What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – Oct 12-18

Greg played the last game in his Clank: Legacy campaign, “I’m sad it’s over because I really had a blast playing this. The nice thing is that the double sided board is now playable as just a regular Clank game, so it’s essentially turned into a standalone expansion. I’m really hoping they come out with a new Legacy version in the future though as I really enjoyed unlocking new elements and the unfolding story.”

Greg played another Escape Room: The Game expansion, Another Dimension. “Set in the 1980s in small town America, with a strange research station on the outskirts of town. Strange things are happening! This was rated as 4.5 out of 5 for difficulty but didn’t prove to be too challenging apart from one bit at the end that was a little finicky. Overall it was pretty good though.”

Greg also picked up all four of the new Renegade Games puzzles and started with the Raiders of the North Sea picture. “They all come with a poster that is the exact size of the finished puzzle which definitely came in handy.” Greg later finished the second of his Renegade Games puzzles, with a little help/hindrance from Alex and Luke. “This one is from the Overlight RPG and was really great to do. Lots of different colors and textures to help identify the pieces, so it went much faster than the previous one which was heavy in yellows and browns. This one is definitely recommended.”

Jordan got a game of Wingspan in after Thanksgiving dinner. “The game is super pretty and the engine building is satisfying and interesting without feeling overwhelmingly complex. The bird theme is used pretty well (ie. big predator birds will ‘eat’ smaller birds off the top of the deck, smaller birds will ‘flock’ together) which is really cool. I was a -BIG BIRD ENTHUSIAST- and just tried to focus on playing large birds all game.”

Greg picked up the kids game Keys to the Ice Castle on a recommendation and gave it a try with Alex. “You lay out a grid of tiles with the closed side of the door showing and each start at one end of the grid. You have a hand of cards and on your turn you draw another card, play one card and then potentially move. Cards mostly have coloured keys and allow you to open a matching coloured door. Some allow you to padlock doors, making them require a skeleton key, add an ice slide, or chop through a frozen doorway. The first player to get to the opposite end of the castle wins. It says 8+ for the recommended age but other than playing with open hands I didn’t change anything to play with Alex (who is five).” Later in the week, “Alex and I played two more games of this and she won the second game fair and square which made her very happy. It’s nice and light and quick but offers some decisions to make.”

Christopher’s pick for a game with Renee and family yesterday was Rush & Bash, “A Mario Kart style board game in which we are playing cards to race around the track, but also shooting missiles, dropping bombs and using power up abilities. The game comes with a fairly large selection of track pieces you can use and we played with both the volcano and the dark jungle tiles in the mix.”

Jenn, Adam and Renee finally got in a few more plays of The Crew! “The first couple of missions we handled easily and we got over confident before the game knocked us down a peg or two with a mission we ended up having to attempt 3 times before being successful but when we were, it felt good. This is such a great trick taking game.”

Jenn and Renee played through Deckscape: Behind the Curtain over the course Thanksgiving day between other activities. “It has a magic show theme and we found the puzzles decent and enjoyable overall. This one came with a few items that you had to physically use to solve puzzles on the cards which we really liked. One of my favourites of the Deckscape games we’ve played so far.”

Danielle has finally put her farm mock-up together! Now the building begins!

Tia is working on her Lumineth bases. “I’m going for a lava theme.  The rocks are made from molding clay that was heated in the oven then broken apart to give it more of an uneven texture. After gluing the rocks down, I covered the ground with agrellan earth to give it some nice lava-looking cracks. I spray painted black, then white where I felt like it would be ‘hotter’, then yellow a bit randomly around. Now just in the process of adding some orange to it. I’m excited to see how they turn out!”

Sue is reading the new Dungeons and Dragons adventure, Icewind Dale. “I’m really enjoying it! I may be biased as I like the Drizzt Do’urden series, some of which takes place in Icewind Dale, so I was really excited to see a campaign that takes place here. I find that the campaign itself has interesting characters and creatures, and I think they do a really good job of bringing this frozen tundra to life. Even just reading the adventure book, there is a lot of vivid and interesting imagery, and I really feel engrossed in the world of Icewind Dale.”

Greg got Mariposas back to the table as Tracy didn’t want to play anything too taxing. “I went into the game intent on not going for waystations, only to end up going for waystations. I did pick up some season goal card points and got three butterflies back at the end as well though, and ended up winning by one point. On her last turn Tracy ditched her two identical action cards in hope of getting something specific but didn’t get it. That would have won her the game, so it was super close.”

Sam got around to finally playing the second scenario for Arkham Horror LCG on Octgn with her sister! “This game does a really good job of making you feel like you’re really the investigators so I always enjoy playing when I get around to it.”

Game 15 in Greg and Tracy’s The Rise of Queensdale campaign, “Saw us continuing to build the Cathedral and also trying to track down a group of trouble makers. We both made our epoch goal, meaning I’ll be moving on to Epoch 8 (out of 9), but Tracy is just one epoch behind. Also, I have Walnuts!”

Greg also got Escape Room: The Game: The Break In to the table this week. “We’re art thieves breaking into a museum to steal a new exhibit and replace it with a replica. It had some neat puzzles, but also one that had us slightly stumped for a while. Ultimately we got through everything and made it with a few minutes to spare.”

Sue painted the prince and princess of Dungeons & Dragons from the Wizkids Royal Court set. “I love both these models. I love the prince’s expression and pose. A young man who is maybe a little bit headstrong. I can see him locking horns with his father, the king, on more than one occasion. These were mostly painted with Contrast Paints. The prince’s hair is the dark yellow Contrast Paint where the princess is the light yellow Contrast Paint. I thought that his hair should be darker as it may have darkened as he got older, whereas the princess still looks fairly young. I also painted the princess’s lipstick, including the white line on the lower lip, before adding the Contrast Paint to her face. I find that the Contrast Paint covers the white line on the lower lip and gives a nice looking highlight.”

Greg played the 10 minute demo and then the first main scenario, Escape from Hoth, in the new Unlock!: Star Wars. “It was rated as difficulty 1/3 and was definitely fairly straight forward for the most part. I enjoyed the Star Wars flavour quite a bit as it added some good connections to the movies. The one strange thing was that even though they have obviously paid for the Star Wars licence and have a separate Star Wars Unlock app, the music used was not Star Wars, but was similar style Classical music, like Holst’s Planet Suite.”

What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – Oct 5-11

Greg and Tracy played another Escape Room: The Game expansion, Secret Agent. “In this one you are a British spy who is trying to get information about the plans of the General of a newly formed country. First you have to gain access to the palace, then get the information from a safe in the General’s room, and finally escape on a private subway under the palace. Luckily you get some help from Miss Pennymoney. This was rated as 3/5 for difficulty, but didn’t give us too much trouble, and we finished with over 15 minutes to spare. There was a puzzle in the third part that some groups just might not be able to get through no fault of their own, but you do get given the solution to that puzzle eventually, if needed. Overall I quite enjoyed it!”

Greg and Tracy played the hard side of the Clank base game board, using two of the other new characters from the Adventuring Party expansion. “I chose Agnet the Dwarf, who focuses primarily on companion cards. Tracy chose the mage who builds up mana tokens and can spend them to use special abilities like duplicating a card, or discarding a card to draw another card. I’m loving the new characters, they really do spice things up in an awesome way!”

Sue painted the Queen of Dungeons & Dragons from the WizKids, Castle: Royal Court set. “I couldn’t wait for this set to come out! I mostly used Contrast Paints for this model. The skin and dress are thinned down Contrast Paints, as I wanted her to be pale, like the kind of person who doesn’t have to work in the sun, and I didn’t want her dress to blend in with her hair too much even though they’re two different yellows.
This model was quick and easy to paint!”

Sue also painted Minsc and Boo from Forgotten Realms. “Mini is a WizKids pre-primed D&D mini. I did his face tattoo before adding the contrast paint (Darkoath Flesh) and added an extra dab of contrast paint to his lips to make them stand out a bit more. For Boo, I painted dots of light brown contrast paint and a couple of black dots for the face and then put white contrast paint over the whole thing. I think this model is quite true to the artwork of this character(s), so all that is really required to make it look like them is basically the same colors.. and that distinctive purple face tattoo.”

Greg picked up Pendulum, the new game from Stonemaier, as it sounded intriguing. “It’s a worker placement, resource management game, but it uses an interesting timed element. When an action row has a sand timer next to it, workers can’t be moved to or from that row, but can perform the action of the space they are on. After the timer has run out, any player may flip it to the other row, freeing workers to be moved from the original row and allowing workers on the new row to perform their actions. After a certain number of flips there is an untimed council phase where players receive bonuses. After the fourth council phase the game is over and if someone has all four of their victory point markers in the scoring section they are in the running to win. There is also an option to play part or all of the game untimed, and that is recommended for your first game to get the hang of it. I’m looking forward to trying a timed game now as I feel that’s the real game and will ramp up the tension and the required planning!”

The theme of Deckscape: The Curse of the Sphinx appealed to Greg so he had high hopes. “The puzzles were a mix of pretty easy and quite baffling. There were a couple that we spent a fair bit of time on but ended up being quite a logical leap. Overall it felt like one of the weaker Deckscapes but I still had fun with some of the puzzles.”

Renee and family wanted a quick game after lunch so Christopher picked Llama. “For reasons that aren’t clear to us – other than luck of the card draw – Christopher so clearly dominates this game each and every time.”

Renee finally broke the shrink off the first Sagrada expansion, Passion, and got in 3 plays with Jenn to check out the new modules. “Passions adds Inspiration cards, which give each player a unique ability during the game, generally a once per round action. It also adds rare glass dice with a set of panels that are used as the third tool each game, each with a different way of adding a rare glass die to your window to help you complete a private objective given to each player at the start of the game. Lastly there is a set of scoring objectives that reward points for symmetry in your window. We hadn’t played in a while and it was a lot of fun getting this dice drafting game to the table again and we both enjoyed the expansion.”

What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – Sept 28-Oct 4

Chris played another 500-point Combat Patrol game getting to know Warhammer 40k 9th Edition, where his Orks took on some spikey Chaos boyz. “I took a deliberately weird list this time with a couple of units that I rarely get to field. My custom-built Gunwagon had never seen the table before and my Deff Dread – dubbed “Killface” – had managed to accomplish very little in his previous career. That changed tonight however, as Killface managed to charge in and take on two characters and a squad of Chaos Marines almost single-handed (if giant mechanical saws count as hands?) and weather hit after hit, leaving him battered, smoking and victorious at the end of the game with only a single, hard-fought wound point left!”

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What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – Sept 14-20

These guys have been sat half finished for a long time but Greg finally got around to adding a few extra touches to them. “They are the third of four player faction minis for Anachrony (there’s also a fifth set of minis used in the solo game, but I may just leave those). Hopefully I can find the time and motivation to do the fourth set in the not too distant future, and then play the game!”

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What have The Sentry Box been up to – Sept 7-13

Greg played The Rise of Queensdale, “We’d had a fairly long hiatus from this legacy game, so it took a while to re-familiarize ourselves with it. The game play is fairly straightforward, at least for now, with players rolling their dice at the start of the round and then taking it in turns to play them to gather resources, build buildings, scout for herbs, etc. We’re still early in the game, so the story line hasn’t really got going too much yet, but it seems like it has potential. I can see how it will make players diverge in ability and strategy as the games progress, so I’m hoping we can play more often now that it’s made it back to the table.”

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