Did you have a fun Thanksgiving weekend? We did, which explains the late post this week. But here it is, filled with all its gaming and painting goodness!
The week started with Renee and Greg playing games at Monday Open Board Gaming:
The Mind: Greg, “I think we were all feeling a bit rushed and then a crowd gathered around us so we didn’t do so well.”
Troyes: Greg, “I haven’t played this dice action selection game in a while but I still enjoy it. It can be hard to wrap your head around the fact that your dice can be used by anyone, and the uneven number of turns as first player may be an issue but I do like it.”
Renee, “A mid-weight euro with dice, so not surprisingly this has been on my list to play for a while now. Everyone rolls their dice and places them in the centre of the board to create the pool. While your dice are free to use, you can pay to use any of the dice, so player order really comes into play for drafting the best dice. I liked that you had to balance acquiring both money and influence to allow yourself to buy better actions so that you could ultimately get the points required to win the game. We played a 4 player game and Brad noted that he felt it played better with only 2 and 3, so I will have to try that next time.”
Kashgar: Greg, “This was an interesting kind of deck-building/hand management game. You have three columns of cards and each turn pick one column and active the card at the front, then moving that card to the back. Ultimately you’re trying to gain resources to fill orders, but the timing of card activation across the three caravans is what made it interesting.”
Renee, “Annoyed I forgot to take a pic of this one. The card art was actually quite good. Essentially a deck builder, however all your cards are laid out in columns face up. Each column as a card that when played allows you to acquire a new card which you place at the back of that column along with the played card. Each turn allows you to pick one card at the front of a column, complete the action, then place the played card at the back of the column. Thus balancing your available actions is a huge part of the game. Ultimately you are acquiring resources to fulfill orders for points.”
Let’s Make a Bus Route: Greg, “This game is just super light fun. I wish I owned this game.” Renee, “I will never turn down the opportunity to play this quick fun game. If only they would make a non-import version…”
Greg, “Finished off with Axio, which is Ingenious but not. It’s still the same basic concept but with rectangular tiles. The addition of the pyramids and the different shape definitely gave it a different feel, and I think I like it better than Ingenious. Ben smoked us pretty badly in our game.”
Renee, “I was joking that this was essentially a renamed Ingenious, so was surprised at the differences. The key is scoring all the colours equally because at the end of the game you only score your lowest scoring colour. Although I failed to take advantage of the pyramids, they definitely altered the game; I was much more aware of “setting up” the next player. Still a decent light abstract.”
Cam, who manages all our vintage board games, has been recently playing Space Hulk:
Vengeance of the Blood Angels for original Playstation. Admittedly the graphics haven’t aged very well but fortunately the gameplay is awesome albeit punishing at times. This is a throwback to the golden days of video games being made by nerds, for nerds; usually heavily inspired by their miniature/board/pen – and – paper counterparts if not directly transferred across mediums like this one. As a result the game does very little hand holding out the gate making the learning curve steep and the difficulty soul crushing at times. Myself having some knowledge of how Space Hulk the board game functions beforehand was definitely helpful, but I could see how somebody without such an asset would become frustrated before sticking it out, and never get to see this gem shine. Never a replacement for the original board game, but still great!
Amanda finally got to sit down and try one of the choose your own adventure books by playing Loup Garou, “This one is all about being a werewolf! I didn’t finish the book and it’s much harder then I thought it would be. I like the fighting mechanics in the book makes it more interactive and fun. Also the art is very enjoyable. Hopefully I’ll be able to survive the whole book and come out alive !!!!”
Kris repainted a Fang Fighter for X-Wing with the stand re-positioned so that it spins properly.
Greg finally got a chance to try out Star Wars X-Wing 2.0 with Kris on Friday’s livestream. “He made both lists since I haven’t had a chance to open up mine yet. The game play itself is very much the same with just a few tweaks to make things cleaner. The change in all the pilot and upgrade abilities will take a bit of getting used to though. All in all I think it’s a good upgrade to the game.” Kris, “Agree with everything said, I really like that it is actually a choice now in list building of spending points on upgrades or not. Greg’s list only had one upgrade and that was more because you can’t fly Boba Fett and not upgrade to Slave 1!”
Renee had a 2 player game night starting with Jaipur, “Still one of my favourite 2 player games on the light side and one I often find myself recommending to customers. A set collecting game, the strategy comes in the timing and method of collecting cards in an attempt to block your opponent from picking up good sets and beating them to the market to sell the goods for the most points.”
This was followed with Trambahn, “Another 2 player card game, this time you’re building tram lines and putting passengers on the 4 lines to trigger scoring of all the lines of at colour – hopefully when it is to your advantage! One of those games where the same cards you need to build your stations, are the ones you find yourself needing to discard to use as money so you can get a tram for your lines. There are never enough cards to do all the things!”
New employee Jeff bought and played a round of Gloom in Space with some friends, “I’ve been a long time fan of Gloom but I had never tried the space version. It was really fun! It played around with different franchises and tropes in a fun way, and due to the sci fi nature of this version, we found we were able to get much more creative and over the top with our storytelling. Highly recommend!”
He also tried Power Grid for the first time! “I had a blast, and found it was very self balancing. Excellent game design, and easy to learn!” Gord notes that it is still one of the better games to recommend at the 6 player count.
Greg ended the week by finally playing Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small, “It’s a nice little Agricola-lite where you don’t have to worry about food and only focus on animals. With three actions per round and only eight rounds it goes very quickly!”
Hope everyone had a fun and game filled Thanksgiving weekend!