Feb 27, 2012
Tikal II Does Not Tikal Me Either, Dr. Nicholson.
Just wanted to point out an old blog post I found on The Board Game Geek from none other than game scholar Scott Nicholson.
You can find the blog post in question here. The gist of it is that he likes Tikal II but doesn't like Tikal and put off trying Tikal II for the longest time because he figured it would be similar to Tikal, which he doesn't like.
I have to agree with the flip side of this point. I much prefer Tikal to Tikal II and was most definitely drawn to playing the "sequel" by my love of the original. The problem is that they really are different games that can, but probably won't, appeal to the same players and that roman numeral 2 stuck onto the end does give the impression that these games are going to deliver a similar experience. I think I would have preferred if it had been called something like: "The Last Pyramid of Tikal" or something like that. You know? Like, a unique title that still calls out the other game without giving you the impression that this game is going to continue the fun you started having playing the first game.
So, what the hell is my problem with Tikal II anyway? Nothing really. I think the river thing that determines your action for the turn is pretty cool and there's nothing wrong with the game overall, I just didn't enjoy it nearly as much as Tikal, that's all. Well, ok, there is one thing... SO MANY WAYS TO SCORE!!! I'm all for multiple routes to victory, but Tikal II takes it to an overwhelming level. I mean, you practically score for scratching your nose! It reminds me of Chandler "teaching" Joey to play "Cups" on Friends, and he was making that game up as he went.
So, all in all, there's nothing wrong with Tikal II and I have some friends who prefer it to the original, Scott Nicholson certainly does. But I like the tighness and deep sense of exploration of the original, it's just more my cup of tea.