Inspired by the famous stained-glass windows of Sagrada Familia, the Sagrada dice game challenges players to create masterpiece stained-glass windows worthy of this basilica. With this being an adaptation of the hit tabletop game, does it do enough to inspire newcomers and experienced players to grab it on the Nintendo Switch?
Your goal as a skilled window designer is to create the most beautiful stained-glass window amongst your peers. Starting off with a pre-existing plan, you’ll draft dice from a shared pool in hopes of completing the project. The player who scores the most points based on completion of the game’s objectives wins.
Building a stained-glass window is easier said than done. While some spots on your window will allow you to place any dice within them, others require specific colours or numbers. Other building restrictions include having to start from the edges, having to build off of existing pieces, and dice not being allowed to share edges with other dice of the same colour or value.
As the game progresses, it grows increasingly difficult to fill out your plans as originally prescribed. Players can scoop up dice you need from the shared pool before you can get your hands on them. Also, as your window fills up, the more restrictions are applied to the remaining spaces.
Leaving spaces blank is an option, but it can hurt your final score significantly. The game does feature some shared benefits that allow players to break specific rules, but they cost favour tokens; a finite currency. Furthermore, as favours are used by others, the cost of said favours goes up.
Sagrada made a great first impression on my wife and I when we first played it in tabletop form. At its core, you’re getting that same quality gameplay in a digital form that’s been refined for the Nintendo Switch. Instead of placing your dice on a card, you’re actually placing the dice on the walls to form stained-glass windows. All of the other user interface elements are blended into the world to make it feel a bit more like you’re building a stained-glass window rather than playing a board game. It’s a nice touch.
A handful of offline and online modes round out the package. Besides local pass-and-play multiplayer, you can take on the computer in one-off matches or work your way through its campaign. Really, it’s just a series of challenges, but providing players with some sense of progression is greatly appreciated. A solo mode challenges you to beat a target score for each window.
Thankfully, online play is available as well. This mode provides a surprising number of options, such as the ability to play public or private matches, set the number of players, and even the ability to play asynchronous or live. You can have multiple asynchronous games going at once, allowing everyone involved to play at their own pace. Though the online community is incredibly small, I still have a number of games on-the-go thanks to this feature.
Sagrada on the Nintendo Switch is a great adaptation of a great dice game. It adjusts the game’s presentation in a way that better fits its theme while also being more functional as a digital experience. You get a number of different modes for solo players and group gatherings. It even has a solid suite of options for online play during a time when a number of Nintendo Switch tabletop adaptations couldn’t be bothered to add online play at all. Whether you’re an experienced window designer or a curious newcomer, Sagrada is sure to please.