Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Sequoia is a Quick and Engaging Area Control Game

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I have learned that I really enjoy area control games, and I really enjoy them when they’re not convoluted but are quick to play and just darn fun. If you want a game like that, then Sequoia is perfect for you. Part of Allplay’s small box series and designed by Chad DeShon, the game is all about building the tallest trees across eleven forests.

What’s In The Box?

When I say small, I mean small. The box comes in under five inches wide and five inches tall, and is only two inches deep, though I think another half inch would have made everything fit absolutely perfectly. The game comes with 11 brightly illustrated forest cards, 11 first place tokens, 11 second place tokens, 25 die (five each) in five colors, and 100 tree tokens (20 each) in five colors.

This was my first Allplay game but I can see why people rave about their games, because the pieces, cards, and die were absolutely solid. I loved that the “trees” were all different shapes and designs too! The art by Anna Gavril and Daniel Profiri is gorgeous. Honestly I’m a sucker for well themed games with good art so I was already really happy about the game when I got it for my birthday!

How’s It Play?

Sequioa is genuinely one of the fastest games that I’ve played. Each turn players can grow two trees in any of the eleven forests but must determine whether they want to keep fighting in a forest with competition or start growing somewhere else. With only ten turns, there’s only so many ways to play and the difference in points from one forest can decide who wins the game.

On each turn, players roll all five dice and hide the results from one another. Pick four die to make two pairs from and then simultaneously tell each other which forest they’ll be growing their trees in. Gameplay continues until all tree pieces are placed. Whichever player has the tallest tree in each forest receives the 1st place token and then the second tallest tree’s player gets the second place token. So on and so forth. With more than two players the game gets particularly dicey (hah).

If there are any ties once all forests have been scored, the players with those trees roll the dice again and go until there is a winner. When my friend and I played, we had tied for forest 7 and it took five rolls before one of us beat the other. Thanks for being the most common roll!

The Verdict?

I love board games now that I’ve been playing them for so long, but I still don’t enjoy super complicated, twenty page rulebook requiring, confusing games. That’s what makes Sequoia such a breath of fresh air. My friend and I had so much fun playing and the only reason we stopped playing is because they had to go home.

Small box games are super great since they really do leave the home and get played more often, and I know I’m going to be taking Sequoia with me to friends places when we hang out. All you really need is a small table or flat surface. While the game is suggested to be played with the forests set up in a circle, you can easily set them up in a grid like the image below.

It’s just so PRETTY.

Allplay has also introduced a negative points and sixth player expansion that allows for team play. The negative value tokens flips the game strategy completely because now players are trying to not have the fewest forests, which earns negative value tokens!

I know I’m going to be reaching for this game all the time now and I can’t wait to try more games from Allplay!

You can pick up Sequoia at Allplay directly or at your FLGS.

10 Reviewer
Sequoia is the perfect area control game for beginners and hardcore board gaming enthusiasts, only takes ten to fifteen minutes a game, and is just plain fun.
Images courtesy of Allplay

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