Ever dream of running your own farm? If you're looking for a simple two player worker placement game, Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small might be the fix you need.
Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small, is a two player, simplified version, of Uwe Rosenberg's Agricola. I decided to pick it up as it looked like a good introduction to worker placement games for my wife and myself.
For a somewhat reasonable price of $30(CAD) you receive a large number of quality components, in a remarkably small box. Thanks to its small size, you end up with a nice little game that travels well. Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small plays quick too, which is an additional bonus for sneaking games in on the run. The only issue with playing on the go, is that there are a ton of little wooden animals and pieces that can be easily lost, so be careful!
The included rulebook is excellent. It explains game concepts clearly, and includes excellent examples of game-play with pictures. Top marks for the rulebook, it's one of the best I've seen yet.
The game-play is solid, if a tad bit simple. As the game is small, options for building your farm are somewhat limited. Beyond building fences, stalls, and stables, there is a very limited amount of special buildings that can be purchased. It's too bad there isn't addition special buildings offered by the base game, but there is two expansions to correct this problem. Be prepared to pay an extra bit of cash to fix this, as the expansions, which add additional buildings, are ten bucks a pop.
I know this is supposed to be a light small worker placement, but it is just a tad too light for my personal preference. I will keep it in my collection due to its portability, and quickness of play. The game works as a nice introduction for worker placement games, so it's handy to keep around to play with others who are new to the hobby.
One thing that caught us by surprise, is for a game that looks so relaxed, is how tense and competitive it is. Because of the lack of resources and choices to players, you will be making the other player grumpy when you take resources they are looking for. I actually like this factor about the game, it makes it a bit of a dog fight against your opponent to grab the good stuff before they do.
If you're looking for a light, quick, and somewhat portable two player worker placement game, Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small should fit your needs.
If the above doesn't match up with your personal requirements for a new board game to add to your collection, I'd suggest passing on all creatures big and small and investing your money into another game.