This Thursday, we took Power grid: The First Sparks out for a test drive.
First Sparks ins a cave man-esque version of power grid, and given that cave men didn’t have Power or Grids, is almost entirely different.
The core mechanics focus on gathering food, feeding, and growing your tribe of cavemen. There’s all kinds of ways to get food, but mostly it boils down to hunting and gathering the four kinds of food resources: berries, fish, bears, and mammoths. The player with the most cave men at the end of the game wins.
There are a few confusing mechanics when it comes to buying technology ( a straight copy-pasta from Power Grid), and player order, but by far the most confusing part of the game was the fact the a fish seems to have the same caloric value as a bear.
Now I’m not a Bear-ologist, but from my time on the discovery channel would lead me to believe that there’s substantially more meat on a bear than on a trout, but apparently I was mistaken.
But keep in mind we’re talking about cave men days, so maybe we’re hunting tiny mini-bears or some monstrous, Loch Ness brand of Tuna.