Every Man Needs A Shed

Life and Games (but mostly games) from Tony Boydell: Dad, Husband and Independent UK Game Designer, Agricola fanboy and jealous admirer of Carl Chudyk. www.surprisedstaregames.co.uk

Archive for Tony Boydell

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24 Carrot Gold

Anthony Boydell
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Newent. Glos
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As the weeks move forward, the attendance at the RoW gamers 'online' dimishes and - this week - it diminished to nothing as the Bateson's are on their holidays and everyone else...well, everyone else has disappeared.

Fortunately, the mood in the house was buoyant, so I managed to gather Alice and Daisy and Mrs B in for a run at my light number-counting card-game prototype (think Pontoon, except the target total is 16 and ALL of the cards have weird abilities). It's based loosely on 'Farmer', an old standard deck push-your-luck thingy wot I found in one of my recent game book purchases; and, as my bracketed aside suggests, I've made everything a tad more complicated! Tonight was to be its first 'public' run, so no photos yet....not because of NDA shite but because I forgot.

Daisy likes an early night if she's working in the morning, so she retired and left a space for Arthur to fill for Hare & Tortoise:

From gallery of tonyboydell


I am slowly - patiently - gathering rather a lovely set of different editions of Mr David Parlett's awesome SdJ winner; tonight it is the Waddingtons '80s edition. Alice had not played before but soon caught on to the benefits of a) hitting the right number spaces and correctly gauging her 'next turn' position and b) jugging the Hare at exactly the right moment (your position in the race is VERY important for your chances of getting a decent bonus). She crossed the line with 16 carrots to spare and trailed by Arthur (still avec un lettuce) then myself (uncharacteristically well-behind) and Mrs B who got in to a bit of a carrot drought and needed to see a tortoise about a supply chain.
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Sat Jul 18, 2020 6:25 am
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Well, whores will have their trinkets.

Anthony Boydell
United Kingdom
Newent. Glos
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As is my wont at shows - especially Spiel (though the UKGE Bring and Buy sometimes revealed a esoteric item) - I like to find rarer games; I'll go as far as blagging demo copies of pre-prod fayre if I can and - ahem - have been known to help with the clearing of rubbish from time-to-time.

At Spiel'19, I was browsing the TBG stand and saw a couple of copies of this...as in 'the only two copies they had with them':

From gallery of tonyboydell


Trying to outdo my 2018 acquisition of David Wang's 'one of the ten in my suitcase' East Indiaman, a friendly PoS (point-of-sale) operative exchanged one of the two for a paltry 20 euros.

It doesn't have a name that I can find - though the English rules print-out included in the box suggests it might be Recommended Reading (while the box hints at Book Selector); in any case, I can't find hide-nor-hair of a reference to it on the Interwebs despite it manifestly exiting, here, right in front of me!

From gallery of tonyboydell


But what IS it? Well, it's like GiftTRAP but with books: the idea being the active player (customer) has a character card - or can, indeed, make up their own character traits and subject preferences (there are a fixed number of categories on many 'Book' cards) and the other players use book cards in hand to 'pitch' a tome to the customer. Players then vote for the book that seems to be best pitched to the customer's requirements and points awarded etc etc.

From gallery of tonyboydell


There are screens - possibly several copies' worth in my box - and chits and LOTS of book cards: some in English (perhaps 20 or so for illustrative purposes/demos), some non-English and some with QR codes and seem to be referencing real works.

From gallery of tonyboydell


It's a sweet, kitsch-y bundle of fun!

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Personalities galore (should some of your local group require one)!

From gallery of tonyboydell


Of course, I would be failing in my duty as a privileged, middle-aged white man if I didn't also highlight some of the amusingly-Anglicised book titles in the demo set - given the hearty and delightful Mr Frank Liu (the excellent Symphony No.9) is one of the designers, I would suggest the wackiness is entirely intended!

From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell


I can see the Ross-on-Wye gamers very much 'digging in' to extrapolating the names and natures of their book suggestions; it's just what we do and we're proud of it.
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Fri Jul 17, 2020 6:30 am
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Grammar-lama-ding-dong.

Anthony Boydell
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Newent. Glos
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One thing that really nail-scrapes my blackboard is the tiresome habit that bloggers have of portmanteau-ing references to each of the games they have played 'in a session' to make a pathetic, meaningless and contrived title - you know the sort of thing:

Quote:
A report on a Friday spent with Agricola, San Juan, Can't Stop, L.A.M.A and Tainted Grail becomes
Endless Colonists Farming Alpacas for King Arthur*.
Quote:
{Insert Convention Name Here} Day 3 Report for Magic Maze, 1655: Habemus Papam 1698, Aaarg!-tect, Codenames and Feudum becomes
Striped Monster Popes Lost In Words with Inflatable Hammers!!!** (one exclamation fails to provide the appropriate humour emphasis).
Quote:
1846 plus Mottanai plus The Grizzled plus Megacity: Oceania plus Cthulhu Wars becomes
Elder Gods with Big Jugs Go Like Trains and Get Their Wet Cities Out For the Boys***
Why insist on mentioning EVERYTHING? Where's your sense of mystery - of teasing? Why shoot your wad before the link has even been clicked?! I have never seen one that makes any coherent sense as a sentence; they all range from 'a bit shit' to "Fuck me sideways over a rolling donut, that's truly AWFUL!" / "It looks like a toddler made it using random bricks!". You might as well just provide a comma-separated list of the game titles and give up any pretence of Wit, Imagination and/or Capability; and, of course, what inevitably follows 'within' is a dull, sequential stream of segments comprising a photograph PLUS 'impression' PLUS an entirely-irrelevant/fatuous 'rating'.

D minus.

Why not try proper puns? An artistic reference or an emotional expression? How about something that stands alone in its language as having actual sense and meaning? If you can't be bothered, then you might as well start eating wax crayons in front of your Kallax on YouTube****.

External image


*I'd go for: "Dennis? There's Some Lovely Filth Down 'Ere"
**I'd plump with: "Smoke and Milieus" (it's too varied for a common thread, so going 'utterly obtuse' works too)
***I quite like this one; it's just the right side of 'filthy'
****100% MUST Watch.
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Thu Jul 16, 2020 6:25 am
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Ruh-ruh-ruh...rahnarahnd!

Anthony Boydell
United Kingdom
Newent. Glos
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Microbadge: I love Europe!Microbadge: 5 Games for Doomsday fanMicrobadge: Talk Talk fanMicrobadge: Citizenship Recognition - Level VI -  Is six any more shiny? ... Well, it's one shinier isn't it? ... Okay, why don't you just make five a bit more shiny and then that would be the most shiny? ... Because these go to six.Microbadge: Klemens Franz fan
Having slaked my recent thirst for Pepys (for now), I've turned my attention to U.P.L (Universal Publications Ltd - those folks who sound like the cover for the double-Os).

They produced a series of run-and-find party games in the 1940s and 1950s - to which Railway Riot was my first introduction and (upcoming) Race The Rails the consequent Tony output. Naturally, I must have a complete set (for the museum) and several cheap-as-cheap-chips Lots popped up online:

From gallery of tonyboydell

Railway Riot with alt-cover; I've got an entirely localised Australian version on its way from the other side of the World, BTW.


Oh, and you've got to admire the presence of so much brittle, caramel-coloured sellotape - evidence that these Service connections really were plastered about someone's home and garden!

From gallery of tonyboydell

Helter-Skelter - the variant for 'children'.


From gallery of tonyboydell

Treasure Hunt - still intact, unseparated and unplayed 80 years later; this is the Dinner Party variant.


From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell

Crazy Post - all the other variants are about 'collecting' (information), so - naturally - there should be a mirror item about 'giving everything away' (posting it in bijou post-boxes!)


From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell


You've got to wonder how folks, ultimately, managed to survive games like these given the enormous tobacco consumption at the time.


Naff, 1970s Kids' TV General Knowledge Game Show presented by everybody's favourite Cock-er-ney Wenkah: Mike Reid. Total rubbish.
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Wed Jul 15, 2020 6:45 am
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Caratacus Woz Ere

Anthony Boydell
United Kingdom
Newent. Glos
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Microbadge: I love Europe!Microbadge: 5 Games for Doomsday fanMicrobadge: Talk Talk fanMicrobadge: Citizenship Recognition - Level VI -  Is six any more shiny? ... Well, it's one shinier isn't it? ... Okay, why don't you just make five a bit more shiny and then that would be the most shiny? ... Because these go to six.Microbadge: Klemens Franz fan
Sunday rolled around all shiny and new and, having very much enjoyed the escape to the wilds the weekend before, I determined we should repeat some perambulatory exertions this week too. Unfortunately, there was a reduced acceptance response from la famille, so it ended up being just me and Arthur and Ziggy racing the baked tarmac to Malvern - this time to sortie British Camp:

From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell


With my bijou (Snowdon climb last year) holdall - replete with sandwiches crisps, sweets, water, spray-on sun block and dog treats - and my floppy 'Cricketing' hat - we tucked the Volvo in a corner of the car-park (opposite an enormous US-imported Ford) and set off up the steep incline.

From gallery of tonyboydell

A boy and his dog.


From gallery of tonyboydell

Far left: where we walked last time.


One day, I have determined that we'll spend the day going back-and-forth across the whole bumpy lot of 'em; however, for today - in the sweaty, dry hotness - British Camp was enough:

From gallery of tonyboydell


Once at 'the summit', there are a number of winding and branching ridge routes to divert you; we paused for food and then set off on a great 'top of the world' circuit.

From gallery of tonyboydell


Despite the obviously well-populated hilltop, there was more than enough space - and there were more than enough paths - for us to avoid bumping in to anyone.

From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell


Two hours, 9000 'steps' and a packet of Swizzels' Drumstick Squashies for 'energy boosting' later, we trudged - heavy-footed and panting back to our chariot:

From gallery of tonyboydell


A slightly over-the-speed-limit-with-all-the-windows-down swoosh home helped with the cooling down somewhat.

Next week: a return to The Skirrid, near Abergavenny (fingers crossed). I've also mooted a couple of days away to North Wales - Welsh Assembly Covid-19 rules & restrictions permitting - and my third ascent of 'the big one' in as many years: fingers crossed!
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Tue Jul 14, 2020 6:20 am
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@shitgamerpuns 68

Anthony Boydell
United Kingdom
Newent. Glos
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Every homo sapiens needs an outbuilding within the curtelage of their property
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Welcome...to my Shed!
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Microbadge: I love Europe!Microbadge: 5 Games for Doomsday fanMicrobadge: Talk Talk fanMicrobadge: Citizenship Recognition - Level VI -  Is six any more shiny? ... Well, it's one shinier isn't it? ... Okay, why don't you just make five a bit more shiny and then that would be the most shiny? ... Because these go to six.Microbadge: Klemens Franz fan

From gallery of tonyboydell
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Mon Jul 13, 2020 6:20 am
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Curiouser and curiouser

Anthony Boydell
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Newent. Glos
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Microbadge: I love Europe!Microbadge: 5 Games for Doomsday fanMicrobadge: Talk Talk fanMicrobadge: Citizenship Recognition - Level VI -  Is six any more shiny? ... Well, it's one shinier isn't it? ... Okay, why don't you just make five a bit more shiny and then that would be the most shiny? ... Because these go to six.Microbadge: Klemens Franz fan
This very rare and collectible trinket, from the history of the having trouble with their suppliers, obviously Universal Publications Ltd was a little expensive BUT absolutely worth it:

From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell
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Sun Jul 12, 2020 6:15 am
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Aztec Camaraderie

Anthony Boydell
United Kingdom
Newent. Glos
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Every homo sapiens needs an outbuilding within the curtelage of their property
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Microbadge: I love Europe!Microbadge: 5 Games for Doomsday fanMicrobadge: Talk Talk fanMicrobadge: Citizenship Recognition - Level VI -  Is six any more shiny? ... Well, it's one shinier isn't it? ... Okay, why don't you just make five a bit more shiny and then that would be the most shiny? ... Because these go to six.Microbadge: Klemens Franz fan
Here's fun*!

(i) Roll a d6 four times; each time consult the row that matches
the number for the part you've rolled for. Make up the compound
name of Dávid Turczi/Daniele Tascini's latest
ancient Civ-themed dice-drafting-up-the-wazooh extravaganza from Board&Dice.

(ii) Now, roll the d6 three more times to make the sub-title (the tiny text bit in each cell):


From gallery of tonyboydell


What did YOU roll? And what's the elevator pitch for the result?

And DON'T FORGET TO INCLUDE A PRONUNCIATION GUIDE!!!



*YMMV
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Sat Jul 11, 2020 6:30 am
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Double-Heading

Anthony Boydell
United Kingdom
Newent. Glos
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Every homo sapiens needs an outbuilding within the curtelage of their property
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Microbadge: I love Europe!Microbadge: 5 Games for Doomsday fanMicrobadge: Talk Talk fanMicrobadge: Citizenship Recognition - Level VI -  Is six any more shiny? ... Well, it's one shinier isn't it? ... Okay, why don't you just make five a bit more shiny and then that would be the most shiny? ... Because these go to six.Microbadge: Klemens Franz fan
I made the first - tentative - moves towards establishing my Museum of Board Games this week; not in the Estate Agents or a fistful of lottery tickets but, instead, a polite e-mail to the Dean Forest Railway. As a heritage railway, they're suffering with the lockdown and most of the staff have been furloughed; my email was acknowledged by an 'out of office' with the reassurance that when someone gets back in again, they'll take a look. Of course, Heritage railways have (literally) tons of equipment and rolling stock lying around the place: no matter its condition, they'll welcome it with open arms then shunt it in to a siding to rust, gently, in to the next Century. My email wondered if the DFR might have a spare carriage that I could convert in to a (starter) exhibition of railway-themed board games and ephemera. If I could secure such a vehicle, I might be able to mobilise it as some sort of travelling attraction: pulled along by a retired Bus Driver with nicotine-stained whiskers and his sweaty Fireman (ironically both 'Ex-' and 'Volunteer')

Re-panelled, painted and fitted with shelves and cabinets (cheap, from Covid-19 bankrupted businesses), Tony's Pullman of Hobbyist Treasures could keep the punters happy while they waited for the 10.17 to chuff in from Lydney. Aa-and, of course, I could have a little shop selling Ivor The Engines, Snowdonia Deluxe Master Sets and a shiny shelf of upcoming (and Award-nominated) Race The Rails!

The Inbox remains quiet (for now); fingers crossed, eh?

Continuing in this vein: a brace of loco-themed, post-War delicacies - with outstanding art style - found their way to my doorstep this week; I, simply, cannot resist the look of these things.

First: Rail Race

From gallery of tonyboydell

What a dynamic, bright and captivating cover!


From gallery of tonyboydell

Cover removed to reveal...surely not?!...a UK Map Board?!?!


From gallery of tonyboydell

A lean rule set nestles, traditionally, on the underside of the box lid.


From gallery of tonyboydell

It is!


From gallery of tonyboydell

It is a UK Map Board! Huzzah!


From gallery of tonyboydell

There's an entire book on the quality of early game inserts, you know; maybe I should write it?


From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell

Look at this beautiful - and complete - set of lead player markers!


And, second: Go Ahead, Little Loc!

From gallery of tonyboydell


A curious roll-and-move thrown the wrinkle of the 'switch' tiles; these can moved, or swapped out, to one's advantage / others' disadvantage and there's a 'Sorry'-esque 'bounce you all the way back to the Start' to really help those hours fly by!

From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell


From gallery of tonyboydell

Not as pretty as their metal cousins above, the plastic locos have their own charm nevertheless.


And so it continues...
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Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:25 am
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I've only gone and gotten myself 'nom'-ed?!

Anthony Boydell
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Newent. Glos
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From gallery of tonyboydell


https://mojo-nation.com/play-creators-awards-2020-finalists-...

And, apparently, physical copies of Race The Rails are steaming across the Indian Ocean as I type! Huzzah for me!
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Thu Jul 9, 2020 7:03 pm
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