The Patchwork Doodle game is a fast and well portable variant of the board game Patchwork for 1 to 6 players and feels a bit like Tetris with coloured pencils.
Who knew drawing patchwork could be so much fun? While the original game Patchwork and likewise the simplified variant Patchwork Express are board games for exactly 2 players, this is a drawing game that you can theoretically play all by yourself, but also with up to 6 players.
How does it work? What are the advantages and disadvantages? And for whom is Patchwork Doodle particularly recommended?
That and more in our detailed review….
Note: The publisher ASS Altenburger kindly sent us a free review copy of the Patchwork Doodle game. However, this review is not remunerated and reflects our own independent opinion.
The playing material of the Patchwork Doodle game consists of a drawing pad with a pre-printed patchwork area (9 x 9 squares) and additional scoring squares at the edge, as well as cards in playing card format, a playing figure, a dice and 6 small crayons. The cards are divided into 10 yellow starting cards and 30 red patchwork cards. The dice is not a conventional one, but shows the numbers 1, 2, 3 twice each.
The basic idea of the game is to create a patchwork with as few gaps as possible from given patches, each consisting of small squares in different formations. In this respect, the game is vaguely reminiscent of Tetris, except that there is no top and bottom to the patchwork and it does not play for time.
First, each player receives a piece of paper, a pen to draw in the patches and a randomly chosen starting card (yellow). This shows different patches, but they always consist of 7 squares. Each player must draw in his or her starting patch.
The patch cards (red) are shuffled and then a circle of 8 is placed, the pile goes in the middle. The small wooden figure is placed between 2 of the 8 cards laid out and the dice is placed ready.
Each Patchwork Doodle game consists of 3 rounds with 6 moves each, which all players play simultaneously. After each round there is an intermediate score and at the very end the final score.
A turn is played as follows: one of the players rolls the dice (it doesn’t matter who) and places the piece clockwise on the corresponding patchwork card. All players may now draw this patch on their piece of paper. The following rules must be observed:
After each turn, the corresponding patch card is removed from the game and the next turn begins. So the first two rounds end when there are only 2 patch cards left. Then the circle is filled up again to 8 cards and the next round begins.
In the third round, a special rule applies to the very last turn: no more dice are rolled, but each player may choose one of the 3 remaining patches to draw in.
Throughout the game each player has 4 special actions available, which you may use at any time and then cross off on your slip as used.
Tip: it is useful to divide up the special actions well or save them until the 3rd round.
But what should the special actions be used for? And how best to put the patches together? That becomes clearer when you know what scores points!
After each of the 3 rounds, each player chooses a completely filled rectangle on his patchwork. Of this rectangle, the largest square it contains with each square counts as a point. Each additional row or column of the rectangle counts as 1 point.
Sounds complicated? Here is an example: Sandra can box a completely filled rectangle of 5 x 7 squares after the first round. Included is a square of 5 x 5 squares, gives 25 points. Then there are 2 rows/columns of 5 squares each, makes 2 more points, so 27 in total.
Sometimes there are several possibilities to score, from which you choose the best one.
At the very end, the 3 values from the rounds are added and the number of empty fields is subtracted. The player with the most points wins the game. If there is a tie, players share the victory. As a solo player, you can try to break your own record.
With the Patchwork Doodle game, game author Uwe Rosenberg has created another variant of his successful game Patchwork after Patchwork Express. This one is characterised above all by the fact that it can be played not only by 2 players, but also that it no longer requires a game board, but everyone draws on a piece of paper.
What is in itself a super simple idea is here turned into a short-winded drawing game. Especially for children, Patchwork Doodle is certainly a good way to train spatial thinking and even their understanding of geometry. Both the game instructions and the cards are made in such a way that it is easier for children to understand everything. For example, on the cards with asymmetrical patches, the mirror image is always printed in small letters. In addition, a number on the card indicates how many squares the patch consists of.
Because it is a drawing game, children can also be creative at the same time and, for example, colour in each patch with a different pattern. Even though 1 pencil per player is enough, you can also put the crayons in the middle, because this way you can alternate colours.
Patchwork Doodle is also ideal as a game to take along on the road or when travelling, because you don’t need a game board with a large structure and the game can be stored in a space-saving way.
The only criticism could be that the game does not offer enough tactical potential in the long run for frequent players. But that is more a question of the target group.
First and foremost, Patchwork Doodle is therefore a game for children and families. In particular, children who like to draw, enjoy puzzles or have fun with geometry will certainly have a lot of fun with it.
Patchwork Doodle is a nice drawing game for children and families that promotes spatial thinking and is creative at the same time. Perfect also as a travel game!
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