A Fake Artist Goes To New York
Teaching Time: 2 mins
Playing Time: 5 mins
Setup Time: 0
Value For Money: Mid
Oink Games has a very distinctive and highly effective graphic design style which is arguably necessary since, as with certain other time filler games, Fake Artist as a play at home game is largely unnecessary. The description of game play makes owning the game essentially superfluous. One player picks a theme and indicates it to all but one other player, the fake artist. The players who didn't pick the theme take turns adding one line at a time to a drawing indicating the theme, after a set number of lines players vote to identify the player who did not know the theme, if they pick them out and the fake artist fails to name the theme from the image the real artists win. Fail to identify the fake artist or if they identify the image correctly, the fake artist and player who chose the theme win. Its simple, elegant, and a good deal of fun. However, every home can reasonably be expected to contain every element to play the game. In fact even buying the game most people will end up needing or wanting to use their own paper, or with enough time pens. Ultimately, all the elements of the game you didn't really need are resources that will eventually run out so you'll be playing the game as if you never bought it.
Particularly annoying from a game development point of view are the elements used to indicate the theme of the round. A set of wipe clean cards and a dry wipe pen are provided, which give a sense of value, however each card has a different coloured design on the back for no discernible reason other than to maintain the distinctive Oink graphic design. Since the code setter is required to write a word on all but one card and nothing or an X on the other, usually the last, making these cards easily identifiable throughout allows observant players to short circuit the whole process. Either that or the code setter needs to engage in extra play acting. The components would be better served if totally identical or blank, an irritating instance of style over substance, minor but unnecessary.
On the other hand the set is very portable and neat, the components would be annoying to transport in other forms, and its a nice thing to own. So for players who game on the move, clubs or conventions a great deal of the package makes a lot of sense. Also it looks very nice and has cute diddy felt-tip pens in it, and its hardly a fortune to buy. But if you play at your own home and don't give a fig for graphic design its hard to recommend.