Harbour Review

Harbour is a worker placement small board game for 1-4 players, designed by Scott Almes and published by Tasty Minstrel Games.  Players take turns doing actions on buildings, gaining resources, and eventually buy a building for their own.  When a player builds their 4th building, players finish the round, and the game is over!  Whoever has the most points from their buildings, win.Harbour pic

Harbour is a great, small game that packs a good strategic punch and changing market mechanism. Players will have to plan ahead, deciding which resources to get, knowing that the resource sell cost may change at any time. Players have to be ready to adapt their strategy based on what buildings come out and what the market is like. This helps the replay value since different buildings will come out on different games, changing the focus on the path to victory.

Since Harbour has limited components due to box size, the designer made a clever way to track resources.  Instead of gaining resources in terms of tokens, each player gets one token per resource type.  These resources are then tracked on the player’s card.  When gaining or selling resources, players adjust their resource track as necessary.  I thought this was a very cool way to track resources and I love the thick wooden resource tokens.  I also really enjoy the player tokens, they are unique and have good colors.harbour pic 2

Another aspect I appreciate about Harbour is the amount of starting building cards that players can choose from.  That also increases the replay value, as players will want to try different building cards every time they play.  I love games that include so much in such a small box, and Harbour does this very well.

Also, Harbour includes an official solo variant, in which you play against a dummy character.  The solo variant is great for learning how to play the game, and become familiar with the buildings.  It’s also a good way to try out the different starting cards as well.  While I do enjoy the game more with a higher player count, I still like playing the solo variant.harbour game 3

Harbour boasts good quality components and art.  My favorite card is the Sushi Shop, which shows an octopus chef cutting up some fish (very ironic!).  The cards are also high quality, as well as the resource and player tokens.

Overall, Harbour is a very enjoyable worker placement for such a small box.  Great for playing at lunchtime, game night, and vacations.  Highly recommended!

2 Player Experience

  • Gameplay is shorter, takes 30 minutes or less.
  • Easier to predict the market as it doesn’t change nearly as often
  • More straightforward strategy

 

4 Player Experience

  • Longer gameplay, closer to 60 minutes
  • Market changes often, more dynamic
  • Have to constantly adjust strategy based on market/opponents
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