My review is becoming riddled with updates, as the developer has been fixing stuff. Rather than keep trying to patch it, I'm just going to add my latest thoughts up here.
They've been very good about fixing issues quickly, and in particular the fact that it no longer pauses or resets when it loses focus is a massive improvement. There are some lingering issues related to the game's touch-interface-heritage (e.g. the requirement to drag tokens around, rather than being able to just click on a spot), but overall I'm much more satisfied with it now.
To be honest, I still don't heartily endorse it at the current quality and price (especially considering the price of DLC), but the steam rating system requires a thumbs up or a thumbs down and I think it narrowly makes the cut. Hypothetically, it should only get better from here.
I also should mention that at the moment, my review says 164 of 197 people (83%) found this review helpful. Those ratings were from before these updates, when I was giving the game a thumbs down, and that negative review. Hopefully my review is still helpful, but I don't want those people to feel like I hijacked their endorsements or something.
------ Mostly-original review below ------
Board games are my thing. I have almost 500 board games, and Small World is one of my favorites. I even kicked in for the collector's edition in the kickstarter that brought Small World 2.
And... I can't recommend this. Besides being overpriced (the Android version is $10; no idea what DLC costs for Android), it's really poorly designed for PC.
Doing everything requires dragging tokens from one place to another, which would be fine on a touch display but is a huge hassle with a mouse.
The game pauses if it ever loses focus, which means you can't browse the web and such during the computer's turn. Also, if you're playing an online game, and you leave the window's focus, even if it's played every other player's turn for you and it's your turn now, the game rewinds and plays back every turn again. What the hell?!
UPDATE: Quick play is now working, although the sub-minute estimates are quite optimistic. Took me a couple minutes to find a game. I'd previously written that only quick play wasn't working at all (and it wasn't, at the time).
There's support for a friends list, but it uses Days of Wonders' servers to manage your friends. There's no way of seeing your steam friends, as far as I can tell, which is particularly baffling since it already goes out of its way to tie your steam account to a Days of Wonder account.
That said, the quick play issues is the only real 'bug' I've encountered in the hour or so I've had it. All the other problems I have with it are design issues. Technically, it runs well. There's no full screen option, but the window resizes smoothly to whatever size you want (including maximizing).
I'm enjoying it, but I've already sunk the money for it. I don't recommend purchasing it until at the very least the online issues are ironed out, and ideally some more thought is put into how the game should work on PC differently from tablets.
UPDATE: Match making for online quick play is working now
Posted: December 11th, 2013