What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – Oct 18-24

It’s never too early to get the kids started on miniature painting! Kris’ daughter Evie wanted to make a fish and paint it. We think she did a great job!

Greg tried out this puzzle from Genius Games. “Genius Games make science-themed board games that are really interesting. Like a few other game companies they also started dabbling in making puzzles during Covid, and this is one of them. I also have Nikola Tesla and Marie Curie to do, and figure they’re good for starting conversations with the kids about who they are and what they’re known for.”

Renee and Jenn had a chance to play Res Arcana with the just released second expansion, Perlae Imperii. “This expansion adds a new element, pearls. Pearls have similar rules to Gold but are worth 1 point at the end the the game for each one in the players collection. As a result, the game end is now triggered at 13 points instead of 10. The expansion also includes some new Mages, Monuments, Places of Power and Artifacts. Jenn ended up getting the Pearl Bed and created a fantastic engine and ended up winning the game handily. We both enjoyed the additions and continue to love playing this game!”

They also had a chance to try out the new game TEN. “I was really excited about this game because it’s from the same designers as Point Salad which I think is fantastic. What I was surprised to find out and made it even more awesome, was discovering that it had a push your luck drafting mechanic similar to another family favourite, Circus Flohcati! You draw cards until you either stop and claim your reward or you bust and get nothing. You bust when the total value of the cards exceeds 10. However there are also currency cards whose value subtracts from that total and when you stop you can either take all the cards or the currency cards. If you take cards, all your opponents get the currency, which you can use to purchase cards in the market. But there’s more! You can also use currency to purchase wild cards through auction whenever they are revealed from the draw pile. This has all the elements I enjoy in a quick card game – some push your luck with enough strategy to make it interesting. Over the weekend Jenn and I both had chances to play it with Dad and it has been a hit!”

Greg likes the little tableau-builder Deus because it’s so simple but still offers some interesting decisions. “You have to deal with the luck of the draw, but you can always choose to spend your turn discarding cards to gain something and then drawing new ones, so it’s easy to cycle through if you don’t like what you have. In two player I’ve found the game almost always ends by Temples being built and that was the case in this game. I picked up a bunch of points during the game though, whereas Tracy only really scored for her Temples and leftover resources, so it was a comfortable victory.”

Greg and Tracy also played TEN. “This is a neat little push-your-luck card game where you’re trying to get runs of numbers in each colour. There are some interesting choices to be made though as some turns you end up helping your opponents. This was a super close game where Tracy ended up winning 26-25!”

Kris is still working on painting different Orks for Orktober. “On last week’s stream I had a vote and everybody voted for my Battle Fleet Gothic Ork Fleet to be next on the list. I have had them for a while now, and just never got around to painting them as I was always a fan of the Imperial Navy. But, the Orks being able to swamp the table seems like it will be fun.This was my first batch while I work on my colour scheme, a Terror Ship and 6 Onslaught escort frigates.”

What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – Aug 16-22

Greg picked up the Dulcinaria deck for Agricola some time ago but hadn’t got it to the table until now. “We didn’t have quite as much time so we just dealt seven cards from each deck and didn’t draft. There were some pretty interesting cards, including one that I played in round one for free that counted as an occupation, a field and a fireplace all in one, which was great. I did end up playing a lot of cards during the game, as the picture shows. Tracy didn’t quite get her engine going early enough and had to take a begging card and eat some raw grain a few times. Despite taking four negative points from one of my cards, I ended up with a respectable 54 to Tracy’s 28.”

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What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – Aug 31-Sept 6

Greg and Tracy played Escape Room: The Game: Wild West Express. “This one had a difficulty rating of 2.5/5 which is on the easier side, and it mostly was fairly straightforward. As is often the case though, we sometimes overlook something initially. This one involves being captured by bandits on a train and having to escape the cell, uncouple the train cars, unmask the leader and fix the train so it can slow down before crashing. It was a fun one!”

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2020 Aurora Award Ballot

The 2020 Aurora Award Nominees have been announced for best works done by Canadians in 2019 in Science Fiction and Fantasy. The Aurora Awards are nominated by members of the Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Association. The top five nominated works were selected. Additional works were included where there was a tie for fifth place. The awards ceremony will be held online in conjunction with When Words Collide (Calgary) on August 15th. (whenwordscollide.org).

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What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – April 20-26

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Maddie finally got Bumblebee and Prime done! “I was able to figure out the water-slide decals so Optimus has one of those, while Bumblebee has just the clear sticker. Overall I’m pretty happy with how these turned out. I still have to get Megatron finished.”

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On Monday Christopher and Renee played another quick game of Age of War before dinner. “Still fun, still frustrating and still awesome.”

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After dinner they played a 5 player game of Chai. “I really enjoyed it at the max player count, turns are quick so the game keeps moving and the increased competition for the customers was fun. I love that everyone in the family enjoys this game so much and we’re getting a lot of plays in these days.”


Sue played Talisman: Kingdom Hearts. “Super fun game, really easy to play. Delightful models to paint.”


Tracy and Greg tried another one of the Deckscape Escape Room games, Test Time, this one about time travel. “They have clue cards for each puzzle that you’re allowed to look at if you’re stuck, but you don’t get penalized for using them. We did use those a few times but otherwise found this to be fairly straightforward and didn’t make any errors. We also finished it in less than an hour, so we got top marks. It was a fun one!”

Jenn and Renee played another game of Cartographers, “It’s so much fun to colour in the sheets and with the different scoring cards coming out each game, each game feels different. Christopher saw us playing and asked to play, so we played again with him. I wasn’t sure how he would do with managing the 4 scoring objectives, but he managed to get a very decent score and we all had fun!”

They then wrangled the kids into a game of Reef, “We’ve been wanting to try this with them for a while now. It’s a pretty straightforward game in that you’re placing pieces on the top part of the card on your board and then scoring the pattern on the bottom part of the card. However, since the cards never give you the pieces you need for their own scoring pattern, it requires that you collect cards that work together well and do some planning. The kids enjoyed it.”


Tracy and Greg were talking online with some friends and they tried out a game of Just One over the video chat. “It worked out ok, with the guesser looking away while the others compared clues, etc. and we ended up getting a pretty good score, getting 9 out of 13.”



What have The Sentry Box staff been up to – March 2-8

Sam played new release Gorilla Marketing:

This game is SO FUN. We played two rounds with three people. The first time went really fast since you only go around the table once so we played a second game with two booklets each which was much more fun.

Each player starts the game with one (or two) booklets in front of them, and then they collectively choose a theme for whole game. Each player then roles a die individually to determine the category of their marketing firm. For our second game my firms were advertising Science Fiction and Propaganda films, since the overall theme was movies.

You then pass your booklet(s) to the person to your left, and begin the game! The first player takes one die at a time out of the bag to roll which adds a letter to the acronym. The first acronym you make is what the movie in this case will be called, and the second acronym is the tag line that advertises the movie! On each players turn, the acronym changes, and when you get your booklet back the round ends and voting begins.

Each player rolls two dice to pick between two available awards, determined by the theme of the games, to assign to their project. Then, you flip through the options people wrote and either choose the one you liked the most or that most suited the award. You go through this process for both the name and then later the tag line for the name. The person at the end with the most banana tokens, which you get by your option being chosen in the voting stage, wins the game!

One critique I had immediately is that the age suggestion is 8+ and there are definitely sexually suggestive themes in this game. I don’t think I’d be comfortable recommending this as a family game, more as a college aged party game. With one of the firms potentially being a fetish club or the college class sex therapy 101 it might make for an uncomfortable evening. There are definitely options that don’t include spicy themes so as long as people are comfortable filtering it out then it’s customer discretion.

Other than that I had a blast. The components are perfectly designed and easy to use which I really liked. The rules are also simply laid out so it’s easy to teach and play. Will definitely be playing this again when I own my own copy.

Jordan shares his thoughts on the game, “I had tons of fun playing this game. It’s the best parts of Telestrations, the Jackbox video games mashed together into a great lightweight party game. The booklets, custom dice and banana markers were all great quality and the game as a whole presents itself as a quality product! I’m excited to play more of this game with the different themes and categories and the near infinite replay ability it offers.”


Jordan has been doing some more painting, “Hrothgorn’s Mantrappers, a Warhammer Underworlds warband. This was a lot of fun to paint – the ogre leader looks super cool (I stuck a skull on his face to serve as a mask), and he has a crossbow armed with a bear trap on a chain – very ‘Warhammer’. The goblins are also full of character – carrying more bear traps, giant arrows, or another goblin, carrying a big hammer, which I think is really funny. The big cat is also super cool and intimidating, and there’s a separate bear trap model that is made of large jaw bones. As with all the Underworlds warbands, the Mantrappers are very unique to paint up as well as play in the game, giving a taste of painting an ogre, goblins, and a large tiger without having to paint up a whole army (though who could decline an army of tigers?)”

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Renee played a quick game of On Tour at the start of Monday Board Game Night. “Every time I’ve played, I’ve played with at least one new player, but I’m not convinced that having played before is any help; every time I play I feel like I’m just as horrible as I was the last time. This game is challenging in the funnest way.”

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Renee then played 2 games of Res Arcana with the Lux and Tenebrae expansion, “I’m really enjoying it with this expansion, even more than I already did. One thing the expansion adds is Scrolls. Using a magic item, players can exchange one resource for a scroll which can be used at any time. When you plan ahead, they can be very powerful. It also allows you to play with 5 players – which we did for the first time this week – and it worked very well. The game still moves quickly and I like that it adds a bit more of a sense of chaos to the game. This game just such a fun engine builder, with the cards available to draft each time changing up, the Places of Power being randomized, it creates enough variation that you do feel each time like you have to adapt and make something work. The player interaction is great, not just with the attacks, but the competition for the magic items, scrolls and places of power. In fact, in our second game we discovered that 3 of us were all in a race for the same place of power. Every time we play this, we just have fun.”

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Renee ended the evening with a couple of players of The Game Extreme, “After our plays of The Game last week, I decided I wanted to try the extreme version. This one has 28 cards with symbols on them that either impact the player on the turn it is played (must play exactly 3 cards, must cover this card before end of turn), or put a new rule in effect until it is covered (cannot use the backwards 10 rule, players must play all their cards on any one pile). It definitely was more challenging! But still fun like the original.”



Kill Team: Terrain Overview

Just like any other miniatures game, in Kill Team you’re going to need some terrain for your models to fight over. Often, terrain can take a bit of a back seat to building and painting the miniatures themselves, which is a shame – it’s just as much a part of your game as your models are! Fortunately, the skirmish-sized boards for Kill Team are quite a bit easier to fill with lovely terrain. The options boil down to three main ideas: buy it, build it, or modify it.

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What Have the Sentry Box Staff up to – Oct 8-14

This week  we get to see Amanda’s finished boat, more painting by Sue and as always, games! Unsurprisingly Greg started his week with more Ganz Schön Clever, “Still playing this pretty regularly and I’d say my scores are slowly improving. It’s just so quick, easy and addictive.” He played again later in the week with disappointing results, ” A bonehead move in the final round meant that despite going into the round with four re-rolls I ended up only being able to take one die and finished the game with a +1 I wasn’t able to use, giving me my lowest ever score at 139. Ouch.”

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