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The results are in for our Inis giveaway!
The total entries came in at around 2000, at around a third of the previous week's. All three of the winners had around 3-4% of the total entries.
To accept your prize, please send me a DM with the following info:
- Full Name
- Phone Number
Thanks everyone for all of your contributions and let's see who will grab the copies of #Obsession a week from now!
I hear the voice calling me, save me everyone lol
The Ultimate Edition adds new cards, expansions, and a 1v1 competitive mode where one player can play as the Imperialists going against Captain Nemo. Honestly, that last bit is the most attractive to me.
For those interested, I've seen a comment recommending people not to get the add-on for the cloth bundle, which includes a cloth map version of the board. Says that there's a potential for slip that will move around the pieces on the cloth board. It was only one person commenting on that so please do your research!
Who here's going "UGHHH why are you sharing this Phil???"
#Tekhenu: Obelisk of the Sun is one of what I (and others) call the T games. ( #Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar, #Teotihuacan: City of Gods, and #Tawantinsuyu: The Inca Empire being the other ones I am aware of.)
I would describe this game as a dice drafting game perhaps. It's different to most other games that I've played. Let's take a look at it!
Setup & Components
Ok, let's get this out of the way. The Obelisk. Yes, it's tall:
And dice can be hidden behind it. There are three dice on the other side of it in this picture but you can't see one of them:
It's still pretty cool and you just have to move your head a bit to see the other side. No, I won't play without it.
The player boards are thick cardboard. Here you see a player board with the buildings on top, production markers in punchouts for the production trackers, statues at the bottom, and pillars to the side off the board.
To start players get 1 scribe, and 1 gold. They also pick 1 of 2 decree cards and 2 starting resource cards (2 player draft shown here)
The combined numbers of the starting resource cards determine who goes first. That person then picks one of the ankh cards and gets the bonus on that card.
For the solo game the setup is slightly different as the bot doesn't draft starting resources and gets a starting statue. You also setup the pyramid which is used to determine the bots actions:
The technology track is seeded to the red zone (bottom row), the statue gods are assigned (top left corner), the population, happiness, & score markers are placed, and three dice are rolled and placed in each zone around the obelisk.
It's important to go a little bit in to dice placement as this is pretty important to game play. As the obelisk rotates there will be sunny, shady, and dark sides. Depending on the side a dice is on it will be pure, tainted or forbidden which updates as the obelisk rotates every 2 turns. Forbidden dice cannot be taken normally. After taking 4 dice the balance between pure and tainted will determine the player order for the next 4 turns and potentially some VP loss.
Overall the component quality is very good with lots of dice and wooden bits. The artwork is a bit brown in general for my tastes but it does make the bits of colour really pop.
On each turn a player will take a die from a pure or tainted slot on one section of the board.
They can do 1 of 2 things with this die normally:
1) Gain resources up to their production limit depending on the colour of the die in the amount of what is on the die. So if they take a yellow die (papyrus) with a value of 4 but their production is only 3 on their player board that player gets 3 papyrus and 1 papyrus goes to the tainted side of their player board. (More on the results of that later.) Bottom line, if you are going to take a high numbered dice you will want your production to be high as well.
2) Do the god action for the section the die came from.
Horus: Allows you to build a statue that you can place around the obelisk or on special spots on the building or temple sections. These statues give you bonus resources when other players activate the given gods section if it is around the obelisk. (And also other times depending on player count.) They give you scoring bonuses in other sections.
Ra: Allows you to build a pillar in the temple. The tile you take is based on the die you take. You then spend the resources shown on the tile and place the pillar. This gives you various potential bonuses and resources along with points both initially and during scoring phases.
Hathor: You can construct a building around the temple, paying the bread cost depending on where you place. This gives you resources and points during scoring phases. Most importantly it increases your populatiion. Increased population opens up technology cards for display further down the technology row.
Here you see some buildings and pillars around the temple:
Bastet: Hold a festival. Spend 2 papyrus to move the happiness marker the number of spaces on the die. You can't have more happiness than people. Also receive scribes if you are using a lower dice. Happiness gives you bonuses and points during scoring if you get it high enough.
Thoth: Acquire technology from the tech row. Depending on the dice number you take you must spend papyrus to get 1, 2, or 3 tech. You can only take the tech from the coloured section equal to your happiness marker or lower. To get more decrees for end game scoring you will need to have your happiness up a ways.
Blessings are one time use bonuses
Technologies are ongoing effects
Decrees are end game scoring.
Osiris: Construct a building in the workshops or quarries by giving up a population. This increases your production and gives you some resources. Also scores you points during scoring phases.
Scribes are one way to mitigate the dice and are always useful to have. They can be used to move the value of a die up or down 1 or 2 spaces. (You cannot wrap around the die value.)
Even better you can spend 2 scribes to take an anubis action. This allows you to take ANY die from ANYWHERE on the board and use it as ANY colour on ANY section of the board. In other words you take a die and are only stuck with its value. This is a super powerful action, especially later on in the game when there may be no dice in the section you want to activate.
Every 2 turns the obelisk rotates clockwise one section and dice equal to the number of players are placed in each dark section. Every 2 of these you do a Maat phase.
During this phase the balance of your last 4 actions is considered.
Here you see the balance of dice I had during a Maat phase. (Went a bit dark but not too bad.)
The tainted side is 3 greater than the pure side. (I overproduced one papyrus.) That means -1 point on the maat tracker as shown below. You can see the bot and I are both tied in how far we are away from balance. However, in this case the number on their ankh card breaks ties and they go first.
Every two Maat phases we have a scoring which scores various sections around the board. You also must pay bread as shown in the building section of your player board.
You can get points for all kinds of things:
- 1 point for the number of buildings and statues around the temple.
- Pillars score for the number pillars/ buildings/statues in the same row or column as the pillar. (This can really add up if you get a lot in there.)
- Most buildings in a given column of the workshop/quarry section
- Points per pip your happiness marker has passed.
- Points for statues placed on the board.
- Points for buildings placed on the board. (If you have placed a lot of them.)
After two scorings it's time for the end game.
Score up to 3 different decree types. Most points win!
This game is a super interesting puzzle which I don't feel I have a full handle on yet.
For example, to score a lot of points you need to focus on areas. The point difference between 4 and 6 pillars for example is quite large. But you need quite a bit of obsidian if you want to build them all. Decrees can score you a LOT of points but you have to increase your population & happiness, and then acquire them.
But competing with that is that there are a limited number of dice available to take those actions. There are blessings that can help with that and of course the Anubis action but it can still be REALLY hard to get enough actions to get to the big points.
You really need to think ahead to where the dice are going to get added and whether they will be forbidden or not. Potentially right from the word go. Of course the other players will be doing their own thing and mess you up so you need to be tactical as well as strategic.
This also applies to resources. You can take a die to gather resources but you can also acquire resources here and there by other actions and bonuses. Gathering resources is going to happen in the first couple of turns likely but after that it's better to acquire them as you do other actions which takes a lot of thinking ahead.
So you need to be strategic to get the big points but you have to make sure each tactical move sets you up for a further tactical move while overall they are working towards your strategy.
It's hard to tell who is actually winning mid-game as the scoring and decrees can really add up. The best you can do is look at other players boards, techs, etc and take a guess. You can't see other players decrees.
I find every time I end a game I find myself thinking about what I could have done better or what strategy I could have taken. It's hard to see the threads during the game, at least for me. This definitely keeps me intrigued and ready to come back for more!
Out of the 4 T games I think this one is the most intricate with a lot of little rules that take some time to remember.
There are a couple of areas that are tricky and I will definitely have to lookup if I take a long break between games. I found it especially tricky at first keeping track of rotation, maat, and scoring. It logically makes a lot of sense but when you are in the game and thinking about your moves it can be tricky to not forget to add the extra dice to the board for example.
Each god action has it's own nuances and scoring can be a bit tricky to get the first time through. This game will definitely benefit from frequent plays or playing it a few times in a row.
The solo play is definitely the trickiest out of the 4 in my opinion as each god action is slightly different and most of them play out slightly different for the solo player.
I would say this one required the most work out of the T games to play solo. The solo player tends to be a generalist but not always. It does a decent job and certainly it feels like you are getting a full game experience when you play solo even if it behaves oddly sometimes.
When I initially read the rules my head was swimming. There is a LOT of stuff to think about if you want to have an efficient run with a chance of winning.
However, after a few games I realized that the dice help to limit your choices somewhat. It's often a question of which of these 4 or 5 dice should I take to get the MOST out of this turn and will set me up for good future turns? It's still a lot of things to think about (especially if you take an Anubis action) but it's generally in limited areas.
If you are looking for a game that has you trying to see the optimal action not just for this turn but the next turn and with an eye towards how you will get those big points for final scoring then you will love this game.
Saw this meme on a facebook group and wanted to share here! :)
- How content are you with your collection?
- Do you notice a lack of certain categories, mechanics, themes, or the ability to support certain player counts?
- What type of games or specific games are you wanting the most to round it out?
- Definitely not content. For at least the next couple of years, I'll usually have 3-5 games that I'll want to add to my collection
- The more I get exposed to other games out there, the more I realize that I love thematic games. "Hybrid" games that combine elements of deep strategy and the excitement of theme and luck tend to go really well for me, and I'd place #Root in that category. I'd love to add more of these types of games to my collection, rather than acquiring too many "dry euros" with very little theme and immersion
- Because of this, I recently acquired #Star Wars: Rebellion. I'll also likely buy #Too Many Bones and #Nemo's War (Second Edition) next year
Here's the culprit:
I was so close to sticking with my budget until the end of 2020. Alas, I've failed and acquired #Star Wars: Rebellion after my wife was down to give it a go in December. No idea if we'll manage to find the time, but she's willing to break it into two sessions if needed to finish. Here's hoping that our son will sleep peacefully in all of those nights and naps. And I might need more table space. Can't say that I feel sad at all about breaking my resolution though. I'm quite happy!
Now, I still plan to stick to my budget in 2021, and this is going to put in a big dent. My budget for 2020 was $250 and I was pretty close. Next year, I think I'll go for less than $350. For now, my plan for 2021 is:
- #Star Wars: Rebellion (~$85)
- #Star Wars Rebellion: Rise of the Empire (~$40)
- #Too Many Bones (~$150 with tax and shipping)
- #Nemo's War (Second Edition) (I'm hoping the publisher will send us a review copy lol)
- New 2 player focused #Root expansion (on Kickstarter in Q1 2021 so it'll likely fulfill 2022. Hopefully I can afford it with what remains. Let's see if I end up buying Nemo's War saying that the Root expansion should come from 2022 budget xD)
- I might also get #Chicago Express or #Flip Ships for family game nights
This actually works nicely because I've been planning to keep 2021 acquisitions either solo or "event game" focused. My wife is my primary gaming partner and we play 0-2 times a month these days so rather than getting another multiplayer game, I'd rather get more plays in on the games we have and enjoy. And every 4-6 months, it'd be nice to experience an epic game night together. I have a feeling she'll like it a lot but it'll be a matter of stamina. Our two year old is only becoming more of a handful and we're still wanting a second!
Now it's your turn. Is there a game acquisition (or future one) that came way out of left field recently?
For those looking to start on their holiday shopping this week. We've put together our 8th annual Board Game Gift Guide.
So I've been working my way through my wishlist and I've noticed I tend to be drawn towards roll-and-write games a lot recently. I have no problem with buying second hand games from fellow gamers who either didn't care for the game themselves, are doing a spring clean of games they bought and haven't touched, or are selling to supplement cash for a larger, shinier game, but there's something about roll-and-writes where I stop myself. Maybe it's to do with the finite number of plays a box like Welcome To.. has with the game sheets. I'm not entirely sure if I'm honest.
So my question is, am I the only one who feels this way? Do you mind picking up a roll-and-write second hand or are games of that ilk a shrink-wrap purchase no matter what?
This is about the "air hockey problem" as coined in the 27th minute of this video:
Basically, it's that if you get too much better at a game than those you normally play with they won't want to play that game with you any more.
I've avoided #Scythe digital version for this exact reason. It's also why I don't play the solo mode of Scythe. I've got a couple of friends that really like the game, but we don't get to play together but a few times a year, and I don't want to ruin that experience. I'm hoping after the pandemic we can set up a semi-regular time and run through #Scythe: The Rise of Fenris together.
I avoided the #Terraforming Mars app for the longest time for this same reason. Then I realized that I wasn't winning any of those games anyway! It's also one of the reasons I don't like researching online too deep into strategies for some games.
Does anyone else have similar issues?
On a recent Designer Chat with Patrick and Cole, Leder Games shared more information on an upcoming expansion for Root that's currently set for Q1 2021 Kickstarter. The primary focus is to improve the 2 player gameplay experience.
Root is one of my favorite games, but let's face it. It's not the ideal experience with 2 players. Unless you get your hands on the expansions like Root: The Riverfolk Expansion, Root: The Underworld Expansion, or Root: The Clockwork Expansion, you're missing out on several things that make Root great for me:
- No "politicking", tabletalk, or tug of war - Root is an interactive game filled with moments of temporary alliances, betrayals, and a constant tug of war. These aspects are mostly all missing from a 2 player game
- Exploring different factions - Highly asymmetric faction powers are available across different animal factions, but around half of them can't be used when it's at 2 player count
- Simplicity - The core gameplay of Root is quite simple. The shared movement and combat rules are straightforward and the faction specific rules are clearly written on the player boards. The complexity mostly comes from learning the dynamic between the factions. While adding Root: The Clockwork Expansion will drastically improve the 2 player and solo experience, you need to run AI's that are more complex to run than the average AI's out there
Looks like the expansion will tackle at least the latter two of the issues I have.
Summary of Info from Patrick and Cole
The following is a quote from a user on BGG (@Hartwell) who summarized the news:
- Everything is subject to change. Currently, the expansion focus is on improving the two player game. The two new factions are intended to police the board and each are expected to have 20 or more warrior meeples available. They will also have high "reach" scores to allow more faction combinations for small player counts.
- One faction is the Turtles, which will have an ability to improve the infrastructure like adding roads. They will not simply "turtle" in place but that will be an element of what they do. Leder himself has been working on them for about a week, but has drawn elements and inspiration from unreleased factions he's worked on.
- Leder contrasted the defensive turtles with the aggressive Rats, which will be lead by a charismatic "warlord" leader. Players select a leader at the beginning and they may use the Vagabond unique meeples and reuse the art. It was not clear and the faction is still being worked on.
- Another expansion element is changing the set up, which Wehrle sees as an underappreciated priority. Advanced set up will add more to the game overall.
- Wehrle is experimenting with mini NPC factions, which can not win (unlike the automatons) and have simple rules and players can work to influence them. He gave the example of an aggressive cat faction that has 2 rules - if it doesn't rule its clearing it attacks, if it does rule it moves and then attacks - and an influential player can choose where they attack.
- I did not understand why, but the mini factions would have their own meeples but share a color and species with an existing faction. Perhaps I missed something here. Regardless, a 2 player game would use 3 mini factions, a 3-4 player game would use 2, and 5+ would use just 1.
- Leder and Wehrle declared they they do not plan to create a "big box" storage for Root.
- Leder said they are risky from a business perspective, and Wehrle said they become "tombs" for games and lower the odds they will be played.
In addition, there was a mention of a map that will cover more than the typical 12 clearings. This is for the purpose of accommodating higher player counts.
If you know me, you'll know I'm pumped for this! This expansion gives off the feel of having minions in a MOBA game, and it seems like a brilliant way to round out the 2 player experience. This may be the very first Kickstarter I'll back, folks. Cole seems to have my heart because I'm also considering backing the upcoming second edition of John Company.
Today's recap is tiny towns, the short, but intense spatial puzzle game about drafting resource cubes and turning them into buildings in a tiny township. You can run out of space real fast in Tiny towns. A quick but intense game.
30-second trailer for The Game.
Has anyone here checked out Ella's videos before? She does Twitch streams of playthroughs and makes excellent YouTube content. She's also featured on our Discover page and you can check out her Top 30 games! I seem to have a lot of overlap with her in preferences too :)
Ok, not really. But of all the Out of Print giveaway options #Obsession is easily the one I'd chase the most and love the most to win. Worker placement is perhaps my favorite mechanic in general and Obsession's unique theme and high rating among other players make it a nice target for future game nights.
#Turin Market is the only hard to find game I've really chased much of late. And that one I am not chasing hard...just seeking a good deal when it comes around.
Throughout this month, @trentellingsen and I are putting all of our efforts toward combining Board Game Prices with Board Game Atlas! For those who aren't aware, we launched BGA in 2019 and acquired BGP in late 2019. We've mostly left BGP alone as is, except for patching up bugs every now and then. Now we're finally making the move to combine the two and provide a better community and more reliable data for both websites.
To promote this "launching event," we've been giving away more than $5000 worth of board games until the end of 2020 and here's Round 2: Out of Print/Rare Games.
- Prize: 1 Copy of #Obsession
- Number of winners: 3
- Starts: Monday, November 23
- Ends: Sunday, December 6
- Make a post on our forum or write an article
- Comment or reply on posts/articles
- Add/edit info on a game page
- What's your interest level in Obsession? Does the choice of prize seem fitting to the spirit of the "out of print/rare" giveaways?
- What's your favorite worker placement game?
- What are some other rare (but not completely out of print) games that I should consider for the upcoming giveaways? I ask because while I'll still have giveaways for games like #Glory To Rome and others in the future, there aren't many copies available and since I want to provide 3 winners for each of these giveaways, I'm considering grouping up several games into one giveaway (and the winners could choose in order). Also, many of these out of print games are outside of the typical preferences of our users and I wanted to give away games that people would get to the table often.
I will announce the results of the Inis giveaway later in the day!
I joined 3 different Secret Santa exchanges this year. Having already posted what my Board Game Barrage Ghost Turkey and Heavy Cardboard Secret Elephant got me, I thought it would be fun to post what I got for my targets. @nealkfrank at the very least expressed some interest in hearing about it, and that's good enough for me!
Also, this can kind of be viewed as a what I picked up with my recent giveaway wins post. I only spent a small amount of those wins on myself in the form of a preorder for #The Red Cathedral for the 0.5 seconds it was available on GameNerdz. Outside of that, I spent it all on Christmas Gifts for my family (some board game gifts, most not haha). The extra money allowed me to go above and beyond the minimum spends for my Secret Santa targets. The way these work is you have to get games from their wishlists. On top of that, I tried to throw in a little something special that they weren't expecting. It is the season of giving, after all!
I put the info in spoiler text just in case someone here on BGA is one of my targets and doesn't want to ruin the surprise.
BGB Ghost Turkey
The Quacks of Quedlinburg- It took a lot for me not to order an extra copy for myself. Didn't help he mentioned he and his wife have already played this about 5 times since he's received it.
Azul: Summer Pavilion - This was tops on his wishlist and, from what I've heard at least, for good reason!
Gift Card to a Local Brewery - Enough said lol
Heavy Cardboard Secret Elephant
Maracaibo - This guy had a TON of games. He had expressed recently relocating for work, so I tried to get games from his wishlist that could be played solo until he finds a new group.
Tekhenu: Obelisk of the Sun - Same reasoning as above.
Circadians: First Light - This one was actually from MY wishlist thanks to BGA. I didn't see it in his collection anywhere but it appeared to be something he would like. Worst case, he can send it back to me, right? :P
BGG Secret Santa
Floor Plan - Seems like a fun roll and write that was on his wishlist.
A Pair of Running Socks - The man likes to run!
Imhotep: The Duel - Just a cheap add on to hit free shipping.
Ticket to Ride: Amsterdam - He mentioned he and his wife vacationed to Amsterdam recently. I don't know if thematically this will mean anything to them, but I had to try!
Architects of the West Kingdom - Got this largely on the suggestion of many on BGA based on his most liked mechanisms.
Architects of the West Kingdom: Age of Artisans - Managed to get an expansion thanks to a well timed GameNerdz DOTD!
Hi friends! I'm entering a roll and write game design competition on BGG and my game is ready for public eyes. It's called Roll in the Dungeon and it's a game where players roll to gain mana, spend mana points to learn spells, and fight monsters, bosses, and even each other. It plays solo, co-op (2 player), and 1 vs. 1 in Duel mode.
At this point, solo is the most polished, but the other variants should still be enjoyable and ready for playtesters. If anyone would want to give it a go, I would love to hear your thoughts, whether it's here on this post, as comments on the Google files, or on my BGG entry thread (see below).
Let me know if you played and what you think! Thanks!!!
For those who have been waiting for a Ginkgopolis reprint, I see it available for pre-order on Zatu. I personally haven't been too satisfied with the way Zatu tends to ship the games (very minimal or typically zero packing material inside) but I haven't run into a big problem yet. Also, if you don't want to go for it given the expensive shipping cost, I'm guessing we'll start seeing it available on the typical stores listed on our website soon.