Discover Costa Rica
Costa Rica is a push your luck tile exploration game. The game starts with each player having a pawn in each of six expeditions situated around the board. The board itself is setup as a pentagon of tiles, face down. Each turn a new player will chose an expedition where they have a pawn and act as expedition leader. The leader will chose a tile that aligns with the expedition and reveal it. The tile will show one or more types of animals on it, and possible a threat, the dreaded malaria carrying mosquito. Going clockwise from the expedition leader, players can decide if they want to stop the expedition, claiming all revealed tiles and ending the turn, or if everyone passes, another tile is revealed. Once a player stops the expedition, they take the tiles shown and remove their pawn from that expedition. The turn also ends if two threats are ever revealed. If that happens, the leader takes any revealed tiles that don’t have a threat on them, removes their pawn from the expedition, and then discards the tiles with threats on them.
Players can only participate if they have a pawn on the current expedition. Once all the pawns have been removed from the board, the game ends. Scoring is based upon how many of each type of animals you collected. The more of a specific type you have, like monkeys, the more points you score. You also get a bonus for every complete set of the different animals you collected. Whoever has the most points, wins.
This is a great fast play game. The box states a play time of 30-45 minutes, but nearly every game I have played has taken 20 minutes or less. I have become a big fan of these simpler, quick play games, as I don’t always have the time, or friends with the attention span, for longer, meatier games. There is enough strategy in this one, mixed with a fair amount of luck to make for a fun game every time you crack open the box. So, grab your pith helmet, your bug spray, and head into the rainforest with me.