Rice is Nice – A Review of Seasons of Rice

Seasons of Rice

Designer: Corry Damey

Artist: Jerome Damey & Corry Damey

Publisher: Button Shy Games

Player count: 2

Ages: 8+

Play time: 15 – 30 minutes

Components: 18 double sided cards depicting an ancestor on one side and rice paddy landscape on the other, rules sheet, wallet

Theme: Players are rice farmers trying to build the best rice paddies.

Goal: Place cards connecting paths to make enclosed rice paddies. Enclosed paddies score based on the number of ‘squares’, indicated by thin furrows lines, inside their paddies as well as the number of farmers, houses, and water buffalo enclosed. Additionally, players score either throughout the game or at the end based on their ancestor’s special scoring condition.

Game play: Players draw two random cards from the shuffled deck. They choose one as their ancestor and place the other, field side up, as the first card in their landscape. The remainder of the cards are dealt evenly to each player. Players draft landscape cards in two phases. In the Wet Phase they will exchange card hands and choose 2 cards each turn one to add to their landscape and one added to a central row, which will be used in the second phase. Placement builds enclosed paddies. Enclosed paddies score immediately based of counting the ‘squares’ formed by the thin furrows within enclosed paddies. In the Dry Phase, players take turns drafting a card from the central row. When all the cards are placed into a landscape, end game scoring takes place. Players also score varying and increasing points for each farmer, house, and water buffalo within their enclosed paddies. Water buffaloes not enclosed count as a negative point each. Players with end game scoring ancestor scores accordingly. The player with the highest score wins.

My Thoughts:

Well, I’ll break the suspense. I like Seasons of Rice a lot. It is a spacial puzzling game. As such it has high replayability. The 18 different ancestors add a lot of variety. I enjoy these. I get a very Sprawlopolis feel from Seasons of Rice. Except in a two player, competitive game. It’s a worth cousin. That is a high complement from me. The game is easy to learn and plays very quickly once you know how to play. The game has good table presence. The completed landscapes look great and give you a feeling of accomplishment. Seasons of Rice has some suspense in that you know what cards are available after the first hand off. But you don’t know which will be available to you each turn. What cards will your opponent choose? What cards should you keep for landscape building and which one should you put out to the center? The strategy of the game lies here. And remembering to play to your ancestor’s special scoring is key. I recommend Seasons of Rice.

You should like Seasons of Rice if:

  • you like Sprawlopolis
  • you like puzzly games
  • spacial games
  • are gameschooling about asian cultures

https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/256705/seasons-rice on Boardgamegeek.com

Thank you to Button Shy Games for providing a review copy of the game.





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