Unveil your city planning skills in My City: Roll & Write, a game set to test your mettle through a campaign of 12 games. Crafted by the renowned designer Reiner Knizia and modeled after his popular board game My City, this game engages you through four interconnected chapters. Utilizing the 192 game sheets and three special dice included, your objective extends beyond individual game victories to winning chapters and the entire campaign.
1-6 players, ages 10+
Playing time: 30 minutes
Designer: Reiner Knizia
Artwork: Michael Menzel
Publisher: 999 Games
📝 To start, all players receive a sheet from the corresponding scenario. All the games contain several rounds where the three dice play a pivotal role in shaping the gameplay. Rolled at the beginning of each round, the dice determine the shape and type of the building to be drawn. Two blue dice show parts of a building that, when aligned to form a circle, set the shape of your next building. The white die then reveals the type of building you’re about to construct. As you populate your game sheet with buildings, make sure to abide by the rules: no building over mountains or forests, and remember to start your construction alongside the river.
🚧 Winning is all about strategic planning and points. In each game, trees that have not been built over earn you a point each, but any stones left uncovered will cost you a point. Be careful not to leave any fields empty, as this also loses you points.
⛪ As the campaign progresses, each chapter brings fresh challenges and new rules. For instance, in Chapter 1, you’ll work on building orderly districts for additional points. In Chapter 2, the churches come into play, where proximity to different types of buildings can earn you extra points.
💰 Chapter 3 introduces a new concept of collecting moneybags, which may lead to bonus points by the end of the chapter. Here, you’ll deal with a river bursting its banks, using a sawmill as your starting building and plateaus on mountains as your safety. The climax of this chapter involves a gold rush, and you have the opportunity to earn extra points by building over gold fields.
💥 In the final Chapter, ‘Bandits,’ you’ll face the challenge of arresting bandits by surrounding them with buildings. The compass on the dice will also come back into play here to construct fortresses. The chapter culminates with the last game, giving you numerous chances to gain extra points by always building buildings, preserving trees, building over stones, and leaving no fields empty.
My City: Roll & Write manages to perfectly encapsulate the essence of the original board game, yet introducing a fresh twist with its own unique elements. One of the game’s significant strengths lies in the consistent injection of new elements and features throughout the campaign. These elements constantly evolve, making the gameplay refreshing and challenging, keeping players on their toes as they adjust their strategies to the newly introduced ways to score points.
📖 In terms of accessibility, this game impresses with its seamless rule integration. The game brilliantly etches new rules onto the game sheets themselves, making the learning curve surprisingly minimal. This ease of learning fosters a cozy gaming environment, encouraging players to indulge in multiple rounds in one sitting. It’s a small detail that goes a long way in enhancing the player experience.
🎲 As with any game involving dice, a touch of luck is always at play. This dynamic brings a distinct contrast to the original board game, which had a more calculated approach allowing for tactical maneuvering. However, the elements of unpredictability and surprise make this version of My City more spontaneous and tactically engaging.
🔁 The components of My City: Roll & Write include double-sided game sheets and three dice. The double-sided game sheets offer an abundance of replayability. The dice are ok, doing what they need to do without complication. The lack of included pencils might be a minor inconvenience for some. However, considering most board gamers usually have an array of pencils from other games that can be easily borrowed, it’s a minor detail.
💭 Overall, My City: Roll & Write is a solid reimplementation of the original. It faithfully captures the feel of the original game, yet in a more compact, table-friendly form. Its gameplay duration is much shorter, making it an ideal choice for quick gaming sessions. Moreover, its portability factor allows for it to be easily transported, further increasing its appeal. It’s fun, engaging, and offers a satisfying gaming experience.
*Disclaimer: We received a review copy of the game from 999 Games.