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Buttons show the cost of the cloth and the timer is how many moves you'll make on the left board. Balance is key.

Patchwork – Game Review

Format: PC, Mobile

Released: November 2016

Patchwork is a cute board game that’s been adapted to PC from mobile and is suitable for young and old players as it’s a simple concept brought to life really well for 2 players locally or online, with some decent AI to battle with if you are on your own.

patchwork01
Creating a quilt with no gaps is like a turn-based mini Tetris game

The game takes place on two boards. Board one is a simple chart to move around. Board two is where you’ll place pieces of cloth you’ll buy over the course of the game to stitch together. Each piece of cloth you buy costs buttons which you’ll collect per turn or by moving around the first board or by having buttons on previous pieces of cloth you’ve bought. The aim of the game is to stitch together a perfect board with little or no gaps in your cloth by the end of the game and the game ends when you reach the end of the first board as shown below.

patchwork02
Buttons show the cost of the cloth and the timer is how many moves you’ll make on the left board. Balance is key.

Patchwork is subtly strategic as each cloth piece needs to fit like a patchwork Tetris grid. Each cloth piece also determines how many spaces around the first board you’ll move so there is a constant balancing act. Do you try to charge ahead to collect bonus buttons but maybe have less turns to complete your quilt, or do you hold back and miss out on more buttons and have to make do with the scraps but actually have more cloth to try to sow together. It’s this that elevates what on the surface is a quaint little game into something that actually has proper planning involved and because there’s a lack of dice, there’s less luck involved and more skill to play to.

The graphics and music are suitable fuzzy and cute. I wish there was more of the great soundtrack than just the main themes because it repeats quite a bit, but the graphics themselves are lovely. The interface is clearly optimised for touch screens and so placing cloth is slightly more clunky than it should be with a mouse as right-click to rotate is a no brainer option than should be there as standard. The AI is challenging and quite unforgiving on hard mode which is great and I appreciate that you can play locally and online in multiplayer modes. Online forms a pass and play design where you make a move and the game passes across for the next move to take place over the next X hours and so you can have 5 games on the go at once and if someone’s online at the same time it can bat back and forth quite nicely.

patchwork03
Knowing your gaps, patterns and buttons will affect your final score and the winner of the game

Enjoy my in-depth overview of the game below :

Patchwork
Final Thoughts
A pleasant surprise - Patchwork sows together a home-made, cute and approachable game into something that you can really sink your teeth into. Recommended for board game fans and fans of a quick and light strategy game that can over in 15 minutes tops.
Positives
Genuine strategy underneath a cutesy family vibe.
Challenging AI and decent multiplayer functionality.
Perfect for a quick 10-minute game that engages you.
Negatives
PC version is not optimised control wise (you can tell it was mobile first).
Occasional issues with online multiplayer turn notifications.
7
Good
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