Combat is resolved by rolling 6 sided dice and check how many of your crew members match the value rolled. The highest number of damage is the winner of the fight.
After you performed your action, the Navy Ship may move and chase you down and it is something that you need to try to avoid in order to not getting sunk.
In order to get the coins, you will move around the islands, plunder for goods and sell those goods to the different markets to get coins. Once you have enough coins you can bury them (it’ll become a treasure).
Bury 3 treasures and you will be the Pirate King and win the game.
Gamelyn Games makes tiny boxes packed with a bunch of components and this time is no different. Pirates contain 7 ships miniatures (you get a Pirate Ship, you get a Pirate Ship, you all get a Pirate Ship)
The ships are very detailed and they have space to place the goods that you collect around the sea, making visible to everybody what kind of cargo you are holding.
The Ocean is done using map cards, each of them is going to be shuffled and placed randomly in a 4×4 grid that makes each game unique because the markets, the plunders, and the storms will be in different areas of the grid.
The artwork is beautiful and each crew member is unique and offers abilities and dice for combat.
Tiny Epic Pirates comes with a Solo Mode where you will face another AI Pirate. To get used to the Solo mode you will need a couple of games.
The AI works using a 6 sided die, each number corresponds to an action space on your rondel where the AI Captain will go and while that is the easy part, the AI has different rules to follow for different actions.
Each AI is a combination of a Captain and a Legend Mat that changes some of the stats of your rival.
The feeling of the game remains the same but it might result in a bit swingy according to the result of the dice rolls from the AI where sometimes it can do actions that have no impact on the game or very small.
FINAL THOUGHT: Tiny Epic Pirates has a very interesting rondelle system that forces players to plan ahead their turn in order to get the maximum amount of actions before the Navy starts to chase them or an important merchant ship sail away.
Each action on the rondel can be skipped by using one of your pirates but you’d lose a bonus by doing that so the amount of decision increases and the choices you have are even more.
TEP is a fun pirate game that immerses you in the pirate world and puts you in control of a crew and a ship.
The huge map is clear to read and offers replayability with the different positions of each card.
I love the rondel system in the game, it makes the strategy pop up and forces planning your turns. The artwork is awesome and engaging I really feel like being a pirate and running my own ship.
The game is solid and thematic but it requires a little bit of time to understand all the mechanisms and also to set it up and play but past that, you will find an engaging game full of life and opportunities.
If you are looking for a pirate game to add in your collection this can be the one.
The feeling and theme are there and it offers a crunchy gameplay.
As usual for the Tiny Epic, so much game in such a little package.
What do you think about the game?
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