Our family has been a big fan of Draftosaurus and it’s a game that still gets to the table regularly. This year Ankama Games dropped two expansions that bring new dinosaurs and additional mechanics to the base game. In this review we’ll cover the Aerial Show expansion that was released this Spring.
Welcome to the Show
If you’re not familiar with Draftosaurus, you can get all the details from our review of the original game. The Draftosaurus: Aerial Show expansion adds 10 blue pterodactyl meeples and a new board that connects to the top of the original Draftosaurus player boards.
To setup with the expansion, you’ll add 2 new pterodactyl meeples per player into the Draftosaurus bag. You’re not going to see many pterodactyls during the game so drafting one is something you’ll have to evaluate on the fly (pun intended).
The new boards are filled will mountain illustrations, walking paths, bridges and pterodactyl nests. The game set up changes slightly with players drafting 2 dinos from the bag before the start of the game. Players will assign these two dinosaurs to the eggs in the nests of the new boards. These will act as unlockable dinosaurs during the game.
Nothing significant changes about the gameplay from this point forward. When a player drafts a pterodactyl, they must place it in one of the empty nests at the top of the board. Each nest unlocks an extra dinosaur, awards victory points or provides a bonus. These nests are numbered #1-3. After assigning a pterodactyl in a nest with the #1, you now have access to the nests with the #2.
Just like the original Draftosaurus boards, these Aerial Show boards are double sided with different perks on each side. On one side, the nest marked with #3 allows you to ignore the die restriction that takes place every turn. This can be huge if you fill this nest early in the game.
Placing a pterodactyl on a nest with an egg unlocks the dinosaur assigned to that nest. You can place this dino meeple anywhere on your player board!
Draftosaurus: Aerial Show is a welcome addition to the normal gameplay. It adds a little more for the player to consider and makes it very tempting to draft a pterodactyl when they show up in your hand.
The only real issue with this expansion for a game we love is the inconsistency of the board size. While the back of the package shows this seamless board addition to your base game, that’s absolutely not what we found. The aviary boards are wider and don’t line up at all with the original player boards. While it doesn’t take away from the gameplay, it is a huge oversight. If the illustrations were slightly off, I totally get it. The fact that the boards are a totally different width and look like they should line up makes very little sense.
Draftosaurus: Aerial Show is just one of two expansions that were released this year. I’m really glad we picked this one up because it means Draftosaurus is going to hit the table more often than it already does. Here’s to hoping Ankama continues to build out this tiny dino meeple world that the whole family enjoys.
You can pick up a copy of Draftosaurus: Aerial Show at your local game store or online through Amazon today.
High quality components as always
Great bonuses on both sides of the expansion board
Quick and easy to teach the new mechanics
Huge miss on the size of the expansion board and how it lines up