Fog of Love Review
We had the great pleasure of playing Fog of Love from Floodgate Games and had a blast!
We wanted to write a quick review and discuss what makes this 2 player game so great!
In Fog of Love, you take on the roles of two people in a relationship and the goal is to achieve satisfaction in your relationship and complete a destiny. Now, we know how that sounds... how do you measure satisfaction? or complete your destiny... those are so nebulous.
You do this by playing a romantic comedy love story as a board game. Huh?
Yeah this is a romantic comedy! Each scenario consists of several chapters and scenes with a finale. You create a fictional character who starts the game with a job, three "trait" about you that you are personally working towards by the end of the game. and three physical/mental features your partner gives you that identify what drew them to you.
The rest of the game is each player playing "scene" cards from thier hand. Scene cards are a mix of multiple choice questions, scene changes and player reactions. The cards are either sweet, serious or dramatic. At the beginning of the game, the players draw only sweet cards (as the relationship starts out!) These have questions like "Do these pants look good on me?" Later serious cards include "Let's go to Ikea" - and try get the characters to answer how those characters would pick furniture for instance. Lastly the dramatic cards include cards like "You are at a restaurant and your partner gets angry" What is your reaction?" The key to this game is to remember who the character is and don't answer as yourself. You want to choose the best response for the character to fulfill their traits.
So let's explain traits. Traits are like "Fun-Loving", "nerdy", "Insecure". To succeed at each trait, you either alone or with your partner (depending on trait) need to add tokens to one of six personality dimensions on the board. These personality dimensions include Extroversion and Sensitivity. The fun-loving trait might say you need 5 or more positive extroversion tokens at the end of the game, or the Insecure trait might say you need 4 or more negative Sensitivity tokens. The idea is that answering the questions as your character grants you either positive or negative tokens for one of the personality dimensions. Traits are also kept secret from the other player, so they don't know specifically what you are working towards, but they can decide to help you achieve your goals as some traits required a shared value of tokens between both players.
We found this hard during our first game as we kept playing as ourselves and not as the characters. During our second play through, we got more in sync with how the characters would respond and also paying more attention to how the other player was playing.
As the game progresses, the chapter changes which advances where the characters are in their relationship. At the beginning of the game, both players get the same four destiny cards and as each chapter starts, they must secretly discard one card. The idea of the destiny card is that by deducing how the other player is playing their character, they hopefully reach the finale card with the same destiny as their partner.
In the tutorial, as it's short, we did find this challenging, but when we got into a full game, we realized that we had more time to develop the characters.
Fog of Love comes with some really fun components. The chapter , scene and synopsis cards are all nice and large format cards about double playing card height and width. They are all very well designed and the content on the larger cards is clear to understand.
Each player gets four poker chips with A-D on them. These are for answering the questions on the scene cards. Each player gets a selection of wooden tokens in their player color. These come in their own plastic container which is designed specifically for the game with "Fog of Love" embossed on the cover.
The gamebox also comes with 3 additional scenarios and custom designed dividers to separate the scenarios, scenes and destinies. The box is designed to hold all the core cards and all expansions released up until now.
For the initial game, the setup is super easy. The game comes with a built in tutorial that walks you through the rules as you play. All the players need to do is unwrap the three scene decks, occupation, trait and feature decks placing them on the board. Then follow the tutorial's instructions.
For future games, players shuffle each of the three scene decks seperately along with the other three decks. Then each player draws three occupation cards, chooses one and returns the others to the bottom of the deck. The players then draw five trait cards and choose three placing them hidden on thier card holder. Finally, they draw 5 feature cards and choose three to give to the other player which are the three physical or mental features that attracted their character to the other. Each of these cards along with the occupation card grant personality traits immediately. The players add tokens to either the positive or negative side of a specific personality on the board.
Finally, setup ends with them laying down the synopsis card in its space and the chapter cards on thier space. They finish setup by reading the synopsis and chapter one card question. Finally, they draw five cards from the deck identified at the bottom of the chapter one card..
Fog of Love is an interesting game. It is not like any game we were accustomed to playing. As mentioned in the overview, you don't play the game as yourselves. Instead you take on the role of a fictional character who is trying to make their relationship work. The ultimate goal is for both players to choose and succeed at the same destiny by deducing what the other player is thinking as you both answer questions as your character. Each character has traits that require a specific number and type of personality dimensions (there are 6 on the board) to succeed.
The idea of Fog of Love is to complete your hidden traits which increase by doing so will increase your personal satisfaction. At the same time you need to have your character work on the relationship and to do this you need to pay attention to how the other player is playing their character.
It's this fun dichotomy of playing the game for yourself but also for the benefit of the team . This is a romantic comedy which makes some of the scenes funny and silly. Using scene cards, you pose questions of your fellow player and either they choose a response or sometimes you both choose your response to a situation.
Some of the questions also have additional satisfaction effects if you choose the same response or combination of responses. Often the final goal is to have a shared destiny and similar satisfaction level
As mentioned before, the tutorial is difficult to get a positive outcome as it is very short. That said it was really helpful that the tutorial cards were interspersed through the 6 decks and as long as you don't shuffle the cards during setup, the game will teach you the rules as you play.
Fog of Love was a really great game. We're not just saying that. It was fun to first creat two different characters and then have them answer questions. Some of them were laugh out loud funny! Even the serious questions were funny with some of their responses!
The hardest part about the game is getting into the character you've developed especially when they are not like you. For novice role-players this may be the most challenging aspect of the game. You are most definitely not answer the questions as you personally would. There were a number of times where my partner would answer and try to match my character's response, but only to find out I chose something else. The response I got was "That's not you! and my response was "Yes, I know but that's how my character would respond!
If you are interested in Fog of Love! We are offering it on sale at $30 (normally $50 is MSRP) from Feb. 12th - Feb. 16th. Pick up your copy and have an awesome time!