The culinary microgreens movement began in San Francisco in the 1980s, a way to add a concentrated blast of flavor, texture, and nutrition to dishes. So perhaps it’s appropriate that Pencil First Games is releasing Herbaceous Pocket Edition…given that they’re based in San Francisco.
We reviewed Herbaceous back in 2016 and revisited it 2018 when we reviewed Herbaceous Sprouts (the dice game). Since Herbaceous Pocket Edition is the exact same game as Herbaceous I’m not going in depth with coverage. But I will give you a quick overview of the game and my thoughts on this newest, smallest game in the Pencil First Games’ lineup.
Herbaceous Pocket Edition Overview
Herbaceous is a game all about growing herbs.
Players alternate between planting herb cards in their private and community gardens, and then potting those herbs into one of 4 containers provided to each player at the beginning of the game. These pots each have distinct conditions for how plants may be placed in them: all the same herb, all different herbs, pairs of herbs, and the glass jar for any three herbs (with bonus points for “special herbs” like mint, chives, or thyme).
On their turn, the active player may first choose to pot herbs (pulled from both their private and the shared community gardens), but be aware each pot may only be used once. They will then flip a card from the shared deck of herb cards and decide to place it into their private garden or into the community garden. They then flip a second card and place that herb into whichever garden was not chosen first.
A special “herb biscuit” card, worth 5 points, is awarded to the first player who is able to place one of each special herb card into their glass jar.
Play continues until each player has filled all their pots, at which time scores are tallied and the winner is announced.
Final Thoughts on Herbaceous Pocket Edition
Looking back over my thoughts on the original Herbaceous game, my thoughts really haven’t changed. This is a uniquely themed game with gorgeous artwork and a light touch (games take 30 minutes or less). Add to that the small footprint of Herbaceous Pocket Edition and you’ve got a winning combination.
Yes, I understand that herbs aren’t “microgreens” but let me have this one…because Herbaceous Pocket Edition deserves the title for its size and the burst of flavor it can add to any game night.
If you enjoyed the original game and want something that literally fits into your pocket, or if you have a loved one into gardening, or if you just want a fun and light game to play on a lazy weekend day, then you should definitely pick up Herbaceous Pocket Edition.