In this abstract strategy game, two players are exploring the lowlands and call upon the wild animals you encounter to help you fight for dominance.
2 players, ages 10+
Playing time: 20 minutes
Designers: Trevor Benjamin & Brett J. Gilbert
Artwork: Klemens Franz
Publisher: 999 Games (Originally published by Lookout Games)
One player plays as the snakes, while the other one controls the fox clan.
On their turn, players place one of their tokens onto an empty field of the play area, either adjacent to their cave or a previously placed token. The goal of the game is to gain control over the meadows; these awards points to the player who has the majority at game end. Each time you place a token on a space depicting a bear, eagle or horse, you acquire a corresponding token which you can spend further on in the game to use its special power.
When both players have placed all their tribe tokens, the game is over, players count their points for the meadows they control and whoever has the most points wins the game.
Great Plains comes with simple, straightforward gameplay, making it seem like a simple game at first glance. But because there’s no luck involved and the animal powers really spice up the gameplay, you’ll find after a few plays that there’s more to it when the tactical possibilities reveal themselves. Especially the second half of the game becomes quite tense with the players having to keep a close eye on each other’s moves to protect their majorities.
Highly recommended if you play a lot of 2-player games or are looking for a game to introduce new gamers to the area control mechanic.