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Fantastiqa: Pocket Dimension

Ah yes, the much-used Der Wanderer über dem Nebelmeer by Caspar David Friedrich. In most places he feels trite. Here, he fits.

There’s a certain enchanting quality to Alf Seegert’s latest, Rival Realms. Set in a sort of pocket dimension of Seegert’s wonder-realm of Fantastiqa — and literally sliding into a large pocket, how’s that for appropriate? — and expounding upon the card-laying system he first crafted in Musée, it’s an otherworldly experience, as though its players have left their concerns hanging in the wardrobe and stepped straight into Narnia.

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Fantastiqa is Fantastic(a)

Seem familiar? That's because it's "Wanderer above the Sea of Fog" by Caspar David Friedrich. Space-Biff! Game Design ProTip: Public domain art is one of the best ways to stay cheap but look classy.

When it comes to Fantastiqa, I’m every bit as late as Lewis Carroll’s White Rabbit was back in 1865. I’m even tardy for the game’s second successful run on Kickstarter, which wrapped up about a month ago.

Now, under normal circumstances I wouldn’t bother reviewing an older game (assuming Fantastiqa’s 2012 release date qualifies as “older”) because I hate being unfashionably late. But in this case, I’m making an exception because… well, I could give any number of reasons, but really it comes down to Fantastiqa’s unique ability to make the mundane fresh again.

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