What did you play this week? (1/30/2023)

(1/30/2023) This is an automated weekly post to talk about the games you played last week.

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56 days ago

Decent week for me

#Frosthaven - did Scenario 65 to start of the guys personal achievement clock.  This was a fun scenario that involved lots of ice and sliding around.  Each of the monster attacks also pushed one so your placement was never quite a sure thing when you were planning your actions.  We started with the outpost phase and spent about 5 hours playing, so it was a late weekday night.  Really enjoyable evening though and had we not won on the round we did, 3 of the 4 of  us were going to be exhausted and I'm not sure our blinkblade would have had enough to finish the victory.

Also did my next 2 solo campaign missions and those continue to be a blast. 

#Elysium - did a 3 player game of this.  Taught to 2 new players and they enjoyed it.  I really enjoy the decision on which color tower to discard at the end of each of your turns.  I ended up building a pretty decent point scoring engine and ended up with the victory. 

Ended the night with another game of #Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King as one of the guys played it the prior week and requested again, always a good sign.  I ended up in a fairly close 2nd place.

Premium User56 days ago

Frosthaven is definitely fun!  Isle of Skye is one I enjoy.  I have the #Isle of Skye: Journeyman expansion which is quite good if you want more in the game!

54 days ago

A minor change of scene this monday, as I shifted across to the games design group for some playtesting, so that the remaining gamers could do a 4 player and 5 player game. 

Always interesting to see games 'in development', with one mature enough that it's already been presented to publishers, whilst the other had its very first public outing.

I won't go into details, but the new game feels like it has good potential, being a compact euro-style rondel game, with interesting variant on how you move around the rondel. Plenty more work to do to refine it, but I reckon it could be a success.

The other game saw its very first outing at 4 player, which is a recent addition (it started out at 2P, then had 3P added), with the wooden board arriving from the person who made it, just as we were about to start, so we got the added joy of it smelling like a Swedish sauna (LOL). Pure abstracts aren't my thing, but without revealing too much, this one solved the problem of similar games where falling behind can lead to a linear worsening of the situation. Whilst still not 'my genre' I was very impressed / enjoyed it, so I'm hoping that translates to wider appeal for it.


Tuesday was back to the usual fayre of published games, with us starting off with 4 player #Undaunted: Normandy (with #Undaunted: Reinforcements to enable the 3rd and 4th players pretty seamlessly). Whilst I'd played this two handed solo to learn it, it was my first real-life game of it, but teaching was strongly aided by 2 of the other 3 players having experience with #Undaunted: North Africa and #Undaunted: Stalingrad respectively. The game played well, with some good tactical discussions / differences in approach. Highlight of the game was a brave german riflleman (Fritz IIRC) moving swiftly right into the fulcrum of the battle, and evading two separate suppressing volleys from Sherman tanks (against pretty strong odds) and then only just getting suppressed by a similar onslaught next round. He very nearly was the unassuming hero of the day.

We followed this up with a swift game of #Startups which is perhaps an unsung Oink game, but feels like it will continue to play well with repeated plays.

Finally, as so often, we finished with a chilled game of #Just One, with the usual mix of clever, obscure, geeky clues, and in which I learnt the name of the music style played in the cantina on Mos Eisley in Star Wars ep. IV. A word I would most definitely not have associated with 'Canteen'

Premium User54 days ago

Playtesting games must be challenging but fun!

54 days ago

Not especially challenging I would say. 

Yes the board may be a handwritten paper or cardboard sheet, and indeed the cards likewise, with random pawns used for starters, but often there's some decent components from prior/other games, and in the euro-style game the cards were properly printed / cut, albeit will undoubtedly get some later tweaks.

Whilst the gameplay will have many iterations, the starting point is effectively a complete game with defined gameplay and end point. With the euro-style game (being so early in the process) there was much more design discussion, about balance, decision-space and with more ideas put forward. With the abstract which is further along the development path, it has a more mature design, so the gameplay, board and values are mostly nailed down. Hence we focused on:
- how easy was it for the people who'd previosuly playtested it, but not designed it, to teach to a newcomer (me)
- how did the 4 player game work (they'd only played 2P and 3P before)
- how quickly did a new player grasp the gameplay

Honestly it gives much the same joy of learning and playing a new game, with the chat we often have after playing a publshed game, extended somewhat, including overall feelings about different aspects of the game, some additional ideas or challenges. Probably not too far removed from a normal group of gamers getting a first play of a new retail game.

Premium User53 days ago

Neat!  It sounds like you are playing games that have had some design polish already.  I was thinking that if I was playing games that were incomplete or maybe badly designed that I might find it frustrating.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

I asked my wife Sunday after church if she'd like to play a game with me later that day.  After she took a much needed nap, she said #Wingspan.  I had just received #Wingspan: European Expansion a few days prior (thanks to a discounted shipping rate on Miniature Market, I had them ship my one item on hold) and I mixed it in.  It has been a few months since she'd played with me, so I had her start with one of the quick-start boards.  She won by 11 points!  She then wanted to play it again, in part to help her better remember the gameplay.  Although she increased her score by one point, I had a card in the first column that cached food on it everytime I gained food.  I ended up with 10 food tokens on it, winning the game by 12 points. (As a side note, I recently bought the Wingspan app and have been playing it solo on my phone a couple of times a week.  It's fun.)

I also played a solo game of #Hadrian's Wall, working through the solo campaign.  I was on Fort 4, but did not do well with the extra brick costs.  Did not even come close to the score goal.

56 days ago

Really good week:

#Among the Stars @4p - Just got this. First play and teach. Relatively simple with a good amount of complexity and decision making. I can instantly see how more variety in cards would benefit it so I went on a hunt for all the expansions shortly after. I got first place.

#Space Base @4p - After over 3 dozen plays this is still super enjoyable. Couldn't figure out a way to make an efficient engine and ended in 3rd place but it was a very close game.

#Carcassonne @3p - With over 100 points I lost by 1 point. Extremely close game. I never object when this is suggested.

#Gaia Project @3p - Got the Terrans (the one starter faction I hadn't played with yet) and completely obliterated the other 2 players. I made a lot of really aggressive moves which isn't usually normal for me but I really wanted a win.

#Among the Stars @3p - Got a second chance at this mainly because it was still in my bag from the previous game night. It went just as well as the first time but I ended in last place this time.

#For Sale @5p - Had a guys night out with some cousins. While we were drinking I brought this out to teach them. They liked it even though I won by a large margin.

#Twilight Imperium: Fourth Edition @5p - FINALLY got a chance to play this. Last time, we found out during setup that the owner of the game was missing a bunch of components. This time, we used someone else's copy. I got the University of Jol-Nar which is the tech faction. I crushed the competition. Kept to my own little "slice" off the galaxy and just completed objectives. Luckily none of them were combat related because my faction was very weak. Managed to finish the game in only about 5 rounds over 8 hours (including about an hour for setup and teach). Fantastic game! If it wasn't so long I'd want to play it more often.

#Love Letter (2019 Edition) @4p - Had a tied game for the last point. Towards the end of the round, I was forced to discard my hand and picked up the princess and handmaid on my next pull. Played the handmaid which protected me from the remaining cards and I won. Always fun.

Premium User56 days ago

It's a good week this week with a couple of fun in game plays!

  • #Yokohama x2: Couple of games on board game arena including one high scoring tight game that I managed to win!
  • #Frosthaven x2: Played scenario 2 and 4.  Definitely enjoying it!  Took a bit to get back in to the flow of the game but it's all coming back now!
  • #It's a Wonderful World with the BGA crew.  Pulled off a win even!
  • #The Castles of Burgundy
  • #Teotihuacan: City of Gods
  • #Tapestry
  • #Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy: Played a 3 player game in person.  It was fun but definitely had that 3 player issue of "if I attack him then I am weak to the other player" thing going on.  I managed a second place finish.  Yet to win one of these!
  • #Furnace: Played after Eclipse was done. Definitely took too many cards and not enough compensation so I had a lot of cards I never really used.  Love this game!
  • #Cacao: First two player game.  Definitely tighter and changed how I needed to think about the game.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

I've played Eclipse twice now and still have yet to even come close to winning, haha. Fun game though!

Premium User56 days ago

I am usually good at building up but I fall flat figuring out how to get the most points at the end.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

Mostly online plays for me last week. A lot of them!


#Sea Salt & Paper x 2 - With . He had mentioned enjoying playing this on BGA a week ago and I had recently heard about it on the BGB podcast so we gave it a try. The first game I got crushed but the second was a lot closer. I don't know if this type of game is my thing, but I did enjoy my plays.

#It's a Wonderful World x 1 - With theDL, , and . I got second place but I didn't do so hot. I really like this game; It's my number 15 game of all time. Most of that is probably attributed to the fact I could get Sarah to play it with me just about anytime. In fact, she asked if we could play it on BGA this week. We didn't, only because it is apart of my SoS contest/challenge later in the year.

#Wingspan x 3 - Played twice on BGA with Sarah and once with my coworkers. I think the week before last got Sarah interested in playing games on BGA again. To be fair, there's a lot more on there vs when we signed up a few years ago and a lot of them we know and love.

#The Castles of Burgundy x 2 - Speaking of which, played this one with Sarah again, as well as another game with my coworkers. I had my highest score ever in the latter, scoring 277 points! Not the highest I've ever seen; that would be 's 279 awhile back. Needless to say, they don't want to play with me anymore so we moved onto something else lol.

#Gizmos x 1 - Another favorite of ours played on BGA. Sarah won a close game. After having played #Splendor a few times fairly recently, there are a couple aspects of Gizmos that I wish were more like it. Both games have random elements, but it felt like more often than not I would take actions that didn't cascade and give me extra actions/resources. I still prefer this over Splendor though 100%.

#Eriantys x 1 - With . This for sure seems more like a game for David than myself lol. Just basing that on the types of games he's asked me to play. Stuff like #Taluva, #Santorini, and #Tash-Kalar: Arena of Legends come to mind. This is a retheme/reworking of #Carolus Magnus. I was happy to give it a shot because 1) Carolus Magnus has been on my wishlist for the area majority mechanics of which I've been getting into recently and 2) because I nearly bought CM from Noble Knight a month ago. I had store credit that I was trying to combine with a 10% off code. The code wouldn't work and I was too cheap to pay the extra $4-5 lol. By the time support got back to me, the copy they had sold. Turns out, I think it's a good thing. I'm not saying I didn't enjoy playing this, but it's way more abstracted than I realized. We're playing a rematch so I'll see if maybe I can do better haha.

#Lost Cities x 1 - Last night I was hoping to play more #U.S. Telegraph, but Sarah refused to play anything in person. Oh well lol. I picked this for a couple of reasons. It's one we used to own but got rid of after growing bored with it. Also, I've been watching the Dice Tower's top 100 games streams (which is a terrible idea when you're trying to not buy games btw lol) and Zee mentioned #Keltis which is just the German version of #Lost Cities Board Game. I thought Keltis looked cool and wanted to try out the mechanics again to see if I would be interested in trying to get a copy eventually. Long story short - I don't need to pick this up in either the card or board game version lol.

In Person

#Gùgōng x 1 - My only in person play this week. I continue to make excellent progress on my unplayed games pile; I'm now officially down to 5 games that need to get played by March. This is of course excluding the remaining 4 additional games I've already played and want to play again. Anyways, I was between trying this or #Meadow thinking Sarah would enjoy either game. I ended up going with this only because I've had it longer. Unfortunately, neither of us had a particularly favorable first impression. Sarah's problem I think was just being too distracted with the baby and never really forming a strategy/fully understanding the rules. She did well enough, but admitted she'd have to give it another try before having an opinion. As for myself, I thought it was fine. I was genuinely confused about the perceived balancing of the various actions. There are 7 different actions on the board of which 1 was essential to winning and MAYBE another 2 even felt important/meaningful. I worry about replayability. When we play it again, I'm going to have to try to do some of the other actions more to see if I'm just missing something. I've heard a lot of good things by people I trust so this was a little disappointing.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

Man, those are some high scores on Castles of Burgundy!

Moderator Level 152 days ago

Don't worry, they're very rare LOL

Moderator Level 152 days ago


I love that game and need more people to play it with.  It's not one my wife will want to put the energy into playing.

Moderator Level 149 days ago

That's too bad! I don't think my wife has an "official" top x number of games (besides #Wingspan) being her favorite. But I would bet CoB would be up there for her.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

Dang, was Sea Salt & Paper only last week? Forgot that it my report haha.

Bummer you didn't have a great experience with Gugong! That's actually on my shelf of opportunity as well. I do see on BGG that people like it better at 3-4 players. Do you think that had any impact on your enjoyment?

Moderator Level 156 days ago

I always do these as Monday to Sunday. We played last Monday so maybe that's why you missed it?

I of course started to read up on people's experiences to see if I was just insane lol. I also saw a lot of mentions of it being better particularly at 3 players. The reason being the gift cards get exchanged more often so it becomes more of a tactical experience vs a strategic one. So my issue was basically we had out a decree that let you get 2 points at the end of the game for each servant you sent to the decree area. Sarah was for whatever reason pretty averse to using her servants and therefore didn't go to the decree area very much at least in the beginning of the game. Prior to that, I was just going over to that area on repeat to maximize the number of points I got from that decree. Maybe if she had been going there too I wouldn't have been able to afford to keep going there. As it was I ran out of servants a couple of times because I had so many on the board. The jade and intrigue areas both felt like a waste of time. I don't know lol maybe if we had someone else changing things around, I'd have to do stuff I didn't want to do to stall until a better opportunity presented itself.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

That does sound like a sub-par experience. Whenever I get to play it, I'll make sure to have at least 3 players, and hopefully I'll be able to report something better.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

I had the privilege of attending a local convention this weekend with my wife and some friends, so I got to try a lot of games!

  • #Nova Luna @ 4p - I'd actually played this once on BGArena, but it was fun to play in person as well
  • #Tiletum @ 2p - this is a hot one right now, and I can see why. The combo-filled efficiency puzzle was engaging but not too brain-burning, which can be a tough balance. I especially liked the action selection mechanism.
  • #Flamecraft @ 4p - this game was fun but I don't think I'd ask to play it again. I wouldn't mind playing it if someone else wanted to, though. I like that you're incentivized to improve the town, which makes it better for other players to take actions. We played on a deluxe edition which is just adorable.
  • #Great Western Trail: Argentina @ 4p - played with 3 strangers. The teach was a bit rough, but after we got through a few turns, things started clicking. I went for a cows strategy, unlocking extra cards in hand and buying expensive cows when I could, and it ended up winning me the game, which was completely unexpected. I enjoyed this (after I got a handle on it) and would play again.
  • #Baseball Highlights: 2045 @ 2p - met up with someone who wanted to try this one out, so I taught him and we played a best of 7 series. I ended up winning 4-2, but he played very well, mainly with a deck of defense-first players. I think he enjoyed it a fair bit.
  • #Roborally @ 4p - my friend played this earlier in the night and wanted me to try it out, so this was the last game we played before leaving for the night. This is a brain burn, and we got absolutely smoked, haha. It's a neat game though, and not like any other game I've played.
  • #Heat: Pedal to the Metal 2x @ 4p - this was the only game we played on Sunday, and it might be my favorite new to me game I played at the convention. This is a hot game right now (pun intended), and I completely understand why. I wouldn't mind owning it, and I'll certainly keep an eye on prices for it.
  • #SCOUT @ 4p - almost forgot about this one, but earlier in the week we went over to our neighbors place for dinner and brought this. Always love this one!


  • #It's a Wonderful World with some folks here. I liked it but didn't quite understand everything until close to the end, haha. We're in another match now
  • #Tapestry @ 3p - I enjoyed this more than I expected to and now we're in a second game of it

Moderator Level 156 days ago

Heat sounds like a very fun game.  I'm hoping I might get a chance to play it in March at Dice Tower West.

Moderator Level 155 days ago

Yeah do it! One day I'd like to go to one of the Dice Tower cons as well!

Moderator Level 152 days ago

I attended DTW last year - my first game convention - and had a lot of fun.  I recommend it.

Premium User56 days ago

How different is Great Western Trail Argentina versus the original?  I can't imagine I would want to have both but I'm curious.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

Unfortunately I can't comment on that, since I haven't played the original, but the teacher of the game said it was about 80% the same.

Premium User56 days ago

That's what I thought.  I'll probably stick with the original plus rails to the north but I'm always curious about other flavours of games I like.


56 days ago

Got a play of #Flamecraft in last week and found it to just be okay.  It may be the entry level missions that we played with as the advanced ones looked way more interesting but its not something I could see pulling out again.  I"m just not sure what game group the game would be for.  We also found the resource generation to be almost too generous.  Part of that may be the one store front card we played with that for the price of a coin allowed you to get 2 of each of the basic resources.

Have you played #Flamme Rouge before and if so, how would you compare it to Heat?  The one game play I've watched of Heat didn't seem that interesting so I don't get all of the buzz.  Maybe its just something you have to play first to truly grasp.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

Yeah to me there wasn't anything special in the design of Flamecraft. A friend compared it to Everdell, but I think there's just so much more depth and hidden complexity in Everdell. I think Flamecraft could be decently fun for a handful of plays, but would fade quickly after seeing all of the different cards.

I have only played Flamme Rouge once, and it was turn based on BGArena, which wasn't a great way to experience it, so I can't compare them. To me, Heat is a light-medium hand management game that you could play with almost anyone. I think it's an even easier game to get to the table than #The Quest for El Dorado (another race game), and the fact that it goes up to 6, and in fact supposedly plays best at 6, is a big bonus. I'd like to get it if only to have a good light-ish game at that player count that's not a party game.

Moderator Level 156 days ago

#Baseball Highlights: 2045...do you have any idea if that's out of print now? I know I bought it for you so how would you know lol, but I was telling my coworker about it (he also is a huge baseball fan) and I could only find #Baseball Highlights: 2045 - Spring Training for sale anywhere.