Age range: 8+
Playing Time: 30 minutes
Style: Board Game
Publisher: Lookout Games
Review: Patchwork is an incredibly satisfying, and low-key game that is themed around quilting – participants take turns selecting patches and Tetris-ing them into their own quilt, earning buttons along the way which can be used for purchasing additional patches – the most buttons wins, but empty spaces in a quilt subtract from the score in the end.
The game is simply and elegantly designed – patches are scattered in a circle around a central board that tracks turn order and game progress, and players may choose from the next three patches in line on the circle. The patch they select dictates which three the next player will have to choose from, and also indicates how far they move on the central board – the player behind on the path always goes next. Alternatively, players may pass their turn and move ahead on the central board, collecting buttons for each square they were behind.
Verdict: Patchwork is a very polished package, with attractive and rugged pieces that convey a sense of coziness and low-stress fun. Minimal reading skills are needed, and it is easy to learn. The chief failing of the game is that it is for two players only, making it somewhat less inclusive for Library gaming programs (though that is where I first encountered it). There are quite a few pieces as well, and depending on policies regarding counting them upon return, it may be a bit of a headache for staff as a circulating game. Still, it is a game well worth playing and a great candidate for a public library’s collection.
Thomas Vose is the Director of the Ruth Enlow Library of Garrett County in Oakland, MD. He is the President-Elect of GameRT.