Board Game Review: Weave
You might’ve noticed we’ve begun to add a lot of new features here at The Weekly Spoon. Some of these things include conventions and board games! Board game reviews will be structured a little differently and are intended to be succinct enough to give you a good idea if you’d like to buy the game yourself.
< 5 = poor concept and execution
5 = the game is average, nothing you haven’t seen before (all games start this tier!)
6 = the game presents some new twists and is a bit better than your average
7 = the game is pretty unique but it works
8 = it was impressive
9 = yes absolutely
10 = this is an extremely rare rating, it would mean the game has absolutely no problems which is generally not true for anything
For this particular set of reviews, copies of the game were provided by the developers for review. All opinions here are my own and not in any way sponsored or paid for by the developer.
Weave is a self-proclaimed 21st century storytelling platform for 2-5 players. Although it might at first appear to be a card game, Weave is actually a multi-faceted RPG system with broad reaching implications. Weave is played using both the physical cards and dice provided, modeled after tarot cards, along with a companion app that is available for both Android and iOS mobile devices. Unlike other RPG systems, it takes maybe 15 minutes to get set up and start playing. No math, paper, or pencils required.
Packaging – 7
Because Weave is both digital and physical, there is no clunky rulebook to be hauled around. The rules are all inside of the app itself. This leaves Weave with a sturdy streamlined box that has a built-in insert to separate the cards and the dice. So far it has proved to be portable and able to protect the contents inside.
Design – 8
There is a lot to this category for this particular title. Aside from the absolutely gorgeous card designs, featuring beautiful illustrations of redone tarot cards, the app itself plays into this. Although the UI for the app could certainly stand to be a bit more intuitive, and we’re well aware that for Android users the system might not yet be up to par, all my players immediately commented on what a bright game this was. It certainly is colorful and stands out on any shelf. The designs are clear and straightforward and when accompanied by the app, help to tell an intricate story that lives and breathes.
The biggest downside to all of this is that the app is not 100% functioning for Android users. Sometimes they will experience glitches, sometimes these are game breaking. Most of the time they are easily fixable by restarting, which isn’t a great solution. Although I do still recommend this game because of it’s great concept and community, I do so with full knowledge that Android users might get less than a perfect experience. On the bright side, the developer is available via Discord and has a Gitlab set up for issue support, so they are actively working on the issue. I would stress that because the game is half-digital, it is a living breathing thing. Always changing. Unlike most RPGs where another edition would need to be printed, the app will just update automatically, for free.
Approachability – 8
It might take more serious RPG fans a little bit to get used to Weave’s mellow and interactive storytelling, but for the most part it’s streamlined RPGs very well. It takes very little time to learn to play and becomes intuitive as you go. Since there is no math, all dice rolls are very straight forward. You either succeed or fail. More so than concentrating on statistics or combat, you concentrate on imaging an in depth story with your friends. The app guides you for everything, so even if you think you might not have the best imagination, you’ll be covered and have a good time. Some rules could absolutely stand to be clarified, and there are new concepts that might take a bit of getting used to (such as Enticements) but you can also play just fine without them. The rules are loose enough that gameplay isn’t inhibited.
Replayability – 9
Weave makes it ridiculously simple to play. Set up is under 15 minutes. Currently they offer 3 different themes, with more planned in the future (and a community driven custom playset creator on the horizon). This means there are tons of worlds to explore, tons of features to learn about, and tons of ways to play and replay. There are 22 tarot cards and each card has a description assigned to it on the app for various components, such as things for character creation and other things for themes, locations, NPCs, items, plot twists, etc. I might not be the best at math, but I’d assume that means it wouldn’t be out of question for there to be hundreds (if not more) options available. Current themes include: Gloomies, and 80s kids movies theme with every amazing trope imaginable. Xorte/IO, a cyberpunk wonderland. And Solar Age, for the space pirates and Firefly fans out there. Planned themes include one such Clique, a Mean Girls-esque theme.
Enjoyment – 8/9
I will admit that I absolutely love Weave. I think it’s a fantastic system that’s extremely approachable for anyone. Fan of the genre or not. It’s great for harcore, casual, kids, anyone! You can play it anywhere as long as everyone has a smart phone, or you can play with one phone/tablet and local characters. There is so much to love about this game.
Weave is an amazing new RPG system that I highly recommend. It’s approachable, quick to set up, playable by all. It creates a fantastic experience that you can replay again and again with different results.
As a disclaimer, shortly after receiving my copy of this review, I joined the Weave Discord to learn more about this game. I have since been made a moderator of that Discord and help people with rules and suggestions. I still give this review in as much of an unbiased fashion that I can with the free knowledge that I have been in direct contact with the creators and writers on a frequent basis.
At the time of this article, Weave is available here for $49.99.