Sunday, 12 April 2015

Mr Takeover - Takenoko

Hello Kawaiisters!!

Yes, it's me, Mr, back with another takeover!

11 April was International Tabletop Day, a day when people all over the world have fun playing lots of games with friends and family. It's great fun and a really social event!

As you might already know, Pinkuiro Pixie reviewed the Japanese game Love Letter and its Christmas edition Letters to Santa, but we've got lots more Kawaii games in our collection - so what did we play to celebrate International Tabletop Day?

The super Kawaii, bamboo growing, Panda nomming game: Takenoko!

The story behind Takenoko is that the Emperor of China had sent the Emperor of Japan a Panda as a symbol of peace between the two countries.  The Japanese Emperor has asked his trusted lords and ladies (the players) to look after the special Panda by setting up a bamboo garden.  Using the garden to grow bamboo and feed the Panda, the player that completes objectives worth the most points will be declared the winner!

So, opening the box, here's what Takenoko includes:

The game is really high quality and includes tiles to make up a garden, wooden pieces of bamboo, tokens, a die and even a super Kawaii little Panda and Gardener!  The rulebook starts with a colourful comic to introduce the game, which is really fun!

The game is designed for players aged 13+ and it takes about 45 minutes to play a game.  2-4 players can take part.

So, we set up ready for our game of Takenoko:

You start off with a blue Pond tile, with the Gardener ready to grow some bamboo and the Panda ready to eat it!

You get two actions per turn; you can play a new garden plot tile, which makes the garden bigger, you can move the Gardener to grow a piece of bamboo, you can move the Panda to eat a piece of bamboo, you can take an irrigation channel (bamboo needs water to grow!) or you can take an objective card (either Panda, Gardener or Plots). You have to take two different actions each turn.

For my first turn I placed a new garden plot and drew a Gardener objective card - I like to try to grow lots of Bamboo!  Here's what the garden was looking like after my turn:

The pink garden plot tile has got its first piece of bamboo grown - it's a good job cause that's one hungry Panda!!

Pinkuiro Pixie took her turn next, she played another garden plot and drew a Panda objective card (her favourite... I think it's cause that Panda is just so Kawaii!!).  Here's the garden after her turn:

On the second turn you start to use the special weather die!  You roll it at the start of your turn and it has a special effect! If it's sunny, you get to take an extra action (so you can do three things on your turn instead of two), if it's rainy then you get to grow a piece of bamboo, if it's windy you can take the same action twice if you want, if it's cloudy you can take a token that adds a special effect to a garden plot (either a fence to keep the Panda from eating the bamboo, some fertiliser to make bamboo there grow quicker or a water source  to make bamboo grow far away from the central pond).  The cutest weather option is the storm though; it scares the Panda who moves to a new garden plot tile and noms a piece of Bamboo to help it calm down!!

We kept taking turns; adding new garden plots, growing bamboo and trying to achieve our objectives.  Here's a picture of the garden as it grows:

There's lots more bamboo growing now... I know what objectives I'm trying to complete, but what is Pinkuiro Pixie up to I wonder.....

We carried on taking turns:

Here's a sneaky peek - she's trying to feed the Panda one piece of each colour of bamboo! She's already got a piece each of pink and green; she only needs a yellow piece to complete the first objective! We carried on playing, the garden keeps getting bigger and there's lots of bamboo growing (especially green by the looks of it!) - and then Pinkuiro Pixie was successful in getting the Panda to a piece of yellow bamboo, which he nommed straight away!

So the first objective has been completed and it was worth a huge 6 points! I'm going to have to try hard to win now!

Play carries on until one player completes a certain number of objectives (this changes with the number of players).  The player who reaches this number first gets a special Emperor card:

Each other player then gets one more turn to try to complete objectives and then you add up the numbers on all your completed objective cards; the player with the highest has done the best job of looking after the Emperor's bamboo garden - and the Panda! - and is declared the winner!

There's different kinds of objectives:

On the right is the Panda objective that Pinkurio Pixie completed - eat one of each colour bamboo.  The middle card is a garden plot ojbective - you have to make that colour pattern, but they have to all have water so they can grow bamboo otherwise they don't count!  The Gardener objective is on the left - this is a tough one; you have to grow four Bamboo, each of them three pieces high! (gotta try to keep that Panda away from green bamboo somehow!)

The game is really tactical but it's simple and fun to play. As it has such a Kawaii theme and style it's a great game for all Kawaiisters to try out!  Surely everyone wants a game all about a Panda eating bamboo?!

We've got lots more Kawaii games to play and share with you - so check back for more soon! ^^


Dannie - Famous in Japan said...

I love the sound of this game! I love pandas SO much :)

Dannie x

Pinkuiro Pixie said...

It's such a cute and quick game to learn! I love pandas too which is why Mr bought it! PANDAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Pinkuiropixie X

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