Spiel des Jahres: Niagara

I was very lucky to receive not one, not two, but three SdJ winners for my 30th birthday (photo’s here) last year and although Mr.J and I have played all three, we have only played Niagara as part of our quest.  We played it quite a while ago so this review is very tardy but that’s a reflection on me and not the game!

As before, there are plenty of more detailed descriptions of this game already out there (BGG, Wiki) so I won’t go into too much detail on the game play and rules here.  What I will say is that I think this is a very aesthetically pleasing game; it has pretty gems and lots of detail on the drawings on the box and the concept of the river moving along at the end of each turn, pushing the discs along and canoes falling off is certainly unique.  Like a lot of the games we’ve played and are still to play, it’s for 3 to 5 people but Mr.J and I played this as a two player game, and it still worked OK.  When we played this as a SdJ quest game it took us a bit of time to go through the rules, as there is quite a bit to cover but once you get into the game itself it does become clear and the turns move quickly.  Overall, once you know what you’re doing I think the game play duration is pretty much spot on and I think you could play this quite a lot before getting bored with it as so much of your strategy depends on other people so you have to think on your feet, but thankfully for me I think you can still have a good chit chat and remain fairly competitive!

Mrs.P won this one but it was a close one, as Mr.J and Mr.P looked to be the likely winner before Mrs.P snatched victory!

MrsP - Niagara winner

The scores are also in with Niagara scoring 83%, the current joint highest along with Alhambra 🙂

Niagara scores


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