New York Zoo Review
ABOUT NEW YORK ZOO
In New York Zoo, you are designing an animal park. Build enclosures, introduce new animals, and raise their offspring. The first player to cover all the construction spaces on their zoo board with Enclosure Tiles and Attractions wins the game.
Gameplay is straightforward as you have only two options on your turn: build a new enclosure in your zoo, or populate your zoo with more animals. But be sure to time your actions well since you want your zoo to participate in as many animal breedings as possible.
8 Double-sided Zoo Boards
1 Action Strip (main board)
45 Puzzle Piece Tiles
10 Animal Tiles
6 Special Tokens
32 Attraction Tiles
126 Custom Wooden Animal Tokens
New York Zoo is Uwe Rosenberg’s next game in which he blends his well-known animal breeding mechanics with his polyomino puzzle system for a wonderful gameplay experience.
I rather enjoyed this game as we played through it. On your turn you may move the Elephant Token a number of spaces determined by the number of players in the game. For a two player game we could move between 1-4 spaces. You pick a space within that range, and based on the space, you either take a tile to add an enclosure to your zoo or you populate your zoo with the specific animals from the space you land on.
Here is the board you are moving on:
After placing your tile in your Zoo, or populating your zoo with animals, if you passed one of the breeding spaces everyone has the opportunity to breed that species, provided you have any enclosures with two of them in it.
Every time you successfully fill an enclosure, you remove those animals from it and get to place a bonus attraction tile of your choice in your zoo.
The player boards are of variable sizes based on the number of players, with smaller boards for large numbers of players.
All of the components are of good quality, and the wooden animal pieces are a nice bonus. Everything fits nicely in the box, and there is even a storage tray for the animals.
The nice thing about this game is there is no score to count up at the end. The first person to complete their player board triggers the end of the game. If the game end is triggered by the animal breeding phase multiple players could finish their zoos at the same time. In this case the winner is the player with the most animals remaining in their zoo.
Frankie beat me when we played. However I thoroughly enjoyed the unique mix of tile placement and animal populating & breeding. This is definitely game I would play again.