Welcome to The Game Shelf!

After getting into the board game hobby at the end of 2014, we've decided to share our thoughts on the games we're collecting on our shelves. The collection has certainly expanded over the last few years and we've been making up for lost time!

Sometimes our opinions differ, so Amy will be posting reviews every Tuesday and Fi will post on Thursdays. We hope you enjoy reading some of our opinions on board games - especially those for two players.

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Tuesday 23 October 2018

I'm more of a dog person:- The Lady and the Tiger

Game: The Lady and the Tiger

Publisher: Jellybean Games

Designer: Peter C Hayward & others

Year: 2017

The Lady and the Tiger is a set of 18 cards that allows you to play 5 different games, of these 5 games 1 is a solo game, 2 are two player only and the remaining 2 can be played with from 2 to 4 or 6 players. The deck of cards features 12 cards of both a colour and species (human/tiger), 2 wild cards and 4 identity cards which are typically used to assign players a colour/species combo.

So is this a compilation of brilliant games or a mish-mash of half-thought out ideas? We played all 4 the 2 player viable games to find out. Doors is a 2 player deduction game, each player is dealt an identity card, one player is trying to collect a set of clue cards matching one part of their identity, while the other player tries to figure out/guess what their opponent's identity is. Doors is a perfectly reasonable deduction game, it leaves enough room to reward bluffing and double bluffs while penalizing bad play and outright guessing.

In doors you try to collect 4 cards from the common market that match one of your traits, but if your opponent can guess what you are then they win points instead of you!
Favor is up next, it's an auction game where you will be given an identity card and then one by 1 bid on the contents of the deck, scoring points for winning cards that match your identity partially or completely. While this game was mechanically fine it felt a little lackluster as a two player game. bidding was never a mechanic I loved though, so Favor was never going to be the strongest showing for me.

Labyrinth is definitely my favorite game in the pack, a map is made with the cards and each player must get their tiger pieces from one corner of the map to the other. You do this by moving your tigers and then swapping the location of two of the cards on the map. The game restricts which cards can been moved each time so you can't always play that perfect blocking move. Labyrinth works really well giving plenty of opportunities for counter play, while rewarding a bit of forward thinking.

The art style is lovely, with blue cards representing serenity and red cards representing anger.
Traps is the last game we looked at and it's the second best of the bunch. It's a bluffing game with similarities to skull or liar's dice. Each round a door card is chosen giving a combination of lady/tiger and colour. Players then play cards from their hand until someone starts a bid. You are bidding on how many matching traits you can reveal (eg if you were looking for red ladies, a red lady card would have 2 traits matching). You either raise the bid or pass until everyone passes, then the player who bid the most must reveal cards until they find the number of traits they bid on. If they find all the traits they win a pot of points, but along the way they may find traps, cards which match neither trait, every revealed trap rewards the player who laid it by letting them steal a point from the pot. Traps works very well, but again felt a little weak at two players, there wasn't much you could do but blunder through your opponents traps.

The Lady and the Tiger is a beautiful game with lovely art on every card. Unfortunately I feel that it's more style than substance. While Labyrinth and Traps are good (mini)games I feel like both are one-upped by other games available on the market. Where The Lady and the Tiger wins out is in portability, for a box that can easily fit into most handbags you have games suitable for everything from solo gaming to medium-sized groups. This makes it feel like a natural game to take when going camping or other similar activities where taking your whole collection is simply impossible.


The Lady and the Tiger was a review copy provided by Asmodee UK. It is available for an RRP of £18.99 at your friendly local game store or can be picked up at http://www.365games.co.uk/.

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