Theme and What is it?
Raccoon’s in the wild are naturally inclined to market manipulation. We all know and understand this. This is why Raccoon Tycoon is such a mimicry of the artistic majesty of nature.
Raccoon Tycoon is an anthropomorphizing of the cuteness of forest dwelling creatures, and making them into great moguls of good and commodities. This is basically combining the famous Rocky from the Bullwinkle series, with John D. Rockefeller, John D. Rockyfeller.
The theme is cute, if not entirely necessary. The game speaks for itself, the theme just makes it more accessible to a player that may not want to play a market based game, but would love to play a raccoon based game.
On your turn, you may make one action, and one action only; produce (which changes market values and gives you goods), sell a commodity (which changes market values), railroad auction (end game set collection), purchase a building (changing in game mechanics), purchase a town (end game set collection, combines with railroads).
The mechanics, are quite simple, and elegant. I’m a fan of games that have simple mechanics that translate into big decisions. This doesn’t disappoint.
The name of the game didn’t initially entice me. The artwork is superb. The movement of the markets is done very well. You can find out more in the Artistic Direction and Conclusions headings.
Game Build Quality
This game will be heading to Kickstarter 6/19/2018. The art is finalized from what I understand. The board and pieces are not. Some of the cards may be enlarged to tarot size cards, for either stretch goals, or a deluxe version.
I am not a fan of the paper money, though there is a possibility that this will be addressed as a stretch goal. I would like to see card stock money, which is easier to handle on the table. With that being said, Mr. B Games has said there will be an option for coin based currency in the Kickstarter. Thus, if the coins are thick enough, would easily remedy this concern. My fingers require a bit of ease of use in games, and coins make that easier, if not physically, definitely mentally.
The art of Racoon Tycoon is forest animals in mogul type clothing. The town art is not finalized, and they are excited about what it looks like, though I have not yet seen it.
I am excited to see what the finalized project will look like.
If you like economic games, I would guess you will like this. It is tight, and plays very well. Some games focus on the theme to make up for gameplay deficits, this game would be just as much fun with aliens or tractors, or worms being the theme.
Age Range & Weight
The age range is not finalized. I am guessing it will be either 12+ or 14+. If that is a correct assumption, I think that would be an accurate age range. Economic games take a more adult intellect generally than most kids can muster.
They also get adults frustrated when turns take too long. For this reason, would likely say this game is mostly adult oriented, with a few kids that will prove to be an exception to the rule.
Raccoon Tycoon is my jam. Complexity of play is exactly at the point that I appreciate in economic games. It scratches the trading itch I have regularly, and does so in a way that feels like a true push and pull of market economies.
MeepleGamers will be backing Raccoon Tycoon. If you enjoy trading economic games, this should be the game you back on Kickstarter in 2018.
If the group you play with make aggressive trades and decisions in games, the time to play and time invested to play is very much worth your second, third and fourth look.