Tactility Board Masters: Azul V Sagrada

Hello guys today I am bringing you a post that will be comparing two different board games: Sagrada and Azul. Now that I have played them both, I can sincerely say that these are wonderful games. However there is a couple of things that I wanted to discuss and that I think is where the choice of game comes into in to play (at least for me), if I were to buy one of them – no, I currently do not own, either but have access to them via my gaming network. So here are my thoughts.

Thematically speaking, they are similar in the sense that the game mechanic involves picking up the tiles, or dice in the case of Sagrada, and making up a pattern in the shape of a grid that will score you points according to the rules at the end of the game. Interestingly, while I didn’t have a clue who would end up winning the game playing Sagrada, it became very easy to establish at round 3 give or take, who was clearly ahead in Azul. I think it has something to do with the fact that in Azul there are no further mechanics other than tile placement, whilst in Sagrada we have the cards and tools that you can use to change the dice or the scoring. But then I know people who didn’t have a clue the other way around, so hhhmmm.

I guess that what I’m trying to say is that, in a way I feel that Sagrada offers more possibilities in terms of the gameplay and the dynamic between the players, whilst in Azul it seemed when someone takes the lead it can become difficult to take that away from them, other than everyone conspiring against that player. At the same time it felt that if I was looking to trump the others I wasn’t scoring what I wanted…perhaps the idea is to find a fine balance or have 0 strategy and go with the flow…not sure on that one 🤔

In principle, I don’t have a problem with that type of game but, I guess it bothered me that it didn’t feel I had a proper chance to catch up. Of course this is just based in my personal experience – and if some of you guys have experience otherwise with either of these games, please do share because I would be really interested to see how it works for you – but that it is the general vibe I get.

I would say however that, in comparison, Azul feels like a much easier game to pick up and roll with. I do remember we struggled a little bit with the rules with Sagrada to begin, and it felt like one of those games that makes more sense as you play. Azul on the other hand was simple and straightforward: here are the tiles, this is how you pick them up, this is how you play them, and depending on how you place them you can either score or not.

The value of these games comes down to what type of gamer you are. Are you the type of person that appreciates a visually aesthetic game? In which case both of them are obviously good – Tactile too which is one thing I value in board games. But the rest of it really comes down to what sort of experience you’re trying to get from this. If you would rather have something that these easy going and still engaging, then I think that Azul is the better option. However, if you prefer something a bit more thinky and that requires a combination of maths, strategy, anticipation, patterns and a higher degree of involvement, then I suspect Sagrada wins.

All I’m trying to say is that as much as they’ve been compared in different ways, by different people – myself included, for that purpose – I think they’re only comparable to a certain degree. At the end of the day, they are aimed to have different purposes. It’s like trying to compare Early Grey and Oolong tea, you know? Yeah it’s tea and you brew them either way, but, you don’t have them necessarily for the same reasons, occasions or purposes.

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One thought on “Tactility Board Masters: Azul V Sagrada

  1. VERY interesting post. Oddly, my experience differs greatly. I actually found Azul harder to learn than Sagrada, which I took to immediately. To me, Sagrada feels both lighter and more fun, but that is because I’m speaking from a position of personal taste, of course. Thanks for a fascinating read.

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