Monday, June 20, 2016

Review - Holmes: Sherlock & Mycroft (2015) - Devir

Upon attending my first Origins Game Fair, I came across this game. And I'm thrilled that I did!

The Blurb

In February 1895, London woke up with a loud bang. A large pillar of smoke showed that a bomb had exploded in the Houses of Parliament. Security forces were activated immediately and they arrested a suspicious young laborer near the area.

Mycroft Holmes at the service of the crown was commissioned to investigate the relationship of the young laborer with anarchist groups, and he thinks it will be an easy task that he can do from the comfort of his armchair in the Diogenes Club — until he is informed of disturbing news. His younger brother, Sherlock Holmes, Consulting Detective, has been hired by the boy's parents to prove the innocence of his son, who believes to be a scapegoat of a dark conspiracy.

For the first time, the brightest minds in London face each other. Will it be aware the young of this terrible attack or he is just a scapegoat of a dark conspiracy?
A game of Holmes: Sherlock & Mycroft lasts seven turns (days of investigation). At the beginning of each day, famous characters extracted from the books of Arthur Conan Doyle appear in London.

Each player has three action tokens that move from one character to another to use their special abilities, knowing that a player can never have two tokens on the same character. Therefore, you need to free a character before reuse. The abilities of the characters allow them to obtain Evidence Cards or gain Investigation Tokens in multiple ways. The game has a great replayability because it is not for sure that a character with a specific ability makes his appearance on the board in the Day 1 or in the final Day 7. Each game is different!

The Gist

Prove once and for all which Holmes is the greater detective.

The Play

The game started as they all do, with the three standard cards (as shown here). We left the two villain cards out for the first play. The game actually progressed quite quickly. I noticed from the outset that Tyler had zero interest in the map fragments (which increase in value at the end of the game for the bonus, depending on how many pieces you have). I took advantage of this, combined with the the Toby card on that was revealed on the second day (every time I played it, Tyler said, "Toooooooooby!"). I was able to amass 6 different sets and gained 6 investigation markers every time I played Toby. I felt like I was really crushing Ty and looked
forward on how I was going to make my custom Dad Wins picture for the blog. Maybe I would pick an outline of Sherlock Holmes with Dad Wins in the silhouette..? By round six, I had all but one map fragment, all the 3's and four of the nine 9's, and the majority of 8's (each card has the number of cards equal to the number: four 4's, five 5's, etc...). Tyler, in round 6, thought of possibly playing Irene Adler to steal a card from me, but it would have cost 6 Inspection Tokens and he was not willing to pay such a high price. He grabbed a couple more cards, and I looked up to see he had 4 wild cards on various stacks (you can put one wild on each number set). In the last round he managed to grab the last nine and I was able to....not do much...but I did get the last map fragment!

Scoring time. Okay, lets see, we go back and forth for points.... And then Tyler starts getting majorites in a few sets.... He is at 18, and clobbering me... He is at 21 after 4's....Wait, I have all the map pieces! That brings me to 13... and I have all the 3's and that brings me to 19.. ugh... I tell Tyler the score and he says "You spent too much on 8's and not enough on wild cards." Happy Father's Day to me.

The Bits

"Okay, I know it's just aesthetics, but look at the back of this board. Seriously, how cool is this when it's folded up. How often do you look at a folded-up board and go, 'This is awesome!'"


"I like the wildcard. It gives me the ability to get majorities in the cards. That card is sooooo wild! "

The Good, the Bad and the Rating


"In less than a week, this has become my favorite 2-player game, hands down. Love the theme. Love how easy it is to teach, and yet there is a depth of strategy, and tactics change every time you play based on what cards and characters are revealed."5/5


"I like that each turn is a day of the week.  It's like you're meeting people every day. It works well with the theme."


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