As we learn how to live in a world without Klaus Teuber in it, a number of folks have pointed out that he made more than the 194 gaming products that have the word Catan in them.
But I have to admit that most of those didn’t click for me. I wanted to be really engaged by Barbarossa or Drunt und Druber (yes, I played it as Wacky West) or Entdecker or Domaine but none of them are games that I have any hankering to play again.
(And, yes, I still love Catan and many of its children. I think that Elasund: First City of Catan is an underrated, deliciously nasty game)
However, I continue to like Adel Verpflichet or, as my copy is called, Hoity Toity.
I’ve raved about it before and I will stand by my ravings. (http://www.gnomepondering.com/2019/06/hoity-toity-so-much-more-than-rock.html?m=1) So I won’t go over the rules again. Suffice it to say, it’s a game about buying, displaying and stealing antiques.
And I still absolutely hold that the simultaneous action selection, which is lovingly balanced, creates a lot of interaction and engagement. It keeps everyone at the table on board. Honestly, I think that was something Teuber excelled at, keeping everyone interested the whole time.
I also have to admit that having the score track and the pawn track/race track be one and the same feels both extremely effective and oddly dated at the same time. It makes the game feel like an evolutionarily link between older mainstream games and designer boutique games.
Of course, Go proves that feeling old doesn’t get in the way of a game being awesome lol
Hoity Toity may be a game that looks old but its play is timeless. More than that, it’s something that a family audience can get into while having depth for a ‘serious’ audience to appreciate. All the moving pieces fit together so well.
Winning the Spiel des Jahres doesn’t automatically mean quality but Hoity Toity does have one and it is quality. The theme and the mechanics make sense together. I have seen other antique-themed games and other Rock-Paper-Scissors games but it still feels unique.