Title: Snowfall Over Mountains
Designed By: Eduardo Baraf, Scott Caputo, and Melissa Caputo
Art By: Julia Koerner
Published By: Pencil First Games
Player Count: 1
Time to Play: 20 Minutes
Are you a solo gamer looking for a relaxing game to play by yourself? Do you like to wander through snowy forests and enjoy the peacefulness of nature? You need to play Snowfall Over Mountains. Snowfall Over Mountains is a tile-laying game where you traverse paths in the new fallen snow looking for plants and animal tracks. I love all of the Pencil First Games I have played to date, but this one is my favorite. I play a lot of games solo and this is one I want to keep getting back to the table.
What's purr-ty cool:
Good things come in small packages:
One of my favorite things about Snowfall Over Mountains is that there is a lot of replayability in a very little box. It's a beat-your-own-score kind of game, but there are a lot of different combinations of cards you can use to try and get your high score. The box can easily fit in the palm of your hand, and yet because of how the game plays, each game will be different so you are not repeating the same play style as the game before. There are five different types of items you are looking for on your walk (trees, bear tracks, rabbit tracks, bushes, and ponds) and multiple different cards for each item. Each card scores differently so each combination of cards will lead to new strategies needed to best place your tiles. Tile order comes out randomly as well so again you cannot rely on specific tiles to pop up just when you need them. Each turn is a chance to make the best move you can with the goals and tiles available at that moment. I appreciate the diversity of scoring options as it gives you a lot to focus on while adventuring through the snow. You also get two unique items each game which can aid you on your journey in differing ways, such as swapping locations of previously placed tiles. It's satisfying to try and map the best path each time.
A game for one:
Another thing I like about Snowfall Over Mountains is that it is strictly a solo game. While I do believe it could work as a co-op, I appreciate that it is designed for just one player. This means every game design decision was made to enhance the experience for the solo gamer, and that solo mode is adapted from a game originally designed with other player interaction in mind. The gameplay gives you just enough choices to be thinky, without being overwhelming. You definitely have ownership over how the game plays out, but as it is just you playing, there is no need to spend ages trying to make the most optimal move to beat an opponent. It makes Snowfall Over Mountains a great choice for nights when you want a cozy feeling game to play by yourself.
The aesthetic of the game matches the serene feeling of the gameplay. I like the light-colored palette used and how the iconography is actually part of the tiles. Rather than using a bush icon to indicate a tile has a bush on it, the bush art is just part of the tile. It's pretty seamless to understand. The cards, while little, are plenty legible. I like how to and I enjoy how it does not require a lot of tablespace to play.
The cat's meow:
"There are the purrrfect amount tiles to make a good sized spot for a cat to lay on!" - Solo the Spokescat
Disclosure: Pudgy Cat Games was provided a copy of this game in exchange for a review, however, this review reflects the honest thoughts of the author.