Back in June I had reported on Operation: Dandelion, a cooperative game where the players are weeding a garden. It seemed a bit weird to me with it’s obvious Soviet tones and game theme, but had snagged my interest.
I’m glad it did.
Operation Dandelion is played over 5 increasingly difficult rounds. Each round cards in a deck are turned over, and the modular garden starts to get overgrown with weeds. The goal of the players is to manage the weeds before the tiles become completely overgrown, or the weed tokens run out. It’s not as easy as it seems, because each player only gets a few actions per round, and can only perform them if their player card is drawn. To make it even harder, there’s only one card in the deck for each player, plus a shared action card. Oh yeah, the deck gets larger each round, too. There’s a bit of rescue in the form of Overtime cards. Each player gets a certain amount depending on the number of players, and they can be played for more actions.
I played this one with my 10-year-old and 5-year-old. At first I was a bit dissappointed. The game seemed far too easy, and we had no trouble at all keeping the weeds under control. Then the 5th round arrived, and we quickly lost control of things. The board started to fill with weeds, and it was only through pure luck that we can out with a win…with a really low score. Overall we had a great time, and are looking forward to this hitting the table again.
Operation: Dandelion plays 2-4 players in around 30 minutes. Cooperation really plays a key roll in this one, and there will be plenty of time where you’re all trying to figure out the best actions to take so you don’t lose a tile, or take the last few weeds from the pile. There’s also an expansion, Morning Sun, which adds variable player powers and other mechanics that can be added into the game. We haven’t tried that yet, but will be the next time we play.
Farm on, Comrade!
A copy of Operation: Dandelion was provided free for review my Michael Groll’s Games.