What did you play this week? (7/12/2021)

(7/12/2021) This is an automated weekly post to talk about the games you played last week.

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Partner2 months ago

This week I was able to get the following to the table:

  • #Marco Polo II: In the Service of the Khan - Three player game without the Caravans expansion, which I'm mixed on. I took the character that can skip the oasis space on a magical trip around the board and pulled out a large win due to this.
  • #LUNA Capital - Unboxed and tried this at solo in an attempt to learn the rules. Hope to get some 2p games of this in the coming week to get started on my review in anticipation of its release next month. The Devir production is very nice for a small box game.
  • #Oath: Chronicles of Empire and Exile - Our group's fourth play and the best one yet. This may be the most engaging game of 2021, but with the right group only. This game had a Usurper win via the Darkest Secret Oathkeeper goal. It really sings at four player when everyone knows the rules.
  • #The King's Dilemma - Now that our group is getting together again, we've been powering through King's Dilemma. We played three sessions last night to get our total plays to twelve. Narrative is still going strong as we near completion (I anticipate at least three to six more sessions). 

2 months ago

Went to 2 different game nights and played a small assortment of games, mostly new experiences.

#Silver & Gold - I went to a 4th of July gathering with some friends and I taught them how to play. They were able to understand the rules fairly easy and overall really liked the game. I won both games we played but they came close on the second play.

#Ethnos - First time playing, as was the first time for 4 of the 5 other players. I liked that each game can be different depending on which factions are randomly drawn. Our game consisted of Orcs, Dwarves, Elves, Trolls, Halflings, and Sentinels. I realized pretty early that Sentinels and Dwarves were the key to gaining big points so I focused on those two and only holding 2 of the 6 areas. Every so often I would use a grouping of Halflings to increase my point totals. My strategy worked out and I won by a single point.

#The Isle of Cats - First time playing and what seemed like the first time playing for everyone at the table since the owner of the game had trouble teaching the game. After about 30 minutes reading the rules, we finally got it going. I was still unsure of exactly what the goal was and by the end of the second round it donned on me that the goal was to fill in the different cabins. It was a little too late at that point since I had filled in a large portion of the unnecessary spaces so I tried my best to fill in what I could. I got 4th place but I feel like I could do better next time. Good game, but bad first experience.

#Dixit - My hundredth game probably. I still love this game though because you always have to adapt to the group you're playing with. I wasn't able to adapt well this time since one player was a complete wildcard that didn't understand most pop culture references or the English language very well so I ended up in 5th place.

#Cleopatra And The Society of Architects - First time playing, as was the first time for 2 of the 3 other players. It's surprisingly easy to understand and form a strategy. I went for the throne first which netted me a bunch of points immediately, then on filling in the mosaic in as strategic way as possible to maximize the guard tokens. After all the Sphinx had been built, I was able to build one of the two obelisks which gave me a bunch of points again. After all the corruption was counted, I ended up winning by about 5 points. Fun, easy game but I still think the amount of plastic is unnecessary. The wall figures could probably be condensed and made a single level and the game would still work just fine.

Premium User2 months ago

Shame about Isle of Cats.  I've only played it once but it was quite enjoyable.  Maybe give it another shot once the bad taste has gone. 

Ethnos is a very good game that definitely slipped under my radar when it came out.

2 months ago

Yeah I want to give Isle of Cats another chance for sure because it seems like a good game with what I know about it now.

I was actually surprised by how good Ethos was. I'd heard complaints about the artwork but I felt it was just fine. I mean if it was a bit more cartoonish it would probably be more appealing but I don't think it's ugly in any way. The map could probably use with more variety just to make them pop out, like if each area was a different biome (desert, forest, mountainous, etc) instead of just 6 green areas with a different color border. And there's really no reason why each area is so small considering how much unnecessary water encompasses the map.

Premium User2 months ago

I'm like you, art doesn't really turn me off a game unless it makes it hard to play it.  I mean, I can 100% see someone picking a good game with good art over a good game with bad art.  Why wouldn't you? 

But once you try it the art is definitely secondary to me.

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Premium User2 months ago

Bummer about the Isle of Cats experience. It's a fun game! The only downside of that one for me is setup time and teaching time. It's not too difficult to teach (for someone familiar with the game), but there's more things going on than I initially realized, so teaching it takes longer than I expected.

2 months ago

I wish the reason the owner had problems teaching it was just due to complexity but he didn't know pretty basic rules like whether we could place tiles anywhere and how the rare treasures worked. I completely wasted the first round just by not understand what I should be trying to keep. And eventually I lost because I didn't know that a family of cats must be touching each other. I had focused on only taking two different types of cats but the majority were spread apart.

It all makes sense once you can understand how all the different mechanics work together. I wouldn't be opposed to trying it again with what I know now though.

Premium User2 months ago

Yeah, it sounds like the owner didn't quite do their homework, which is a bummer. Hope your next play is more fun!

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2 months ago

Played #Terraforming Mars: Ares Expedition at 2 player count.  My experience showed and I won pretty easily. 

Played #The Estates at 3 player count and man I really love this game.  1st and 2nd ended up being really close (27/26 point) and I scored in the negatives(-1).  This is my 4th play of the game and every game has been a little bit different and unique in a good way.  Loving this purchase.

Got my kickstarter #Harsh Shadows in the mail this week and got 2 play throughs in yesterday.  Lost the first game due to some bad card draws early in the game but didn't realize I had lost until much later.  Won the 2nd game.  Really happy with this solo game.  Plays quick, so even the game I lost early didn't feel too terrible as each game takes 15 - 20 minutes. 

Owner2 months ago

I got to play #The Quacks of Quedlinberg: The Alchemists and #TRAILS and had an amazing experience with both. I think this latest expansion for quacks really elevates the game to a point to a #1 spot. It's incredible.

Moderator Level 12 months ago

Only two complete games this week, both solo:

  • #Scythe this was my first true solo game against the AI, and my third time playing (all solo, but one game wasn't completed so not logged here in BGA). I really like this game, want to play it a lot more, and do look forward to playing it with others so I can experience the shared actions of the lower half of the player boards.
  • #Raiders of Scythia this was my second game against the AI-so much easier this time, and the AI isn't that difficult to follow, which is nice that it doesn't 'interrupt' your turn. Another game I really like and look forward to playing with others

Incomplete game: #Marvel Champions: The Card Game trying to teach the family. We have experience with deck builders ( #Dominion: Second Edition and #Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle), but this is more complicated than those and they are having a hard time understanding how the cards work.  Three hours, three rounds, and I'm 'playing' everyone's hand.  We've defeated Rhino once and have put off his second defeat (hopefully tonight).  Hope the second half goes MUCH faster!

(edit) Update: We finished Marvel Champions Wednesday night, defeating Rhino the second time in 2.5 rounds and about 90 minutes. Hopefully the fact that my wife defeated him soundly might increase her interest in playing this game again.  It's definately a huge learning curve for her and my son and I can't really tell what their actual interest is in playing this one again. #Marvel Champions: The Card Game - Black Widow Hero Pack might be enough of a lure for my son to stick with it a few more games. 🤔

Premium User2 months ago

Did you use the Scythekick app for your solo game?  If not I highly recommend it as it makes it a lot smoother once you get over the growing pains.  Running 4 or more bots is a breeze!

Playing multiplayer is obviously superior and taking your top action once the previous players top action is done helps a lot.  We finished a 6 player game in maybe 15 or 30 minutes more than a 4 player game would finish.

2 months ago

Played #Steampunk Rally at 6p yesterday.  For the first time ever I played a small machine strategy.  (I tend to go for hulking monstrosities.)  I sped far ahead of everyone else but stalled out when my husband tried to blow me up and I had to spend a whole round just rebuilding health.  Ended up coming in 3rd. 

Also played #Bites and #Tsuro with the Sunday school kids.  I've got a new crop of 3rd/4th graders now since the other ones moved up a grade and one year really makes a difference.  I'm still getting to know them but it seems like one girl is very interested in games so we'll see if I can nurture that seed a bit. 

Premium User2 months ago

Lots of board game arena plays this week but also some with the group.  Hopefully in person soon!

  • #Yokohama on BGA: I did a bit better this game but still not enough to take 1st. 
  • #Race for the Galaxy on BGA x2:  A great game to play online in small chunks.  For me I'll be keeping it to the basic game and maybe one expansion.
  • #Cacao on BGA: Second play complete.  Such a nice little tile laying game with some really good strategy sitting there under the surface.  Managed to come in second...again.
  • #Teotihuacan: City of Gods on BGA: Another second place finish.  I tend to play games on BGA pretty loose and fast which means there is always that one person who is hyperfocused and ends up kicking butt.  The game is still enjoyable and playing this way allows me to try different strategies to see how effective they are for when the "real deal" comes along.  
  • #7 Wonders on BGA: Another game that is perfect for BGA play.  You can pickup the board situation pretty quickly, give yourself some strategy notes for the game and draft away.  I've enjoyed just picking different thrusts for each game to see how it pans out.  
  • #Beyond the Sun on BGA: I had played this game once with my group and just launched myself in to an online game.  Took me a few rounds to remember the rules so the score wasn't great.  I prefer this one in real time but it was still fun.
  • #Path of Light and Shadow multiplayer on TTS: First time playing this game.  Ok, I defintely missed out on this one when it first came out!  This is a really fun deck building game with some great player interaction.  I think the release reviews etc focused too much on the "good vs evil" mechanic and didn't do enough to let people know how much fun the rest of the game is!  
  • #Viscounts of the West Kingdom multiplayer on TTS: I've played this one 4 times now I think.  I ended up being mostly unmolested placing workers in the castle and won the game quite handily.  Yay!  I think this is my favourite of the three in the series just ahead of #Architects of the West Kingdom which is just ahead of #Paladins of the West Kingdom
  • #Welcome to the Dungeon multiplayer on TTS: I've played this one before.  I think it's pretty fun for what it does.  It would likely be better in person (which most bluffing style games are)

Good week!  Really enjoying the Board game arena games but I am really looking forward to opening up and being able to game in person soonish!

Premium User2 months ago

What a week! #Path of Light and Shadow just recently had a KS for an expansion, right? I seem to remember looking at it when a few people on discord were hyping it up as an underrated gem. I didn't really care for the theme enough to back.

Premium User2 months ago

I believe it did. One of the other members of the group owns the game but I'm not sure if they will back it or not.  

It is definitely a cool game.  The upgrading of cards, the interplay on the map, and sure the light and shadow thing combine together quite nicely.  It's really a deck builder with map action in the vein of #Tyrants of the Underdark.  However, we found that there are quite a few different paths and victory ended up being achieved by a player who was pretty much knocked off the map at the beginning!

Premium User2 months ago

That does sound pretty neat and shocking that someone knocked off the map so quickly could come back and win!

Premium User2 months ago

It definitely has multiple paths to victory going for it.  I'd try it out for sure if you get a chance!

Premium User2 months ago

Good week for me!

#The Networks - Finally got to play this at 5 players. We played twice - once with some of Sarah's family and once with my cousins. Teaching it to new people seems to be the tricky part, but once people caught on they seemed to enjoy it. We have 2 more plays to get through for the 10 x 5. Might just have to play those with the 2 of us to avoid more learning games for others.

#Chinatown - Played this again with Sarah's family, this time introducing it to her grandparents. The game was much more relaxed vs when playing with her siblings. I think that's mainly due to the unfamiliarity with the game (Nana can be brutal during Monopoly lol). Looking forward to playing this with them again!

#KLASK - Went into a FLGS while on vacation and they had so many games to try. Sarah recognized Klask as one I had shown her before. She had an absolute blast playing it. Now it's on the wishlist :D

#Bonk: The Fast Rolling Ricochet Game - Similar to Klask, but not quite as fun. Probably because we played with 2 and not the recommended count of 4.

#Suburbia - Also in the FLGS, we took an opportunity to play a game on the 10 x 5. This play was just so so for me and Sarah agreed, feeling it was starting to feel same-y. Might want to part with it after the challenge is over.

#Word Mines - Not much to say here. Played at a bar we found. Kind of an adult version of #Taboo. Definitely should be played with more than just 2 people, but it was a nice way to pass some time over drinks.

#Carcassonne - Played this at 5 with my cousins which is a first for me. Obviously resulted in much lower scoring than I'm used to as well as more competitiveness in terms of where to place tiles. Going to have to make a decision on whether to keep this or not after the challenge and I'm still on the fence lol.

#Taco! Cat! Goat! Cheese! Pizza! - Another one with the cousins. Silly game that got a lot of laughs. I won only because I was sitting next to Sarah who was so terrible at the game and therefore had to start a lot of rounds lol.

Moderator Level 12 months ago

I think the only two games you played this week that I've heard of are Carcassone and Suburbia!

Premium User2 months ago

You should check out #Chinatown and #KLASK at least. Last time I made my top 10, Chinatown was my #9. And Klask was just a whole lot of fun!

Premium User2 months ago

That is a good week!  I'm considering picking up Suburbia myself but will likely look for it on the used market.  

Premium User2 months ago

You're in Canada right? If you were closer, I'd say you could have mine when I'm done with these last 2 plays lol.

Premium User2 months ago

Yeah, unfortunately shipping anything from the US to here is cost prohibitive. :)

Premium User2 months ago

How is your 10x5 going? How many plays of #Suburbia do you have so far? Almost done?

Premium User2 months ago

I think we're about halfway through. Most of that is my own motivation to complete it ASAP so we can get into some of the other games I've picked up and haven't played with Sarah yet haha. I think that was our 3rd play of Suburbia so we're getting there. 

Premium User2 months ago

So only 2 more for Suburbia! Although playing a game you don't really enjoy anymore just to check it off the list doesn't sound like a great use of time (to me). I guess that depends on how committed you guys are to the challenge!