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I was thinking about how funny it would be to describe our favorite games in the worst way possible and having other people try to guess what games we're talking about based on those horrible descriptions! For example, Castles of Burgundy topped my list of top 25. To describe this game in the worst way possible, I could say "a game about placing hexagonal tiles to score victory points." Of course, I suppose this could describe any number of dry euros lol
So let me guess your favorite games...How could you describe your favorite game while making it sound way worse than it actually is?
Which board game do you think will win game of the year for 2020? Also, what do you think should be the criteria for winning such an award?
Here are some games published in 2020. This is only a small subset of the entire catalog for this year and some of these haven't even seen retail release just yet:
- #On Mars
- #Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion
- #Sleeping Gods
- #Sorcerer City
- #Santa Monica
- #Undaunted: North Africa
- #Tekhenu: Obelisk of the Sun
- #Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy
- #Forgotten Waters
- #Viscounts of the West Kingdom
- #Project: ELITE
- #Tidal Blades: Heroes of the Reef
- #Raiders of Scythia
- #Pan Am
Based on past results, Game of the Year candidates are typically popular games that garnered lots of attention. They're typically in the midweight range in terms of complexity as well.
Personally, I would narrow it down to these games. Not all of them are my favorites, but they seem like likely candidates based on the overall reception among content creators:
- #On Mars - I think this is highly unlikely because it's too heavy, but Lacerda games often get listed among the candidates
- #Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion - A successful casual adaptation of the #1 game that sold out immediately after its Target exclusive release. If anything, it's got to be one of the most influential games of 2020
- #Fort - Not my favorite, but I think it'll likely get mentioned as one of the top 5 games of the year
- #Forgotten Waters - This one got so much attention as well and has seen great reception in the media world. It also seems to have originality, and that's always a plus to be considered as a game of the year
- I would've gone for one from Garphill Games here, but I'm not sure how likely it is considering that #Raiders of Scythia is too close to #Raiders of the North Sea (which has performed well in 2019) and #Viscounts of the West Kingdom hasn't seen retail release just yet
What do you think?
Some info has surfaced on the Dire Wolf website, along with some images!
Looks like there is a chance to ask some questions of the developers in this thread on BGG as well (no questions as of the time of this post): https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/2505822/dune-imperium-first-look
Part of the community challenge is rating your board games on BGA. I've been going through and slowly rating my collection and was suprised at a few of the ratings my favorites have. #Karuba in particular stood out to me as we have it rated as a 64 on BGA and I think I would give it an 80 on fun factor alone. Even on BGG, it has a GeekRating of 6.924 out of 10.
What about everyone else? Are there any games you feel BGA or BGG has rated too low? Why do you think they're rated so low?
As I'm sure we all know, the community challenge is to do some trick shots with board game components. I was just curious if anyone had some fun ideas they wanted to share. I'm on vacation this week so I have so much time on my hands. I already sent some videos to @philryuh, but I promise I won't steal your ideas (maybe lol). The first one I sent was used a Gizmos marble in a pretty simple Rube Goldberg style set up of other games into the plastic dispenser.
What's everyone else doing?
Last night I got in a 3P game of #Root for the first time in a while. It was basically a teaching game (one guy had played it once a long time ago).
The faction break down was Marquise, Duchy, and Riverfolk (my faction).
Now that I'm so familiar with the game, teaching is a breeze.
The biggest challenge in the game was that because we play a lot of Imperial Assault and I'm the Empire there was a natural distrust of me and a strong feeling (at first) that they had to work against me. This also hurt me as the Riverfolk faction as people didn't buy enough of my goods (at first).
Once we got into the game though it moved steadily along with each faction playing leap frog on their turn with the VP tracker. One thing that was hard for my game is neither the Duchy or the Marquise would go after each other (which had consequences as we got toward the end of the game). They also had trouble making temporary alliances with me because of other gaming experience (although I do think it'll be different on future plays).
We got to a point where the Marquise saw they had a chance to win with a Fox dominance card and went for it (this was because there weren't enough battles early on in the game). This was the first time I've played with a dominance card in play and I did not really love it. Although, it did create a good story for after the game (which unfortunately we ran out of time to finish, but I think the Marquise would have one in another 2 - 3 rounds on dominance).
I didn't love Dominance because it made stopping the Marquie the only goal in the game. While it created an alliance between me and the Duchy, it also meant we couldn't use any of our turns to score any points so we were basically stuck. This had another major negative impact on my Riverfolk gameplay because I had to take a lot of actions that caused me to spend funds instead of commiting them, which meant I couldn't keep my coffers full of money to spend on my next turn. So basically it turned into, spend to put warriors on the board, commit to move, commit to battle, repeat next turn.
I think in the future I'd consider only using Dominance cards in 4+P games, but we will see. I also didn't think of looking at the map from a Dominance standpoint so maybe I'll just make sure we work against potential Dominance even before it gets played.
Can't wait to get it out again.
Today's recap is It's a wonderful world, the card drafting/engine building game about building a future (Dis/U)topia. This game blends two mechanics i really enjoy and has a short play time, check it out
Happy Monday! Here are two community challenges for everyone!
1. Trick Shot
- What to do: Record video(s) of yourself landing trick shot(s) using board game components! Here's a video for inspiration: https://youtu.be/8BZXQMz90o4. Send your video(s) to firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll compile all submissions into one video
- You will gain 1 entry per trick shot to win a $60 gift card from a store of your choice. No limit to number of entries
- Deadline: Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 11:59 PM PST. We'll randomnly select 1 winner on the following day
- Note: Depending on how difficult the shot is, it'll take a long time. One of my shots took 2.5 hours and all other ones took about 30 min on average
2. Rating Games
- Let's spend some time this week to leave our ratings on all of the games we haven't reviewed yet! You can review your overall impressions and score by clicking on the "Leave a Review" button. You can also rate the learning and strategy complexities for the game
- There are no prizes associated with this challenge, except that we'll have milestones created so that when you reach a certain number of ratings, you'll be awarded a badge to show off on your profile :)
- After going through this process, feel free to share about your experience in a forum post. Were there any games you ended up rating much higher or lower than expected? Has your feelings toward a game cooled off after a while?
I hope you enjoy the challenges!
This was a fun read :)
I recently realized I joined BGG about a year ago, so I decided there's no better time to rank all the games I've logged plays for since then. I used pubmeeple.com and got a...rather interesting top 10, so I expanded it to a top 25! Lol. If anyones interested in my list, I added the link to BGG.
Analogies are great because you can say so much in just a few words and explain something in a relatable way. Well.... @trentellingsen has been having fun with that and I thought we might as well have an entire thread about it :)
Trent's most recent analogies:
Tell me yours and explain why! (And Trent, please explain yourself for others lol)
This would be especially helpful for "news" related posts. In updating my post about the upcoming #Dune: Imperium game, I found myself wishing I could have a comment or two "pinned" to the top, so that updates didn't get lost in newer comments from people discussing what they were reading. And now that I've added another update in the form of a new comment, it'd be especially nice to have that pinned now that the initial attention on the post has died down. Even if OP had the ability to pin a max of one comment, I think that would be quite useful. Maybe admins/mods could pin more.
I have a lot of amazing games that are epic and huge and worth every minute of play. Often, though, these games don't get to the table so readily due to their weight, setup time, long play time or something else. I wouldn't sell them because I love them, but there are several games that I can get to the table all the time. This is my list:
#Terraforming Mars: Easy setup, good depth, and the rules are so easy I never have to spend time checking the rule book. Plus the space theme.
#Escape: The Curse of the Temple: Super fast play time, but intense and thematic. Also very easy to teach so it's great for family occasions. Tons of fun. #5-Minute Dungeon is grouped into this one as well.
#Twilight Struggle: I think I'm just a masochist because this game causes so much stress while I'm playing, but for some reason this always gets to the table. Probably because it's challenging but the rules are simple.
#Ethnos: Quick-ish play time with good depth and I always have fun. The random selection of factions leads to enough variability that I don't get bored with this one.
#Mint Works: This one is just a great game for backpacking, so it gets played A LOT. Enough strategy to be engaged and quick enough that I'm not too tired to play it (usually).
LAST BUT NOT AT ALL LEAST!
#X-ODUS: Rise of the Corruption: This is simply my favorite game (hence part of my username). It feels epic, and probably would be one of those games that doesn't get played much, but I LOVE this game, so it gets to the table often. Usually after one play, I want to turn around and play it again immediately.
Would love to hear yours!
HeroQuest returns to the tabletop gaming world after 31 years. Is this reboot a must-have for fans of the original or would it be best to save your money for something else? Here's a quick rundown of the available information.
Originally published by Milton Bradley in 1989, HeroQuest is a classic tabletop game that bridged the gap between traditional fantasy role-playing games (such as Dungeons & Dragons) and board games. One player takes on the role of game master while others play as one of four fantasy world character archetypes venturing the dungeon (Barbarian, Dwarf, Elf, or Wizard).
After release, HeroQuest's success spawned a series of expansions and a sequel called Advanced HeroQuest in 1991. The game has since served as a source of inspiration for many dungeon crawlers that shaped games of today such as Star Wars: Imperial Assault and Gloomhaven. If you want to hear more about HeroQuest, just listen to him:
Since going out of print, HeroQuest could only be fetched for a high price of $300-500 in the secondhand market. Well, looks like there's finally a "better" option.
Hasbro has launched a crowdfunding campaign on its own platform called HasLab, with a goal of raising $1,000,000 for their HeroQuest reboot. It's an "all-or-nothing" format similar to Kickstarter and features two tiers:
1. Heroic Tier at $99.99
- Core HeroQuest Game System (featuring 71 highly detailed character and furniture miniatures)
- 4 Bonus hero miniatures
- 1 Exclusive miniature
2. Mythic Tier at $149.99
- Includes Heroic Tier offers
- 2 Expansions
- 2 More exclusive miniatures
- All unlocked stretch goals
- Warlock Hero by Shauna Nakasone at $1.2M
- 6 Extra combat dice at $1.4M
- 2 Extra skeletons at $1.6M
- 2 Extra goblins at $1.8M
- Quest Book by Stephen Baker (designer of HeroQuest) at $2.0M
- Deadline: November 6, 2020 at 11:59 PM EST
- No shipping outside of U.S. and Canada
- Shipping to U.S.: $30
- Shipping to Canada (excluding Quebec): $135 (some customers have reported that Hasbro has responded this could be an error. Let's hope it is)
My First Impressions as an "Outsider"
I'm not the target demographic. I have zero experience with HeroQuest so the most important nostalgia factor is nonexistent.
With that said, this looks like fun times for those who've played the original. It's a modern rendition that takes very little risks and Hasbro knows how to tug on the heartstrings of now adults with lots of disposable income. And that's okay, but...
1. I have a feeling that the artstyle could be hit or miss with the target demographic. It's a "safe" style that's trying to appeal to a wider audience. But fans of the original may prefer the classic look with more realism.
2. $135 shipping for Canada?! Apparently this could be an error on their website, but no answers yet. And $1,000,000 all-or-nothing funding goal and limited to U.S. and Canada? I'm glad fans are getting what they want, but it's almost amazing to see that Hasbro isn't masking their motivations at all.
I should stop before my cynicism leaks out any further. So, what do you think about this campaign? Are you interested in getting this new version of HeroQuest? Or are there games with more modern designs that you'd rather get?
My top 10 board games of all time, as of Sept 2020. This is purely based on my tastes, and obviously I havent played all the games so some great ones may not make the list.
I've been working most of this week on improving the look and feel of the game pages and it's now live! Take a look and let me know what you think of the changes!
I also improved the page loading experience and added in a game mentions feed as well!
There has been a weird issue on Android devices where the # and @ symbols that normally bring up the autocomplete just didn't work. I've tried to fix it over the course of a few days/weeks and only now have gotten it working! It's so exciting to get this working so I hope you enjoy it!
The weather may be cooling, but it's still enjoyable to spend time outside...why not do it gaming! Our favorite board games to play outdoors!
Hi! Here’s the latest in my videos recapping our games of Aeon’s End Legacy. This one is a bit longer than usual, but... that's because... (spoilers) ...we had to play this one twice! 🙀
In this one: Fresh Prince of Bel-Air! ✚ Shamalamadingdong!
VIDEO TIMING -- 0:00 Start 0:17 Some context 0:55 Flavor Text 2:00 The Nemesis 7:13 Our Supply 10:10 Nemesis’ Cards 14:48 We Lost The 1st Game! 17:23 This is Where I Rap 19:50 Our 2nd Game Supply 23:32 My Aeon’s End Advice 24:50 Nemesis’ Cards (more) 26:07 How It Ended 28:02 End Game Upgrades 35:48 Final Words
We review Sonora, the first Flick and Write board game.
An approachable and exciting economic game with lots of variety!
Before I begin, I was sent a prototype of the game and will receive a copy of the game should it fund. This is not a paid preview. If you would rather watch a video of this preview you can check it out below. Back it on Kickstarter here.
So last year a friend of mine turned me on to this dude I had never heard of named Jonny Pac who was making a game with a company I had never heard of Final Frontier Games. That game was Merchants Cove, and it opened my eyes to just what a euro game could actually be. Since then I have not shied away from Euro games, but have delved deeper and deeper into the genre. Since then I have played a few more games from FFG, and have enjoyed all of them.
So with that said, when they reached out to me and asked me if I could manage a last minute preview of Monsters on Board, I said yes without hesitation. Especially, when I learned that Drake Villareal was working on the solo mode. For those of you that do not know his work, I think he is possibly the hottest solo mode designer out there right now. I would pick him over Automna factory any day of the week…and AF does very good work!
So in Monsters on Board you find yourself in the highly unenviable position of having car fulls of Monster Lords on their way to a party at your place, and you are out of Spook Juice. I mean you are totally out. You don’t even have any of those frozen from concentrate versions in your freezer, nor do you have and powdered versions. The only option is to get some, and get some now!
To do this you will be sending your goons out into the human towns and scare the bejeezus out of them. Why? Obviously because the only way to make Spook Juice is with the distilled screams of those silly meat sacks that call themselves humans. Just don’t touch them, they are sticky.
The core of the game is dice drafting. You will roll your dice, and place them in your fearmobiles, pick one and send the car off to your opponents, while they are sending their car around to you. Once each player has 4 dice you move on. Each die coordinates with a same colored goon who will get to advance through human lands to scare folks. As the goons move through the towns you will gain various bonuses and actions that you can take to manipulate your dice, and the path through town.
Each die has a variety of symbols on them that allow you adjust your dice and path, and unlock more scoring options for the endgame. The higher numbered dice are worth more points at the end of the game, but the lower numbers have more actions. Come the end of the game you will be comparing your dice set up to the secret “prophesy” card you drew at the beginning of the game for more spook juice points.
The game plays over 6 rounds and at the end of each your will have the opportunity to purchase from an ever changing board of Great Old Ones and ghosts. The ghosts will add even more actions to your goon paths, and the Old Ones give you even more end game scoring options.
At the end of 6 rounds the player with the most Spook Juice is the winner.
So what do I think?
The art, theme, and components are adorable. There is something just awesome about having a Halloween game that is cute, not gross or scary. It opens you up to so many other options of whom you can play the game with.
Mechanically I think the actions on the dice are very tightly balanced, and really is enjoyable. You ALWAYS have something that you can do, and there is almost never a time when you take an action and you do not get to do anything. I also appreciate games that allow for simultaneous play, cutting down on time spent waiting in a game that is closer to multi player solitaire. Finally, I really love the prophesy cards. Having that target to work towards the whole game gives you direction which is so necessary in a game that you could feel overwhelmed by choices in.
There is one thematic miss to me in this game, that is kind of sticking in my gullet. The monsters show up in a car, and get off at a dock…what? Shouldn’t they either be in a boat and get off at a dock, or in a car and get off at a grand entry? I dunno.
I think the game needs more Old One variety and much more prophesy card variety. If your opponents can figure out early on which prophesy you are working on they can start to block you if they choose, which is a bummer.
Edit: Several more of these have been unlocked as stretch goals.
Finally, a quick warning. This is a game that is very tight and delightful, but you do have to choose a strategy fairly early on and stick to it. If you try to do everything, you will wind up with a whole lot of nothing. Not a bad thing, just something to be wary of.
Bringing it all together
Monsters on Board is a gorgeous dice drafting game, with a adorably monstrous theme. The mechanics are tight, with the actions gained from the dice and the secret scoring cards being highlights…along with the adorable monster minis. The game is light enough to be a great option for a family to play on Halloween, and quick enough to not feel like it is an “event.” I would like to see a little more variety in some of the cards, and you do have to pick a strategy and stick to it, more or less, in the beginning stages of the game. This is a game that is not hard to play, and is fun.
Monster not like words much!
* Promises to have great components, adorable art and theme
* Super tight mechanics
* Dice drafting, combines with mechanics on the dice in a delightful way
* Really enjoy the end game scoring secret objectives
* Could use additional variety in end game scoring cards
* Why does the car pull up to the dock?! People want to know!
* The game is filled with options, but you kind of have to pick one and go with it early in the game
Before I begin, I was sent a prototype copy of the game, and will receive a production copy should it fund in exchange for an honest preview. This is not a paid preview. If you would rather watch a video of this preview check it out below. You can learn more here.
I am a sucker for fast moving 2-player games. I also think magnets are really cool, and I will always check out a game that talks about light and shadow…oooo creepy! So it was a pretty safe bet that I was going to be interested in Quin when I heard about it.
Quin is an interesting game to me, because it is definitely different than anything I have on my shelf. The difference is not that is uses magnets (I have Coloma after all), or because it deals with light and shadow (I have plenty of adventure games after all…though this one kind of is literally about light and shadow, not metaphorically). The difference is that I have never played a game with more variety of rules for each individual type of playing piece you have.
In Quin every single playing piece has its own paragraph of rules. This tells you how many spaces it can move, what special capturing, and movement rules it might have, and so on. The point behind all of it is, all of these pieces will allow you to get your “light” into the Iris, at the center of the board. Every other piece in the game will be assisting you in this quest.
Each turn you will get to move one of your pieces, of course moving your pieces will potentially give your opponent clues as to what type of piece you have, you see the base version of the game is set up where you cannot see the types of pawns your opponent has.
It is simple enough, whoever captures their opponents light first, or gets their light to the center of the board first will be the winner.
So what do I think?
The production on this game promises to be fantastic. The board is very attractive, and the magnetic board is certainly cool. There is something very cool about being able to, in theory, mount the game on the wall, and have a game that you can play vertically. (I will note that in the prototype the magnets were not quite strong enough to do this, but it was just a prototype)
I also really appreciate that the fine folks at Arch & Gravity, are clearly attempting to create a culture around this game. Everything about the strategy guide, and rules seem to be creating its own culture. I think this is pretty cool.
Finally, I always appreciate a game where the way each piece operates is unique and distinct.
This is a game with a significant learning curve. There is a real level of skill required to be successful at this game. I cannot imagine someone who has never played before beating a veteran of the game very often, if ever.
I found this game exceedingly hard to grasp. As I mentioned above they have striven to create a culture, and feeling behind the game. As such the rules are set out on a single card, which is all well and good, but you have to go into the strategy guide to understand how things actually work. This is where I had an issue.
You see the strategy guide is filled with ideas about quantum physics, and thoughts on the game, in addition each playing piece has 2-4 pages of explanation of how it works, and examples. On the one hand this is a good thing, but I found myself getting frustrated as I tried to figure out how the pieces worked, and I was constantly flipping through the strategy guide and cross referencing with the how to play card.
All the info you need is there, I just had a very hard time finding it in anything resembling rapidity.
Bringing it all together
Quin is an interesting game with a metric butt-ton of strategy. The designers clearly have a community that they envision playing the game, and everything about it. The production promises to be gorgeous, something that you could hang on your wall if you wanted. This is a game that you are going to get crushed if there is a imbalance in your experience levels. The game has a ton to offer, but I found it incredibly challenging to learn, and I can not swear that I fully understand it now.
Quantum physics is not about words
* Fascinating level of variety in how the pieces work
* Cool production in the prototype, which is very promising for the final version
* Attractive board, when combined with the magnetic components I could absolutely see hanging it on a wall and always having a game going, like with a chess board
* Designers have a very clear vision of what they want this game to be
* Extremely hard to learn, I struggled immensely, and am not confident I got it all right
[Root: The Riverfolk Expansion, Root, Root: The Underworld Expansion]
[It's a Wonderful World]
[X-ODUS: Rise of the Corruption, Terraforming Mars, Mint Works, Escape: The Curse of the Temple, Twilight Struggle, Ethnos, 5-Minute Dungeon]
[UBOOT: The Board Game]
[Aeon's End 2nd Edition: Legacy Reset Pack, Aeon's End: Legacy]
[Monsters on Board]
$112,622 / $20,000
Ends in 21 daysSee Kickstarter