Monthly Archives: May 2017

BTN May 2017

Wow where did May go? The day this post goes live sees me travelling to Birmingham for the UKGE, after having seen Wonder Woman. A great way to start off the month of June and end half term.

I know after last months amazing record breaking figures it was going to be hard to top that or get close. But still it does seem to be a bit of a drop. Looking at the games played there have been some “epic” games hitting the table in May. For example Star Wars Rebellion was just over 5 hours of game time, and although we were nearly finished, we didn’t finish. Then there was 3 hours or more on Eldritch Horror. So bigger, more meatier games in May. Plus one or two organised meet ups fell through due to life, the universe and everything.

As the “stats” show I played more than the average this month. But was under for the played games.

The final section as usual presents the data graphically so we can try and see trends.

At the moment it looks like my overall trend for 2017 is I’m playing more than 2016.

My Game of the Month…

Not many new games (to me) hit the table in May. I think that the contenders for this highly regarded accolade have to be Star Wars Rebellion and Terraforming Mars.

A tough choice indeed. If my Verses posts and the pairwise comparisons I have been doing have taught me one thing it’s how to make tough choices. Plus how to avoid those tough choices.

I liked Terraforming Mars. But the share epic nature of this game that manages to capture the original trilogy is just mind blowing. FFG knocked it out of the park production wise. This is an awesome game. It deserves to hold the title of my game of the month for May by itself. 

Worst Game of the Month…

Game publishers around the globe will be breathing a big sigh of relief because there are no new inductees into the Nantucket Wing of Shame (still located at Jonathan’s house, despite him actually off loading said dire excuse of a game to some poor unsuspecting sap).

Hopefully hitting the table in June…

Wow I can tick two off this list for May. Star Wars Rebellion and Star Wars: Destiny both got to the table. For June I’m just going to leave it to these two remaining games on the May list.

  • Broom Service – I think a special learning session needs setting up for this.
  • Mech vs Minions – need to arrange a big session for this I think.

Fenland Gamer Events for June (so far)…

The Fenland Gamers celebrates its second birthday this month. 

After Junes monthly meetup it will be moving to a temporary location until a new home has been found for it.

  • Saturday those at UKGE are meeting up.
  • The weekly Friday Evening Gaming at The White Lion (or FEG@WL as I call it)
  • 10th – our first AGM! 
  • 14th – The monthly meetup (it’s the second Wednesday of each month).
  • 17th – T.I.M.E. Stories session (all places taken at the moment)

 If you are in the area and want to attend one of the events, please visit the Fenland Gamers Facebook page for further details about the event. Hope to see you there.

ePadme/Jyn Mono Mill 2.0

In my previous post I went through my first version of this mono mill deck. Since then I’ve made some changes.


Battlefield: Command Center (Lothal)


  • Friends in Low Places (0 cost, Neutral/Yellow) x 2
  • Rebel (1 cost, Hero/Yellow) x 2
  • Evade (1 cost, Neutral/Gray) x 2
  • Block (2 cost, Neutral/Gray) x 2
  • Take Cover (0 cost, Neutral/Gray) x 2
  • Daring Escape (2 cost, Hero/Gray) x 1
  • Bolt Hole (0 cost, Neutral/Yellow) x 2
  • Cheat (1 cost, Neutral/Yellow) x 2
  • Long Con (0 cost, Hero/Yellow) x 2
  • Unpredictable (0 cost, Neutral/Yellow) x 2
  • Dodge (2 cost, Neutral/Gray) x 2
  • Diversion (1 cost, Neutral/Yellow) x 2


  • R2-D2 (2 cost, Hero/Gray) x 2


  • Ammo Belt (1 cost, Neutral/Gray) x 2
  • Ascension Gun (2 cost, Neutral/Yellow) x 2
  • Second Chance (3 cost,Hero/Yellow) x 1

My thinking behind the deck

The changes have mainly been to strengthen what the deck is meant to do best, mill. So in comes Command Center for War-Torn Streets. For some reason my battlefield never gets chosen by Dale. But that’s what the Ascension Gun is for, I don’t care I can still use it.

Second Chance is there to keep Padme on the board. Throw in Ammo Belt and some recursion and Padme is very hard to get rid of.

R2-D2 was added to boost Jyns discard from hand sides of her dice. 

Evade, Bolt Hole and Friends in Low Places were taken up to two copies each to improve their likely hood of being drawn.

How’d it do?

I did try this as eJyn/Padme but it didn’t work as well for me as the ePadme/Jyn. Mind you it could be because the first game yesterday against Dales Hero deck (I should have made a note of his line up) drew all the right cards for him early on and was doing lots of damage. Back to ePadme/Jyn and not so great card draw for Dale I took the next three games.

The bane of my life ePalpatine. This deck is doing a lot better against it. It won two games against it, and the ones it lost were pretty close games. I was using Con Artist (borrowed from Dale) instead of Rebel. Which made a big difference I think.

In our final game I proxied in a second Second Chance. Yeah I need a second one of these. Along with my Dodge (Block wasn’t needed against this version of Dales deck), Evade and Unpredictable I was able to avoid and hang in there against this damage heavy deck.

I found I wasn’t using R2-D2 at all against ePalpatine, he came out in two early games.   So R2-D2 is at risk.

In one game I rolled the following. Which equated to six cards discarded from the top of Dales deck. That’s massive.

Where next?

If my opponent gets a good draw on a damage heavy deck I have problems. Who wouldn’t?

Ideally I’d like more recursion. So I can pull back cards to keep me in the game longer.

It needs that second copy of Second Chance.  Con Artist worked well so Rebel is my most likely candidate for going in its place. 

Over on Instagram the following helpful suggestions were made:

Sadly because Scout is a red hero card I can’t use it in this yellow mono hero deck! Although Cunning does look very interesting.

I think the mono mill deck is nearly there. A couple of tweaks and until the next set is released it’s not going to change. So in all likely hood the next post about this deck will be the final one!

Boats and Spaceships

Yesterday saw some impromptu gaming between Jonathan, myself, Chris and Edmund.

But how did we get to that point? Well I needed a big favour from Jonathan! I’d sold my Android Netrunner collection, and needed to print out the delivery label so myHermes could pick it up today. Sadly my printer/scanner is just a scanner these days. So I threw myself on the mercy of Jonathan. Who suggested we also play a game too. The invite went out on the Fenland Gamers Facebook page. And there we were, playing Keyflower on a Sunday afternoon.

Boy did Edmund grok this game. He destroyed us. While Edmund was grokking the game, Jonathan was getting wound up, because the game was not clicking for him. Sometimes that happens with a game, and you need another play at least before it clicks. It’s that second game that the person usually ends up whooping my butt at the game. The important point is that I beat Jonathan by two massive points this time.

Like Nations: the Dice Game Keyflower is over way way to quickly. 

But still a pleasant surprise for the Sunday afternoon.

Today Dale and I spent it productively testing Star Wars: Destiny decks (lunchtime only). 

By the end of our gaming Dale edged it winning 6-5. 

Our first four games were a new hero deck that Dale came up with. It demolished my ePadme/Jyn deck. It was crazy in the damage it was doing. But the remaining three games the cards weren’t so favourable to Dale and I won.

Dale then lent me Con Artist to swap in to see how that would work in my deck. Our remaining games were Dales ePalpatine against my ePadme/Jyn. They were pretty tight games. In our final game I proxied in a second Second Chance. Con Artist worked pretty well. And I most certainly need that second Second Chance.

I’ll have to do a post of my deck in its 2.0 state. If the dice come off (like the photo above – I rolled that today) thats 6 cards off the top of the opponents deck. That’s insane!

Too much like work

This selling stuff is too much like hard work! No wonder I only do it near to the UKGE. Pick up only at the expo is how I like to do it. I can’t be doing with all the hassle of wrapping and posting stuff.

It was after a lot of heart searching I decided to sell my Android Netrunner collection. If it doesn’t sell then I won’t be too upset. I’ll be pleasantly surprised if it sells.

I’m curious as to how much I raise. 

Dice Fight at The White Lion Corral!

Getting home from work last night was a flippin nightmare once I hit March. Hit a standstill near Tesco, so cut across to the station to take the back roads to Friday Bridge. But nope traffick was bad that way too. Not sure what was getting into everyone. Was the hot weather and it being the Friday of a bank holiday weekend the cause? 

In a hot and flustered and very rushed state I threw some games into a bag. I wasn’t sure if Jonathan would be there so in went some two player games. But I decided also as a last second decision to also throw in one or two games that played more.

Jonathan was waiting for me at The White Lion, with Dice Town. A game he had recently bought off a Facebook trading/selling page. But after playing with his wife, she’d decided she didn’t like it. Which suited me. It had been on my wish list for a long time. I’d missed out on this copy by a minute or two to Jonathan. So I wasn’t upset because I knew I’d get to try it. But then I was given the chance to buy it.

Jonathan had informed me that Diego and Chris were also attending. A chance to play my new purchase. Plus Jonathan could teach the game as he already knew the rules!

So our first game of the evening was Dice Town.

I’ll come right out and say it I enjoyed Dice Town.

I liked the dice rolling using the little cups, and selecting one dice at a time to save and build your hand with, then rolling the remaining dice. With the ability to save more dice, reroll, or not take any dice, but at a cost. A monetary cost. Which can be limiting if you run out of money and unable to get anymore.

There is some take that, mainly in taking cards off other players. But also a chance to bribe the sheriff to persuade them to chose you in a draw for a bonus. 

After the game I asked Jonathan how it compared playing as a four player game against a two player game. To which he responded it was better. It had struck me as not being a two player game. The more the better for this game I think. More competition for the bonuses. 

Oh Chris won. 

I think I’m getting a nice collection of dice based games now. The students will love Dice Town. 

Our second game was Sagrada. Which Jonathan somehow won. This is still a charming puzzle game, which looks beautiful.

The final game of the evening was Don’t Mess With Cthulhu. A new arrival that once again has been bought to be played by my students. I’d heard about it on the latest Rolling Dice and Taking Names podcast. It sounded interesting, and apparently played well with four players. So it was great that I could learn the game with friends before introducing it to students.

There was some confusion at first. But the game is quick enough that an initial play can be done to clear up that confusion. Which our first play did.

For a hidden role game that plays quickly, it wasn’t bad with four players. I like the four round limit on play. It keeps the play time short. Redistributing the remaining cards at the start of each round is a nice touch. I can see how the success of the game could be down to who you play with. Especially when it comes down to selecting a card to reveal and the discussion between players over whether that is the correct card to reveal.

We finished the evening with some chit chat. Before heading off for questionable meat and chips.

A great evening of gaming.

Fifty Percent Milestone Reached!

At the start of the week I had set myself the goal of reaching the 50% mark on the number of pairwise comparisons I have to do to rank my game collection.

When I ran my stats program this afternoon it gave me the following information:

You have done 11514 of a total 23005.0 – that is 50.04998913279722%

That’s a lot of pairwise comparisons. And the same number still to do. The aim is that by the middle of June I will be able to say that I have my definitive list of ranked games that I own.

I thought this would be a good point to look at my current Top Ten games in my collection. So here is my current Top Ten games in my collection:

1 Scythe
2 T.I.M.E Stories
3 Star Wars: Destiny
4 Viticulture Essential Edition
5 Star Realms
6 Kemet
7 Istanbul
8 Santorini
9 Lords of Waterdeep
10 7 Wonders Duel

I know this is kind of a spoiler for any top 100 list I will do. But who cares?

Right on wards and up awards to 75%…

Current UKGE17 Plans

We are now a week away from the UKGE. Naturally after the events at the start of the week the shows organizers have informed those attending that there will be increased security at the show.

We have just set a meeting spot for the Fenland Gamers meet up at the show. On the Saturday at 1pm our play group will meet up out front of the Dice Tower stall.

I have one person to meet up with at the moment. With potentially another two. These two potentials are with friends who want to play particular games. So I’m going to have to tie them down to a time and place before hand. I don’t want to be taking games along I am not going to play. But then again I’m pretty sure I could find folks to play Scythe with, or even Onitama  and Santorini.

I want to catch the Dice Tower guys. Mainly to buy some of the promos. But also to talk to them about their top 100 games and how they choose the positions. I’m determined to get to the bottom of this.

Hopefully I can pre-order the new expansion for 51st State. Which I believe I should be able to do. But if I can buy it and walk away with it I’ll be even happier.

I’m hoping to sell some games, and need to get those booked in. Which I think after the Gaming Breakfast tomorrow is my weekend task.

If you are at the show and see a man who has seen better years, looking lost and bewildered, and wearing this t-shirt, that’s me. Stop me and say hi. Or even take pity and invite me to play a game.

Verses: Run,Fight or Die vs Zombicide

Continuing the  now regular series of verses that my match up engine is generating from my game collection. Today we have a clash of Zombie themed games with the push your luck Run,Fight or Die taking on the 800lb gorilla Zombicide.

I love both games. But which did I choose?

Run, Fight or Die is a nice push your luck dice game, that has miniatures, variable player powers. With the expansions can play up to 6 players, and even be played as a co-op instead of competitively. The Mutant Boss figures are brilliant for this game, but sadly hard to get hold of. Which means that those inflated internet prices kick in when you try and buy them of eBay or some other site. I think I have everything for this game, except a couple of promos. It’s a nice game if you like that push your luck mechanic. There isn’t much to do when it’s not your turn. Luckily a players turn doesn’t take that long. There is some interaction with other players with limited take that, when you can send zombies to other players boards from your own. Having various decks to represent followers, loot and locations is cool.

Zombicide, Zombicide. What a great miniatures based co-op game this is. Variable player abilities, lots and lots of characters to choose from (you could argue too many), tonnes of scenarios to play, plus you can make your own up. The difficulty of a game can be adjusted by removing/adding cards from the zombie spawn deck, or the item deck. It’s a simple game, however it gets real tense, real quick. You really do need to work together to complete the missions. With all the expansions, there is just so much replayability. I’d like the second compendium book that apparently came out last year, but I never saw it being sold. The original Zombicide and has been replaced in the limelight by the wrongly themed Zombicide Black Plague. Which is a shame, I’d love to get the 3D doors for Zombicide. But they are unbelievably hard to get hold of. And I just don’t see Zombicide getting any more love from CMoN.

The winner for me was Zombicide. I think it was it’s flexibility of being able to create my own scenarios (aka the Epic Zombicide I played last year using literally everything I owned), and it has been more tense, piling on the pressure a lot while playing. Both great zombie games though.

On social media I don’t think this was a popular match up at all. Two responses. The first was Jonathan who said neither because he doesn’t like zombie themed games. Well he did like one, Hit Z Road. The other reply I had was siding with me and chose Zombicide.

There you have it, Zombicide is the winner both on here and in the court of popular opinion.


Verses: Star Realms vs Star Wars Destiny

If you have been following the posts of mine about ranking and my top games posts you will have seen that these two games have been in my Top 10 games since I started using my “match up engine”. Plus because of the nature of my process they were always going to go head to head.

So Star Realms or Star Wars: Destiny? Which did I choose?

I don’t think it’s any secret that I love Star Realms. Thanks to an awesome app I have up to 20 games on the go at a time. I’ve played thousands of games. Since records began I’ve actually managed to get the physical game to the table a whole 25 times. I really do like the deck building mechanic. The shared trade row. Plus the expansions. Oh my, the expansions. You can mix and match or if like me just play with everything thrown all in. With Gambits and Events you can get some crazy turn one purchases. Plus missions now change how a game can be won. This game just gets better and better. Oh and comboing cards so you draw your whole hand, and do one massive amount of damage. Or when you claw back from a single authority to get the win. You definitely get some great gaming moments in this game.

Star Wars: Destiny, OMG! I knew if I played it I’d get hooked. It ticks a lot of boxes for me, deck construction, dice, Star Wars. Ok the collectible side of the game is a big draw back.  But no worse than Magic the Gathering, Dice Masters or others of that ilk. There has been that initial difficulty in getting product. But hopefully that has been resolved by FFG, and so far it’s looking that way. I enjoy the deck construction side. I like building decks and playing them to see if they work. Yes there is a random element with the dice rolls. But there are ways to reroll and even chose a face of the die. So I don’t see that as a drawback. Sometimes the dice rolling adds an element of suspense that I like. Especially when the other player rolls badly letting you off the hook for an action or two while they mitigate that bad roll.

In the end I kinda copped out, sat on the fence and declared this one a draw. I really enjoy playing both of these games. And would find it really hard to make a choice between which to play if they were both in front of me.

And looking at the comments to the post on Facebook and Instagram, the slight edge goes to Star Realms. But it was close, one vote in it. And a draw if I take out the Hero Realms vote! The public can’t decide either then.