Essen 2012 - What i was interested in, what i played or bought, and what I thought about them
Richard Dewsbery
United Kingdom
Sutton Coldfield
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As with previous years I'm going to use this as a repository for the games I'm interested in before the event, and the games I look at - and perhaps buy - at the event.

Edit - Sunday before Essen: I've listed as many games as I dare, knowing that six new games (expansions don't count) is the absolute maximum this year. The next target is to add stand numbers and rule downloads to the list.

Edit - Now at Essen, playing games and commenting as below.
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1. Board Game: Spellbound [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:3981]
Board Game: Spellbound
Richard Dewsbery
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Sutton Coldfield
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The new Fragor game. Predictably sold out before I even looked at it. I'm *not* a fan of having to pre-order games completely blind, as I've wasted far too much money that way in the past.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/file/download/9o0qxr7h93/Spellb...

Thursday - read most of the rule book and bought the darn game. I hope that it's as good as it looks.
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2. Board Game: Keyflower [Average Rating:7.83 Overall Rank:51]
Board Game: Keyflower
Richard Dewsbery
United Kingdom
Sutton Coldfield
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The new "key" game; will probably be sold out (like the last one) before I get around to making any sort of decision.

Rules:
http://boardgamegeek.com/filepage/81999/keyflower-english-ru...
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3. Board Game: Eclipse: Rise of the Ancients [Average Rating:8.45 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.45 Unranked]
Board Game: Eclipse: Rise of the Ancients
Richard Dewsbery
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Sutton Coldfield
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Pre-ordered, because Eclipse is That Good.

€40, pickup from Asmodee.

Picked up on Thurs.
 
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4. Board Game: Flash Point: Fire Rescue – 2nd Story [Average Rating:7.58 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.58 Unranked]
Board Game: Flash Point: Fire Rescue – 2nd Story
Richard Dewsbery
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Pre-ordered, as the base game is one of the best things I bought at Essen '11.

Price - €11, pickup Thurs - along with Avalon for €16 (KS for each of them).

Picked up my copy.
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5. Board Game: 7 Wonders: Cities [Average Rating:7.85 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.85 Unranked]
Board Game: 7 Wonders: Cities
Richard Dewsbery
United Kingdom
Sutton Coldfield
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I have no need of expansions for games i don't particularly enjoy.

And I fear that remark won't stop me from buying this.
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6. Board Game: Dixit 3: Journey [Average Rating:7.79 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.79 Unranked]
Board Game: Dixit 3: Journey
Richard Dewsbery
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Can't have too many dixit cards. And I don't need the score track or rabbits.
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7. Board Game: P.I. [Average Rating:6.74 Overall Rank:1809]
Board Game: P.I.
Richard Dewsbery
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Played it; will be demoing it on the Saturday. I'd describe it as the lovechild of Cluedo and Mastermind, and I can't resist logic puzzles even if a lucky turn can often determine the overall winner*.

* That's my excuse, to be used every time I lose.

Saturday - spent the whole day, from 9.30 to 7.00 explaining PI. Apart from the 60 seconds spent trying - and failing miserably - to explain London (sorry, but that was two years ago; I have trouble remembering what I did *last week* - remembering something I last played two years ago was always going to be an impossible task).

From an explainer's point of view, PI is really straightforward, and by midday I'd got my pitch worked out pretty well. The only part I initially had trouble with was the direction that *questions* went around the table; the rule book is completely clear, but I *still* had to resort to writing it on my hand (and at last one explainer was teaching it the wrong way round). Probably doesn't affect gameplay at all, but doing it the right way around helps reduce any AP time. Not that PI is a game which is remotely susceptible to AP.
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8. Board Game: Le Havre: The Inland Port [Average Rating:6.89 Overall Rank:1026]
 
Richard Dewsbery
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Friday - purchased.
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9. Board Game: Crude: The Oil Game [Average Rating:6.72 Overall Rank:2232]
Board Game: Crude: The Oil Game
Richard Dewsbery
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I failed to buy Outpost last year (tough I did pick it up later). But has Crude stood the test of time in the same way?
 
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10. Board Game: Mage Knight Board Game: The Lost Legion Expansion [Average Rating:8.80 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.80 Unranked]
From gallery of kinkykone
Richard Dewsbery
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11. Board Game: Escape: The Curse of the Temple [Average Rating:7.01 Overall Rank:503]
Board Game: Escape: The Curse of the Temple
Richard Dewsbery
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I so want to like this game. Usual Queen dilemma - buy now, or wait for a price-cut in a year or two. Although they seem to do that a lot less these days.
 
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12. Board Game: Asgard [Average Rating:6.88 Overall Rank:2374]
Board Game: Asgard
Richard Dewsbery
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What's Your Game

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/file/download/9oq0q6aaud/Asgard...
 
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13. Board Game: Galaxy Trucker [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:166]
Board Game: Galaxy Trucker
Richard Dewsbery
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With yet another expansion due, should I check out this obviously popular game from an excellent designer?

A bit more reading, and the answer is a "no". I'm put off by the scramble for tiles mechanic.
 
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14. Board Game: Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar [Average Rating:7.91 Overall Rank:39]
Board Game: Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar
Richard Dewsbery
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Possibly the only game due out at Essen 2012 that I would consider as a blind purchase. It'll probably sell out before I decide to do so, though.

Rules - http://czechgames.com/files/Tzolkin_EN.pdf

Thurs - played half a game, and bought a copy. Worker placement where your workers - what they can do and what their actions are "worth" - changes over time. Usual strong graphic design by the publisher to enhance the playability of the game.

Might be tempted by a Dungeon Lords expansion - but when did I last play Dungeon Lords?
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15. Board Game: Saint Malo [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:2035]
Board Game: Saint Malo
Richard Dewsbery
United Kingdom
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16. Board Game: Colonies [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:8453]
Board Game: Colonies
Richard Dewsbery
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Among Meeples

http://amongmeeples.dk/filer/RulesColonies.pdf
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17. Board Game: Suburbia [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:123]
Board Game: Suburbia
Richard Dewsbery
United Kingdom
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Bezier Games

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/file/download/92c06ikdki/Suburb...

Played half a game on Weds afternoon - not really my cup of tea, as there's a lot to keep track of around the table. It would work really well as an iPad app, but as a board game, I found it too fiddly.
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18. Board Game: Power Grid: Northern Europe/United Kingdom & Ireland [Average Rating:7.90 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.90 Unranked]
Board Game: Power Grid: Northern Europe/United Kingdom & Ireland
Richard Dewsbery
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19. Board Game: Tweeeet [Average Rating:6.26 Overall Rank:5567]
Board Game: Tweeeet
Richard Dewsbery
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Cwali

€25

http://www.cwali.nl/tweeeet/tweeeeuk.pdf
 
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20. Board Game: The Palaces of Carrara [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:639]
Board Game: The Palaces of Carrara
Richard Dewsbery
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Mik Svellov says it's really good. And I haven't bought a HiG game for a while.
 
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21. Board Game: Express 01 [Average Rating:5.02 Overall Rank:17981]
Board Game: Express 01
Richard Dewsbery
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Eggert/Pegasus

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/weblink/137691/rules-english-pd...

 
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22. Board Game: Terra Mystica [Average Rating:8.17 Overall Rank:14]
Board Game: Terra Mystica
Richard Dewsbery
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Feuerland Spiele

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/file/download/96yzcwre21/Terra_...

Thurs. - all sold out, removing another source of temptation.
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23. Board Game: Eclipse: Rise of the Ancients [Average Rating:8.45 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.45 Unranked]
Board Game: Eclipse: Rise of the Ancients
Richard Dewsbery
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Reserved. Because Eclipse is that awesome.
 
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24. Board Game: Fallen City of Karez [Average Rating:4.47 Overall Rank:18450]
Board Game: Fallen City of Karez
Richard Dewsbery
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Golden Egg Games

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/file/download/9njfkct4v7/KAREZ_...

Thurs - Heard half a rules explanation. Finished game isn't here yet. Might check it out later this weekend.
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25. Board Game: Il Vecchio [Average Rating:6.94 Overall Rank:1501]
Board Game: Il Vecchio
Richard Dewsbery
United Kingdom
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Hall Games/Tasty Minstrel

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/file/download/95lrz2rsvi/IlVecc...

Sunday - listened to rules explanation (why, when I could have just read them fr myself? Too lazy/busy I guess), complete with an example turn or two. It sounded like the dreaded "JASE" word would be used again, so I passed.
 
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