Game Time Decision

“When did I ever refuse an accomodation?”  –Don Vito Corleone

This week on Game Time Decision we have a message for you: Those that don’t try this game sleep with the fishes! The Godfather: A New Don is an area control, area influence dice game by Sen-Foong Lim and Jay Cormier, published by IDW Games.

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From the Website:Control the streets to climb your way to the top in The Godfather: A New Don. In this dice-rolling, area control board game, you’ll take on the role of the head of one of six major crime families battling for control of New York City. Through the roll of your dice pool, you’ll send out your soldiers to take over different territories or send them to Vegas to gamble on your future.

Use your muscle to become acting Don, and you’ll be able to make an offer your opponents can’t refuse, but be careful. The tides of power shift with every roll of the dice, so you’ll have to use your influence at just the right moment, or you’ll risk sending your soldiers to sleep with the fishes.

From RTHG Staff (Brandon):I have always been a fan of the Godfather series of movies. There is a bit of romance in the idea of putting something before self (the family) and all others and doing whatever it takes to make it succeed. Sure there are some questionable actions taken and we all should be grown-up enough to know between right and wrong, and that ultimately they were movies. Good, good movies.

So when the chance to play The Godfather: A New Don came up I was all in. The first player (The Don) rolls three large die to represent the Vegas section. This section is numbered 1-6 (game is played with d6) and during the 1st turn you can send some of your meeples to Vegas to gamble on your behalf. Only 1 meeple per number (no sharing) and if the Don rolls your number you get to add that die to your roll for the turn.

The game is an area control game with the game board broken down into different neighborhoods of New York City. Each sub-section (of a neighborhood) has a yahtzee format die value assigned to it (two 1’s, three 4’s, four 5’s, etc.) which are what you have to match within your die roll to claim on your turn. After the Don’s Vegas roll everyone rolls their die (then add any Vegas die to your lot) and you pair off your like numbers (or in some cases a small straight) in an attempt to lay claim to various sub-sections. Each neighborhood has three victory point values assigned to it allowing players to finish 1st, 2nd or 3rd based on how many sub-sections they have claimed influence over within the area.

A neat feature, one our group played up in our normal over-acting way, is that after everyone has rolled for the turn and before the Don begins their turn (claiming sub-sections), the other players have to offer up one of their die to the Don, as they duly should. The Don gets to accept their offer, or request a different die number (1-6) instead, of which the player can’t refuse if they have it. The player then gets to place one of their meeples on the river track space of the number of the die they gave (having a choice of the initial number offered OR the Don’s requested number).

Game end triggers when a player has placed onto the board their last meeple after which a last turn is finished and points tallied. The board has a river section (mentioned above) which functions primarily as die manipulation, and also there is a muscle track which is how the role of the Don can change hands turn to turn (add up the pip totals of any die that can’t take a sub-section to advance along the muscle track-at end of turn it resets). The rest of the game’s rules keep gameplay clean, fair (the Don has some action restrictions to compensate for his power), and moving. With a playtime of around an hour, how can you refuse?

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