Bobby's Games

I will be posting monthly recaps of my gaming which I have been doing in GeekLists. I'll also be commenting on games on occasion, though I can tell you that I will be behind the curve because I just don't get to play the new games as soon as some people do.

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Games Played in March 2017

Bobby Warren
United States
Glendale
Arizona
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March. It used to be a busy work month for me, but now it is a normal month.

The lowest rated game I played was a new one at a ‘5’ and the highest rated was an ‘8’.

In March I played 24 different games a total of 42 times and six expansions accounted for fifteen recorded game plays. Seven of the games and four of the expansions were new to me, and I played seven of the games and one of the expansions in February.

Here’s what I played:


51st State: Master Set
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2017
My Rating: 8

Mike hadn’t played in a long time and I likely won with the Hegemony over his Appalachian Federation in large part because he forgot that the number of cards in the each players tableau is added to the final score.


Abyss
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This is not a bad game and I would play it any time someone brings it out.

I remember being put off by the cover(s) when it was released. When playing, I found the pearls to be an annoying component, and the flimsy, vacuformed holders for them to be a poor choice for components.


Arcadia Quest
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 8

Nick stated an interest and I’ve been waiting for my copy of Inferno to show up; though it finally arrived near the end of the month; so I thought we could get together and play a scenario or two as a teaching game. We’d start over if there was interest in a campaign.

I dealt four characters to each person and we drafted and kept three of the four. I ended up with Leeroy, Scarlet, and Spike; Nick had Aeric, Jøhan, and Kanga; Devin drafted Grom, Hassan, and Maya; and Mike’s team was Diva, Greensleeves, and Hobsbawm. We played “The Rookery” scenario.

As often happens, I got a bit distracted from completing quests and poached some kills that Devin started instead of working towards the goals. Mike focused on the goals while Devin had really bad luck with the dice.

It looks like we will be starting a campaign soon and, hopefully, play through all the available ones including Inferno.


Capital Lux
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

It’s a fun drafting game that Mike and I played. I might have picked this up if I was still playing a lot of two-player games with someone other than Mike.


Clank!
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Sunken Treasures.

We played using the expansion for the first time. I really enjoyed the new mechanisms and am looking forward to playing it again soon.


Colony
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 7

I taught this to Devin, Nick, and Tony using the basic set-up. The following week, Devin and I played against Michael, who was a new player, and we played with a random set-up.

With four players, the game drags a little, though it is still good. I would rate it one point lower than with two or three.


D6 Shooter
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

We played this for the first time. It is a quick, fun game, though nothing too spectacular.


Dream Home
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2017
My Rating: 7

Since I have adopted a general theory about having a garage, I have done a lot better more consistently. The top three scores in the game were 40, 39, and 38, with Mike winning.


Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

The Kickstarter arrived and I got it played twice on the last night of the month. We played Storm Front with four players and lost both games.

There were two problems with the game that I thought might be the case. First, with four players the draw of cards for the characters is too random since you see only half the cards in the deck. In both games we were heavy with low-fate generating cards that worked on obstacles and obstructions. Second, the end of the game is very random with the dice. Since the game is quick and we know this going in, the second isn’t a terrible problem. The first can be mitigated by allowing the players to reshuffle the deck and redraw if their initial draw is not to their liking. Generally, though, I can’t imagine going out of my way to play it with more than three, and three players might be the sweet spot for the game.

I am looking to play the game more, see some more of the characters, and the other scenarios.

Each of the three expansion will comes with two more books (scenarios) and two more characters. It feels like they are stretching to get the characters that they have done and I wonder which other characters will be included in future expansions? If they run short of them, I suspect they could release cards to update characters, like the Kickstarter Exclusive cards for Susan which make her deck reflect her being turned into a vampire. These cards replace some of the cards from the deck with more attacks.


Elder Sign
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Omens of the Deep.

We played with the new expansion and lost quickly against Hydra, with two characters dying. It’s a deadly, deadly game with the last two expansions.


For Sale
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2006
My Rating: 8

This is a really good game and it’s a shame it hasn't seen table time in over 10 years.


High Society
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2008
My Rating: 7

Another really good older game that was good to play again.


Kingdomino
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This is a clever, quick game about placing tiles with two terrain types and trying to score the most points. Some of the tiles have one to three crowns in one of the areas. The game ends after six rounds where each player picks and places two tiles. The tiles have to be places in a 5 x 5 area and any tiles that would extend beyond that space are discarded. At the end of the game, each area in the player’s tableau scores based on the number of spaces of in that area times the number of crowns on the terrain type and the player with the most points wins.

It comes in a compact box and is something I would consider getting as a nice filler board game.


Mystic Vale
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: Vale of Magic.

The problem with playing this with the expansion and only two players is so few of the cards are seen during the game. I don’t know how wise it would be to play with more than one expansion mixed in at a time, which is how I play Dominion and Arkham Horror. Talk about a diverse pair of games to compare this to – they’re quite different!


Pandemic: Iberia
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Four players to finish off a Saturday afternoon of gaming. The diseases kicked our behinds and we left the store in defeat.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Mummy’s Mask
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Shifting Sands for all of the games.

The scenario set-up rules aren’t clear and the rules for the various scenarios are fiddly and more annoying than fun. This might go the way of the last set with the group at Mike’s: abandoned and unfinished as we move onto another game.


Power Grid
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2014
My Rating: 8

We played a five-player game with several new players on the Germany map. I expected Michael and I to be the winner, since we were the most experienced with the game. We gave general advice during the game to the others. When phase three triggered, Devin had a lot of cash while Michael and I could power the most cities but were a turn away at getting in the right number of cities. I pointed out to Devin that he might be able to win without powering the full 15 cities since no one else had built into as many as he could power.

He decided to build into the 15 cities to end the game and was able to win.


Quests of Valeria
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2017
My Rating: 7

After playing it a second time, I am beginning to wonder how it will hold up with more players? I wonder if the attacks are a bit too prevalent and if they might make individual game playings outstay their welcome?


Roll Player
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 7

The first time I played was with two players and we both scored in the low 20s, and the next game was with three and we scored in the mid to high 30s.

The following week, I taught the game to Devin and Mike M. and we played twice. Both were relatively close games as well.


T.I.M.E Stories
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 5

We played “The Asylum” and I was quite underwhelmed. I don’t mind the idea of rolling dice for tests, but the random time passage each time we move locations makes it feel like the game comes down to the luck of the time die.

I found the theme, characters, and puzzle to all be off-putting and the limited chances at survival was another failure.

If it is the same, it is still something I will play on occasion with the group. I’m willing to play this again, when Mike gets one of the scenarios to see if maybe it might be better with a different story.


Terraforming Mars
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

I enjoyed this, though not enough to buy it, especially since both Michael and Mike own it.


Trains
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 2/2017
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Map Pack 2 for two of the games.

I played a couple of two-player games with Michael, one on the California map and one on the Italy map.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2017
My Rating: 8

Always fun, you could even say it’s bean-o-rific!


Zombicide: Black Plague
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 2/2017
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Wulfsburg.

I received more painted figures and the zombie bosses looked awesome, so I had to start using them.

All zombies must, umm, “die”

We played Gregoire, Hitch, Homer, James, Lady Faye, and Paul, all of which are newly-painted characters. We played “The Zombie Army” scenario from Wulfsburg and mixed in the Ratbomination cards, and to make up for the additional abomination I pulled the Wolfbomination cards.

We quickly lost the first attempt because there was a rash of Necromancer cards which allowed the necromancer to escape when there were six spawn zones on the board. So we went for it again, and managed a win by splitting into two groups. One guarded the area of tightly-packed spawn zones to keep a necromancer from escaping while one went for the objectives and better equipment. The plan was for the second group to make it to the area to gain their equipment while the first group took over guarding against the escape. It worked well and that made the scenario a lot easier.

The next time I play this I will add in as many extra zombies as possible to make the game more challenging. The Deadeye Walkers and Wolfz were in the mix we played with and I would add in NPCs and the Crowz in the future and maybe a character Necromancer.

Watch what you step in

Michael and I played “The Dragonfiends” quest from the web site using a mix of all the painted characters and we ended up with Benson, Clovis, Nelly, and Theo.

Four spaces on the board are seeded with dragon snot or vomit. When a figure stops on it, they move an additional space in the direction they were moving unless the next space is blocked or there’s a figure in it. Two of the spaces are instant death when stopped on it, the other two create “traps” that block the space until the end of the turn. The object of the scenario is to collect all the objectives. It was a fairly easy scenario and worked well with four players as we won the game.

Surrounded!

Devin, Mike M., and I played “The Ambush” scenario from Wulfsburg and we had Morgan, Paul, Danton, Gregoire, Gowan, & Silas in the party. The goals are to collect the five objectives, replace one of the starting span points, and then post survivors in the two towers to prepare to cover the exit from the ambushing necromancers and zombies.

Mike likes to split the party, which is not my general course of action, but once a counter point is made I didn’t argue (though I often joked, “you’re the one who split the party”). It made it a little harder to clear part of the board, but not too difficult. Things were tough early on, but once Silas had the Chaos Longbow things got easier and we cruised to another victory.

In the thick of it

It was on to a quest I had played previously and lost all three times. Devin, Nick, and I attacked “In Caligine Abditus” using Theo, Xuxa, Troy, Nelly, Benson, and Danton. We allowed Xuxa to be played since I had the Trollbomination in the mix and that made her less powerful since she couldn’t kill everything on the board because the troll needs dragon fire to finish it off.

The object is find the two special objectives among the four on the board that open the doors that let us make it to the exit. We found the first one right away, but as we were moving to the second possible location the troll popped up and we couldn’t kill it, so we had to change plans and did our best to stay in front of and out of its sight, since it gets enraged when it sees mere humans.

We searched as we could while avoiding the troll but still were unable to find the dragon bile necessary to kill the thing. We found the second goal without having to double-back and face the troll. We made it to the exit but it was a tough battle and one which we might have lost if one of the keys was at the location of the last objective.

Zombie madness

Next up was the “Zombie Court” scenario from Wulfsburg. Devin, John, Michael, Nick, Tony, and I played Mortimer, Gregoire, Ann, Ariana, Morrigan, and Gowan. The goal was finding two goals in the six objectives. The Trollbomination was still in play and I added the Crowz to the mix for the first time.

We were a little careless with Gregiore who was holding off the wolves. All seemed well, but a double activation by three walkers killed him early on just as we moved to the first vault. Since it was early on, and having all survivors survive is not a goal for this scenario, we “found” Arnaud hiding in the vault and John played him the rest of the game.

The second objective was found in the fifth possible location and we won this one.

The devil, you say...

To make things tougher, I added the Wolfbomination back into the zombie deck. If we keep winning as often as we have been winning, then I might add another abomination.

We played “The Hellhole,” which was the only quest from the base game I hadn’t played yet. The party was Glynda, Lady Faye, Homer, Morgan, and Benson as played by Devin, Jacob, Mike, Nick, and I. The error we made was not opening the Hellhole building up so spawning things could escape, because that was the only way to both spawn necromancers in the Hellhole and killing them. One of the goals was to get all the spawn zones in the Hellhole. Silly us.

We still beat the game, though it wasn’t easy.
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Sat Apr 1, 2017 8:36 am
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Games Played in February 2017

Bobby Warren
United States
Glendale
Arizona
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Edit: I missed a few games in my summary and have added them. Oops. shake

Zombicide: Black Plague is the new Warmachine for me. I’ve been getting together with others to play it early on Saturdays and we played one Friday night at Mike’s. It was also a Valeria month as we played all three games.

The lowest rated game I played was a new one at a ‘3’ and the highest rated was a ‘9’.

In February I played 27 different games a total of 42 times and six expansions accounted for fifteen recorded game plays. Five of the games were new to me, and I played 13 of the games and five of the expansions in January.

Here’s what I played:


51st State: Master Set
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 7

I had the Mutants, Devin got the Merchants, and Michael had the hicks (Appalachian Federation).

In my hand I started with the card that gave a number of victory points equal to the number of gun symbols I had in my tableau. Of course, I couldn’t get many gun symbols early on, but managed to score by getting several cards that gave me VPs for symbols I had in my tableau and ended up winning easily by generating lots of VPs that way. It’s the second time I’ve seen this happen where one person gets several of these and cruises to a fairly easy win.


Automobiles
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 8

Mike, Matt and I played a couple of races on the Monza track. I’m looking forward to the upcoming expansion, but won’t buy it if I have to get all three in one box. I have no interest in paying for the Planes expansion nor do I want to support the idea of boxing large expansions for completely different games in one box. Hopefully it will be available on its own.


Beyond Baker Street
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

We lost to challenge number three using investigators Helen Stoner, Inspector Baynes, Inspector Hopkins, and Irene Adler.


Big Book of Madness
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 6

We played on the medium level yet still managed to win.


Dream Home
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 7

I picked this up and we played and I had a terrible game. I made up for my poor showing by coming close to the win in the second time we played the following week.


Finstere Flure
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: Last Month
My Rating: 7

“Oh, yeah.

“Oooh, ahhh... That’s how it always starts.

“Then later there’s running and screaming.”


Holmes: Sherlock & Mycroft
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

It’s a really good set collection/worker placement game for two players. Half way through the first game I knew how I would want to change how I was approaching the game and I am sure Mike would have modified his tactics as well. We ended up tied and he won the tie-breaker by one.


Jump Drive
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

I thought this would be a light version of Race for the Galaxy, but it is only slightly similar to the game with less choices. It’s a pretty good filler that I look forward to playing again soon.


King of Tokyo
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: Last Month
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Power Up! and Halloween.

We played with six. The bunny won.


Masmorra
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: Last Month
My Rating: 8

We’re just playing the standard game though I want to play the epic game. My worry is it might take too long, though I am willing to try it out.

The first time we played in February was a four-player game with Allison, Michael, Nick, and I playing Azure, Toghor, Jay, and Makumba. I won that one with Makumba.

Next was another four-player game with Devin, Michael, and Mike with us playing Tosh, Algus, Hyldir, and Izzy. Algus, guided by Michael ended up being the champion of the day.

Game three was with Devin and Nick and all three of us drew characters from Arcadia Quest: Inferno (Kisha, Phyx, and Trandir). We had an early appearance of the second level, and I managed to get there first with Kisha and found the room with the Hydra and had the upgrade that gave Kisha an extra VP for bosses and major monsters and had a quick win.


Mystery Rummy 4: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played.


Pandemic
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

The last game of the month was a successful beat down of the infections threatening to cause chaos in the world.


Pandemic Legacy: Season 1
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Michael had been playing this already and I joined in to his ongoing campaign. We were in June and played the first time for the month. We lost.

I’ve never liked the idea of legacy games: that’s what computers are for. The board looked like a mess with the misaligned stickers, and added powers on cards looked off as well. I’ll stick to playing the real version of the game or one of the other variations, though if someone wants to play this I will jump in without complaint. Well, much complaint.


Pandemic: The Cure
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Experimental Meds for the game.

We played using just the Mutation Challenge expansion and lost.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Mummy’s Mask
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Empty Graves for three of the games.

We finished the first adventure and then started the second one, and the first scenario beat us down. The rules for the scenario could have been better explained.

The next time we got together we didn’t beat it, though we ended up with enough cards in our decks to meet the winning condition if we were able to beat the boss. This was a game where we were the victims of poor luck with the villain being at the bottom of the two decks they ended up being in during the game. We disliked the scenario so much that we called it a win and moved on to the next scenario.


Potion Explosion
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

As I mentioned last month, Mike M. wanted a copy and the Game Depot got copies in. He bought it and while he ran out to get lunch we built the apparatus and punched the holes from the potions.

It’s obvious why he liked the game, he won again.


Quests of Valeria
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

The Kickstarters arrived to everyone I know who backed it, including me.

Mike and I played a two-player game and we both liked it. In a lot of ways it felt thematically like a card game version of Lords of Waterdeep. I am looking forward to playing it a few more times to see if it will hold up to multiple playings.


Qwixx
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Qwixx Gemixxt for the game.

This is was just for Rylan.


Red Dragon Inn: Battle for Greyport
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 3

It’s an ugly game with a poor graphic design.

The game play is worse. There is no real deck building and the clunky mechanisms which comprise this game drain any fun that might have while playing.

We played one small rule wring the first time and decided to give it a try. the game is so unintuitive and unmemorable that both of us had a hard time remembering how to play after just two weeks.

The amateurish graphic design is worse than many actual amateur productions that outshine this box of junk.


Roll for the Galaxy
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 6

We played three games with Devin’s set, without the expansion.


Rumis
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

We played on the “Pirka” (wall) and I did horribly.


Santorini
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Not a bad abstract game, but not the greatest either. I would rather play most of the Gipf Project games than this, though I would play it again.


Trains
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

After playing Automobiles we played this on the Tokyo map. Like Automobiles, this will have an expansion in a combined box, but I have enough maps that missing out getting another with some more cards is less of an issue if they are packed in one box.


Valeria Card Kingdoms
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 9

We played without using the mini expansions. Nick and I tied, but I won the tiebreaker for a win of pure skill and planning.


Villages of Valeria
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 7

Since I had played the other two Valeria games I decided to bring this one out and complete the trifecta for the month.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Beans!

Dice!


Zombicide: Black Plague
Times Played: 8
Last Month Played: 1/2017
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Wulfsburg.

We played another of the quests from the Zombicide web site. This one was number B3, “The King’s Crown” and we played with Baldric, Glynda, Montalban, Morrigan, Thalia, and Theo using the basic necromancer.

This scenario is really easy since we could ignore opening any of the rooms except the ones which passed us through to the tile where we needed to be to win the scenario. It needs to have some other objective or condition to win. Maybe mixing in the green objective token into the mix and not being able to open the green door without it, or requiring that getting the two vault weapons are a requirement to winning as well would make it a little more challenging?

Quiet!

The second time I played in February I decided to try scenario B5, “Hush!” We played using Ariane, Arnaud, Silas, and Tucker. We called the first one as a loss fairly early on when death came upon one of us.

We restarted and then we managed to pull off the win. Even though there are only four tiles and the goal is to claim all the objectives the scenario is quite tough. One of the things making it tough was not having a vault weapon that would allow us to kill abominations. Especially threatening was the speedy Wolfbomination. Luckily, the ‘Ice Blast’ promotional spell was something we grabbed early on which allowed us to constantly freeze the abominations in place, allowing us time to find Dragon Bile which let us kill the buggers. Though once or twice we almost didn’t get the freeze effect and it soaked up a lot of actions to do this.

Silas is a very powerful character once he reaches the red experience level. The ‘Iron Rain’ skill added to the ‘+1 to die rolls’ he gets at the start means he wipe out a space full of zombies in one action with a standard longbow. Add to it a ‘Quiver of Arrows’ that will let him re-roll if there are a lot of misses (rolling a one), and it becomes even more powerful. Sure, the bigger deadites like the fatties and abominations are not worried about him, but there are a lot of ways the other characters can handle most of them.

“Hush!” was a much better scenario than “The King’s Crown.”

Wolves. Why’d it have to be wolves?

I also played three times at Mike’s one Friday. The first game had the four of us controlling Arnwal, Evil Troy, Gurbak, Hewelin, Inquisitor Mizar, and Scowl. We played the second quest from the Wulfsburg expansion, “Know Your Enemy.” The first time we played we lost quickly because of wolves and the Wolfbomination.

Mike traded in Evil Troy for Ulfo and Damian dropped Hewelin for Cadence. We made it a little further the second time, but still lost. The third game we decided to change our plan and it worked better and we completed the quest.

From gray to white?

Another Saturday game had Me, Michael, Jacob, Devin, Rylan, and Kevin playing Julian, Ann, Arnaud, Clovis, Bob, and Beauregard in the “Run, you fools!” quest (B6) from the web. It was a fast game as we found the one objective required right away and were able to quickly make the exit.

Run away!

Finally, I played my first nine-tile scenario as we took a glimpse inside the quest for the Holy Grail with Arthur, King of the Britons; Sir Bedevere the Wise; Sir Galahad the Pure; Sir Lancelot the Brave; Sir Robin the Not-Quite-So-Brave-as-Sir-Lancelot; and Tim the Enchanter (a.k.a., Mortimer; Gilbert; Beauregard; Chauncey; Montalban; and Bob).

The scenario was the last one in the rule book, “Trial by Fire.” This one has all the dragon bile cards in a vault which is unreachable until all three objectives have been collected. There is an abomination in one of the rooms which has to be killed to win the scenario. Because I didn’t want an easy win I skipped using the NPCs. The problem was the Wolfbomination which was too fast and we couldn’t kill it. Luckily, just as we were going to die horribly at the hands of the super wolf we once again pulled an ‘Ice Blast’ and was able to keep it locked down with Bob and his Lucky skill making sure a six was rolled to keep it in place.

If I was to play the scenario again, I would stick the Trollbomination in the building. It requires that Dragon Fire is used to kill it, so getting someone who can kill abominations normally wouldn’t matter until the quest was completed and the vault accessed. That would allow to add the NPCs so we might be able to get some buff vault weapons during the game.

We ended up winning the game.
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Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:00 am
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Games Played in January 2017

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
Arizona
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The consecutive months of playing Warmachine at least once has ended. The league died as player interest either dried up, their availability was spotty, or the army list choices just didn’t work. I hope to continue playing, though I’m more likely to play Khador than Menoth.

On the board game front, I played a lot of games I really like, though most of the new ones were just okay while a couple of them were super dogs.

The lowest rated game I played was a new one at a ‘3’ and the second-lowest rated was another new one at a ‘4’. The highest rated was an old favorite. I also have a lot of ‘8s’ on the played list, which is a really good thing.

In January I played 34 different games a total of 52 times and six expansions accounted for nine recorded game plays. Five of the games and three of the expansions were new to me, and I played 14 of the games and two of the expansions in December.

51st State: Master Set
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 7

I taught the game to Mike Mc. and Jeff. I had the Appalachian Federation, Mike Mc. had New York, and Jeff had the Merchants Guild.

Later in the month, I played T. who got the Mutants Union and I had the Appalachian Federation again. He was able to destroy locations at will, so I focused on rebuilding them for the VP, and rushing for the end. He was able to stay ahead and finished with the win because he had far more locations built.

Mike wanted to play again the next time I saw him, so he and I played Nico. I had New York, Mike had the Appalachian Federation, and Nico had the Mutants Union. I made a few deals for VPs and I also had a feature that let me get VPs for razing buildings, and raced for the win.


Baseball Highlights: 2045
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2015
My Rating: 7

Mike and I played this again. We got in the initial three mini games at the Game Depot and ended up playing the world series at his house in the evening.


Beyond Baker Street
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

Three of us took on the second challenge and managed to beat it just before Holmes advanced all the way to the end. At one point we deliberately played a wrong card to make the required number harder since the target was impossible for us with the cards played and the remaining cards in the deck. It’s a really clever game.


Clank!
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

A fast run through the dungeon. As we got about 1/3 of the way through the game it was obvious that the only way I could win was grabbing a small artifact and pushing the end of the game. Even with that, Mike was close to beating me out of the dungeon. He ended up not making it out and I ended up being the last one standing, but didn’t make it out of the dungeon because of the dragon countdown.

I’m really looking forward to the Sunken Treasures expansion due out in a couple of months.


Dice of Crowns
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 3

This is a bad dice game. The rules pretend there are real choices, but really it is just chucking dice, maybe passing some to a neighbor who will check them and likely pass them back to you. Then, when a ‘winner’ is found, everyone can try and attack the winner, prolonging this brutal, pedantic game.


Fantasy Fantasy Baseball
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 4

This had too much going on to be fun. It just reaffirms my sneaking suspicion that a sports game trying to simulate leagues are usually doomed to be underwhelming.

The sub-standard tracking using cheap plastic cribbage pegs in poorly-punched board made playing the game less bearable. Like the game itself, someone got cute and over-designed a solution instead of keeping it simple.


Fields of Green
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This is a terrestrial version of Among the Stars with developing a sprawling farming complex replacing the building of a space station.

This has several of advantages over the interstellar-themed game. First, the set-up is easier because there is no construction of the card pool. All the cards of each of the four types are shuffled into their own decks.

Next, the players draw six cards each round, determining their own mix of cards to be used in the draft. The only rule for the mix of cards is they have to draw from at least three of the four types of cards.

Also, while building the locations the players don’t have to score every card as it is played. Some score immediately, but that is tracked by victory point tokens and not by constantly updating a score board.

Finally, there is a harvest phase at the end of every round. Resources are spent to generate money, victory points, and resources for future rounds. The game also introduces upgrade tiles that can modify how a card works.

We played the two-player game which changes the way card drafting works by laying out a tableau of six cards, each playing choosing one and playing it, then replacing the two cards with new ones until all 12 cards have been selected. We both enjoyed the game, though I don’t see myself buying it as long as I still own Among the Stars.


Finstere Flure
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 7

The monster attacked, the players ran, and Nick’s group was fastest on their feet and they would have gotten all three of their tokens out on the same turn if we didn’t call it at the beginning of the turn because no one else was even close to challenging him.


First Class
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

This is the card game version of Russian Railroads system. I liked this more than the board game, though the coins and spending them add a chaotic timing element that slows the flow of the game down.


High Score
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

A four-player game that T. won.


Isle of Skye
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 7

We played a five player game. One of the scoring tiles was for most ships and I gave up on that right away to focus on the other three. I was not that successful and ended up in third place.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 7

We talked about how often we have played this game and I would have sworn that the game was almost 10 years old, but it is only five. Sometimes time doesn’t fly as fast as it seems. That, or I am more senile than I thought I was.


King of New York
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Power Up! for the game.

I ended up stuck in New York without being able to leave because of a card in the queue and was the first eliminated since I wasn’t all that healthy before going in. Just before I was eliminated, Jeff got an upgrade that let him web those he attacked which reduced their re-rolls.


King of Tokyo
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Power Up! and Halloween.

Four of us. The pumpkin won.


Masmorra
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

My copy arrived early in the month, before Mike, Nico, or Jerry got the KS copies. I picked mine up from the house at lunch on a Friday and took it over to Mike’s so we could play with some of the new characters. He, Jerry, Damian, and I played and Mike won with the Toghor, the dragon.

The next day, Nico and I played two games. He won with Raffi while I played Lotus. Game two had me winning with Blossom over Thereon. Mike and I also played a two-player game with me playing Tosh and him playing Travis. This was a quick game.


Medici
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 9

Five people, one master trader. Me.

And by master trader, I mean lucky. At the end of the first year I had three empty spots. I flipped the next three cards over and got an addition 14 points of ship value and ended up with four of one good and one of another. It put me at the front with Nick and I managed to hold onto the lead for that win.


Mystery Rummy 4: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 8

Nothing I was collecting went right the entire game and we went into the last hand with Mike just two points shy of winning while I was over 40 points behind. Once he laid his first meld down, it was a race. I needed to get all the Al Capones and go out while he just needed to go out. In the end, I had seven of the eight Als and the deck ran out. Stupid game.


New Bedford
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Mike picked this up. We played using just the basic game and it felt like a programmed exercise more than a game. Mike also has the expansion and he thinks it might fix that feeling.


Orléans
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

Mike, Damian, Matt and I played this one Friday night. Everyone thought I was clearly in the lead, but I knew that Matt was probably going to be a little ahead of me. He ended up winning by a fairly large amount.

I’m looking forward to playing this again.


Pandemic
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 8

We played a game using just the base set, though it was a later printing which had the annoying clear disease cubes. It came down to the next to last turn and we needed the Government Grant to be one of the cards that was drawn. Otherwise, we would have lost.


Pandemic: Iberia
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

Michael and I won our second game using five epidemics, not because Mike tried shaming me in last month’s comments, because we played before I posted. Honest!

Then I won the next time I played with Mike, Jerry, and Damian with five epidemics.


Pandemic: Reign of Cthulhu
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

It was a Pandemic month! I was happy to get this version played again as well as getting the others played. We ended up with the win on this version as well.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Mummy’s Mask
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Empty Graves for one of the games.

We finished the first adventure and then started the second one, and the first scenario beat us down. The rules for the scenario could have been better explained.

The next time we got together we didn’t beat it, though we ended up with enough cards in our decks to meet the winning condition if we were able to beat the boss. This was a game where we were the victims of poor luck with the villain being at the bottom of the two decks they ended up being in during the game. We disliked the scenario so much that we called it a win and moved on to the next scenario.


Potion Explosion
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

I taught the game to Mike Mc., Johnathan, and Jeff.

Mike Mc. managed to score the most points and won the game, cursing me for showing him a game that he wanted to buy, breaking his resolution to buy fewer games. It was January 2.

Damian was also interested in the game so Mike G. dragged the game out and we played with him and Jerry before Pathfinder one Friday.


Qwixx
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Qwixx Gemixxt for two of the games.

We played this at the end of the night after being smacked down by the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game. It was a screwy game.

We also played a couple of times at the Game Depot, once with and once without the expansion.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played this. I really need to bring it on a Saturday and see if that group would like it.


Rumis
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2010
My Rating: 8

It was great to get this played again. We played using the pyramid template and I ended up with the win, being the most experienced player.


Saint Malo
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 8

We played this with five players, and that was a mistake. It took a long time to get through the game and the pirates came up so fast that four of us lost all six of their cannons and the eventual winner, Mike M., was the one who had a soldier before the first round of pirates attacked.


Snowdonia
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2014
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played this on Thursday evening. It had been a while since we played. I made sure I grabbed engine number 5 to get the extra coal and started using my extra worker to advance the surveyor. I petered out at the 11-point station and by the end of the game Mike’s surveyor had caught up with mine. Mike won fairly handily because he built more than me and I focused too much on laying track at the end when I should have worked on building the last station.


Taluva
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 8

I won this four-player game, though if Matt and Damian weren’t new to it and Mike had played it recently, then the results would have been different.


Villages of Valeria
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 7

It is a decent game but still a little clunky in execution. If it were in a large box I wouldn’t likely be bringing it along with me, but it is in a really good sized box to pack in the game bag so it will see more play than if it were in a larger box.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

We played a couple of times during the month and Nick ordered a copy so one more person in the group owns it.


Zombicide: Black Plague
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Wulfsburg.

I’ll record using Wulfsburg when I play a scenario which requires components from it and I’m using the zombie wolves.

We played one of the quests from the Zombicide web site, B6: “Run, you fools!” Grom, Thalia, Bob, and Troy were the heroes and Evil Troy was the Necromancer behind the undead shenanigans. Things were progressing well, even though Evil Troy escaped once. We’d investigated one of the vaults and a couple of the buildings and moved back to the tower and we were going to explore to the other. We were set up to go there, and I was holding the stairs, ready to ignite the Dragon Bile when runner zombies got an extra activation, jumped into my spot and killed me dead. That was the end of the scenario.
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Fri Feb 3, 2017 1:15 am
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My most played games of 2016

Bobby Warren
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I am duplicating my format from the past couple of years, summarizing the top 10 played games from this year and commenting on the ones from last year.

My most-played games of 2016

Five of them were new to me in 2016 and I own nine of them, which is surprising since I am buying fewer games as I run out of room. Nothing was played in really extreme numbers. There are also eleven top games since two tied with the same number of plays.

Here they are from the most-played.

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
Own: Yes and No
Times Played in 2016: 28

Like last year, I am combining the sets. Ninteen games were the Wrath of the Righteous set. The group at Mike’s stopped playing this early in the year. The bookkeeping and artificial mechanisms for making the game fresh and/or harder were too much after dealing with the unfortunate and useless ships in the previous set.

Michael and I kept playing it, though at a slower rate than previous sets. We picked things up at the end of the year and I feel it got better as the scenarios progressed.

Late in the year, Mike, Damian, Jerry, and I started up the Mummy’s Mask. So far, it has been more enjoyable than the last set. Here’s hoping that continues.


Shadows of Brimstone
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 22

In June I thought this would be my most-played game of the year, and since it takes anywhere from one to two hours, tending towards the latter, that would have been impressive. That was because it started off being played regularly, but my focus on getting it played dipped when I started running the Warmachine league.

When playing at the store, we used my set with all the characters being used with anyone being able to switch back and forth between characters so everyone had the chance to play any single character. I bought the Jargono Native, the Frontier Doc, and the Cowboy heros but never built them or got them involved. The rest of the heroes are all at, or close to level three.

We are also playing a campaign at Mike’s with a Lawman, Bandido, Saloon Girl, and Indian Scout.

For some inexplicable reason I backed the new Kickstarter even though I haven’t received everything from the original KS campaign.

Okay, there are two reasons. I like the game a lot and I just can’t help myself.


Qwixx
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 19

It was played the same number of times each of the last two years. This was played with all of the various sheets. I really like the Big Points expansion sheets which make the scores really, really, umm, “big.”


Zombicide: Black Plague
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 16

This was the first game we played this year and most of these plays were in January.

I ended up buying a KS pledge off someone and I had some of the heroes painted. Michael enjoyed painting his Fireteam Zero figures and volunteered to paint my zombies using the quick and simple army Painter method so I will soon be able to play games with completely painted models.


Warmachine
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 15

I started a Journeyman league at my store and played quite a bit the first month and less the last couple. Part of it was an unexpected upheaval at work, but part is the nature of the league. The number of available players over the holiday dwindled and that made finding matches harder as well.

The battle boxes are not balanced to play against other as Privateer Press claimed. There are some definite Rock, Paper, Scissors match-ups and the speed and order which things can be added to the armies does little to change that over the first three weeks (months in our case).

Still, the game is fun and now that work is a little more settled and I can add a fair number of models in month four I hope to get in more games.


Arcadia Quest
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 14

There are two things which are stopping this from seeing regular play.

1. The last scenario is just not all that compelling and is a let-down after five games of competitive goodness.

2. Being a campaign game it requires the same players and that is not something that happens from week to week, especially when some of the people showing up to play games doesn’t like playing it.

Still, I hope to get it played some in the coming year, both before and after Inferno gets released.

Does anyone have a Bob character they are willing to part with at a reasonable price? (I’d like a Pigsy as well, but that’s more because he looks like me but he’s not names after me.)


Fireteam Zero
Own: No
Times Played in 2016: 14

This is the only game on the list of which I don’t own any version.

As I said above, Michael painted up his set using the basic Army Builder method, but he started just as I tired of the game because we played it so much both with his set and at Mike’s, so I tired of it before either owner did. Hopefully, we’ll play some more in the new year as it really is a good cooperative adventure game.


51st State: Master Set
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 12

Considering how fiddly the original game was, I was happily surprised when I played this. The cards are clearer than the original version, borrowing heavily from Imperial Settlers.

I wasn’t interested in picking up Imperial Settlers, which I find to be a slightly better game, because the expansions meant needing to do some deck-building before playing each game and I just didn’t want to go down that road and knew the game would end up sitting and being brought to play because of it. This version eliminates the need to build decks by having just one communal deck so I bought it.

It scales well for two to four players and that is a bonus.


Clank!
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 12

A surprise from late in the year. This deck-building game uses the cards to move a player’s thief through the dungeon to try and grab the most loot and then escape before being discovered by the dragon. It’s a lot of fun and one I hope to play a lot in 2017.


Pandemic: The Cure
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 11

When this was first released it was played a lot. Then it was all but forgotten until the Experimental Meds expansion was released and now it is seeing regular play again. I suspect that might last a month or two before it goes back on the shelf and is replaced by the new shiny game.

The expansion really ramps up the difficulty, which is a good thing.


Valeria Card Kingdoms
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2016: 11

This took over a lot of the plays Machi Koro would have gotten and it ended up not being played as much by the end of the year. I am really looking forward to the expansion coming out in 2017.



My most-played games of 2015

Three of them are on the list above.

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 128
Times Played in 2016: 28

Number one again, though not by as much.


Roll for the Galaxy
Own: No
Times Played in 2015: 36
Times Played in 2016: 5

All the games played in 2016 were with Ambition. This only got pulled out twice to play. It’s a lot harder to explain and get the hang of than it is to play.


Isle of Trains
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 19
Times Played in 2016: 0

Wha’ happen? It just stopped being played and I can’t say why. I will get this played some in 2017!


Qwixx
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 19
Times Played in 2016: 19

Steady in 2016.


Epic PVP: Fantasy
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 14
Times Played in 2016: 4

Mike didn’t like it enough to keep it and it is not something I am likely to bring along most Saturdays since the need for two-player filler games are hard to predict and the box takes up a lot of space in the game. Seeing it doesn’t get played a lot, of course I backed the next version on Kickstarter.


Race for the Galaxy
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 14
Times Played in 2016: 9

The Xeno Invasion was used for eight of the games. Like the Orb in the last expansion, the new mechanisms in this one just add fiddliness to the game.


Machi Koro
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 13
Times Played in 2016: 1

It died and was replaced, in spirit, by Valeria: Card Kingdoms.


Shadows of Brimstone
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 12
Times Played in 2016: 22

It was played more in 2016 and that is a good thing.


Tiny Epic Galaxies
Own: Yes
Times Played in 2015: 12
Times Played in 2016: 5

It was played far less this year. I think it is because we have seen all there is to see. I backed the expansion on Kickstarter, but am really not all that excited about getting it. Maybe I will be when the expansion is released?


Deus
Own: No
Times Played in 2015: 11
Times Played in 2016: 1

Nico stopped bringing this, so it stopped being played. With the new expansion being released I suspect it might hit the table some in 2017.
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Games Played in December 2016

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
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A little of this, a little of that and not mush else to say except what is below.

In December I played 33 different games a total of 65 times and ten expansions accounted for 17 recorded game plays. Seven of the games and two of the expansions were new to me, and I played 12 of the games and two of the expansions in November.

Those played games to finish out the year are:

51st State: Master Set
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 7

I mixed in the promos I ordered from Portal games and we played with the New Era cards. It was a my Merchants against T’s Mutants.

In our group, T is the one most likely to attack others, and he did attack a few times. I ended up focusing on getting VPs from deals and had a card that let me score three points a turn that he thankfully didn’t attack. I won but T’s last round scoring brought him close.


Bluff
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 8

We played two games of this at Mike’s, using the latest version of Liar’s Dice which has the neoprene board.


Carcassonne: Amazonas
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

I was excited to try this after Mike said he was getting it. Both he and I were tentatively disappointed.

The river will either force a long and skinny board or large parts of it could end up being ignored. Also, the rover point scoring felt more random than just about any other mechanism in another Carcassonne game. I got screwed by drawing a couple of the too-many river tiles early in the game, which let the other two score rivers and jump way in front of me. I managed to catch up some by the end but never felt like I was in contention.

I’d like to play it again before rendering a final judgement on the game, but as of now it’s only an average game and a below-average Carcassonne entry. Yes, that is a “7” in my book.


Clank!
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

Just once into the breach this month. If the Saturdays weren’t holiday month Saturdays I suspect it would have been played once or twice more.


Colony
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 7

I managed to get the auto-upgrade cards (a 2, 3, and 4) and was prepared to win, but Matt jumped to the victory before I could take the turn that was to be my last.


Cottage Garden
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This is a replacement for Patchwork. It does much of the same things as that game, but smoother and it plays with up to four players.

Mike and I played it twice and he and I played it with T and Michael. We also played with Matt and Jerry.

It was a blast with both two and four and I will likely be getting this when it comes out from Z-Man games.


Dice City
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: All That Glitters and Crossroads expansions.

Mike and I played with card from the first two expansions. We selected five cards of each type, including two of each type from Crossroads. It has peaked already and I suspect it won’t see regular play, but I can see it getting played occasionally since Mike, Nico, and I all own it.


Doom: The Board Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

It’s kind of slow. While it takes about two hours, the number of turns each player gets is relatively few and that makes the game feel like it is moving even slower. The initiative system, while cool, can make it seem longer if you go early one round and late the next.


Flash Point: Fire Rescue
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

We played on the brownstone board and ended up with a loss.


Hero Realms
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 7

I could see my rating go down on this. I really prefer the mix of cards in Cthulhu Realms and having just three “suits” allows for better deck building in such a short game.

All four of the games were against Mike. The first was with the starter decks from the base game and the rest were using the hero decks and they add a nice flavor to the game.


High Score
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

The most average of all the rolls in any of the three rounds was mine. So I can happily tell the others to “Eat it!”

We had a tied score between T and Nick, who won the tiebreaker of having the highest single round between the two of them. His win for the month.


Isle of Skye
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 7

My weakness in this game is still not making sure I get some end-game scoring.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 7

This was the odd game were both Mike and I had all four of our tokens on the board. Usually we have just three because that allows us to focus on scoring with just them and means less of a chance of scoring negative points for one or more of them.


King of Tokyo
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Power Up! and Halloween.

We played a really fun game with five players. There was lots of laughing and trash talk!


Lord of the Rings: Journey to Mordor
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

It’s light. So fluffy light that it is barely more than just rolling dice. We played with the “advanced” rules.

It was a nice diversion and I would play again, but I won’t be buying it.


Medici
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 9

Allison and Nick were at the store on a Saturday, so we played. This time was with four and the tile mix ended up being a bit odd. We never saw the gold tile and one ofo the goods only was bought a very few times.

Nick won. We need to stop that from happening.


Nyet!
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 1/2016
My Rating: 5

Michael wanted to show it to Nick, so the three of us played a round. We also played later in the day when Allison was there so she could see the game and they could decide if they wanted to get it.


Oceanos
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 7

Mike’s set is obviously defective. The card selection for both games with it was horrendous as I saw entire rounds without crystals or bases. Iello should send him a replacement copy that actually works properly and take back his buggy one!


One Deck Dungeon
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Mike backed this and we played the easiest scenario, against the Dragon, with the Mage and the Warrior. We made it to the final battle but were killed early on.

It’s a fun cooperative game designed for one or two players and I would recommend it if you were looking for solo game to play.


Orléans
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2016
My Rating: 8

I went over the game again for Mike who needed the refresher. I went for making my boatmen and scholars wild by getting the Herb Garden and School tiles and then grabbing citizens and maxing out the development track.

Both Mike and I thought I was well ahead of him during the game, but when we tallied the final scores he was a point ahead of me and won.


Pandemic: Iberia
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Wow! Like Reign of Cthulhu, this takes the basic game, twists it a little, and comes up with an utterly playable and familiar game that has new choices and decisions to make. We played it twice at Mike’s with five epidemics and lost badly both times.

I then broke out my copy and Michael and I played to end a Saturday, and my gaming 2016, using four epidemics and ended up beating the game.

It really is a blast and I look forward to playing with some of the included expansion/variant rules.


Pandemic: The Cure
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Experimental Meds for all of the games.

We lost every time. That’s a good thing.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Mummy’s Mask
Times Played: 6
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

We finished off the beginning adventure, beating scenario four on the first try but it took us two tries to beat the last one. The real enemy in the loss was just the amount of time it took to get through the decks, plus a couple of bad rolls (i.e., me twice needing a two or greater on a d10 to close a location and rolling a one each time).

We also started adventure one and beat the first three scenarios we chose to play. The players are allowed to choose the order for the first four scenarios and then play the last one after completing the others.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Wrath of the Righteous
Times Played: 9
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Herald of the Ivory Labyrinth for six of the games and City of Locusts for three of them.

Michael and I moved into and completed the fifth adventure. And made it through the third scenario in the fifth adventure. Soon it will be done and we’ll go hunting mummies!


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 8

Yeah, we’re still playing this. Ain’t it cool!


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Xeno Invasion.

Just one quick game when we didn’t have enough time for one more scenario of the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game. I think it might be time to go back to the original set of cards and expansions.


Robo Rally
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: Before 2003
My Rating: 7

We played a four-player game using Mike’s copy which is either the 2005 or 2010 edition. The map was on a single tile and all four flags were on the first half of the board.

I won after Mike and Matt bit the dust.

I still like the game, but it is sure dated and takes a long, long time to play. I wasn’t a huge fan of the flag layout on the map. It would have been better to spread them out a little and force the robots to cross either other going to and fro, but it still worked. Jerry almost won by being the last to survive and being in last the entire game.


Roll Player
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 7

My Human Wizard was just a little more superior than Mike’s Frogkin Druid. It would have turned out differently if Mike had not misread one of the traits he bought.

Game two was my Dragonkin Thief competing against Mike’s Human Ranger and Greg’s Elf Barbarian. The way of the thief was the superior way. Money, baby. Money!


Villages of Valeria
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

It’s fun but I agree with Mike that it just doesn’t seem to flow. I want to play it some more, and soon, but I think this might be one that ends up dropping a point, or so, in the ratings and being relegated to gathering dust. Kind of like Jay Cutler in the NFL beginning in 2017.


Viticulture
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2016
My Rating: 7

We played using Mike’s Inferior Edition which is the worst of the three editions.

The basic set-up has been removed and the “Mamas and Papas” expansion from Tuscany was made the standard way to start the game. I didn’t like that expansion. They also added the expansion that allows the fields to be sold, which just makes more money available. The visitor cards felt much more powerful in some cases and their relative power is varies greatly. They add way more randomness to the game.

Why anyone would ever buy another game from Stonemaier when this has gone through three rapid editions, changing the rules constantly. So if you own the initial edition, someone else owns the second, revised edition, and someone else owns this, you will be playing with different rule.


Warmachine
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 9

My first game was against Ben’s Retribution and I expected to lose because he went with a shooty list and I eschewed the choir to go for the big warjack. It was a horrible game since my rolls sucked, his didn’t, and I also made a couple of bad choices.

Game two was against the other Ben’s Circle Orboros. He left Wrong Eye, his hired minion, vulnerable and I tried taking him out to also take out his gator warbeast, but my attempt failed a couple of times because the darned walking luggage made a couple of saving rolls. Then Ben rolled over me. What a disappointing month.

Month four lets me switch out my warcaster (general) and double the size of my army, so now I will start playing with things how I might normally play. I don’t know if I will consistently be able to beat the better players, but I will feel more competitive while losing. I hope.

Also, starting a new job means my playing time might be curtailed some, but I hope to get in at least two games in January. Or more. Much, much more!


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

We needed a quick game for five players and this fits the bill.


Zombicide: Black Plague
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2016
My Rating: 8

Michael painted all my zombies from the base game because he found the exercise relaxing. Since he painted them, he wanted to play. So he, Nick, and I played with two characters each and we played quest 2, “The Black Book.”

It was a successful adventure.

Later in the month, Michael, Mike Mc., and I played quest 4, “Famine” and won, even though the last food item was the next to last card in the deck.
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Mon Jan 2, 2017 5:33 am
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Games Played in November 2016

Bobby Warren
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I played a little less Warmachine this month and played a lot of new games.

Warmachine was my highest rated game of the month, at a nine, and the lowest rating is a three and came from the first game I’ll be talking about below. That wasn’t the only stinker of the month.

In November I played 26 different games a total of 61 times and five expansions 12 times. Eleven of the games and two of the expansions were new to me, and I played eight of the games and two of the expansions in October. Those played games in November are:

Chariot Race
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 3

First up this month is a terrible, not-fun game with sub-par components. It says it is a racing game, but the way to win appears to be by knocking everyone else out of the game. The rules make no sense because going faster, in a race, is always worse for the chariot. at least I was able to commit suicide in the game and walk over and get a drink while the other suckers, err, players, finished the game.

Don’t blame Gryphon for the components. One thing I am sure about is they would never have done something to low-end as the “dashboards” used to track the chariots. I bet that can be blamed on the European publisher. When did American companies care more about the quality of components over German ones?


Clank!
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 8

We are still enjoying this dungeon crawling deck builder even though I was having way too many dragon attacks. I was having the dragon attack every turn there was a face-up card with the dragon icon, not only the turn that card was turned over. Oops.

The third game was played the right way and it went well. I ended up grabbing both the 25-point and 30-point artifacts with the backpack and key and got out of the dungeon.

The fourth game was against just Nico and he planned on doing the same thing, but was sidetracked when he was able to buy two seven-point VP Secret Tome cards for the same cost as the backpack. He grabbed the 30-point artifact and had been collecting the Secret Tomes, so I ended up getting a backpack and grabbed the 25- and 15-point artifacts. Nico was close to being dragon bait so he got out quickly. I was a couple of turns behind him, but managed to get out and scored a win. The difference being the second artifact I grabbed.

In the last game, Mike grabbed an artifact and made a dash for the exit. I grabbed the 30-point artifact and grabbed as many movement cards as I could. Near the end, I beat a monster and grabbed a gem that generated a lot of clank and that was my undoing. I was killed right before I was about leave the dungeon. I still had enough points to win over Michael, Mike, and Nick.


Colony
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

It’s a resource management game where the dice are resources that are used to take actions or buy cards which represent buildings. The buildings give more resources or actions that can be taken on a turn.

I played against Mike and then against Nico and T. All-in-all it is a fun game that I look forward to playing again.


Dicey Goblins
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 4

Maybe it was just the die rolling, but there was no real tension in the game and we only had one of the six rounds that ended with the dragon attacking. I didn’t think it was that fun.


Dream Home
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This is a fun, light drafting game about building your dream house. I bet that is how they came up with the name for the game. Well, maybe I’m 93% sure.

The first time I played was against Mike and Jerry and the second time was against Mike and Damian. Game three was with Mike and Damian again, and game four was with Mike and Michael. I didn’t do too well either game, but enjoyed it. I watched most of a game played by others, and even then my choices seemed poor.

I would have picked this up but it was out of stock and I bought something else. I still might get it at some point, and would happily attempt to play it any time.


Fabled Fruit
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

It’s an odd game that I just don’t feel like describing. Mike, Hilary, and I played three times, with Mike being the overall winner. We rebooted the set when we were done. The next time we play, we will start over at the beginning and keep track of everything as we try to play through all the cards.


Hare & Tortoise
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2014
My Rating: 8

We actually played the newest version of the game, Around the World in 80 Days, which added spaces to the race that brings the number of spaces up from 64 to 80. It also uses cards for the “hare” spaces instead of the die roll from the recent Rio Grande edition. I liked the way the cards were used over the previous card versions I’ve played, though I did not like the hold and play later cards.


Hero Realms
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

I enjoyed the three playings of this against Nico. I used only the cards from the game box and none of the promos or the class decks. The games went fast, maybe a little too fast for me. So few cards are seen each game that I don’t see wanting to add any more, though I will be adding in the promos soon.


High Score
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 8

Maybe the guys will stop complaining about my dice rolling after everyone else rolled way off the curve? Nah, I didn’t think so!


Ivanhoe
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2010
My Rating: 4

This just has too much down time because players are always passing and waiting for the others to finish.


La Granja: No Siesta!
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

While I enjoyed this dice game a little more than the board game, it still felt like a soulless Yahtzee clone. Both this and the board game are more procedural than fun. I have always said Edgar Rice Burroughs had one plot that he recycled over and over but made fun. These games are lacking a lot of the fun. They are just “interesting.” This is one I will play some more because it is an interesting enough puzzle.


Masmorra
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

Mike, Jerry, and I played a regular, competitive game of this. Mike opened up a big room on the bottom floor and, just when things got tough for him he switched places with Jerry and that trapped him down there for much of the game. Good times.

The three of us played later in the month with Damian. Being the superior player who knows all, I whined near the end when Damian stole a VP from me in the last round because Mike was closer to him. He said he knew what he as doing, which I loudly doubted. He then stopped Mike from being able to use any abilities, proving a me a loud wrong as he won. I hate being wrong. The times weren’t as good this game.

I am really looking forward to getting my copy when the Kickstarter ships, which I now expect it sometime after the first of the year.


Mystic Vale
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: Vale of Magic.

Mike and I played a couple of games using the new expansion and we both liked the new cards we saw. When playing with the expansion, my rating is a 7 and without it is a 6.


Oceanos
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Another card-drafting game by 7 Wonders designer Antoine Bauza. It’s a fun game that takes up a lot of table space.

Like 7 Wonders there is set collection and improvements to your base. Here is it upgrading your submarine instead of building your wonder. The drafting mechanism and card layout is the real difference. Each player is dealt a number of cards and plays one of them, then gives the rest back to the dealer. the dealer plays one of them, then the next player becomes the dealer. The cards are laid out in rows over three rounds, with each round representing diving deeper and deeper, so the cards from the second round are laid out below the first round’s cards, and the third round’s are laid out under the second.

Each round the players score for the number of different types of fish in a level, up to a maximum determined by the size of their sub, plus a number of points determined by the speed of the sub, minus a random number if they have the most hazards in their row of cards. At the end, they players also score points for the largest contiguous chain of cards with coral and for treasures drawn from a bag by their divers.

I was late to the party to upgrade my sub to be able to score more than the minimum number of fish and thought I was surely doomed to a poor finish. But I managed to connect well-over 10 cards with coral on them and get five treasures at the end of the game, so I scored quite well and finished with the win.

The second game was another five-player game and I was in the running, but I tried to set up so I could get the best chance to get the a treasure chest in line but I couldn’t get one.


Pandemic: The Cure
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 1/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Experimental Meds for three of the games.

With the Experimental Meds being released, Mike brought this to the table on a Friday night and he, Damian, Jerry, and I lost the base game twice.

Then the next day Nico, Michael, and I played it three times with the expansion and lost twice and just won the last time. Finally, Hilary, Mike, and I lost a couple more games.

The two additional modules make the game harder. The fifth disease has more of a consistent impact on the game play while the hot zones are far more situational.


Paperback
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 7

After playing this quite a bit using the app on the phone, I decided to go ahead and pick this up. I taught it to Michael and we tied the first game and won the second one. Later in the month, Mike, Hilary, and I played one game and Mike ended up winning that one.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Mummy’s Mask
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

After abandoning the last set with the group at Mike’s I wasn’t sure we would play again, but the new set is out and we played this. We played the first three scenarios. Damian is playing Simoun the Rogue, Jerry is playing Ahmotep the Magus, Mike is playing Zadim the Slayer, and I am playing Drelm the Cleric.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Wrath of the Righteous
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: The Midnight Isles for all three games.

Michael and I finished off the fourth scenario pack and it was quite challenging. This has been getting better the further along the path we’ve gotten.


Potion Explosion
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This is a fun little puzzle and set-collection game with special powers for collecting the right ingredients for finishing types of potions. The cardboard apparatus looks like it might end up being prone to wear and I wondered if there was an MDF one out there. By the time I got home from Mike’s that evening, he found one online at a decent price.

I did end up getting the game, though mine came without the apparatus. I contacted CMON on Monday night, they replied on Tuesday, sent it on Wednesday, and I got it on Friday, just in time to play on Saturday against Michael and Nico. Nico’s comments were along my own in that there was more a game here than appeared at first look.

The following weekend Mike, Michael, Nick and I played. This was Nick’s one allotted win of the month.


Qwixx
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansions Played: Qwixx Gemixxt for one of the games.

Two games. One with an expansion and one without.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Xeno Invasion.

We needed a quick game to finish the day, so Michael and I played a game. The Xeno Invasion is the weakest set yet. This might be because we don’t play with the invasion game which neither of us liked.


Roll Player
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 7

Mike and I taught this to Jerry and we all had a really bad game for getting our statistics where they would score and Jerry, the rookie, won.


Snowblind: Race for the Pole
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Oy! The numbers on the dice can be hard to read. The are so thick and stylized that they lose some definition at a quick glance and we often confused a “1” for a “7” and vice-versa.

The game was okay. I never felt like I was pushing my luck, which is how Nico described it. I was playing the odds and once the odds weren’t in my favor I stopped. The decisions seemed pretty obvious the whole game. I won by playing it safe, setting up a low-risk return trip, and being the last one on the last turn so I had lots of dice to roll with minimum risk.

I also thought the board was a little small for the components for four players. We often had things bumped just a little and they ended up on lines and we didn’t remember what went where at times. I liked the game and will play it, but was glad I didn’t back it on Kickstarter.


Warmachine
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 9

I played five games this month. I made blog posts about each battle with the first three games being covered in one post:

• Journeyman league, game 7 against Ben R.’s Circle Orboros.
• Journeyman league, game 8 against Brigham’s Retribution of Scyrah.
• Journeyman league, game 9 against Ben S.’s Retribution of Scyrah.
• Journeyman league, game 10 against Brigham’s Retribution of Scyrah.
• Non-league 50-point game against Ben R.’s Circle Orboros.

The league has been going well and it was also nice to play a game that wasn’t a league game.


Welcome Back to the Dungeon
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2016
My Rating: 7

Brandon picked this up and was looking to give it a try to see what the differences were, and since I had played it I explained the differences and we played with Buzz, who won.


Zombicide: Black Plague
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

We played the same quest that we lost in September, and that was number seven, “Dead Trail.” This time he added in the heroes from the Special Guest Artist boxes he owns and the Deadeye Walkers, which were nasty, nasty, nasty!

We lost both times.
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Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:40 am
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Games Played in October 2016

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
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It was a busy month. I am running a Warmachine Journeyman league at the Game Depot and got to play seven times during the month. There were some great new games this month as well as some older classics seeing table time.

I got nothing else to add, other than in October I played 30 games a total of 63 times and four expansions ten times. Three of the games and two of the expansions were new to me, and I played seven of the games and one of the expansions in September. Here they are:


10 Days in Europe
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

Two players with Nico. If it is in the game bag it works well as a game while waiting for someone to show, a light game after a heavier game, or to end the day.

I also played three games against Nick and Allison. I should bring one of the other games in the series instead of this one, but it is my favorite.


51st State: Master Set
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 7

Nico played New York and I played the Merchants Guild and we included the Winter cards. Nico actually ended up making more deals than I did with the Merchants, while I ended up getting out more buildings than he did and that gave me the extra points I needed to pull out a win.


7 Wonders: Duel
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2016
My Rating: 8

Nico and I played this late one Saturday. I jumped on the science train early and managed to pull off a win with the sciences about 2/3 the way through the third age. Sometimes the game can hinge on how the cards are laid out in the tableau and whether or not you can force your opponent to reveal them so you can draft them.


Big Book of Madness
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 6

Michael pulled this coop out and we played a four-player game and lost. After the initial excitement generated by the game, I picked up a copy and never played mine. Now I am pretty much done with the need to play the game so I have sold my copy. I am happy to play it when others request it, but I won’t be suggesting it. Michael, Mike, and Rylan own the game and that’s another reason I don’t need to own it.


Clank!
Times Played: 6
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

It’s a deck-building game driving a high-level dungeon crawl race to collect treasure before the dragon kills the heroes. There are two different dungeon boards. We played the first game on the easy side and the other two on the harder side.

I picked the game up, Nick, Michael and I played a couple of times. Nick didn’t make it out of the dungeon either time, and none of us made it out the second game, though all three of us scored becuase we had escaped the depths. Mike and I played it a couple more times and then Nick and I played on the last Saturday when it was just the two of us waiting for others to arrive.

The question is whether this game is will it be played for years to come or burn brightly for a couple of months and then disappear?


Coloretto
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2011
My Rating: 6

Ashley and Rylan bought this and Rylan brought it on another weekend and I explained the game. The new edition has a new type of wild card which adds more randomness which I am not sure I like, but the game is still fun. Now it is time to introduce to Zooloretto to the new Eurogame players.


Dominion
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 6/2015
My Rating: 9

I picked up the update packs for both Dominion and Intrigue recently and Allison had stated she would like to play, so I brought along the base game with the new cards and we played four times. Nick won twice, but the world didn’t end, so that is a good thing.


Finca
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2014
My Rating: 8

It was a three player game with the new Nick. I felt like I was having a poor game, but when the scores were tallied at the end I had a huge win. This was likely because I was very familiar with the game and they really weren’t. I need to bring this for a few months so we can get it played some more.


Finstere Flure
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2016
My Rating: 7

Listen to Michael. Block me. Then he can win instead. Weak-minded fools.


Heckmeck am Bratwurmeck
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 8

Hilary, Mike, and I played and the obnoxious one beat the Hilary. Portent or random cooincidence? We’ll know in a few days…


High Score
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

We played this a couple of times with five players because I own two sets.


Medici
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2016
My Rating: 9

I was expecting a lot of players on a Saturday and one of them was Rob, who requested a classic auction game. That meant this game was one of the obvious choices.

It was the first time Allison, Nick, and Rylan had played the game while Michael, Rob, and I were experienced with the game. I never did what I thought was really well in any one round, but I had a steady game without a a real bad round. Allison, scored big on a couple of goods the last round and looked to be the winner, but it turns out we tied at 80 points, which is not a very high score. The game changes with the dynamics of the play group and the goods available. This group was a little confrontational with Allison buying up the goods that Nick needed because she could also use them. In other words, good times and a lot of fun!


Mystery Rummy 4: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2015
My Rating: 8

Mike needed one Ralph Capone to score a complete set, and tried stealing it from my hand since there was only one card left in the draw pile. It was Ralph, successfully hiding from the Feds and Mike didn’t get that bonus for the complete set for that hand. It might have been the difference in the game. Thank goodness that Ralphie was so good at hiding out!


Mystic Vale
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 6

Nico and I played once on the first Saturday of the month, and then the following week we played with the old Nick who cleaned out clocks. Not that there are clocks in a mystic vale run by druids.


Nations: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 6

I whined and moaned when I came back to the table and this had been picked. I did it because I wanted to, and not because of the game chosen. For the first time, I jumped ahead in the book scoring from the beginning and ended up winning the track all four times, which was enough for me to be able to pull out the win. It really is a fun dice game, with ot without me whining about it. shake


Patchwork
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2015
My Rating: 7

My second playing. I still scored negative, but a lot closer to zero than before. Mike easily won.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Wrath of the Righteous
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: The Midnight Isles for both games.

Michael and I had the chance to play a couple of games and we started The Midnight Isles adventure pack. We’re a little over half way through the adventure with the new one being released this month. It might take a while before we’re ready to take on the mummies, but it looks like we will try the new one at Mike’s in the near future.


Powerboats
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2013
My Rating: 7

There were six of us and Michael suggested this one. Because of a time crunch, we were only able to get through two of the three races and Nick was the winner.

One of the weaknesses of the game is it can be unforgiving and if a player is unlucky or makes a bad decision, they are forced to play out the rest of the race without a chance to catch up, which might take a while. A lot of that depends on the layout of the course and how many tough parts there are in each race. If there is just one, then the error is magnified. If there are multiple places for errors, then the mistake might be rectified.

It is still a fun game but we need to remember not to play it at the end of the day when we might run out of time.


Pursuit of Happiness
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

We played twice. The first time we played with several things wrong but still liked the game. The second time, I recall we did a little wrong, and it was better. I am looking forward to playing it again but it isn’t something I plan on buying.


Qwixx
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansions Played: Qwixx Gemixxt for three of the games.

This was played four times, with most of them using the mixed-color side of Qwixx Gemixxt.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played a close game. In the third era I was racing up the Nile track and should have taken a flood, but I thought I had more time than I did and got greedy for the extra points. If I had taken the flood I would have won. Instead, he did by getting more monument points at the end of the game.


Roll for the Galaxy
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 6/2016
My Rating: 6

Expansion Played: Ambition.

Nico and I played four games at the end of a Saturday when it was just the two of us left. We always enjoy this and the games are pretty quick because we are both familiar with the game.


Roll Player
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 7

I played the most masculine side of the elves. Yup, the female side. She proved her toughness (i.e., sneakiness) by being a rogue and using her myriad of skills to be the best character generated during the game. Later in the week I ordered a copy of the game for myself.

Nico and I also taught the game to new Nick and I was an evil Orc Paladin with a three Charisma, but I still managed to score 40 points. In the previous two games I did not count my class dice as points and am not sure it was explained that I should, but it is obvious if you look at the scoring order on every character sheet.

We played a third time at the store, and then Mike and I played a couple of times at his place. It’s a fun game that I hope gets played for a while.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 9

Played using both core sets, Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients, plus Caverns of Cynder, the Frontier Town as well as every smaller expansion released so far.

Reminder: Back in December I began tracking one of each hero and asking different people to play them instead of tracking heroes for each player. That way we don’t need specific people around to play specific characters and, hopefully, we can see most, if not all of them advance to eighth level. It also causes the gear and artifact cards to be spread out among all the characters.


Taluva
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2015
My Rating: 8

Nico and I taught the game to old Nick. As always, we played with 12 tiles per player instead of using all 48.

I was doing really well, and thought I would get the premature victory, but they blocked me quite well and Nico ended up with the win.


Warmachine
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 9

I played seven games this month. I made blog posts about each one with the last two games being covered in one post:

• Journeyman league, game 1 against Jurt’s Trollbloods.
• Journeyman league, game 2 against Kiernan’s Cygnar.
• Journeyman league, game 3 against Tony’s Skorne.
• Journeyman league, game 4 against Ben’s Circle Orboros.
• A non-league game against Ben’s Circle Orboros.
• Journeyman league, game 5 against Brigham’s Retribution of Scyrah.
• Journeyman league, game 6 against Eric’s Protectorate of Menoth.

So far, the league has been running pretty well. I had hoped everyone would be able to get in more than one game, but interest still seems to be good. Four of the players didn’t get in a game. I was supposed to play one of them, but soemthing came up and I had to cancel the game, and two of the players joined the league late.


Welcome Back to the Dungeon
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

It’s pretty much the same game as the original, though it adds a deck of specisal cards. Two of them are randomly selected and added to the monster deck and the game is played with them. The heroes looked like they would have a much harder time in the dungeon than the originals, but in action they seemed to do just as well.


World’s Fair 1893
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2016
My Rating: 7

I’d asked Nick to bring this along and when he was setting it up, I was talking to someone about the Warmachine Journeyman league, and kind of just jumped in to the game and played from memory, asking a few questions. I screwed up, trying to collect many of one type reward instead of collecting sets of them, so I did not do well. I still enjoyed playing it again and will be happy to play it when it is brought along.


Zombie Dice
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion played: Zombie Dice 3: School Bus for one of the games.

Bus fast. Zomby too slo.

Shootgunn hirt.


Zooloretto
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 12/2013
My Rating: 7

Since we played Coloretto I had to bring out to teach to the newer Eurogamers. Rylan wasn’t there, but Nick and Allison were and we played a couple of times. Even though she won the second game, it didn’t go over as well with Allison and I thought it might. Nick seemed to be okay with the game so I will bring it out at least once more in the near future.
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Wed Nov 2, 2016 7:20 am
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Games Played in September 2016

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
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It’s cooling off here in the desert, which means only one or two days where the temperature is over a 100 and it gets down into the high 70s in the morning. Ahh, the crisp temperatures of the fall! Does anyone have a jacket I can borrow?

I did get a chance to play to play Warmachine in September and have a Journeyman League starting in October.

The lowest rated game of the month was a new-to-me two. My highest ratings this month were a couple of nines, though one of them isn’t reflected on the linked game because the latest edition is still not in the database.

I played 29 different games a total of 37 times and recorded playing one expansion pack twice. Ten of the games were new to me. In August, I played nine of the games and none of the expansions played in September.


10 Days in Europe
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2015
My Rating: 8

I taught this to T., Nick D., and Allison, with Michael helping before he had to leave. I mention this because it is important. Allison ended up winning the first game, but she had two ships together. Michael had told her it was okay before he left so I wasn’t able to mock him for that, so I will do it here. still, we counted it as a win because I didn’t add that nugget when explaining the rules. So we played a second time.

In the second game, I only needed one tile to pull off the win after drawing the initial tiles. Nope, I didn’t win. Nick did. I still enjoy playing these games when they hit the table and hope someone picks them up since Out of the Box is no longer publishing.


7 Wonders
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

Two games with six players. The best thing about this game is it does play with that many players and is still quick, and enjoyable. It makes the game harder because it is possible that you will never a type of card you want because of the randomness of a shuffle and the choices of the other players around the table.

Our scores in the two games were in different bands. The first game the winner was the only one to break 50 points and the rest were 42 or less. The next time the winner was above 60 points and three others were in the high 50s, one player in the high 40s, and one scored only 39. I suspect that we all saw more cards we wanted the second game.


Augustus
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 8

Another game that plays well with six and is fairly quick. We played two times and a disturbing trend was noticed. New Nick has started winning games. Sure, it was cute when he won once, but he won two games in a row on the last Saturday of the month. Methinks the universe is going batty! devil


B-Sieged
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 7

We broke this out again at Mike’s after not playing for a while. The four of us lost the first game, but won the second one. It’s still a really fun tower defense game and it looks like we might break out the expansion for the next game.


Beyond Baker Street
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

The first scenario/case is pretty easy. Last month we beat it at Mike’s and when I introduced the game at the store we beat it pretty easily as well. Next time I will try scenario two and see how much more challenging ti is.


D-Day Dice
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 6

After losing last month, T., Michael, and I attempted to swarm Gold Beach again and won easily.


Evolution: The Beginning
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

This is out of alphabetical order with the next one because we played this first.

Mike picked this up at Target because he was looking for a lighter game to play with the kids. He explained it was a streamlined version of Evolution with fewer traits. I liked it and Mike ended up getting the original game and we played that later in the month.


Evolution
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

The biggest difference between this and Evolution: The Beginning is there are a lot more traits and the amount of available food is determined at the beginning of each round by a number on the cards that the players discard at the beginning. The differences really does change the game and I liked it.

Later in the month, T. was asking about a new game he could get during gaming at the Game Depot, and I thought of this, gave him an idea of how it plays and he picked it up. We ran through the game rules and played.


Flash Point: Fire Rescue
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 8

Once more into the breach!

To burn up and die, like a poorly-secured marshmallow on a scout camping trip, that is.


Isle of Skye
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 7

A couple of games as this is seeing a resurgence these days.


King of Tokyo
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 8

A few things to remember:

• First, with six players do not tempt fate and stay in Tokyo.
• When you are promised getting six “smacks” if you do tempt fate by staying in Tokyo, believe it!
• Don’t ignore the fat old dude sitting at the end of the table, rolling his sets of twos and threes.
• Don’t mess with Cyber Bunny!


Others: 7 Sins
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 7

Mike ran Pride with the Corrupted Doctors and we played the “Haven’s Last Stand” scenario on map B.

Damian hadn’t played before, so Mike went over the rules and then Jerry and I joined the game and we went against the sin. It was a really tough scenario, but won the game rather suddenly when we met the second scenario condition and I was just two spaced away from our winning goal: delivering an innocent to our headquarters. Mike had left open and I doubt he would do that if he was more familiar with the scenario goals. So, yes, we kind of lucked into the win.

Every time I have played it I liked it a little more than the last time. Still, I sold my pledge because I wasn’t likely to bring it to the store all that often and it takes up so much space. But I sold it to Brent so I might get to play it on Saturdays on occasion as well as playing it at Mike’s.


Pandemic: Reign of Cthulhu
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

I picked this up the weekend it came out. Michael, Nick R. and I played it twice. We won the first game and lost the second one, which we played with the difficulty made one step harder.

They both liked the game.


Paperback
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

This is a decent deck-builder that is also a word game. The problem is with some people it might take a long, long time for them to come up with words. When Mike and I played, it was a little slow and I think with three or more players it might be tedious waiting for your turn. Still, if you like word games this might just be the deck-building game for you.

And Mike only won because he was lucky. Not because he’s better at words! shake


Qwixx
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansions Played: Each of the Qwixx Gemixxt sheets once.

I played games using each of the sheets from the expansion once. I definitely prefer the mixed colors sheet over the mixed number-order sheet. Still, both are fun to play with, though Big Points is still the best of the expansions.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played this after a few months of not playing. It’s still a good go-to game for us.


Roll Player
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Nico’s Kickstarter pledge arrived and he and T. had played it and both wanted it play it at the store. They played with Nick D. and then T. taught it to Michael and I.

The basic idea for the game is that you are trying to create the best RPG character possible. Each round you draft a die that get designated to one of the stats, with each stat getting three dice, and then have the chance to buy a skill, weapon, armor, or trait. The dice are different colors and how they are placed they might end up scoring points based on the color and placement. In the end you will score based on the value of your stats, any special scoring from your cards, having dice of a color associated with your character’s class, and dice color placement in your character stats.

We all really enjoyed playing it.

I thought about backing it when it was on Kickstarter, but didn’t. I kind of wish I had, but will get it when the store gets it in.


San Juan
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 7

We played a four-player game. This time I saw a Guild Hall early on and focused on getting out production buildings, which is the way to play it. Unlike last game, I saw several end-game buildings during the game, though no Library. I was able to build both the Palace and the Guild Hall and ended up with a fairly comfortable win.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 9

Played using both core sets, Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients, plus Caverns of Cynder, the Frontier Town as well as every smaller expansion released so far.

After missing last month, we started up again at Mike’s with that group. We had to venture into Targa and had several solid combat encounters. We faced off against the various Targa inhabitants, finishing off the scenario against a Targa Guardian with every other indigenous model appearing in small doses as well.

I also received the Cowboy, the Frontier Doc, and the Jargono Native when Mike was kind enough to Sherpa them back from GenCon but didn’t the Saturday group to the table to play so they are still waiting to see some action.


Sushi Go! Party
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

I like this just a little less than the original game because of the set up and tear down time because of the varied card mix and significantly bigger package. I won’t be picking it up, but would play as long as someone else was responsible for drudge work of the game.

Even with six players, we often didn’t see a good mix of some of the cards, so that is a negative towards wanting to play it a lot.


Targi
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This is a very solid, well-designed two player game. I would definitely pick this up if I wasn’t only playing two-player games with Mike, who already has it.


Thief’s Market
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 2

What a useless piece of junk this is. It takes everything good an fun there can be in a “divide and choose” game and turns it into a plodding, analysis paralysis exercise that completely random because the available resources each turn are dice and the scoring items, the cards, are also random. This was the most painful gaming experience I’ve had since the initial release of Myth. Myth even had an excuse: it was an undeveloped steaming pile, while this was supposedly play tested and someone thought it would be a good idea to actually publish it.

I’d rate it a “1” except there is actually game play there. It’s not good, but it is there.


Tides of Madness
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

I liked this a little more than I liked Tides of Time. The Madness mechanism adds just enough additional game play without bogging down the simple basic premise.


Tiny Epic Galaxies
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 7

Sometimes the dice just don’t like you. But I do like the game enough to back the expansion on Kickstarter.


Via Nebula
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

It’s a nice, simpler, variation on Steam and I look forward to playing it again.


Warmachine
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 9

I finally had the chance to get in a game of the new MK3 version of Warmachine! I played the Protectorate of Menoth using a warjack-heavy list with no combat units against Tony’s Cygnaran heretics.

I do like the new rules and they do make it possible to play with more than one or two warjacks and keep them operating at peak efficiency.

I talked about the game we played in detail in an earlier blog post.

I am also going to be coordinating a Journeyman League at the Game Depot to try and get a community playing at the store.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

To the winner goes the spoils. Err, beans.


Zombicide: Black Plague
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 8

We played with Mike’s set using some of the group-run characters from the expansions. I was late because of work, but stepped in to one of the characters they were running.

It was a tight scenario and we were thinking we just about turned the corner and were leaning towards winning, when we were overwhelmed. I hope we play it again soon.


Zombie Dice
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2016
My Rating: 8

Always a great filler when waiting for someone or for another game to end.
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Sat Oct 1, 2016 7:13 am
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Games Played in August 2016

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
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It was a month of longer games and fewer fillers, so I played a fewer number of games than I usually play. Mike and Damian went to GenCon and brought back some new ones, which were fun.

I tried to get in at least one game of Warmachine, with the Mark 3 rules being out since July (but still not approved in the BGG database), but that didn’t happen. Neither the group at Mike’s nor the group at the store played Shadows of Brimstone this month, which is a first for the year.

The collection has swollen beyond the storage and I definitely need to get rid of some games. I probably should get some games on the BGG marketplace but that takes effort and time I would rather be doing other things. Dang, I am so lazy!

In August I played 18 games a total of 31 times and one expansion one time. Five of the games and none of the expansions were new to me, and I played three of the games in July. That’s a bit surprising.

That’s it’s for the pointless meanderings and now on to the complete drivel!


51st State: Master Set
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 7

We played the first game with the New Era cards and it was odd. I couldn’t pull actions and kept getting features. T. had actions but didn’t pull a single feature (though he might have had one late.) Nick looked to be the easy winner, having jumped out to an early lead by playing two buildings that gave him VPs for types he had in his state, getting the maximum out of them both for a total of 10 VPs. I was still managing to generate a point here and there, and after he and T. passed on the last turn, I was able to generate just enough to be in a tie with Nick before we counted buildings. I had a couple more than him and ended with a slight win.

The card distribution was wonky as hell. Like I said, I didn’t see but one or two actions until the last turn and T. was feature starved the whole game. I doubt we’ll see another game like that anytime soon.

The second game was with four players and ran more in-line with normal probabilities. T. won this game.


7 Wonders
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 1/2016
My Rating: 8

Nick had said he was interested in playing, so I brought this along and we played two games without any of the expansions. I was also a new game for both T. and Rylan.

Michael and I each won once, but the others improved their scores in the second game. The new guys were surprised at how quickly the game played and seemed to enjoy it enough that I will likely keep bringing it. I might add in one of the first two expansions next time, though I seem to be the one who likes Leaders the most and I recall others not liking it, so maybe we’ll just stick to the base game?


Beyond Baker Street
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Mike picked this up at GenCon and said it was a fixed Hanabi. I wouldn’t call it fixed, but it is definitely a better game. I picked one up a couple of weeks later at the Game Depot.


Dark Gothic
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 7

A close three-player game.


D-Day Dice
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2015
My Rating: 6

This was the first time that T. has played and he, Michael, and I stormed Gold Beach, but only with a silver, or even bronze, effort as we failed to make it to a single bunker.


Elder Sign
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Unseen Forces.

Nick wanted to play, so we faced off against Glaaki, who has a face even a mother can’t love, and kicked his butt into the next dimension.


High Score
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2012
My Rating: 8

Wow, I can’t believe I haven’t brought this out to play in almost four years. It was fun, but I have to say I much prefer rolling the dice. I don’t have a chance to second-guess my placement when I do. In the third round this game, I erased a number, and changed its position, but also partially-erased another one which I thought was a nine. It wasn’t. Not that it would have mattered what number it ended up being because I so screwed up the last round that there was no way for me to win.

At least I was in the running until the last round, unlike most of the losers playing! devil


Isle of Skye
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2016
My Rating: 7

T. wanted to play this since he picked it up and wanted a rules refresher, so Michael pulled it out and we played a five-player game.

Seriously, people, pay attention to the scoring tiles. Not only is a verbal description given, but the way the tile scores is pretty obvious after the verbal/written description. Not that I ever have that problem! Sheesh!


Masmorra
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Mike picked it up at GenCon even though he backed it on Kickstarter because he wanted to play it right away, and I am not complaining. It was a lot of fun, though I can see it not working with groups where players use the cards to attack other players just to pick on one another instead of actually trying to slow down the potential winner. This won’t happen in our groups, so I expect it will be a favorite for a while.

Nico, T., Nick, and I played two more games the following Saturday. Nico picked up his copy from eBay. Like Mike, he was also a backer but wanted to get it right away. So he broke it out and we played. The game is slower than with two. We finished the two games in about three hours which was fine. The first game took longer than the second, which is to be expected since everyone else was playing for the first time.

Then Mike, Jerry and I played later in the month. The first time was a normal game and the second was the cooperative variant. Then the following day, Nico broke it out and we played a couple of five-player cooperative games. I was pleasantly surprised how well the game played with five players. I am not sure I would want to play the basic game with five, but it worked just fine when playing the cooperative version.

I am looking forward to giving it a whirl in the future with more heroes and more monster dice. So the Kickstarter can’t arrive soon enough for me.


Mystic Vale
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2015
My Rating: 6

Dave was demoing it during board game day at the Game Depot and he must have played six or seven times over the course of the day. I played with Matthew, who I haven’t seen in ages, Zach, and Dave.

This game suffers the same issue as any of the deck builders with random cards being available. It is possible that games will happen where a player never sees a card they want because they will be bought up by other players before it comes to their turn. This happened to me this game. I would rather play it with fewer players.


Others: 7 Sins
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Mike and I took on this game with him reading the rules. I hadn’t read the rules or looked at anything to do with the game play since the Kickstarter.

He set up the basic “Haven’s Last Stand” scenario and ran the forces of Sloth with the Corrupted Nuns helping out the extra-dimensional horrors, and I played the heroes of Alpha Team. About half the way through the game I felt like there was nothing I was going to be able to do to win as Mike kept rolling more and more dice as the sins overwhelmed the heroes.

Most of the map felt pointless and I never got beyond the second tile from the base.

The second game was the same scenario with the other map layout. I like it better because the map allowed us to move around if we chose to. We ended up winning this game, in large part because Thorley was very maxed out on the gear and was nigh-invulnerable, even to huge amounts of dice the sins were throwing at him.

After skimming the forums, I suspect our approach was a little too combat-oriented. I am looking forward to playing the game some more and hope Mike plays a sin other than Sloth with the Corrupted Nuns because I would like to see some more of the options with the game.

I am still likely going to be selling off my pledge when it arrives. I can’t see bringing this on a Saturday and getting it played all that often and it is going to take up a lot of space, which is at a premium right now. It’s the sort of game that might see more play if Michael owned it because he is more aggressive at suggesting games than I am, and he would enjoy playing the sins and beating down everyone else.


Pandemic: Reign of Cthulhu
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Another GenCon pick-up by Mike. He, Hilary, and I tried it out and failed most miserably. It will take some getting used to the different strategy necessary to beat this, but it will be fun to explore the game. It is in many ways a simpler, more streamlined design, that works with the theme of the game. Not that it is a deep, thematic game, but it represents what the players are trying to do quite well.


Qwixx
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 7/2016
My Rating: 8

Qwixx, quickly played by a quirky quartet. Not quietly.

Nick and I also played one game when I taught it to him and he bought it.


Salvation Road
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Another GenCon game for Mike. It’s a decent cooperative game and we lost both times we played.


San Juan
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 8

This was another game that T. hadn’t played which Michael and I taught him. They got the two Guild Halls and T. was able to get the Library as well. I didn’t see a single six-point building until the end of the game and it wasn’t one that would help me. Still, I was close to the final score that Michael was able to generate with the Guild Hall and might have been able to pull out the game if I had an end-game scoring building.


Welcome to the Dungeon
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2015
My Rating: 7

Rylan would have won the game if he hadn’t looked at the remaining cards after forgetting to properly use a vorpal weapon. He still ended up with the win a couple of rounds later.

Yeah, Rylan won. We tried to stop it from happening, but failed.

Don’t get cocky, kid!


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 8

More dice rolled, more beans collected, and more hopes dashed by the fickle fate of the bean.


Zombie Dice
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2013
My Rating: 8

It was in the bag and we were looking for a quick game to play as others arrived. It fit the bill and hit the table.

As is the case of all these high-skill games, I dominated the rest and came out with a runaway win. shake
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Wed Aug 31, 2016 3:25 am
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Games Played in June 2016

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
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June may not be over just yet, but I know my gaming for the month is. Mike and I missed playing two-player games a couple of times and one Friday was given up to vacations, but other than that it was a pretty normal month. We had a week of 115 degree temperatures, but that’s Phoenix in the summer. I pity those of you who had 90+ degree heat with real humidity: you people really suffer in comparison!

The lowest rated game of the month was a single six, which is probably more of a seven, so that is great news. My highest rating this month was a tie between two games which both rated a nine.

I played only 26 different games a total of 42 times and recorded playing four expansions five times. Nine(!) of the games and none of the expansions were new to me. In May, I played four of the games and one of the expansions.


51st State: Master Set
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Mike taught this to me. He played the Merchant’s Guild and I played New York. We used only the base game cards. I liked this updated version of the game which felt much more like Imperial Settlers than the original version, which I wasn’t a fan of. I ended up with the win, though we played one rule wrong: we converted resources on our cards more than once per turn.

Game two was against Nico, who pre-ordered it and has the extra factions, we also included the New Era cards. I drew Texas to play and, this is something I never thought I would say, Texas sucks. All three of their actions are a one-to-one trade so there is nothing they are exceptional at trading and thus they have no focus. I was also hurt by not drawing many production cards. Nico played the Mutants and he overwhelmed my puny Texans.

The last time of the month was once again against Mike using just the base cards. This time we ended up swapping factions from the previous game. It was also Mike’s third time playing and he still hasn’t played with the right rules. He was not producing with his open production buildings and I was, but we didn’t realize it until near the end of the game. That gave me a huge advantage and I won. Hopefully, the next time he and I play, he’ll play with the right rules.


7 Wonders
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2016
My Rating: 8

We played a five-player game with just the base game. I was the only one focused on the green Science cards and managed enough of them, along with a little of everything else to have the best civilization of the bunch.


Animals on Board
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Mike picked up this portion-splitting game and he, Hilary, and I played it. It was light and fun.


Broom Service
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

It was one of those days when the temperature was going to settle in around 115 degrees, so not everyone brought games to play since I usually have my bag of games and someone else usually has their games with them. But Nico and Michael weren’t there. Mike was running errands before making to the store and didn’t want his games damaged by the heat*, and Alex didn’t bring anything with him. So the choice in games was limited and I had already pulled out the ones in my bag that would work for three. The Game Depot had a copy of this on sale for $30. I had eyed the game for a while and since we were looking for something to play, I pulled the trigger and bought it.

Mike went over the rules, and he, Rob, and I played using just the basic rules without any of the expanded variants. I liked it, though neither more or less than Witch’s Brew and would like to play it again soon, though I bet I will like it best with three players.

*Yes, extreme heat will warp paper products, melt and warp plastics, and break down glue bonds. Kids, watch your games around heat!


Castles of Burgundy: The Card Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Nico taught this to Rylan and I. It felt a lot like the original game and takes up a lot more space thank the original. Unfortunately, my FLGS ordered their copies from a distributor that hasn’t come delivered on the order, so I haven’t been able to get a copy of it. I’ll likely pick it up once they get it and I suspect they won’t be using that distributor for board game preorders for a while, if ever.


Elder Sign
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Unseen Forces.

Nico and I played Ashcan Pete and Amanda Sharpe and were quickly devoured by Yig. Yig is freaking everywhere…


Eldritch Horror
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Forsaken Lore for one of the games.

The last two times I played this, we won. But Yig was a terror to face off against, we lost two investigators during the game and didn’t finish even the second mystery before we died. Mike is getting the other small-box expansions to add to his set and I’m looking forward to what they are adding to the game.

Yig should retire.


Flash Point: Fire Rescue
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2016
My Rating: 8

We lost because the building crumbled around us before we could rescue enough people.


Gold West
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Nico taught this to Nick the New and I. I liked the variable board and ways to collect victory points, but overall there was nothing to make this game stand out. I will play it any time Nico brings it, but can’t see buying or trading for it.


Guildhall Fantasy: Fellowship
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

We hadn’t played the original game in quite a while and it took some time for us to familiarize ourselves with the rules again. The reference cards are not the best, since the print is so small on them, and that is one down-side to the small footprint of the box. We also had a hard time figuring out what one of the victory point cards meant. There was no key as to what to do with the “X” cards to the player’s guild. We only found it in an example in the rulebook. Sloppy.

I don’t know if I will be picking this, and the other two “new” sets up these sets since I own both the original sets. I can’t see myself plopping down almost $75 (retail) for six new roles and 12 duplicates.


Heckmeck am Bratwurmeck
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 8

I didn’t pull out the expansion for any of the games since at least one person was new each time. The first game new player was to T. Both he and Michael were dominating early on, but as they started to fail rolls, I was able to make enough to be in the running and eventually pull out the game as it ended.

Game two was teaching it to the new Nick (not to be confused with Nick R. or Nico R.). That game I gathered a huge stack of worms and refused to give them up, as I because the biggest rooster, or cock, if you will, at the table. shake

The third time was with Mike, Paul, and Alex. This game I was putting my worm dominance on the table for all to see. The dice gods are apparently favoring me once again as I won every time this month. In other words, I’m due for a losing streak!


Isle of Skye
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2015
My Rating: 7

We were looking for a five-player game, and Michael pulled this out. As I recall, neither T., Alex, nor Brent had played the game in the past. T. ended up with the victory. Michael and I scored close to him until the extra points were counted for the tile bonuses, and he jumped way ahead of us.

I’d play this again with five, but it really is better with fewer people.


La Isla
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Mike picked this up and we played it. I had heard it was very similar to Bruges, which I thought was a hot mess because the cards could royally screw you. This is a better design and I enjoyed it, though it seemed to end a little quickly with just two players.


Modern Art
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2012
My Rating: 9

Rob H. returned from his “exile” in the Bahamas so I had to bring along one of his favorites as he graced us with his presence. I am always happy to play this, and he went over the rules for Nico and Nick. Nick fell prey to the inexperienced player’s trap by buying a few too many of his own paintings, otherwise he might have had the win.

I ended up winning and I think it was because I might have done the better job playing the auctioneer, getting the weak-willed (i.e., everyone else) to bid more on my paintings up for auction that they did on others. Not that I’m conceited, or anything. Nooooo...

This is one of those games that I should try and get played more often than once every four years. Maybe now we’ll see Rob on occasion as he looks for the next weather hot spot to move to, this will happen.


Notre Dame
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2014
My Rating: 8

I taught the game without refreshing myself on the rules and I guess my explanation of the Doctor person card wasn’t clear because several people thought it moved the rat token to zero instead of reducing the rats for the round to zero. Michael also thought that and he was the only other who had played before, so I can blame him for this.


Orléans
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2016
My Rating: 8

Four players, with two new to the game. We had the map fill up way more than I have seen in the past, though there were several available towns in the north at the end of the game. We had all migrated south through various routes and that made it hard for anyone to get all of their guild halls on the board.

I really would like to get my hands on the limited edition, but the price is more than I am willing to pay and I suspect it will continue to rise.


Palaces of Carrara
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2015
My Rating: 7

My second playing was just not a fair game. I played against Nick and Nico, who had not played. Nico had watched a play-through of the game and had an idea of how it played, and I explained the game to them, with Nico helping out when I stumbled. I highlighted it was a race to complete various tasks because the game ended quickly and that five points for announcing end game could be very important. It turns out that it wasn’t.

When I called the end of the game, it took them both by surprise. I scored a whopping 148 points, Nico came in second at 67 and he just about doubled Nick, who scored in the neighborhood of 35 points but really didn’t count everything at the end. We played with the three basic goals and drew one of the end-game cards (which allowed each of us to score any two cities at the end).

Luckily, Nico liked the game and I think Nick would play it again.


Pandemic
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2016
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: On the Brink.

Usually, when I play at Mike’s he has me set up the decks. This month he did it and both times he put in six epidemic cards. With three players it is usually a losing proposition with six, and with four the chances of winning are slim. Still, I was game and we did lose both games. After playing the second time, I mentioned that it’s always hard to win with six epidemics and Mike said that was the suggested set-up. “No,” I said. “That’s the hardest set-up.” Oops. At least this time it was someone else with the slightly faulty memory. It’s usually me.

It’s still an awesome game and we had fun losing both times, though I suspect we’ll play with five epidemics with four players in the future.


Quarriors!
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

It had been a couple of years since Mike and I had played. We played three games with the same cards.


Qwirkle
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2015
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played this and it was great to get it to the table again, especially since I had [played a few games on my phone recently. I need to get it played again.


Roll for the Galaxy
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2015
My Rating: 6

Expansion Played: Ambition.

Nico and I sat down to play a game while waiting for others to show on a Saturday, and Nick arrived just as we were setting up, so Nico explained things and we played once. The insert from Broken Token really helps expedite the game set-up and tear down. In the end, Nico had the best galactic empire as the dice were kind to him and he made the best decisions with them.


Rolling America
Times Played: 6
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

I learned this from Mike and played it five more times this month, teaching to those who might be interested. I will likely print out the Japan map and maybe some of the others.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 9

Played using both core sets, Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients, plus Caverns of Cynder, the Frontier Town as well as every smaller expansion released so far.

Jerry, Damian, Mike, and I started a new group at Mike’s. We played using the Indian Scout, Saloon Girl, Law Man, and a Bandido. We played the “For a Few Dark Stone More” scenario and won the game. They got to face the Undead Gunslinger for the first time and saw how tough he was. I was just glad not to see the Burrower at the first level. That would have been very bad. Very, very bad.

The second time we played we were tasked with blowing up a mine which had been spitting out horrors that were harassing the local town. We marched into the mine, dynamite charges in hand. There wasn’t too much resistance in the mine, but as we were leaving we were confronted by the Scafford Gang, with the old man at the head of them. That was a tough fight, but we prevailed and got away just as the mine blew.

Meanwhile, at the Game Depot, Arjun, Narani, and Rylan joined me playing the “Swamps of Death” scenario using the Law Man, Bandido, Preacher, and Rancher. We faced only five total enemies during the game in two battles. In our march to and through the swamp-world of Jargono, we only faced a Serpentmen Shaman with a single Serpentmen Guard. When we found the end point, we faced a Goliath and two Swamp Slugs and finished them off for the win.

The following weekend I forgot all the other character sheets, so Arjun, Narani, Alex, and I played using the same group as we went on a “Frozen Expedition” to the Targa Plateau. It was a difficult journey as we were unable to find any clues to what happened to the last expedition until trekking far into that frozen world. When we finally reached out goal, all hell broke loose and the darkness escaped and destroyed the nearest town.

I expect I’ll play this at least four more times in July. We’ll probably play two games at Mike’s and the Game Depot group will probably get in another couple of games, hopefully getting all the characters up to third level.

Reminder: Back in December I began tracking one of each hero and asking different people to play them instead of tracking heroes for each player when playing at the Game Depot. That way we don’t need specific people around to play specific characters and, hopefully, we can see most, if not all of them advance to eighth level. It also causes the gear and artifact cards to be spread out among all the characters.


Splendor
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 5/2016
My Rating: 8

I got in two plays of this during the month and it was nice getting it played a couple of times during the month.


Temporum
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2015
My Rating: 7

It’s been a year since we played this and I remember why I didn’t buy it. It’s a solid game, that is well-designed, but now that I am (finally) trying to be more selective in my purchases, this missed out. That being said, I thought for sure there was going to be an expansion for it, but I guess any expansions are lost in the time stream...


World’s Fair 1893
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Both Mike and Nick the New bought this the Saturday we didn’t have many games to choose from to play, and Mike also read the rules and explained it to the three of us. It’s another game placing cubes for influence and gathering resources to convert to victory points. Again, nothing special and not something I would buy these days. When anyone suggests it, I will happily play it.
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Wed Jun 29, 2016 10:36 pm
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