Game Time: 40-80 minutes
In Dog Park you play as dog walkers who want to fetch and walk your favourite dogs. The game features more than 160 fur-tastic dogs, each with their own art and facts (really love this). You can also play with expansions that add European and famous dogs to the game (which we got as part of the Kickstarter release). Dog Park, a game designed by Lottie and Jack Hazell is a howl of a good time for the whole family, and it takes about 60 minutes to play (add on 20 mins for learning). We are reviewing the Kickstarter edition and this review is not sponsored; it is our own opinion and we are excited to share it with you.
The captivating theme of Dog Park, combined with its well-designed mechanics and artwork, creates a unique and immersive experience for players. The game's simplicity allows for quick and enjoyable gameplay, making it accessible to players of all skill levels. The strategic decision-making involved in acquiring and managing dogs adds depth and replayability to the game.
One of the highlights of Dog Park is its interactive nature, which encourages player engagement on multiple levels. Whether it's bidding for dogs, competing for objective cards, or strategizing their walks, players constantly interact and compete with one another, which is a feature I really love about this captivating and charming game. It creates a lively and engaging atmosphere during gameplay, which is important with games like this!
The incorporation of special dog powers and bonus scoring for specific breeds adds further depth and variety to the game. It not only encourages players to diversify their kennels but also gives each game a unique twist, ensuring that no two sessions are exactly alike.
The push-your-luck aspect of the game during the walking phase adds an exciting element of risk-taking. Players must decide whether to take a quick walk, potentially earning more victory points, or a leisurely stroll, gathering extra resources. This decision-making process keeps players engaged and invested in the outcome of their walks.
The production of this game is great, the artwork (Holly Exley, Dan May & Kate Avery) is beautiful and the artists behind this game should be very proud. The card stock is excellent and a quality finish throughout. My ONLY issue with this is the finish on the cards, I have made it clear on a few occasions now that linen finish is NOT the best in my opinion and ALL OF THE CARDS are finished in linen, NOOOOOO. Fortunately, the colours and pastel look to all this artwork isn't ruined by it, so in this instance I can forgive it. I would have preferred a soft matt finish to the cards, like the board, if the game had cards like that it would be getting TOP marks.
I really love the component trays (dog bones) Game Trayzz (https://gametrayz.com/) have done it again!
With its accessible rules and engaging mechanics, Dog Park has the potential to become a popular gateway game that introduces new players to the world of board gaming. It is just the game you need to immerse yourself in with your own faithful companion by your side (don't forget your dogs treats!) . It has a light competitive edge, while perfectly recapturing the feeling of a relaxing nice walk with your favourite pup.
So let's break it down for you in our key areas:
Replayability - Highly replayable with the nature of the variety of dog breeds and goals. We even have an expansion on the horizon called Dog Park- New Tricks, which you can currently pre-order on Backerkit https://dog-park-new-tricks.backerkit.com/hosted_preorders.
Production Value - Fantastic. I am not overly fond of the linen finish on the cards, but otherwise the themed (bone shape) component trays are brilliant.
Theme - Love dogs, and the walkies element is lovely, nothing better than walking dogs!
Complexity - Not overly, about normal for this style of game
Rules - Really good, the rulebook is clear and easy to read, good clear descriptions make it easy to learn and play
Uniqueness - Not very; I have seen a few in this genre / game style BUT if you're a dog lover and you like boardgames, you'll most likely love it.
Value - Not terrible; the standard edition is £49.99 which is about normal for a boardgame these days - you can get a copy directly from the Birdwood Games website (https://birdwoodgames.com/products/dog-park-standard-edition?variant=40583413628962) and every copy purchased supports Guide Dogs.
So, why not unleash the fun with Dog Park. The paw-some board game that's fetchingly crafted for both casual players and seasoned pros? This tail-wagging adventure combines delightful themes, top-notch artwork, and interactive gameplay that'll have you rolling over with joy. Whether you're a dog aficionado or a seasoned board game buff, Dog Park is the game that raises the woof and makes every play session a bark-tastic experience!" Well done to team Birdwood Games, it's tailwaggingly good!
Mr Chris - Founder