Hey folks, back again. Today we’re tending the garden, feeding the pig, and selling veggies at the market. We’re looking at Harvest Dice today. It’s a roll and write dice drafting game. We are in a time where roll and write games are plenty and one even has been nominated as a Spiel des Jahres this year. I haven’t had a chance to play that one, but I do enjoy my roll and writes. Harvest Dice is from Grey Fox games, plays 2-4 players, and takes 15-30 minutes to play depending on player count. So come, lettuce take a look at the game play.
This comes in a small square box, has the following inside it. 2 different score pads, 4 pencils, 1 pig start player marker, and 9 veggie dice. The two different score pads change the game a little bit. They differ just by scoring at the end of the game and the pig power you can use during the game. The veggie dice come in green, red, and orange. These represent the veggies we’re harvesting. Green is lettuce, red are tomatoes, and orange are carrots. First thing I did was laminate some score sheets. I wanted something that I could reuse and not run out. The start player token is a cute looking piggy. It gave me some warm fuzzy feeling from my head tomatoes. I just want to give it a hog. Nope, going to try and get all the veggie and pig puns I can. I don’t carrot anyone thinks. I love puns. I don’t mean to boar anyone, so let’s take a look at game play.
This is a dice drafting roll and write game. If you have 2 players, you’ll use 2 of each color die. If it’s 3-4 players, you’ll use all 9 dice. The starting player, the last person who has eaten a vegetable, rolls the dice. I like to separate them into like color groups. Now the drafting and placing begins.
The starting player will pick a die, and plant them in your score sheet or feed the pig. On the top of your columns, there’s 1-6. This shows what column the dice needs to be planted in. All 1s go in column 1. 2s in column 2, and so on. You simply draw in the box you want to plant. Lettuce are squares, tomatoes are round, and carrots are triangles. Now, planting the first of each veggie doesn’t have any restrictions. When you plant an additional veggie, it has to connect to like veggies. So if I plant a lettuce in column 2, the next lettuce I can plant has to be a 1, 2, or 3.
What happens if I can’t follow that rule? Well, then I have to feed it to my pig. You cross off circles equal to your die number starting in the top row of your pig pen. Once you completely fill a row, you can use the pig power. The pig power differs depending on the score sheet. Simple games you can change the number of the veggie by 1. In the advanced game, you can change the color of the die or change the number.
Players will draft the dice until there’s only one left. Someone each turn will have one less draft they get. Since starting player rotates around, it didn’t seem like this was much of a problem. The die that is left will change the market. Next to the pig pen is the market stands. I know, not that sanitary. You’ll mark off the circle in the stand that corresponds to the veggie die left. This will change the scoring at the end of the game.
So, rounds will keep going until one of three things happens. First, if someone feeds their piggy so much that they don’t have any room left to feed it. You know what that means? No, not bacon! Well, maybe bacon. It also means the end of the game. Next thing to signify the end of the game is completing all your rows. If you have no place left to plant, it’s the end of the game. Lastly, if a market stand is every full and no more room to put the left over veggies it’s the end of the game. The round will finish, then it’s time to count.
Once the game ends, it’s time to score your farm. If you’re playing the basic game, then first count how many carrots you have planted. They’re equal to the price at the market each. So if the market has 4 spots marked and you have 6 carrots, that’s 24 points. You’ll total it like this for tomatoes and lettuce next. The blue box total is how many completed rows in your garden you have. Each row gets you 5 points. If you’re playing the advanced score pad, the player who has planted the most of each veggie gets 5 points, and the player with the fattest piggy gets 5 points. Now, you’ll add the points for feeding the pig. You get the points next to the row most recently completed. If you have 5 on the third row, you’ll only get points for completing the second row. Farmer with the most points wins.
So, what do I think about Harvest Dice? It’s a dice drafting roll and write. I really like the drafting part of the game. It reminded me of Sagrada’s drafting. I like the decisions while playing. Do you plant these or feed the pig. As the player to draft the last die before market, you’ve got a lot of decision there. The last die left will change the end points of the veggies or even end the game. So watch what you’re drafting as it could make things better for the other farmers or end the game sooner. My grandma was able to play this game with some coaching the first round. After that, she ended up winning the game. This game is easy to teach, fun to play, and is a nice small filler. It’s one that’s also grandmother approved. I recommend this one if you’re tired of Yahtzee and like roll and writes.