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Games I play, games I'd like to play. And tea. I really like tea...

Archive for László Stadler

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Anticipating Mage Wars

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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I already wrote about Mage Wars a year ago. Since then we've seen some card examples (check out their website and Facebook page for them) and now also the rulebook is out.

When first seeing the demo cards I was a bit disappointed. I did not like the card layout and the few art images on the cards did not look that good. Fortunately they listen to feedback and completely recreated the layout and hired great artists to do the art (Jason Engle and Peter Tikos (a fellow Hungarian) among them). The art and layout are now beautiful and practical. I take card layouts really seriously, some companies use a really awful layout and ruin the art completely. This is not the case with Arcane Wonders, they did a great job here.



This is definitely my most anticipated game of 2012 but probably my most anticipated game of the decade. Or maybe the century. I guess I've been waiting for a game like this my whole life.

I don't want to get into details now (go read the rules and descriptions) but want to mention the most brilliant feature of the game: forget random draws, you decide what monsters to summon, what spells to cast every turn. This is real evolution...
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Mon Aug 6, 2012 12:30 pm
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New games acquired, March 2012

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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Wiz-War: Seems like a nice magical battle-game that reminds a bit of MTG but in "3D". It's supposed to be quite random but with some variants and possible expansions this could be reduced.

Ascension: I know to game to some extent (I've been doing some beta testing for the iOS app and also own Ascension: Return of the Fallen) but I've been waiting for the 2nd edition of the main game before buying it. Now it's here. The game seemed decent before the expansions and now it seems getting better and better.

Unfortunately I could not order the promos yet because the GG website has still some trouble with international shipping.

Future: I'm also interested in Thunderstone Advance. Hopefully PaYa will have it soon. I was actually quite surprised that the pre-release event is held here in Hungary as well. Let's hope this will be a new trend.

I will also get Lords of Waterdeep once available.
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Thu Mar 1, 2012 10:47 pm
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How not to redesign

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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I was really hoping for the new Thunderstone to be great. They were talking about improved rules. That if done right could elevate it from being a mediocre deckbuilder that it is right now, to one of the great ones (it has some cumbersome mechanics like the way monsters end up in your hand). Some of the newer deckbuilders have really great mechanics. But this post is not about mechanics or rules.

They also changed the card layout. I agree that the old icons needed to be changed as they were really meaningless but they managed to mess up the quite good layout into this thing here:



The second one is the old one. See how bigger the art feels. The vertical space is more important in this case than the horizontal. Also the text-box is too big, you don't need so much space for the text.


see more images here: http://www.alderac.com/thunderstone/2012/01/10/get-down-to-b...

And now here are some good examples for card design. Distinguishable icons, enough space for the art and a non-obtrusive text-box





If they stick with this layout I'm pretty sure I'm not going to buy this. Art and (layout)design with board and card games nowadays is one of the most important factors with me. And in this case this is an obvious decline.
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Wed Jan 11, 2012 6:06 pm
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Packages November 2011

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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This month I also ordered some games, now from Boards & Bits:



It was quite a (positive) surprise, the Star Trek promo cards were included. The Star Trek box is extremely huge, even bigger than a Thunderstone expansion box. By the way the Eminent Domain box is also at least twice as big as it should be.

And fortunately my The City has arrived as well (separately).

This is not boardgaming realted, but another box arrived from China, containing these:

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Sat Oct 29, 2011 5:10 pm
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Thomas Lehmann: The City - trials and tribulations (part 1)

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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When I first heard of this game it immediately got my attention. I really like Race for the Galaxy and this game seems to be a more simple version basically only keeping the settle and explore +5 actions without being able to use others' actions and without the science-fiction theme. So this could be the perfect game for people who'd find RftG too complicated (at least in the beginning) or don't like the science-fiction theme.

Then I saw the art. Ok, let's call it graphics because it's everything but art. The graphics is über-ugly, probably even I could make something nicer if I really tried. So then I said I'm not going to buy it in this form.



Later I saw the price. It's a small box game and quite cheap so for that price it's a must buy even for the graphics. I read some negative reviews/comments regarding the lack of complexity and strategy but the game is still interesting enough for me to try. So I decided that I need this and added it to my wishlist thinking it will be available for Essen and not sooner.

Then some time ago I realized it's already out. Some people started organizing a group-order from a German webshop so I decided to join. Unfortunately when they wanted to add my order the game was already not available there.

I found a seller in the German Amazon marketplace that sent the game with a reasonable shipping price so I decided to order it. They sent the package to Hungary trough DHL (German Post) with a tracking number.

And it did NOT arrive.

The tracking information says it left Germany, the Hungarian Post tells me it did not arrive to them. They probably stole it, like they do with a lot of other packages but till now I thought they only do this with US packages and not with ones from Germany with tracking. I of course complained, now the sender has started an investigation but it will take some time

Now I'm hoping I will find someone who will bring me a copy from Essen. The game is cheap so I can afford to have two copies should the other arrive.


Edit: This Friday (10.29.2011) finally it arrived. They have sent another package.
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Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:29 am
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A package has arrived

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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... today from Coolstuffinc.



Unfortunately the Fortune and Glory Box got damaged a bit.

Also as others have noted, the King of Tokyo dice are already damaged in the box. Mine are not that bad, but they don't look new. And the green cubes also look kinda low quality. I will make photos later.

But all in all, it's still great that I can play these games now.
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Thu Sep 22, 2011 9:26 pm
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Travelling with games / what to do with oversized boxes

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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Unfortunately most games come in oversized boxes (way too big) and so they are hard to bring along your travels. I needed a solution for this and I needed it fast. I just threw some games together so this is no way the perfect solution with an even more effectively fine-tuned system one could achieve wonders.

These are the boxes I brought this year:



And These are the games inside:



- Isla Dorada was in it's own box. Though the box is big the game itself is also big so there was nothing easily done.
- Mr. Jack Pocket is perfect as it is.
- The Gosu box contained Race for the Galaxy and the cards from the first expansion (I usually store RftG in the first expansion box) and Dixit (I did not include a scoring board, did not have time to make one but you can even draw one if needed).
- The Race for the Galaxy box contained Gosu and 7 Wonders.

As I said this is not the most streamlined solution but it shows that the original game boxes are way too big.
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Fri Aug 12, 2011 11:28 pm
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Mage Wars - THE alternative to Magic the Gathering?

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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I was always fascinated by Magic the Gathering. The art, the mechanics, the deck customization, how everything worked together. But not the blind and collectible nature. This made it absolutely a no-go for me.

The Living Card Game-s from FFG seemed to be a good solution at the first glance, but in the end turned out not that great (at least for me). Too many too small expansions, without longer research you don't even know what you are getting and what they are good for.

But now, I found Mage Wars. Not simply a card game, a game board arena is also involved but the concept is the same. Two mages duel against each other, by attacking directly or summoning creatures and controlling them. The mages have a spellbook where they cast their spells from. You don't need to draw cards, just chose and summon them if yo have enough mana. What's great is that you can customize your spellbook before the game and this is what makes it really interesting.

The base game will include four mages with their spellbooks and addition mages will be available later.

Unfortunately there is not much information available yet, the game is supposed to come out Summer 2012.

Also check the Mage Wars website for additional information.
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Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:07 pm
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I hope giving cheesy names won't become a habit

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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With the growing amount of games appearing these days you probably have to stand out of the crowd somehow. There are a lot of good ways to do it. I don't want to get into details here. The way I prefer is having gorgeous and/or very interesting art (either the Eminent Domain or the Ascension way) or a very good theme.

And there is the 80's way: choose a really stupid name. Back then with 14 year old's it probably worked. Now it does not.

Quarriors is not a name that makes me interested in a game. Fortunately I've seen some pictures of the game. Just by reading the name I would not have clicked on it. The art and the amount of dice balances the issue here, but nevertheless I will try not to say out the name aloud. I will especially not say the word Quiddity out loud. Why do you need to invent new expressions when there are perfectly good ones that everyone knows and uses?

And then there's an even worse case. This one is an iOS game and is called Kard Kombat. Yes, card spelled with a K. They even spell the cards in game with a K. Now the good thing here is that I've read that this is in fact the iOS version of the Richard Garfield PC game Spectromancer. This is the only reason that I even bothered to check out the game. Spectromancer is really good, what I thinkg about Kard Combat is another story.
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Wed Jul 13, 2011 10:14 am
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Too fast, too many

László Stadler
Hungary
Budapest
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I feel the same as Bruno Faidutti already pointed out.

There are too many new games. Even if I had the money to buy everything interesting, I do not have the time to play them. My wishlist contains 25 items at the moment and more are added than I buy. Right know I'm prioritizing and have an idea what I will buy and what not. But if this keeps up I don't know. I hope I won't get too frustrated and do something stupid. Maybe leave BGG so that I do not see all the new interesting games. Well, that won't happen hopefully but I still do not like what's happening.
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Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:32 pm
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