Crootle: A game of kaleidoscopic proportions

In Crootle, World Village Games has created a concept simple enough for players of almost any age, yet with strategic depth that will surprise you as the game unfolds.

The idea is to be the first player to connect two randomly chosen corners of the game board by matching colored tiles side to side.  Each player will likely have a different pair of corners to connect, so you'll be getting in each others' way enough to interact but not so much that it would be annoying. Getting in someone's way could either work for you or against you - since other players can play on the tiles you placed (as long as they connect to one of that player's assigned corners.)

Each player starts by drawing 10 color tiles and putting them face up in front of you.  The color tiles look like this:

With tiles having anywhere from one to four colors, there's a lot of variation in the tiles you draw and a lot of ways you can go with them as you build towards your goal.  A stalemate is possible, but statistically unlikely.

On your turn you have 2 minutes to place tiles on the board and try and connect your two corners.  While you're waiting for your turn (or during your turn) you can also arrange and rearrange tiles on the table in front of you, but on the board, "a tile laid is a tile played!"  As you become more familiar with the game over repeat plays, you start to think about what tiles the other players have and what tiles are still in the draw pile.  It's an interesting transparency that makes a very simple game much more tactical than it would seem.

In the prototype version, you built the board by placing the four corners using a strip of paper provided, that worked something like a measuring stick.  In the new kickstarter launching September 16th, the game will be re-launched with a game board, which will make this setup step unnecessary.

While it will not be the go-to game for hardcore strategy gamers, Crootle should be a hit with families and casual gamers.  It's an intriguing, quick game of color matching and spatial reasoning that anyone who loves puzzles will enjoy.  Check out their web site and watch for the kickstarter launch on September 16th.