FEG@TA 26Aug16

It’s been a busy week and not much gaming going on. Hence the lack of posts this week. Plus I’ve also not had much to say. Which is unusual for me I know.

Anyway last night saw Jeff, Debbie and myself at The Angel for FEG@TA. The first at its new starting time of 6pm (last weeks didn’t happen because of holidays and such, or in other words I was the only one who could make it!) 

Earlier in the week Jeff and I had planned to play Tanks. But with “Calamity” Debbie (and she will kill me for just thinking that nickname up, but the poor girl has had a recent run of bad luck, which hopefully had come to an end) also coming along, Tanks was out, and our first game of the evening in. 

Since arriving (a couple of weeks back now) Jonathan and I have wanted to get our Kickstarter copies of Thiefs Market to the table. However life, the universe, and the usual unexpected things that life throws at you stopped us gathering with enough people to do so. 

So here I was, sitting at a table with two other people wanting to play games. We had met the minimum player count for the game. 

While setting up, we had the first player discussion to see which of us had most recently stolen something. Frankly I was so disappointed by the two goodie two shoes I was playing with. Obviously I am that Han Solo lovable rogue type, and the least trustworthy one at the table. So I took the first player token. 

After explains the rules as best I could, our band of thieves was ready to start splitting our ill gotten spoils, gaining notoriety, and trying to become the King of Thieves.

I have to say I enjoyed the game a lot. I love the first phase of a round where you are splitting the spoils (which are the rolled dice). That decision which dice and how many do you take, or do you steal from another player? I love the I’ll want x dice but if I take that many will I be too attractive to the other players that they will steal from me? This is a great mechanic. At one point I had a card that if I was stolen from I gained a notoriety point. So getting the first player token, then taking everything as the first player at the start of the splitting phase, forced the other players to steal from me and trigger that ability.

The buying cards phase is basically your engine building stage of the game. There is a lot of iconography. But the player aids break the symbols down, plus each card is explained on the rules sheet for further clarification if needed. And while you are learning the game things aren’t slowed down too much decoding them. The use of the cards as a means of giving the game an end and a clock is clever. So when you start being able to buy from the last deck you know that the game doesn’t have too many turns left.

During our game I thought Jeff was going to be the run away winner. But final scoring had the gap between his winning score and my second place score a lot closer than I thought it’d be. He had won by four points in the end.

For me the only main draw back is that this game is a minimum three players. I know why, I don’t think it will work with two. But it does mean to play with Nath, who I think will like this game, we will need to find a third player. 

I can see that the iconography may be a problem. But I think the player aids and the rule sheet mitigate this rather well. I also like that the player aids also summarise the setup, which to be fair isn’t complicated.

One thing I do like about TMG games or the ones I have that include it, like Harbour, is the social media winner card. Wisely TMG include one in this game. It just adds that fun bit at the end, celebrating the glorious victory. Or in this games case stolen victory!

I think this is a perfect game for FEG@TA and could be a regular.

So with Jeff crowned King of Thieves we moved on to clearing out dungeons in Welcome to the Dungeon.

I’d played Welcome to the Dungeon once before. Which longtime readers will recall was a two player game with Jamie. I wasn’t too impressed with it as a two player game at the time, and if my poor memory hasn’t failed me (and I can’t be arsed to go back and read what I exactly wrote) I thought it would be better with a higher player count.

Well our play through last night confirmed my suspicion. This game is far more enjoyable with even just the one extra player (plays two to four). It even improved the two player side once a player had been eliminated. 

Another game that has the potential of being a FEG@TA regular. Plus there is an expansion coming out later this year also.

Oh Jeff won this also by not scoring a single point. Despite Debbie and I both scoring a point each after successfully defeating the dungeon. Sadly we both failed to defeat the dungeon twice also.

Debbie had to go after Welcome to the Dungeon. So I introduced Jeff to the joys of building nuclear bombs in The Manhattan Project:Chain Reaction.

You know how I feel about this game. I’m not going to waste your time with more glowing platitudes about this game. All you need to know is that I won breaking Jeffs winning streak for the evening.

A great evenings gaming (that was finished off with that meaty pig out of a kebab). I’m planning to take Thiefs Market and The Manhattan Project: Chain Reaction to The Hobbit Hole (my FLGS) this coming Bank Holiday Monday. So if you’d like to try the games hit me up there. I’ll also have the new Star Realms United expansions with me.

Not you

I've not had a rant for a little while, well at least a couple of days. So it was timely that iello games would ignite that inner rage within me yesterday with the announcement of a competition.

 

A competition to win a copy of the new King of New York Power Up! expansion. Look at that Mega Shark monster. Doesn't it look awesome?

Yeah wow, who wouldn't want to win that?

Well if you live out side of North America basically you can keep wanting, because with the following:

we will select and announce one random winner with a US or Canadian address.

iello have said you can stand out side in the cold and look into the shop through the window, because you ain't welcome here.

But cutting comments aside, this sort of region crippled competition winds me up.

Why? Sometimes, especially if it is a youtuber/blogger doing it, the excuse is “the postage is too expensive”. Not really, I've sent games internationally and if I can afford it (I'm not rolling in money for sure) living in rip off Britain. And our postage costs in the UK are not known for being cheap. Plus I've had friends send packages from the US to me, and funny enough they manage to do it for a very reasonable price. So I'm not buying it.

Maybe it's not wanting to step on the toes of a local publisher? But with iello I don't think this is the case. But even so it's one copy of the game. I can't see that being a real problem.

Maybe it's seen as being more effort to post it? But really if it's that much of a problem why not just not have a competition. Then you won't have to do anything.

I think making your competitions region specific does not make your customers/fans in the regions excluded feel all fuzzy and nice about you. I kind of resent you. Ok resent is a bit weak. I hate you with every bit of my black little heart.

Right deep breathes I think, I need to calm down.

 

Ws22Aug16 – The Russians Are Coming


Yep the Asmodee/Esdevium Borg Collective are unleashing the Soviet war machine on us next week with the release of some Soviet tanks for the skirmish game Tanks.

Which is lucky because if any thing will work in the Dead of Winter (see what I did there?) it’s Soviet tanks. Which is handy because we will need them to survive The Long Night (oh yeah I went there). Yes the stand alone expansion for Dead of Winter, Dead of Winter The Long Night brings us more hidden traitor, surviving against the odds set against a zombie apocalypse backdrop magic. Plus you can integrate it into the original game too.

Your FLGS will also get a chance to restock the second expansion for Seasons, Seasons Path of Destiny. Along with the Spiel des Jahres nominee Karuba. I’m sure they will feel really lucky and blessed that they have been given this opportunity.

Finally the dungeon building card game Boss Monster gets an expansion allowing 5-6 players to play with the expansion called Crash Landing.

So that’s it for another week. It still feels relatively like the lull before the GenCon releases storm. It’s just going to get busier in the run up to that big holiday at the end of the year.

The Streak

That's what I'm naming Tom's run of eleven back to back wins at Ashes against me.

Oh let me back up a little so you have a clue to what I'm talking about.

Last Thursday Tom and I met up at The Angel to play some pre-tournament Ashes. While Tom played a couple of decks, I played mainly a Dimona deck I had built and then “tweaked” between our games.

I like to at least play a couple of games with a deck I've built to get a feel for what works and what doesn't before making changes. It's how I roll in Netrunner. And I don't see a reason to change that with Ashes or even Epic (if I was constructing a deck in that also).

I got my butt handed to me that evening. My attempt at creating big creatures to swing in and do lots of damage didn't really work.

I have to admit my relative inexperience at the game does come through. I haven't nearly played enough games or know the cards well enough. Luckily this is an easier task to achieve than it is in Netrunner. But now I have a regular playing partner this will improve. Sadly, spoiler alert for the rest of the post, not quick enough for the tournament.

Tom and I both had friends that had planned to come to today's Ashes tournament. But due to illness and such were not going to be able to make it. That left just Tom and myself playing in the tournament. A replay of Thursday evening then, at least we were guaranteed one of the prizes!

So I was playing Brennen. I'd created two deck lists before hand. Both around the same idea but with different implementations. I had created these lists on the official PlaidHat Ashes deckbuilder. Which was a pleasant experience. I liked that once you have built your deck it will suggest the dice to use with it. Tom had said he found that it wasn't perfect and for him just off. Which very well may be the case, but it makes a starting point to work from.


I started off with the following deck:

Ready Spells

x2 Chant of Revenge

x3 Chant of the Dead

x2 Hypnotize

x2 Summon Blood Puppet

Blood Puppet

x1 Summon Butterfly Monk

Butterfly Monk

Other Spells

x2 Final Cry

x2 Hidden Power

x2 Poison

x2 Redirect

Allies

x3 Blackcloud Ninja

x2 Blood Archer

x1 Crimson Bomber

x2 Fire Archer

x1 Hammer Knight

x2 Leech Warrior

Dice

x6 Ceremonial

x2 Charm

x1 Illusion

x1 Natural

I found the Hypnotise wasn't used, and was swapped out. Can't remember what with. Yes this was a very casual tournament. Just an extension of last Thursday's match up really.

After four loses I declared Tom the worthy winner of our “tournament” and let him choose between the prizes. As the photo above shows, he chose the beautiful looking playmat. A wise choice. So my second place prize was the alt art Phoenixborn cards for Brennen and Rin. Then we split the alt art mist spirits between the two of us.

My other Brennen deck I played with for the remainder of the event was the following:

Ready Spells

x2 Chant of Revenge

x1 Chant of the Dead

x1 Hypnotize

x1 Summon Butterfly Monk

Butterfly Monk

x1 Summon Gilder

Gilder

x1 Summon Mist Spirit

Mist Spirit

Other Spells

x2 Deep Freeze

x2 Final Cry

x2 Hidden Power

x3 Ice Trap

x2 Massive Growth

x2 Molten Gold

x1 Sympathy Pain

Allies

x1 Anchornaut

x2 Blackcloud Ninja

x1 Crimson Bomber

x2 Fire Archer

x2 Leech Warrior

Dice

x4 Ceremonial

x1 Charm

x1 Illusion

x4 Natural

Oh boy did we laugh when I went to play the Hidden Power card and I realised there was only one charm die! Which was fine playing the summon gilder card. But useless for Hidden Power. How could the Ashes deck builder suggest only one die, when two were needed? Oops think there is a bug there. It was so funny it bought tears to my eyes. Obviously the first tweak between games was to replace the Hidden Power card. Can't remember what I went with instead.

At best I think Tom found these decks annoying, and delayed the inevitable. In the first deck the blood puppets were being used to try and keep his battlefield clogged up, which can be irksome. That worked to some extent. It was cool when I got a combo to work such as when an ally died and triggered two or three things, or/and allowed me to play Final Cry. I love Brennen's ability but his three slot Spellboard was a bit of a handicap. I'd love it to be five. But then that might make him a bit overpowered.

So that's eleven and oh for Tom at the moment. I think that sort of record in a CCG/LCG game deserves to be given the same awe and respect as The Undertakers winning streak at Wrestlemania. So hence why I'm just calling it The Streak.

It's great to have found someone localish to play against. I'm learning a lot from playing against Tom. It really shows that this is his main CCG/LCG, while this is my secondary one. But it's about having fun for me. When the game stops being fun then I'm out. So yes Tom currently has his Streak, which I'm sure I will break sooner than later (I hope). I just hope in the meantime Tom doesn't get bored with winning.

We also need to grow our local meta, ie find/attract more players. I thought having a tournament might do that. However I can honestly say that failed this time. I promoted the event on the major online Ashes communities (Facebook,Reddit, and BGG), plus the event was listed on the PlaidHat events system. Before I crack open the second OP kit I have for a tournament, I need to have grown the local Ashes community first. I'm open to ideas. I have plenty of the promo Dimona and Lulu Phoenixborn to give away to new players! Maybe I should use these as part of some sort of “learn Ashes” event.

Finally unrelated to Ashes, Chris has finished assembling, painting and adding decals (something I don't have the skill set to do) my tanks in the base set of Tanks.

Chris has done an amazing job on the models.


I'm looking forward to getting some games in now.

 

Not Cool Mini or Not

Or why I'm not going to back CMoN on Kickstarter ever ever ever again.

So the other day CMoN sent out an update for The Others, which gave the news that the EU shipments would be hitting the shores of Germany one lot on the 13th September and the other on the 22nd September.

Add in time to clear customs, and then getting to the distributor, by the time that second shipment lands the first one might actually be in the process of being sent out. So we might start seeing copies arriving at the start of October.

That's a two month delay from when the US and Australia started getting theirs!

The thing is CMoN have given bs reasons for the delay. Ours in the EU had to be delayed because

For the European packages, we ran into an issue with the August holidays, which means our distribution center would be closed if the packages arrived in August as expected. Unfortunately that means we are going to have to delay the European shipment a little bit, so that the distribution hub can send them out in September. We are sorry for the inconvenience.”

This statement smelt so bad even I could smell it was rotten, and I have no sense of smell. a distribution centre closed for a month as implied by their statement! I call shenanigans, “liar, liar, pants on fire”.

But CMoN buried their heads in the sand and ignored the furore that this announcement caused this side of the pond.

One poster on the comments section of the Kickstarter page suggested an interesting conspiracy theory that maybe the original shipment for the EU was directed to the US so that CMoN could sell the game at GenCon. The timings certainly fit.

Looking at the timings of the arrivals that CMoN gave in the latest update, I suspect that possibly the EU shipment may have been delayed deliberately to save them shipping costs so they have product to sell at a certain large event in October in Essen.

The initial delays for the game from its original March delivery were down to production delays and the Chinese New Year. Basically bad project management. They new they had production problems with the Zombicide:Black Plague stuff, and that there had been long delays from that having a knock on affect.

Ok I was disappointed with that, but could live with it. What I can't take is the lying to cover up what I think is a combination of my theory and the GenCon conspiracy theory.

What really grates is that CMoN seem to have got a corporate shill to sing their praises on line to say what nice, salt of the earth guys they are. Apparently they will move the earth to help you, nothing is too much for them. That maybe so if you are part of the most popular Boardgaming YouTube network with a reach of tens of thousands. But further down the food chain, they are more than happy to screw you over.

Now some posters on the comments section of the Kickstarter page point out the CMoN small print:

Please note that while we do our best to get you your rewards in a timely manner, you may not necessarily receive your rewards before the product makes it into distribution in your own country or before it's made available in conventions and special promotion opportunities. We hope that the special price and exclusive items you will get during the Kickstarter will make up for any such possible lag. However, if this is something that is not acceptable to you, please do not back this project, and instead wait for the retail release. Thank you for your understanding.”

Firstly as others point out, these aren't rewards, we are buying a product. If it was a reward that means it's a gift and should be marked as so when shipped. However CMoN won't do that.

CMoN like others use Kickstarter as a pre-order system to fund their up and coming games. The money raised pays for the production, it's a risk free route for CMoN. They don't have to put their own cash up to make a game that might not sell. The risk is all on the backers.

So CMoN should be doing everything to make sure that game is in the hands of backers before anyone else. Without them there would be no game. TMG have delayed the release of Thiefs Market by a couple of weeks to the mass market so that backers can get their copies first.

As for the exclusive content being compensation for any possible lag! That exclusive content, that is the reward for backing the project. Not the game itself. I think Kickstarter exclusive content is wrong. If it was timed exclusive, fine I'm down with that. But only able to get it if you back the project is wrong. It means that last line of you have to wait until it hits the shops if you don't like it, is basically saying “take it or lump it”. I'd happily wait for the shop release if they also made the exclusives also available at a later date. But CMoN do like to prop up the eBay scalpers.

Until people start to not back the CMoN kickstarters (which will never happen in significant enough numbers to make a noticeable difference) CMoN will continue to treat their backers like an inconvience, and like dirt.

As you can see this whole CMoN Kickstarter experience hasn't been a pleasant one. Their disregard for EU backers, and I would argue backers in general is leaving a rather unpleasant taste in the mouth. Personally if I was Eric Lang I'd be wondering if I had partnered with the right company. They are tarnishing the image of his game and name.

Wow that was a long rant, and it might even be coherent too in places. But as you may have detected I'm a tad upset about this. I think my tag line for them is so true, “CMoN cool games, crap company”. They won't respond to this, they don't respond to the comments on the Kickstarter page. But at least I feel better having vented.

Oh wait it's just clicked if you say CMoN it sounds almost like you are saying … That explains a lot.

There she blows


Last night Jonathan and I meetup to do some good old fashioned whaling, when his latest addition to his game collection New Bedford hit the table.

New Bedford as you may have guessed deals with the highly emotive and controversial subject of whaling.

But does it glorify whaling? I don't think it does. In fact I would say that although its a major source of scoring points. The majority of the game is all about worker placement, building up the town of New Bedford, and gathering resources. With the whaling itself an end product, an ends to a means. In fact and I'd love to test this theory, you could almost remove the whaling phase and not miss it from the game. I certainly don't feel that the game glorifies whaling in anyway. Especially when it is set in the mid 1800s.

Overall this is a nice game as worker placement games go. There are some nice things about the game. The components themselves are lovely. I love the Meeple whale used to track the rounds. The Meeple ships look nice, although the publisher could have used easier colours to distinguish between for the base of the boats. The large ships wheel as the first player marker is lovely.

It's just a shame that from what Jonathan described Dice Hate Me didn't put as much effort into quality control on the expansion, oh and missing out a tile from the main game for solo play!

Having played New Bedford I can now see what Dice Hate Me were trying to do with the game Nantucket. New Bedford feels like a game, is a pleasurable experience. Whilst Nantucket isn't. I particularly think that this is evident in the whaling phases of the two games. Within New Bedford, it comes across as thematic, part of the game. Pulling cardboard chits out of a bag, felt like you were whaling (minus harpoon). If you drew out a sea tile, it felt like your nets were coming up empty. Whilst the cardboard coin tossing of Nantucket just felt horrid.

A bit like Harbour if you use another players building on their side of town. Then you have to pay them a dollar to use it. In out game that wasn't a bad exchange for the gain five dollars tile that Jonathan had. Pay one, get four back. However I did manage to build up a nice engine that allowed me to send out ships using half the resources needed. So to go the max distance out that usually would require six food, I only needed three. Plus I had a powerful tile that allowed me to land three right whales for free.

I think for replayability this game will need the expansion with the extra tiles. Plus the rule book could be clearer in some parts.

This isn't a great worker placement game, but an average one. You'll have a nice time playing it. I'd definitely play again if someone said “hey lets play…”. Would I go out of my way and ask to? Nope.

Jonathan ended up winning our first play of the game. But only by three points. Which was basically the extra points he earnt from a couple of bonus tiles that he had on his side of the town.

We finished off our evenings gaming with me teaching Jonathan 7 Wonders Duel. Jonathan had wanted to try the game. I guess after reading me harping on about it so much since getting it.

We used the wonders as suggested by the rule book for a first time playing the game. It seemed the right thing to do considering this was Jonathan's first game.

While I was going for the science win, Jonathan was going for the military. Neither one of us was able to complete our chosen path to victory so it ended up going to a points victory. But who would win that? Luckily for me, it was me!

But still for a first game Jonathan did get a respectable fifty points.

Overall I think Johathan was pleasantly surprised he enjoyed the game. Especially considering he's not. Fan of 7 Wonders.

After some gaming related chatter, we said our farewells.

Learning Starcraft 

Last night at the Chatteris Warlords weekly meet up Bob bought along his recently acquired copy of Starcraft the boardgame. A copy that was in amazing condition, and purchased at an unbelievably cheap price. Go google the game, and see how much this game goes for normally. I can tell you Bob didn't pay anything near to those prices.

My water damaged box, and the odd damaged card (due to a previous owner storing the cards by holding them together with elastic bands, the elastic had attached itself to the odd card), copy of Starcraft the boardgame has been sitting on my pile of shame ever since I got it. And yes I paid more for this copy than Bob did his, and I thought I was getting a bargain at the time!

I did have the odd game with me, such as Thiefs Market, The Manhattan Project: Chain Reaction. But they had been left in the car because earlier in the day on the Chatteris Warlords club page on Facebook, Bob had posted he was bringing along the game, and wanted to know who was up for playing it.

Five players were soon gathered together to play Starcraft. None of us had played the game before. So this was a learn as we play game.

Ben had already pushed two tables together for gaming when he arrived. But as we went through the setup process of the game, it soon became clear this was not big enough. We needed a third table. So pulling apart the two tables and slotting a third in the middle, we just about had enough space to play. Wow this is a big game!

No sooner had we finished setting up, than the last member of the clubs committee turned up, so the regular committee meeting was held. This meant we had to pause so Ben and Bob (who hold positions of power on the committee) could take part in the meeting. Usually these meetings are a wham, bam, thank you mam, type affair. But this time it decided to drag itself out. I have to admit it's interruption to game play as the meeting dragged on was starting to get to me. If the meeting had dragged on for ten minutes longer than it had I would have dropped out of the game.

We started playing again. Working our way through the stages of a turn. The player on my right was getting on my tits. He wasn't giving the game it's full attention, instead more bothered about his feckin Pokemon Go stuff. For fecks sake play the game or feck off I thought. He was slowing the game down.

This was a learning game. I thought I had only one resource, compared to the others. Which meant I wasn't going to be able to build anything on my turn until I conquered another planet to get them. So this meant I issued a move order to attack Ben's forces. Something I wouldn't have done when it turned out minutes later that we had a default pool of resources we could call upon. So with altered plans I built a new transport ship or whatever they are called, and moved to another unoccupied planet.

It was handy that Ben and I had a fight over a planet, because it meant we learnt the rules for battles. Which aren't really that complicated. Well that's how they seemed last night.

It was obvious that we were not going to finish the game. This is another one of those games that will take hours to play, not something for a club night. This game needs a Saturday session like the one I organised recently for A Game of Thrones the boardgame to do it justice.

We completed a second round of the game. I think on the banked victory points I had won with eight. The others were in the three,four point region. But I'm sure that if we had played longer I wouldn't have held onto that lead. I have to admit I was getting very frustrated with the player on my right during this second round. Him and his bloody phone and Pokemon Go. then his friend came over and chatted to him, distracting him further. He saw my Instagram likes popping up on my screen. Oh I was getting more likes than him for my picture, what's my ID on Instagram? Oh feck off I wanted to say, but begrudgedly through gritted teeth I gave my ID.

From the play through we had. And it was a learning game. So I can forgive Jamie on my left for needing to ask multiple times the same question. That doesn't slow the game down too much, and is great for banter at his expense. Although I don't think Bob will forgive Jamie for breaking one of the miniatures off its stand. I won't forgive the ignorant player on my right. However I disgress. From this limited play, I can tell I like this game, and definitely want to get a session going to play the game all the way to the end. Now all I need to do is try and find a time and place to get that game in.

 

Top 5 Two Player Games

Back in April on the Roleplaying and Board Game Chat group on Facebook there was a post about having a weekly top five games list based on a theme such as Dungeon Crawls. Obviously I thought this was a great idea for this blog too. I'm not sure if it took off because I don't seem to remember any top five lists on that Facebook group.

Now I'd filed a screen shot of that post away on my iPad for later use. A break open in case of lack of content sort of thing.

I have to admit I've always looked at this sort of content as lazy, and click bait. But I've never denied I'm not a big hypocrite. But what can I bring to this obvious attempt at grabbing views that will make it different and fresh?

So here we are with my first top five. The theme I've chosen for this list is two player games.

So how did I compile my top five? Firstly I downloaded my list of games owned from the bgg website.

Using Numbers on my iPhone I filtered the data on max number of players. I then decided that I would not include any CCG/LCG. I'll use them for the theme of another list sometime. I also discounted any game that plays more players but plays really well as a two player game also. Once again I think that would make a great theme for another list. I better start making a note of these themes to use at a later date. I also discounted games from the list that were still languishing on my pile of shame. I then went through the bg stats apps records of games played to make sure I hadn't missed any that I've played since I started recording game plays at the end of last year that belonged to someone else.

Now with that pruned list of candidates, it was time to whittle it down to a top five. But would I be able to actually rate the games in any sort of order of preference? No. So in no particular order because I can't be decisive, hate making decisions, and it was like trying to choose a favourite child, here is my top five two player games.

  • 7 Wonders Duel – a recent addition to the collection that I love playing, and is just as big a hit with Nath. Card drafting and set collection set in the ancient world. If when I introduced Nath to the game I hadn't been so tired from travelling, we probably would have been up all night playing this. Nath asks me when I visit now if I have the game with me, and if so can we play it.
  • Battlelore/Memoir '44 – I've cheated a little here by including these two “war games lite” together. I love playing both games, they both have the same underlying mechanics being based on the command and colours system developed by Richard Borg. I'd say get both and play both. But in reality chose the theme you like best. Do you like fantasy? Then get Battlelore. Do you prefer the more “modern” setting of World War II? Then get Memoir '44. It really is that simple. Memoir '44 has the better support expansion and scenario wise. But there are some nice expansions for Battlelore, just not as many.
  • Lost Cities – the majority of my games of Lost Cities have been with the app of the game against the same opponent for the last five years. Unlike our Carcassonne games where I get my butt kicked regularly, the advantage lies with me in Lost Cities. Set collection loosely based around the them of exploring for ancient lost civilisations. Some nice decisions to make about when to play cards, what to hold onto etc.
  • Odin's Ravens – a very recent addition to the collection, it can be taught in under five minutes. Which hides it's hidden depth/decisions. Such a simple theme two ravens belonging to Odin racing to the edge of the world and back to be the first to bring Odin the latest news. This also was an instant hit with Nath.
  • Star Realms – a two player deck builder that has a great scifi theme, is fast, in your face. If a number one game had to be chosen on plays alone then this would be number one. It helps that it has an amazing app that has online play. The majority of my playing is via the app. The game is cheap, with everything you need to play in one box. But there are also expansions you can buy that when added in mix things up, either adding new ships and bases, or new mechanics. How good is this game? Nath asked for his own copy for his birthday. It's probably the first thing that hits the table when I visit.

There has been a reason why I've pointed out when Nath loves a game. Nath as regular readers are aware is my son. My 22 year old son, who plays video games all the time (just like his father). So if a boardgame can get him excited and asking to play it, then that game has to be really special. So I use that as an extra measurement for how good a game is. With the games above that I haven't mentioned Nath, it's not because he doesn't like them, it's because I haven't played them with him yet.

Honourable mentions

If this was a top ten these four games would definitely be added to the list and would easily have made the list six months ago if I had done it then before some of the games had been added to the collection.

  • Sun Tzu
  • Hive Pocket
  • Tides of Time
  • Patchwork – has a great app available.

Dishonourable mention

I had to do this, I can't warn people about this enough.

  • Nantucket – the “game” that was created to illustrate the saying “it's not a game”. Read my thoughts on the “not a game” here.

So there that was my first click bait top five list. Was it different enough from other lists? Are there any recommendations for others for me to play?

 

Out ws15Aug16

Once more we are scrambling for the crumbs as they fall from the Esdevium plate. So what morsels will we be devouring gratefully in the coming week? 


First up is the two player game Tides of Madness. Portal Games follow up to the Tides of Time with the now obligatory Cthuhlu theming and having to take into account madness now also! The original Tides of Time was a beautiful looking game, with a nice twist on the draft mechanic.

We also have a chance to get our teeth sunk into the first expansion for Dice City. Dice City doesn’t get as much love as it should, especially considering how much better it is than the over rated Quadropolis.

Clocking in on the expensive side are the first three Imperial Assault skirmish map playmats. Ideal for quick play, no digging out tiles for starters. However they are more expensive than I think they should be. The sweet spot would have been the seventeen coins of the realm each. Which would have been an instant buy. But at the price of ¬£24 each it’s not so attractive.

The Walking Dead continues its spread throughout the board gaming world. This time as a themed expansion for Zombie Munchkin. I’m surprised it has taken them so long to do. If I had the Zombie Munchkin this next one would be an instant buy.

Kennerspiel des Jahres nominee Time Stories is getting restocked. A timely reminder I still need to get this game to the table. Think on this purchase as being similar to buying a console with a game. You are buying the core game system with a module. Then you can buy more modules as they get released (currently three I think so far). 

Finally two new armies for Neuroshima Hex 3.0. I love this game. And the addition of more armies is always welcome. I’d love a roll up play map of the board to make the game truly portable and something I could carry around to play. A great game, with a great app implementing it. The Dancer army is in the app, however the other isn’t. This is definitely the one thing next week I’m most excited about.

Well that’s it. The other crumbs that fell off the plate looked a bit off. So I had little interest in them. 

See you in the next post.