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Ooh, that smell...

82,90 euro. That's how much I forked out to buy Zeppelin Raider: Imperial German Naval Airships. The theme appealed to me, I had never before tried a Gregory Smith game, and also wanted to gift myself something for Christmas. For this hefty price, I should be expecting the highest quality possible, right?

I am going to stay at the surface of things and examine the question of value for money based on multisensory impressions. And I say multisensory, because unlike any other game in my collection, this one forced me to experience it with more senses than I wanted to. Upon opening the box, I was hit by a nasty odour coming from every paper component inside. Especially the Compass Games folded catalogue. I suppose this is factory smell, and not a defect of the product, but if I was the company owner I wouldn't want my games to stink like that.

I tried to read the rules but the booklet was revolting. Thankfully, the weather outside was mild, so I took the box to the balcony and left it open in the hope that sun and air would take the nastiness away. Then I had the idea to use lavender sachets from my closet. I put two inside and closed the lid. Let's see if it works.

And what about component quality? Well, why not compare the counters and overall content with those of another wargame, for example Comancheria (which, by the way, costs 57 euro)? Oh, comparison doesn't do Zeppelin any favours, right? Small, thin counters. Some printed paper charts and a notepad. Only the character cards are nice and thick. And what do I see on BGG: errata files for all the charts and the rulebook!!

Compass Games doesn't seem to have any compassion for their customers. I had read complaints about the quality of their products but didn't have the pleasure of seeing for myself until now. You want wargames? Pay premium for a few paper sheets, since competition doesn't affect us. And that smell is a whiff of how much we care.


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