Oceans... is it worth it?

Hello, I was watching last night the play through with the creator of the game on the SU&SD YouTube channel, and it really appeals to me, I like the card mechanics and the theme. I have seen other sort of tableau/ engine building games like Wingspan and they left me cold, but this one I think it can be great to play.
Has anybody else here got it, and if so, do you recommend it?

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Evolution, an earlier iteration, is a free app, if that’s any help.

(I note the BGG blurb claims Oceans is a “vast departure from other games in the series”, so I guess it depends on how true that is.)

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I have a copy of the retail version. I’ve only played a couple of times so far, so don’t put too much weight on my opinions!

It feels very similar to Evolution, with some extra complexity. Definitely more player interaction than Wingspan, because of the ability to predate other people’s species. The “deep” cards, which are available in the second half of the game, add some fun traits that make things more interesting. I like the fact that you can tailor the difficulty and ‘meanness’ of the game using the event cards (useful for playing with children?)

On the strength of a couple of plays, I’m not sure I’d recommend that you rush out and buy it, but I am keen to give it another go and explore the game a bit more. Maybe give it a go on TTS to see what you think?

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From what I heard so far: they remove the simultaneous play, which is a big deal for me. Geekbuddies say theres less player interaction. So Evolution seems to be better. I dont know why SUSD likes this game.

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I think it’s good but it really depends on if your fellow players can get into it. My partner really struggles with word jumble engine builders.

I think I like the puzzle it presents but I didn’t play it that much as well.

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We’ve not played any version of Evolution, so I can’t make that comparison.

That said, we’ve really enjoyed out plays of Oceans. It’s quite fun to build up your species, and to see some of the combos you can get going.

It can have a fair amount of player interaction if you want it, but I believe it’s less “take that” than Evolution. That said, we tend to play in a very casual “chill” way, with minimal Predators of any.

Comparing them, I’ve heard Evolution compared to a multiplayer duel game, while Oceans is more of an engine builder with the potential for direct interaction.

As an aside, while the Deep cards are cool and exciting they’ve rarely had an impact on who wins our games. Though this does seem to be a factor of player count (we only play at 2), and your group (it’s easy for them to not become playable until late game unless you push for it).

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My group has really enjoyed it. The modifiers are great at allowing you to tailor the game to exactly what you want, and there are opportunities for some very clever plays by manipulating their activations. I’d say interaction depends on the group. Our games tend to have a ton of interaction, and there’s a potential for the development of a highly interdependent ecosystem that can send EVERYTHING into chaos if the wrong (right?) species gets taken out.

But, we’ve had games where it’s been more about building our own little systems that focused more on optimizing our own engines and trying to really take advantage of the Deep cards (when they work it’s very satisfying).

I’ll say that I tried the original Evolution and just didn’t care for it too much, but only played it once.

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