Board Game Gumbo: Spice It Up with Freshwater Fly

Board Game Gumbo: Spice It Up with Freshwater Fly

I have two brothers that are pretty close to me in age. We’ve spent a lot of time over the years sharing the same hobbies: gaming, travel, sports, and more travel. But some of my best and worst memories were learning to fish with them as we were growing up. We grew up near a very small town, in a house in the country with a fishing pond in front.

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My brother Dave and I never took to fishing much, but my brother Greg has always been keen on the sport. He even learned to fly fish and has been on rivers from Colorado to Tennessee trying to improve his skills.

If I ever started fishing again, I think fly fishing would be something I could get into. It just seems lightyears better than sitting around in the hot Louisiana summer air waiting for my cork to dip. And yet, even though fishing is not something I ever think about, I was very intrigued to play Coldwater Crown, from designer Brian Suhre and publisher, Bellwether Games. I talked the Gumbo krewe into getting a demo of the game from Brian at BGG Con last year, and we were...well... hooked. Two of us bought the game on the spot, and I’ve played it a half-dozen times since then.

So I was very excited when Dennis Hoyle from Bellwether asked me to have Brian Suhre on Gumbo Live! last season to talk about his latest game, Freshwater Fly. I backed the game, and I’ve had it in my hands for a few weeks now. Does Freshwater Fly live up to Brian’s first highly rated game? Does it capture the essence of what Yeats would have called “the controlled passion” of fly fishing? Let’s find out!

Freshwater Fly is a 2019 release from Bellwether Games, designed by Brian Suhre for one to four players. A three or four player game will take about sixty to ninety minutes, and the game takes only about five to ten minutes to teach as the rules are pretty simple.

Players take on the role of unique fly fishermen, “tying” flies on their rod and sending them drifting down a rushing river full of rocks and three different strengths of fish. Scoring comes in two parts: first, you have to land a fish on your line, and then you have to work the fish into your scoring area by reeling the fish in. Just like in Suhre’s other game, there are extra points to be had for accomplishing the personal goals on your player board, and for completing the goals on the main board which are shared with every player.

(Click here for the rest of the review with pictures!)

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