Gameday First Play – Bora Bora

Placing Dice on the isle of Bora Bora.

Feld does Kingsburg?

Stake your fortunes in the mysterious island world of Bora Bora. Journey across islands, building huts where the resilient men and women of your tribes can settle, discovering fishing grounds and collecting shells. Send priests to the temples, and gather offerings to curry favour with the gods.

Each player has 3 dice which are going to be placed for actions, one at a time. The catch being that some action spaces require a higher value to get the most out of it, but you can’t place a die with a equal or higher value than one already placed.

So while all high numbers get you better actions, you may end up being blocked out later in the round…

I love this.

In order (the way they were laid out in our game)  these are the actions you can take and how the value of a die effects them.

The 1st lets you take multiple actions depending on the number of pips on the die placed. You can score points, activate people (for Tattoos and Seashells), gain resources, draw cards etc So the more pips the better really. Any spare can always be used to pick up extra points.

The 2nd & 3rd let you travel across land or water to spread out your buildings across the island. The space you’re moving across has a number so the value of the number matters here. When you build, you gain the item printed on that space on the board. When you move to a new space you bump the player there off the ‘control’ space. You control it… for now.

The 4th lets you build a hut on your play area, but for this you need to cover 2 resources that you need to have already placed there from other actions. You have 6 huts numbered 1 to 6 so if you want to build all of them, you need to use a 6 on there at some point.

The 5th & 6th let you pick from a selection of men and women. Just like the huts, the higher the value of the die the more you have to pick from except each Man/Woman will have a different ability.

The 7th lets you add a Priest to the Priest track. When adding them to the track you push down the other priests, sliding a priest from spot 1 off the board if that’s the case. So a 6 is basically going to stay there all game if you’re lucky.

Bora Bora Board

After everyone is placed there is a scoring period that has a few steps.

Firstly, you use a Man and Woman action. Of the Men and Women you have on your board, you can pick one of each and take an action that is on the right side of the tile. These can simply be gaining points to taking those actions I mentioned earlier.

Then you score points for the number of tattoos you gained in the round. The higher the number of tattoos, the more points you’ll score. This also determines turn order for the next round.

In the new turn order, you can buy Jewellery using the seashells you have.

Then you complete a task if possible and draw a new one. Tasks give you something to aim for each round as well as giving you something to aim for in future rounds. A typical task would be “Have two of the same God card” or “Have 3 Men with different abilities” etc etc

After 6 rounds you go through the end game scoring. I’ll list it here…

  • You can complete the 3 task tiles you have left for a bonus
  • You get 2 points per God tile (God tiles let you activate a God, I’ll explain these shortly as they’re pretty cool.)
  • You get points for the value of the Jewellery you own
  • Each island space you control has a fish tile next to it, you get the value of each fish you control
  • Points for building all your buildings and huts as well as filling your ceremony spaces and recruiting the max number of Men/Women

Most points wins.

Bora Bora Play Area

It’s  a Feld so points for everything but I’ll say it again, I like that.

Placing the dice is fun and very tactical. You can play a 1 early to lock out an action for everyone for the rest of the round… But then you risk having your larger value dice still available when everyone else has taken a turn.

Now those God cards I mentioned earlier can really help here. They let you cheat a bit. You discard a God card and an offering token to take the action…

  • Blue – Ignore the ‘less than’ rule when placing a die. Play any die anywhere, very handy.
  • White – Treat a die as a 6. Normal placement rules apply. Play it as a 1 and block out the action space but activate it as a 6!
  • Red – Score the points of a fish token you build next to. Worth it when you build next to a 5-6 pointer.
  • Green – Double the effect of a man/woman or activate a second one. Very useful.
  • Yellow – Ignore 1 requirement when completing a task at a penalty of 2 points. Handy if you’re trying to complete one each round.

You can also give up a God token to use any of these abilities without an offering or God card required.

This is a very nice, well balanced game that would have completely replaced Kingsburg for me if it played 5 or 6 players.

Looking forward to playing this again and focusing on different areas of the game.

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