In Fields of Green you have given up city life and are building your own farm in the country, by laying cards down on the table that represent your expanding farm.
Everyone starts with one water tower – full of water – and one silo – with one food – and each player choose six cards from four available stacks: fields, livestock, constructions and buildings. Then play proceeds with everybody playing one card to the table – adjacent to their water tower or silo – and passing cards to their neighbour, before the process repeats.
There’s a cost to adding cards to your farm shown top-right on the card, but all cards will bring a reward of some kind; either instantly (constructions) at the end of each game round (fields and livestock) or the end of the game (buildings) This drafting system continues until all cards are gone, and instead of adding a card to your farm you can choose to discard it for money, or to add another silo or water tower to your farm.
At the end of each round – or year, to use the game’s nomenclature – there’s a harvest where you can activate your cards in any order you like. Broadly speaking, the water towers supply water to the fields, and the fields produce food to for the livestock. The livestock bring a variety of rewards – but most often money, as you’ll need it to pay for cards! So you’re seeking to create a balance between cards so have enough water to irrigate your fields, enough crops to feed your cattle, and so on.
A new year begins with everyone receiving a little income and building recommences. After the fourth year points are awarded for money, food, empty water towers and any game-end bonuses. Most points – wins!
I’m not the biggest fan of card-drafting games on the whole, but like 7 Wonders I have found Fields of Green to be quite more-ish: rules are simple, the artwork is very good, and not least there’s something pleasing about building your own farm – especially when you combine the cards to good effect.
Not much. Nobody can interfere with your farm once it's built, so the worst that can happen is a card you really wanted gets taken by someone else. This is more prevalent in the two-player game though, where the card selection works slightly differently.
Low. Once everyone knows the game people can be busy expanding their farm at the same time - no waiting around for turn order.
Moderate. The rules are fairly simple but the challenge here is to expand your farm in a way that sees the cards combine together in the most productive fashion.
Lots of variety here, as the cards come out randomly and you can pursue different strategies.