26 April 2022
It’s a charming two-player game, although its gameplay shows its age
Fungi is like the essence of an autumn forest: full of warm colours, slightly damp mossy ground and, of course, delicious mushrooms sprouting after a gentle rain. Players are walking through the forest collecting all the edible mushrooms they can find, to cook later over their open fire.
This is a fast-paced set collecting game with endearing artwork by Jarek Nocon. Mechanically, it does not stray away too far from the path made for it by the games of the similar ilk. Although, this is not entirely fair as Fungi is a rebrand of Morels, which debuted back in 2012. Nonetheless, ten years later the gameplay feels very familiar, albeit not in a negative way. It is smooth and fast-flowing, as you pick up mushrooms from the row of available cards. You can pick cards towards the end of the line, spend sticks to delve deeper into the forest or even risk it: wait for cards to be discarded into the decay pile and get all of them later. The latter adds a gentle splash on a push-your-luck mechanic: it allows you to draft more in one turn, but not all the cards might be good, indeed they may contain poisonous mushrooms!
The winner of the game would have cooked the most dishes made up of sets of identical mushroom cards. Mushrooms comes in many shapes, sizes and rarities, with latter being the most victory-point giving. Other types of cards, like stick or basket, might not earn any victory points but can help players increase their hand size or manipulate the draft.
Manage your hand well, avoid poisonous mushrooms and don’t forget to add a bit of butter and cider to your dish for extra points and you should do well in Fungi. It’s a charming two-player game, although its gameplay shows its age.
PLAY IT? Maybe
Designer: Brent Povis
Publisher: Pegasus Spiele
Time: 30 minutes
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