Recent gaming: Entdecker, Deep Sea Adv, Hey That's My Fish, Carc, Hanabi, 7 Wonders, Miracle on the Loire
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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Feb 13 - March 19, 2017

Yeah, it's been a month since my last "weekly" update. By waiting this long I'm able to accumulate a decent list of games below. The truth is that my weekly gaming has slowed quite a bit. Why? Work. Remember I'm over here in France for my job, and from about mid-December it started getting very busy. The past month has been crunch time against schedule deadlines--we've all been there, right? I'm very fortunate to have squeezed some games in around the edges of this busy period.

By the way, my time in France is winding down. In my most recent podcast, I mention during the "closer" segment that I'll be heading back to California soon. It's been an amazing experience with wonderful people & places, but I'll also be happy to be home, too.

-Mark


My recent gaming geeklists (2017)
Boardgames To Go podcast, Season 13
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1. Board Game: Entdecker [Average Rating:6.44 Overall Rank:2667]
Board Game: Entdecker
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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I'd better give this 5 stars after all the cheerleading I do for this 21-year old game, right? Right! Two parts were very exciting for me. First, just getting my favorite game to the table is great. I didn't bring this game with me from California--I picked up a used copy in the Essen used game exchange through BGG. Which means I've had it since October, and this was the first I got it to the table. The obstacle in other weeks has been the 4-player limit. The groups we've got tend to be a little larger, and they also want to play together instead of splitting into two tables.

The second thrill was that I finally got to play the old, original version. Spinner & everything! Ever since the game has been released, gamers have preferred variants that add more strategy, and reduce the luck. I even have my own variant that's a mash-up of the original game and the notably-different later edition. I like its best-of-both-worlds strategic space, but I still have a fondness for the quickness of the original version. Luck never bothered me so much. It was good to play it that way again. I'm sure I haven't done so for at least a decade.

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2. Board Game: Deep Sea Adventure [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:603]
Board Game: Deep Sea Adventure
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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With a couple new players that night, Entdecker was only the second nautical game we played. DSA was first. Once again it delighted the crowd, being pretty simple to explain & play, yet very original and clever. In this game the winner was the only one who survived...ever. Laura got her diver back to the sub on the third dive, while the rest of us died every time.
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3. Board Game: Hey, That's My Fish! [Average Rating:6.71 Overall Rank:829]
Board Game: Hey, That's My Fish!
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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I owned this game a number of years ago, played a few times with my daughter, and eventually sold it along. Now I reconsidered how this might make an excellent game for our Light/Short/Couples game group in Paris. The rules are abstract-simple, because that's what it really is. The theming is good, the components are nice. A probable winner. When I saw it on the shelf at our friends' apartment, it was my pick for one of the games we played after dinner. Sure enough, it worked like a charm.

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4. Board Game: Carcassonne [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:178] [Average Rating:7.42 Unranked]
Board Game: Carcassonne
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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My wife has played Carcassonne some years ago, but mostly forgot about it. It's now a staple, and I thought it would be good if she re-learned the game with friends in case it came out with strangers on a game night. Great, modern classic.
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5. Board Game: Hanabi [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:378]
Board Game: Hanabi
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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Another modern classic, in my book. This is one that's at the sweet spot where we can jump in without any rules refresher. ANY game gets a +1 star for that. We played as two couples, then another night (while I was playing Entdecker), I saw that Candy played with her friends as a 3-player. Any accidental cheating is just part of the fun, and part of the story.

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6. Board Game: 7 Wonders [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:58]
Board Game: 7 Wonders
Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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This is one of the go-to games for the Light/Short game group for two reasons: there's a spare copy at the café we visit, and it allows a big group to play together. We even played it back-to-back. I forget that newbies often like to do that, since after scoring the first game they feel like they know what to do now.

(The other end of the table is playing Camel Up)
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7. Board Game: Miracle sur la Loire: Jeanne d'Arc à Orléans [Average Rating:6.12 Unranked]
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Mark Johnson
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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A light wargame that's helping me in my preps for an upcoming Wargames To Go episode, about the Hundred Years War. Never mind Agincourt--here's the part of the tale when the French army bested the English, thanks to a country girl who proved to be an inspirational warrior and leader of men. Joan of Arc is such an amazing person in history, you'd think her exploits were legendary like Robin Hood or King Arthur. However, there is quite a bit more historical record for Joan. Really amazing.
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