Monthly Archives: February 2016

Prepare for battle…

Hot on the heals of the announcements last week for Epic of the game day kits and store tournament kits comes this new announcement from White Wizard Games about giving Epic a Worlds.

That nice funny money figure of $100,000 is not for one person, but spread out amongst those taking part in the Worlds. With a not to be sniffed at top prize of $25,000.

Here are the words that White Wizard sent:

I am thrilled to announce the $100,000 Epic World Championship tournament. Event details can be found here.

Epic was designed to provide a complete trading card game style experience at a tiny fraction of the cost. I am very proud of the depth of game play and strategy the game provides for both sealed and constructed play.

The one thing Epic was missing was high-end events to inspire players to build the best-possible constructed decks and to push their strategies in awesome limited formats like dark draft. This high-end play doesn't just benefit the competitive tournament player, it also provides a wealth of internet content like cool deck lists that casual players can build and try at home or in a local casual event.

Every one of the 64 qualifying players in the Epic World Championship will get a cash prize and awesome Epic swag! The road to Epic Worlds begins at SXSW Gaming in just a couple of weeks. Best of luck to all in your quest to qualify!

Thank you again for backing Epic!

-Rob

My concern is that there will not be a nationals in the UK, and therefore a chance for a UK champion to participate. We will be lucky if we get a store tournament, let alone a regionals to feed into the nationals.

There seems to be very little up take in the UK or even a distributor (I'm sure there must be one, but I'm waiting to find out who from White Wizard so my local FLGS can order the game day and store kit).

I love that White Wizard are doing this, it shows ambition and support for a great card game.

The deck building card game with a historic theme has been relaunched on Kickstarter. This is a great game and worth a punt if you like the genre.

You can back Ages HERE

 

Planeswalkers and Being Epic

In the last couple of days White Wizard announced the release date for the first expansion for Epic called Tyrants.

Before this announcement they had been putting previews of some of the new cards in the expansion up on the Epic Facebook page.

At the same time White Wizard also announced the details of a game day kit, and tournament kit. You can guess what I'm going to be asking my FLGS to get in.

This is great news seeing White Wizard supporting the game. My question on the expansion is will I need three copies as I do for the base game for catering for the larger draft formats or deck building?

Also the expansion may hit stores in March in the US. But there is a loooong delay afterwards before we will see them on the shores here. We still haven't seen the Star Realms Colony Wars yet over here. This seems a regular problem for White Wizard, and I'd love to see them resolve this.

Magic the Gathering Arena of the Planeswalker

Over the last couple of days news has also leaked out in the autumn we will see another expansion for Magic the Gathering Arena of the Planeswalker.

From the info/rumour I've seen on a forum or two this will be a large expansion, same size of the original game, and not require the base game. It will have five new Planeswalkers, which will be dual colour, plus all the supporting terrain, cardboard, etc. And naturally be playable with what has come before.

So MtGAotP has been out six months now, we have seen one expansion, that barely added much to the game. Team/deck building is not really an option as it stands.

If I compare this to Imperial Assault in fourteen months we have seen two deluxe expansions, and several Hero and Villians packs, a Worlds competition, active support for stores to host game nights with kits. In the skirmish games there has been a lot better ability to team/deck build.

Imperial Assault really does show what might have been and could be if Hasbro actually got behind this game. Failing that I pray Plaid Hat buys the rights to the game mechanics/rules and releases an Ashes version with better support.

 

New Loot 27/2/16

Welcome to my weekly round up of stuff that dropped through my letter box.

Even though I haven't got Ticket to Ride Europe (yet) this mini expansion is free from Days of Wonder, you just pay for the postage.

I've already blogged about the following, looking at its contents. However the publisher hasn't responded to my email yet about getting a replacement figure for the broken one. I have been forced to register with their call tracking system. But that was an automatic response to my email. I've uploaded evidence of the fault. But no update has been put on there either. Walls of silence are great customer service!
At my weekly Netrunner fix there are plans afoot to play the draft format of the game. With a lack of the draft rules online, I ended up getting this draft starter just to get a look at the formats rules!

There is going to be a “marathon” Ticket to Ride play session in March by some of the Fenland Gamers. So I thought this might be a fun “chaotic” expanse to throw into the mix. Or at least have the option there of playing it.

 
This week I met up with an old school and college friend who I hadn't seem since 1987(?). In the meantime he moved to the land down under, and made a life down there. Fast forward the clock, with the aid of Facebook we got in contact again. That friend is now back in Blighty for a visit with his wife and latest addition to the family.
I made a little gift package for them of the following two games and Love Letter (from my collection) after hearing they were just using a pack of cards and playing canasta as entertainment. I think I covered a few genres with these three, cards, dice and tiles!
Thanks to Gavin who alerted me to this little bargain currently on Amazon, if you are a WWE fan you should be snapping this up. And with unlimited music streaming from Apple I'm sorted for the entrance music to play for each wrestler.
 

Oh how much of a bargain was it? Just under a tenner! That's a twenty odd pound saving. Plus my Prime membership it was free next day delivery.

That's it for this week.

New Releases For Next Week 29/2/16

So it's that time of week again when the local branch of the Asmodee collective Esdevium come down from upon high and tell us what we are being allowed to buy next week from them.

First up is a game Tom Vassel of Dice Tower fame is singing the praises of…

Next up is a reprint of the game I haven't got to the table yet Dead of Winter.

Remember last week they released a Super Mario Playmat? Well this week we are getting Super Mario deck boxes. They look bloody amazing.

Finally the biggy of next week for me is…

Some Netrunner fans have this already because they paid the excessive postage wanted by FFG to ship it. Now it is the time for those of us who were prepared to wait for it to arrive in the UK to get our copies.

I think from one or two posts I've seen the supply is limited, and some shops aren't getting their full orders. So I think I'm going to be one lucky person when I get my pre-order.

So I'm looking forward to next week…

 

So near but so far

Last night saw Jonathan and I patrol once more the Streets of Commonville.

It was going to be a weird play session, there had been some “requests” made to Jonathan from some of the small but elite folks that had viewed the previous play through.

Once more we were filming the play through, but we had a wishlist of things to cover.

The first twenty minutes or so of filming was spent explaining various elements of the game. We then started a two player game.

I thought for the sake of this recording we would be taking a couple of turns and then “fast forwarding” the game state to show various in game situations.

However we were opening the board up fairly fast. A lot faster than our other two player game together.

I was soon able to level up to Captain, giving me five dice and an intuition (alter a dice to a value I need), plus my starting donut. It wasn't long before we were also able to get Jonathan up to the same rank, with similar additional powers.

But the clock was ticking. We hadn't revealed all the evidence, but we had done enough to get down to one suspect (shockingly not Dr Kinky this time), give that suspect a weapon and a set of handcuffs.

With the clock dangerously low, we had one turn to get myself to join Jonathan (who arrived the previous turn) and the suspect and defeat the suspect.

I needed three dice to get me to the suspects tile. Then we needed to score between us forty five points with our remaining dice. We totalled up our points, we had forty four points. Short by one! One lousy point!

The game had beat us. But that was the closest game we'd played. Amazingly close. Great fun.

So some editing for me, then the “directors commentary” to record and then edit back into the video, before putting up for viewing. How I ended up doing more work I don't know. All I know at the moment with the size font that will be needed in the rules book for my name in the thanks, the page will have to be a gatefold!

Tokaido Collectors Accessory Pack

So today (and I'm jumping the gun here, because I normally talk about new arrivals on Saturdays) the Tokaido Collectors Accessory Pack arrived.

After opening the box up my initial excitement was damped by disappointment to see that one of the figures was broken. I've emailed the publisher via their website for a replacement. Time to see how their customer support matches up against the likes of AEG and Portal Games.

So in the box you get sixteen unpainted plastic figures representing the characters in both the base game and the Crossroads expansion. Sadly there is not a figure for the Eriku promo character.

Also in the box is a nice cloth bag for storing the coins that also come in the box. Plus a CD of Japanese inspired music to play in the background while playing the game is also included.

Naturally if we have a cloth bag, we also have to have something to put in it. That something is fifty metal coins. These are lovely, have a nice feel and weight to them.

You also get five replacement score tracker tokens in the shape of coloured packages. Plus a coloured base cover for the figure you are playing with, and finally a “second” (assuming you have the Crossroads expansion) dice.

As a pimp my game kit, this is a really nice little kit. Despite a model being broken, the models are really detailed, and look great. And I can't wait to get Tokaido to the table using these new components.

If you love Tokaido this is a must buy.

 

Patchwork hits iOS

Who would of thought I would be getting excited over a game about making a patchwork quilt?

Yesterday an app version of the 2014 two player game hit both the iOS App Store and that other lesser one.

I hadn't played the original physical game, but one of my regular Star Realms opponents has, and put up on Instagram that they had just downloaded the app and was asking for people to play against. So I thought why not? The app once I found it on the App Store was only $2.99, so a bargain.

Once downloaded, I went through the tutorial and was instantly hooked. I love the Tetris feel of the placement of the tiles that represent the quilt patches. Then there is the timeline, and the currency being buttons. Love those touches. And the button currency very thematic.

Each patch has a cost both in buttons and time it will advance your counter on the timeline. Certain points on the time line when you cross them will generate more buttons for you to spend, and there are single square patches that if you reach first can be used to plug that odd gap on your quilt.

Love, love, love it.

Digidiced the developer of the app have done an amazing job. I've installed the game on my 6S, and it's usable on the smallish screen, the buttons are on the tad small side.

The game looks amazing, plus the in-app purchases are just themes for the game, so if you want to change the appearance you can. But I love the default look.

Now I wish other app devs would learn from these guys, because the app comes with asynchronous online play straight out of the box. Too many boardgame apps are being released these days without this feature, with the promise of it coming in a future release. The bread today, jam tomorrow deal. It's one of the reasons I took so long getting the Splendor app, it still doesn't have the online play. But a 99c sale over Christmas saw me cave in. Digidiced have just hit it out of the ball park here, and deserve a big hearty pat on the back for this.

So there you have it, a great two player game on iOS, well worth getting. And you can guess what will be added to my game collection soon.

 

An RPG Bargain

Those Humble Bundle folks have done a massive and I mean massive bargain for those that want to try the Pathfinder RPG, or even just want to dip their toes into the dark murky waters of role playing. For about $16 you get $350 worth of Pathfinder goodness in digital form.

Not only is there a great deal on the table, there is also a series of videos about how to play the Pathfinder RPG! The link can be found on the Humble Bundle page.

For $25 plus shipping costs you can also get the beginners box in physical form!

This really is a steal. If you have been tempted to part with your money for this to good to be true deal, click HERE.

Yes I have got this. I'm not mad!

 

How many servers?

Last night was the weekly Chatteris Warlords meet. Or as I like to call it my weekly Netrunner fix.

The evening started off with a four player game of 7 Wonders. This would technically be my second play of the game ever, despite getting the game straight after my first play. So naturally I was asking questions to refresh my poor memory.

So despite my lack of experience in playing the card drafting game 7 Wonders I think coming second was rather good.

Then it was time to do some running against the corps. It was Darren v Ben. Our first game was my NEH deck verses Ben's Noise.

Ben was scoring agendas and soon hit six agenda points. During that time I was landing tags with my ice rather easily. Which made landing my drawn Scorched Earth easy. I needed to find my other Scorched Earth, Traffic Accident, find and score my Private Security Force, or hope Ben hit a snare.

As you can see I created a few servers trying to find a card that would allow me to finish off the runner. While I was doing this I was reminded of Timmy Wong and his server spawning at last years Worlds. There were four agendas hidden amongst them. But I had given up on the scoring agendas route to victory. I was going for the murder, there were plenty of tags landed, Ben still was within easy reach of that goal.

It really was a race, Ben to score that final agenda, and myself finding that damage to kill him. Sadly it was a race I was to loose. A great enjoyable game. I learnt a lot about my deck in this game.

Second game was my Noise against Ben's Personal Evolution.

Within three turns I had Pancakes/Wyldside installed. I'd got Same Old Thing down, plus Aesop's. My rig was building up nicely. Datasucker was out and building up with virus counters, thanks to an unprotected archives. My bookmarks and Streetpeddlers were doing there jobs of storing cards for me. Inject was getting cards in hand and getting me cash.

I quickly scored some agendas, Ben scored one back. I needed one agenda to win. Ben built a scoring server three ice deep. He hid a possible agenda behind it, and advanced it twice. It was run now or, well there was no other pressure at this point.

I had David install, Faust, and trashed my installed DDOS. All of sudden the ice wall was thinner, and I was ready to run hard on the server. So unable to rez the first bit of ice, the second was my first encounter. It was rez'd Faust ate it up. The third and final piece of ice had a strength of five. David territory. David ripped that ice to pieces. I was through. Had I been duped? Was this a trap?

Nope, it was my winning agenda. The evening ended up even.

How do you follow that sort of exciting game play? With a game of Catan of course.

I'm not going to bore you (well more than I already have). But Ben totally ruled this game, and got the win easily.

A great evening gaming.