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Spirit Island First Impressions: Unboxing

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Foote
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Spirit Island First Impressions: Unboxing

As someone who never playtested or even played earlier versions of Spirit Island, I have been over the top excited to get my hands on this and experience this game. I'll be doing a short series of first impressions for this forums as I go through everything the game has to offer. First up, Unboxing!

 

I open the shipping box to see the main SI box, the expansion, and the promo spirits and cards. The first thing I get to look at are the promo spirit panels. I dont know why, but I wasn't expecting them to be so...sturdy! Thick cardboard and a very nice finish makes these things look and feel great and I have no doubt that these will surivive the beating of time. Off to a great start.

While opening the main box and looking through the components for the first time, I am stunned and amazed at the storage design. Everything has its place and there are small cutouts everywhere making sure that every single component fits where it belongs. I've seen a lot of 3rd party companies do this for other games (BrewCrafters I'm looking at you), but to see it so well designed and thought out right from the start makes me so happy I could cry. I really don't want to undersell just how amazing this small detail is. Tactics really could have used the touch of whoever was responsible for this masterpiece of box space solutions. Hell, 90% of the games on my shelf could. It's impeccable. 

However, I will say that the promo spirit cards, as well as the 2 from the expansion, will not play nice in the main box in the space designed for spirit panels. I dare say that this feels like, maybe not an oversight, but more of a missed oppertunity. You will need to keep all avaliable spririt panels in 3 seperate locations between 2 boxes for them to fit nicely. For as great as the storage design is, I have to point out the obviously glaring flaw.

The map pieces are a thing of beauty. I've seen them in pictures, but to have them in hand just reinforces how elegant the design is. Truely the most unique thing about the game visiually.

The invader minis look good. They are very small and very frail with slender features (by design of course). If anything in the box will not withstand the afformentioned beating of time, these will surely be the first to go. I'd caution handling them with care when cleaning the game up and putting them back in the box.

The rulebook, or the rule novel, is big, bright, and easy to read. Which is nice considering just how much reading there is for new players such as myself. I'm a seasoned gaming veteran at this point in my life, and I gotta say that the rulebook is the most daunting thing I'v tackled since I bought Arkham Horror on a whim all those years ago. While the text is dense in places, the large text font and colorful image helpers that are splashed everywhere help.

As soon as I clear an afternoon to read this book, we will get to my first solo game, and then, my first 2-4 player game.

Stay Tuned!

 

Paul
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@Foote

I'm glad that you have a good impression so far! Regarding the Explorer pieces, the plastic they are made out of is quite sturdy and flexible; I carried a bunch around the GAMA Trade Show in Vegas in my back pocket for 3 days and sat on them all the time and they held up great.


“Many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.” ~Obi-Wan Kenobi

dpt
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Paul wrote:
... I carried a bunch around the GAMA Trade Show in Vegas in my back pocket for 3 days and sat on them all the time and they held up great.
Wow, that's way more abuse than I would have dared to subject them to.
Rabit
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They'd been bad. Needed to be punished. You know how it goes...


"See, this is another sign of your tragic space dementia, all paranoid and crotchety. Breaks the heart." - Mal

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TakeWalker
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Dangit, I really wish I could have backed this game. D: Are all the promo spirits going to be available in retail eventually?

dpt
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TakeWalker wrote:
Dangit, I really wish I could have backed this game. D: Are all the promo spirits going to be available in retail eventually?
Not in retail, but may be available other places. They will be available at conventions, and Eric (the designer) was pushing to make them available on the BoardGameGeek store; I don't know about other plans.
Arcanist Lupus
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Every indication is that the Spirit Island promos will be handled identically to the SotM variants.  That is: available from conventions and kickstarters, available as a Print-N-Play, and eventually (if enough are gathered to make it worthwhile to collect them) available as a seperate pack.


"Do you not know that a man is not dead while his name is still spoken?"

- Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

Paul
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Yup! Arcanist Lupus is correct!

@TakeWalker

If you or anyone you know is going to be at Gen Con, they'll be available for there with purchase of the base game!


“Many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.” ~Obi-Wan Kenobi

TakeWalker
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Nope :C

Bunston
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Got my box yesterday and played my first solo game this morning. Overall I am very satisfied with the game and its components. I was able to barely fit everything from the base game, the expansion, and the two promo spirits into the main box by simply removing the large plastic insert. It doesn't look as nice, but now I can carry it all in one box.

I did have one moderate and two minor complaints:

1. While I was examining the island boards I noticed the top layer of the top right corner of one of them was already peeling a bit. It's possible this was my fault and I wasn't as careful as I thought I was when taking these out of the box, but I don’t think it was.

It was hard to get a good picture, my phone's camera was having a hard time focusing on it.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BxSEHRRLpyhgUEdtSS1Sa1dMUXM

If there are any crafty people reading this, is there some kind of glue or sealer I could use to prevent the peeling?

2. The explorer tokens are sturdier than they look, but I came across a few that were bent at the ankles just enough that they wouldn't stand up until I bent them back. I'm a bit worried that over time this bending back and forth will cause the ankles to become weaker and weaker, but time will tell.

3. The way the Invader Board is folded makes it hard to get it to lie completely flat. Nothing slides off it, but it would look nicer lying completely flat.

speedyolrac
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I wished I play tested this game, but all the pieces looked intimating. And having to find so many counters. Love the final product. The only problem is teaching this game to every group and getting them to play more than once. . . There are so Manu board games in the world


"A stranger is a friend you haven't met yet." - Star

Foote
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Not many this good though. 

Still can't get wildfire to be more of a help than burden, but other than my one gripe with this one spirit it's so good 

dcvdg1
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Bunston wrote:

2. The explorer tokens are sturdier than they look, but I came across a few that were bent at the ankles just enough that they wouldn't stand up until I bent them back. I'm a bit worried that over time this bending back and forth will cause the ankles to become weaker and weaker, but time will tell.

I had a number of explorer models bent horizontal at the ankles and a number of others whose base was bent.  Unfortunately, they don't really bend and stay back into their correct pose very well and the bases don't straighten out completely.  The Explorer models are functional, but it is unfortunate that a lot of them are a bit crooked and/or don't necessarily sit flat on the table (or have bases slightly curled up).  

grysqrl
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Has anyone tried using heat to fix the bends? I have, upon occasion, submerged a plastic part in boiling water for 5-10 seconds to make it more pliable (and then it hardens up again as it cools). I have no idea how these will react to heat, so if you try it, be prepared for them to be destroyed.