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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 May 2015

Bobby Warren
United States
Glendale
Arizona
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I've still been spending a lot of time working on my Warmachine and Hordes army box overviews and trying to get the figures ready, but this month I kept up with my board game plays so I am back to my meandering thoughts.

In May, I played 26 games a total of 61 times and six expansions a total of 20 times. Four of the games and three of the expansions were new to me, and I played six of the games and one of the expansions in April.

Here's what I played in May.

Baseball Highlights: 2045
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Mike and I worked this out and enjoyed it. He won the first, third, and fourth World Series 4-1 and I won the second 4-2.

It makes a small-deck deck builder playable, which other games have failed it. I think I would buy it if it was something that could be played with three players, but since it is really a two-player game which can be increased by groups of two players in a tournament format it really won't work for the Saturday group.

My one gripe is the card stock. Gryphon has always used a highly-textured linen-finished card stock that is high quality. Visually, I'd always prefer less texture on the cards, but that a preference. When trying to shuffle the tiny deck, the texture creates friction and the cards are difficult to shuffle when there are so few. So boys and girls, I recommend getting sleeves for the game. Normally I would suggest that for a deck builder, but the shuffling doesn't happen so much to put wear on the cards. Don't let this minor quibble stop you from trying the game because it is a lot of fun.


Castles of Mad King Ludwig
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2014
My Rating: 6

This is much better with three than it is with two, though I would still rather play its big brother. It's also one of the ugliest games on the table and some of the pieces are tiny.


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

Four players. It looked like Nico was losing the entire game, but he finished strong and triggered the end game which made the difference for him.

Being able to remove cards from the top row can speed the game up and prevent it from taking too long. Overall, this is a solid design and a lot of fun.


Deus
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2015
My Rating: 8

Nico, Mike and I played. A load of fun that Nico and I like more than Mike, but it's not something Mike will avoid playing. For me, it scratches a similar itch to Race for the Galaxy in that the players are making the best tactical use of the cards they get dealt during the game.


Diamant
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2015
My Rating: 9

I had a great first round and that's all it took to win the game.


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

It's an interesting take on trick taking with the suits having powers related to scoring. We played with three, and if we play with three again we're likely to do the alternate set-up so all the cards are dealt out each hand.


Elder Sign
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Unseen Forces

We fought Cthulhu's minions and lost. It looked like we were going to lose badly right off the bat and Joe Diamond and Ashcan Pete were killed, but the intrepid adventurers made a comeback and almost saved the world, but we lost in the end.


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

Eh. In the end it seemed like we didn't get to use the cards we picked but once or twice and there was no engine building in what felt like an engine-building game. Generally, I am not going to complain about some attack cards, but losing one, or more, of your three cards on a turn is a bit extreme, especially when you've made careful plans. I think I would want to leave out the Neptune cards if we played in the future.

Now I am thinking I might want to lower my rating.


Geschenkt
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 5/2014
My Rating: 9

Three times with five players. You have to remember who is nearly out of chips because if you send something around one more time that will fill a straight, it sucks big time when someone has to take it.


Hansa Teutonica
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2011
My Rating: 6

Yikes! Time sure flies! I can't believe it's been over four years since we played this.

Mike, Nick, and I gave it a go, and it took a little while to get the hang of it again. Sure, it may be the most-soulless game ever, but it is a lot of fun and a solid design. Hopefully we will be able to play it again soon.


Isle of Trains
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 8

Nico taught it to Dave and Mike and it was the first time we played it with four. I like it much better with three since there is still more player interaction than two, but it works with four. I'd rate the number of players I like playing it with as three, two, then four.

Later in the month, Mike and I played some two-player games and discovered we were playing incorrectly. We were delivering routes anytime, not upgrading a route before delivering another. Nico and I might have played it this way the first time we played, I don't know for sure, but we've been playing it wrong since then. The correct way gives you a reason to build up your trains and makes buildings more feasible.

We played it some more later in the month and I might need to up my rating.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 7

I easily won both games, flexing my dominating die-rolling skills over Mike's puny abilities.

That's right -- it's all skill!


Lanterns: The Harvest Festival
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 4

We played with four and it was completely boring. It was also a bad decision to limit the number of the cards available to players. I think it would also have been better if the cards were tokens. If I never play it again I won't miss it.


Nicht die Bohne
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2012
My Rating: 7

Another that hasn't been played in a long time. I like this more than the others seemed to, so it might be a while before it gets played again.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 17
Last Month Played: 4/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansions Played: Tempest Rising for three of the games, Island of Empty Eyes for eleven of the games, and The Price of Infamy for another three games.

We're progressing in the campaign at Mike's with Damiel, Jirelle, Seltyiel, and Oloch and we're ready to play the next set.

Michael and I also played through eleven more scenarios in the two-player campaign. We lost the "The Land of the Blind" scenario, which was the extra one included in the fix pack. We didn't replay it because we were just one turn away from winning and because the directions on how to handle the winning conditions aren't clear. This isn't the only one of the scenarios which isn't clear and it's quite disappointing to deal with when sitting around the table in the middle of playing the game.


Qwirkle
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2014
My Rating: 8

Mike had two relatively early Qwirkles and had a pretty good lead. I managed one later in the game and went out first to take the game-end lead over him and Nick.


Qwixx
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 4/2015
My Rating: 8

Two games played this month beginning with 'Qwi' on the same day. Not something that occurs every day!

I also taught it to Michael and Nico this month. It does work as a two-player game, but it is better with more.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 8

Speaking of skill, I drove my slaves, err employees, to build many monuments to my dynasty and the incredible amount of points won the game for me.

Seriously, it was the most points from monuments I think I have ever seen in all the games I played.

Mike ended up winning the second game.


Risiko Express
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 7

Mike, Nick, and I fought over Japan and I once again proved my skill at rolling dice and handled the challengers easily for the win.

Call me Sensei.


Roll Through the Ages: The Iron Age
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2015
My Rating: 7

Michael and I played this while waiting to see if anyone else would show up on a Saturday. I ended up rolling lots of Pestilence and Michael never bought the prevention and he ended up losing because of it.


Run, Fight, or Die!
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Zombie Horde Expansion.

Always fun. I still think the expansion does slow the game down but it is a lot of fun and makes the game a little more difficult.


Taluva
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2012
My Rating: 8

I've been wanting to play this again for a while and it was great to play it with four. Nico hadn't played it and ended up buying an original edition copy off BGG while we were playing.

I attained a premature victory with a couple of turns left and it was satisfying because I was more in conflict with Michael and Mike and not the newbie.


Temporum
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2015
My Rating: 7

I thought Mike might like it, so I made sure to ask Nico to play it when Mike made it on a Saturday, and then Mike bought it and we played it that night with Hilary at their house.


To Court the King
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2011
My Rating: 7

With the Favor of the Pharaoh implementation coming out soon I wanted to play this again.

Mike, Nick, and I played it. Nick hadn't played it before and it had been a long time for Mike and I. I thought I was really in the best position when the end game came around and Mike looked to be in the worst position, but he managed to make a roll that Nick failed to match (since he had the Queen) and I couldn't beat.

Stupid luck-based games.


Vegas
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: Played using Las Vegas Boulevard.

We tossed in the large die and the $100,000 certificates. I like the additions and am interested in trying out the other mini expansions.


Warmachine
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played what amounted to a refresher game with of Warmachine using the 35-point lists from the all-in-one boxes for Khador and Cygnar. That was summarized here.

We played again a few weeks later, this time switching sides, and that little dust-up was summarized here.

I’m hoping to get in a lot more games this month. There are plans afoot...
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Tue Jun 2, 2015 2:50 am
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Games Played in April 2015

Bobby Warren
United States
Glendale
Arizona
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I've been spending a lot of time working on my Warmachine and Hordes army box overviews and trying to get the figures ready so I can get people to play the game with me. That has meant I haven't been good at keeping up my board gaming info in my database, so I am going to do something a little different this month: one-word thoughts on the games I played. Some are meaningful, to me at least, some nonsensical, and some are just made up all together.

In April, I played 20 games a total of 47 times and six expansions a total of 15 times. Four of the games and one of the expansions were new to me, and I played seven of the games and one of the expansions in March.

How for the games and the words.

Blokus
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2009
My Rating: 9

Squares.


Bluff
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 3/2014
My Rating: 8

Fibs.


Ciúb
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to Me
My Rating: 7

Transformations.


DC Comics Deck-Building Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 7

Justice!


Deus
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 8

Genesis.


Diamant
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 9

Snakes!


Duke, The
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2014
My Rating: 7

Chess-ty!


Flash Point: Fire Rescue
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 9

Conflagration!


Hanabi
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 6

Work.


Machi Koro
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 8

Shakin'!


Pandemic: Contagion
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 6

Allergy.


Patchwork
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to Me
My Rating: 7

Quiltiferic.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 12
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 8

Owlbeatross!


Qwixx
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to Me
My Rating: 8

Quixotism.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 2/2014
My Rating: 8

Windfall.


Roll for the Galaxy
Times Played: 6
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 6

Consumption.


Splendor
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Gemology.


Temporum
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: New to Me
My Rating: 7

Paradoxes.


Thunderstone Advance: Worlds Collide
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 7

Doomknights!


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 3/2015
My Rating: 8

Beans.
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Wed Apr 29, 2015 4:25 am
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Games Played in March 2015

Bobby Warren
United States
Glendale
Arizona
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I played fewer games this month than I have in a while. Lives get in the way of fun. Still, I get to play a lot more games than many people get to, so who am I to complain?

I'm really in the mood to play Warmachine/Hordes again. Hopefully, I will have one or more playings of one of the games this month.

In March, I played 17 games a total of 38 times and two expansions a total of 4 times. Three of the games were new to me, and I played seven of the games and both of the expansions in February.

Augustus
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2014
My Rating: 8

I remembered to both bring it along and to grab it when we were looking for something quick to play. I need to make a label for the small, white sports card box I am using to store and transport this game.

Nico won both of the games we played.


DC Comics Deck-Building Game: Rivals: Batman vs The Joker
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Mike and I split a couple of games and I liked it.

Our games highlighted the biggest problem with the game: If one player makes a jump into a lead, it can be difficult for the other players to make a comeback.


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

Nico and I taught Michael how to play and it ended up being a very close game. I believe we all thought I was going to win, and I did score the most end-game points, but Nico had hid is in-game engine going better and ended up winning. The final scores were 72, 69, and 69.

After the fourth play of this game, I am still enjoying it quite a bit.


Diamant
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 7/2014
My Rating: 9

Two games had us all laughing out loud. The Diamant version has vastly superior components to the Incan Gold version.


Dungeons & Dragons Dice Masters: Battle for Faerûn
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played this several times.

The WizKids rule book is weak and does not do the game justice. You'll need to get several clarifications on the new concepts to understand how to use the game.


Isle of Trains
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 1/2015
My Rating: 8

We played a three-player and a two-player game of this. I really like it as a two-player and am leaning towards saying it works best that way, though I want to play it a few more times to be sure.

Writing this up reminded me to e-mail Dave at the Game Depot to ask him to order a copy for me.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 7

Played at Mike's.


Mystery Rummy: Escape from Alcatraz
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played this once. I think it will take a few games to get the hang of the play style, but it was a lot of fun and definitely a much better entry into the series than Bonnie and Clyde.


Pandemic: Contagion
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 6

With four players, it felt like the player going last was at a disadvantage because the other players were able to best take advantage of the events that popped up, often leaving him not being able to take advantage of it as much as those moving earlier.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 6
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Raiders of the Fever Sea three of the games.

Michael, Shawn, and I played the last three scenarios in Adventure 1, The Wormwood Mutiny with Feiya, Valeros, and Lini.

Then Mike, Damian, Jerry, and I finished the last three scenarios of the Raiders of the Fever Sea adventure and are ready to advance further on. I'm really appreciating playing Damiel. His alchemy powers are awesome!


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Also played at Mike's. I will take this one to the store this month and try and get it played with more than two players.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Alien Artifacts but not with the Orb.

One game with Michael and Shawn. I think this was just the second or third time Shawn had played. That's like less than 0.5% of the times I have played the game!


Roll for the Galaxy
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 6

Nico and I were playing another game at the store when Patty introduced Parker and Justin who really liked this game, and we were happy to play a few games.

I am liking this more than I originally did, though still not enough to buy it myself. Both Mike and Nico own it so I should be able to play it pretty much any time I want to play it.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 9

Played using both Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients.

Just the three times this month, and they were all with Mike and Damian on a Saturday when the store was invaded for the grand-daddy of all CCG's pre-release. Hopefully, we will be able to do this on occasion and get these characters leveled up. So far, level four is highest any of our characters have made, in part because I play in different parties and have tried not to have greatly differences in the levels of the characters playing.

The two base games have still been enough variety for playing it, but I'm starting to hear the call of the wave 1.5 shipping.


Snow Tails
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2013
My Rating: 8

About half way through the race I decided to commit suicide since not playing would be more enjoyable than playing more.

I realized I had been hesitant to play this of late. My rating did plummet three points from an 8 to a 5 because of my desire to avoid the game and I might end up getting rid of my copy since I know so many people who do own it.


Viticulture
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2013
My Rating: 7

It works very well with five players. I think I prefer the original Grande worker rule over the new rule. I read over the expansions and found the idea for the "legacy" expansions to be silly. I also don't see why you would need to play all of the level one or two expansions to play the level three ones. Heck, I found only half of the smaller expansions to be something I would be willing to try.

Here's hoping we play more games soon so I can integrate some of the expansions.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2015
My Rating: 8

We played this at the store. We were waiting for Shawn to arrive and Michael had his copy and it seemed like it would last the right amount of time. It ended up being a very close game with me almost winning on Nick's turn, but Nico pulled it out when he began his own turn.

Why have the dice gods forsaken me?!?!?
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Thu Apr 2, 2015 1:30 am
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Games Played in February 2015

Bobby Warren
United States
Glendale
Arizona
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I managed to play Shadows of Brimstone twice, which is not acceptable!

In February, I played 20 games a total of 50 times and eight expansions a total of 15 times. Four of the games and two expansions were new to me, and I played five of the games and two of the expansions in January.

Here’s what I did play in February:

Carcassonne: The Castle
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 8

Mike and I played this for the first time in a while. We both thought I was in the best position to win the game, but my luck failed near the end of the game and Mike came away with the win.


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

I didn't think I would like this, though that was more my reaction to the box art and the art on the game tiles pictured on the back of the box.

Nico told me not to hate the game until we had the chance to play it the next week since he bought it. He brought it to the store the next week and he, Nick, and I played it. Nico and I played it again the following week with Narani and she liked it as well.

I really liked it! It's a terrific design with rules and mechanisms to mitigate possible problems that could cause the game to bog down. Yes, there is still some luck of the draw in the game, but it is not a huge problem.

Mike also picked the game up and we played two-player. He wasn't as big a fan as I was, but it seemed to grow on him some after we played because he mentioned he played it with someone else and said we should play it again. I suspect this might be in the rotation a while.


Duel of Ages II
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Expansion Played: Master Set.

Nicki and Tim both really like this game so we split into teams with Michael and Nicki going against Tim and I with each side having eight people a side.

I liked this more than I remembered liking the original, but it's still not a favorite. I'd play it a few times a year without complaint and if it was quicker I would like it a lot more.


Elder Sign
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 11/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Unseen Forces for all the games and Gates of Arkham for one of them.

Dilettante Jenny Barnes, private eye Joe Diamond, handyman Wilson Richards, and Sister Mary, the nun took on Tsathoggua and the world ended because they were lacking.

Not being satisfied with the world ending, three of the four left behind the unlucky Diamond and added some musical accompaniment with Jim Culver as Hastur was the challenge. This time the heroes managed to defeat the evil before the world ended.

Then something new happened. Gates started opening. New investigators arrived on the scene, and rumors of previously-unknown old ones started up. Three of those newcomers investigated the machinations of Yibb-Tstill. Those three are/were Skids O'Toole (RIP), Akachi Onyele, and Tommy Muldoon (RIP). Picking up the torch for the fallen ones was William Yorick (RIP), Trish Scarborough (RIP), and Patrice Hathaway. The two survivors lasted long enough to see the world end again!

I like Gates of Arkham, though it does slow the game down a fair amount by adding randomness in the adventures by keeping them hidden until the players visit them. For those who feel the game is too easy before the expansion, they might be singing a different tune after playing this.


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

Mike backed this small worker placement game and we both liked it. My one concern with it as a two-player game is the number of buildings available is less than with more and it can happen that there are set-ups that can bog the flow of the game down.


Heckmeck am Bratwurmeck
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Mike had to have cheated.

Why would I say that?

He had a good game and won.


King of New York
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

I wonder if I should order the Broken Token insert for King of Tokyo for this game, or will expansions for this make that a bad choice?


Machi Koro
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Machi Koro: Harbor Expansion.

Just once with The Harbor. We're beginning to feel as if there are too many purple cards in the mix that tend to clog up the flow of the game.


Marvel Dice Masters
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 11/2014
My Rating: 4

Nico and I played a few games one Saturday and Mike and I played a few more at his place on another day, mixing both sets released so far.

I'm really looking forward to the Dungeons & Dragons set which is due out soon, and even the Justice League set. As long as we're playing it, I can see myself buying more, though storage is becoming a problem.

Speaking of storage... If you're interested in buying sets of two commons and one uncommon from Avengers vs. X-men or sets of commons (maybe an uncommon set as well) from Uncanny X-men, drop me a private message and we'll see if we can work something out. Any sales would end up being through the BGG marketplace.


Mystery Rummy: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

When will the reprint for this be out in stores? Mike's copy needs to be replaced, ASAP!


Pandemic: Contagion
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2015
My Rating: 6

Who said you couldn't play it just once when it is played?


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 12
Last Month Played: 1/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Raiders of the Fever Sea for five of the games and Tempest Rising for one of them.

Mike, Jerry, Damian, and I started adventure 1, The Wormwood Mutiny. As has been the trend with this set, we lost one of the four times we played the first evening we played. Night two had us finishing the first adventure and starting adventure 2, Raiders of the Fever Sea

Michael and I also played four scenarios in a two-player campaign, coincidentally picking up where the group at Mike's finished off and continuing through the first scenario of Tempest Rising.

I like that the level "0" missions are now supposed to be played as part of the full campaign, but I feel that having five of them with minimal character growth was a mistake. Three scenarios, like in Rise of the Runelords, would have worked better. We also got very little from the "Cat and Mouse" scenario which looked to be designed to get a lot of new cards into the decks of the characters. This was because we had already played six scenarios and had done a decent job of collecting things for the decks.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Alien Artifacts.

Michael and I finished a quick game while waiting for others to show at the store.


Risiko Express
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2012
My Rating: 7

WTF? Age of War has a separate entry in the database even though the games is the same with a different skin? I wonder how long it will be before the two entries are merged (then unmerged, then re-merged)?


Roll for the Galaxy
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 1/2015
My Rating: 6

Nico and I taught the game to Greg and Alexander. They left after the first game. Nico and I played three more times before putting it away. We then played a few more times later in the month when there was just the two of us playing games.


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

Michael and I played this to close a Saturday instead of the usual Race for the Galaxy. RftG really did improve on this while making it more complex. The only real fault I still see with this is the Guild Hall and Library can give an advantage and when two players are pretty evenly matched, they will often determine the winner. Still, I will keep it around for those not wanting the steeper learning curve or when I'm just looking for something lighter to play.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 1/2015
My Rating: 9

Played using both Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients.

Arjun, Narani, and I played the "Cursed Idol" scenario. Our Marshal, Saloon Girl, and Law Man found the gate to Jargono fairly quickly and, thanks in large part to the Old Map, we were able to find the burial ground early enough so we weren't killed and completed the adventure. Giving the characters an Old Map item and removing the corridor tiles from the swamp mix was a genius design decision. It made finding the destination tile much more likely in the allotted time, but still meant it might take too long to get to if the players didn't keep up the pace.

The following week, we played the "Night of the Dead" with Michael joining us, playing his Rancher. Unlike the "Cursed Idol" scenario, this one felt like it could go on forever. That was because some moron didn't read the scenario carefully enough and didn't apply all the special rules. It never pays to be in a rush. Now I want to play it again with the right rules, which means we might have a character fatality or two.


Suburbia
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2014
My Rating: 9

Expansion Played: Suburbia, Inc.

We had not played this in a while, but my assembling the box organizer from The Broken Token, I had to bring the game along to try and get it played. I used to think I was good at the game, but really I am not.

The organizer is awesome! My only fear is the next expansion might have more borders than will fit in the borders area. Here's hoping what is released does fit.


Tiny Epic Defenders
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Tiny? Yes.

Epic? Not so much.

Will I try to look clever every time I play one of these games by repeating the same opening? Probably.

It's a decent cooperative board game. I like how the turns are taken based on a deck of cards for each round, but the characters felt kind of generic because of the limited actions available.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

Hilary, Mike, and I played this as part of an evening of dice games.
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Tue Mar 3, 2015 6:03 am
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Games Played in January 2015

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
Arizona
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January was an odd month. People were sick, on vacation, and generally unavailable so the number of different games played was down as Michael and I defaulted to playing the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game a couple of times, plus I met with the group at Mike's three times for the same game.

I still managed to play Shadows of Brimstone several times and would like to play more, though not everyone on Saturday likes it as much as I do.

I decided to stop the experiment I had been doing which was revisiting what games were new to me last year, so I am back to just covering what I played the past month.

In January, I played a mere 12 games a total of 42 times and four expansions a total of 10 times. Four of the 12 games and three of the four expansions were new to me, and I played five of the games and none of the expansions in December.

Here’s what I did play in January:

Among the Stars
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: The Ambassadors.

I set up the game using one of the suggested basic card set-ups from the Artipia site using the cards from the expansions. I also went through the special cards and created a set of colors which was balanced so one color didn't dominate. It was a fun game and I look forward to using The Ambassadors some more, but can see why some might not like using them.


Glen More
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2011
My Rating: 8

Nico recently discovered this, not having been a regular the times we played it back in late 2010 and early 2011. We had five, and I thought for sure I was doing poorly, but I managed to grab a VP generating building near the end of the second round and managed enough points to win.

I still like this game a lot, but I wonder if five might be too many for it? It felt like I didn't have much ability to plan on getting a tile I wanted after grabbing the one I would take on a particular turn.


Isle of Trains
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Nico Kickstarted all six of the 54-card Rabbit games from Dice Hate Me Games. This is the one which he had played and liked, so he taught it to Paul and I. After the first game we played it again right away. I really liked it and looked to buy it right away, but it was not available yet.

A week later, Nico, Michael and I played it and Michael wanted to get a copy right away.

It is a quick, fun and a not-too complicated take on the cards being multiple resources like San Juan and Race for the Galaxy. I really am looking forward to getting my hands on a copy of it, but it packs so much fun in a small deck.


Level 7 [Omega Protocol]
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

Another cooperative game, but like Descent it has someone controlling the bad guys against the other players.

I liked the game and the mechanisms for the way the characters set how they are moving each turn which changes some of their stats. The adrenaline points is also a nice way of trying to balance the number actions the players get versus the number that the overlord player can use. But in the end it still suffers from the one against many, which I don't like, so I would much rather play Galaxy Defenders.


Machi Koro
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Machi Koro: Harbor Expansion.

The Harbor is out so now we can use the actual set and not the PnP version I've had for a while.


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

Light, amusing, and quick. Maybe it is too quick because it felt like it was missing something? It felt like just as we got rolling, the game ended.

Also, we never saw any purple city cards in our game, which meant drawing a bunch of these was really disappointing. Yeah, you can use two cards as a wild, but that is still less useful than having two cards of a color that can be played.


Pandemic: The Cure
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 11/2014
My Rating: 8

I was looking for something quick and this fit the bill. We played two games, winning one and losing one. The Scientist is the big game changer: if you want a more-winnable game she should be included as one of the player characters.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Spires of Xin-Shalast for five of the games.

Mike, Jerry, Damian and I finished off the first adventure path! We hated the last scenario and feel it could have been better designed because it can be unbeatable just because the cards shuffle the wrong way. Are there any issues like this with the scenarios in Skull and Shackles?


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 14
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Raiders of the Fever Sea for two of the games.

After finishing up Rise of the Runelords, Mike, Jerry, Damian, and I went to work tackling pirates, sharks, and other ne'er-do-wells of the Shackles islands. We decided we could choose any of the 12 characters from this set or any of those from the class decks. I chose the Alchemist, Jerry chose the Swashbuckler, Mike picked the Magus, and Damian grabbed the Warpriest. We managed to lose the second scenario the first time we played.

I also played four scenarios in one of Michael's campaigns with Kyle and Caitlyn, though she didn't play in all of them because their kids were being rambunctious.

Later in the month, the group at Mike's ended up finishing the Plunder and Peril adventure, though we had another loss in the mix. That just makes the game more interesting. As a group, we were generally underwhelmed by the five scenarios after coming down from the characters that finished the first set. I think it would have been better to keep the included Adventure 0 as three scenarios than have five.

Michael and I also played two more scenarios in the Raiders of the Fever Sea adventure in his two-player group. A third game that day had Jessica and Jonas joining up as we played another in the four-player game that we played with Kyle and Caitlyn.

My figures for this and the next adventure path are off being painted and I should have them in hand sometime soon.


Roll for the Galaxy
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

In some ways it is over-produced, but the most important component is not. For this price I would have expected the dice to be etched and not just have the faces painted onto the die sides.

The game is also slower to play than the card game without adding any real depth.

Before it was released, I considered this an auto-buy, but with the huge box, painted-on die faces, and slower play, I am not likely to pick this up. Nico and Mike own it, so I am sure I will play it on occasion.


Roll Through the Ages: The Iron Age
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 7

Nico and I were the last two hanging out one Saturday afternoon and we played this before he had to leave. I was able to generate more workers early on and was also able to generate more ports than him, while avoiding rolling disasters. I scored 131 points with only four disasters, which felt like a huge score.

I don't believe any of us who Kickstarted it have read the rules for The Mediterranean Expansion. I keep thinking I will, but I don't.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 12/2014
My Rating: 9

Played using both Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients.

Arjun, Narani, and I played "The Lost Journal" fixed-map scenario using the U.S. Marshal, the ever-popular Saloon Girl, and the Law Man. We ended up getting to the fifth possible room out of six before finding the Journal. We had the event which made the Hold Back the Darkness roll harder and it sped the end of the game, and we lost the game because the darkness escaped while facing the Goliath and his minions. The best part of the game? Telling Arjun he should roll to kill his wife and saying the opposite to Narani. I'm sick.

The following weekend the three of us were joined by Michael who was playing a new Preacher. We played the "For a Few Dark Stone More" scenario and ended up with a win, but the poor Saloon Girl got a mutation which injures people ending up next to her at the end of their turns. How messed up is that?

Later on in the month, Paul, Michael and I played "Seal the Void Gate," which was the last of the basic adventures I hadn't played. This is a tough adventure, with a slightly-accelerated clock because the characters need to find only two clues to get to the final battle. Paul played his Piano Player (Saloon Girl), Michael played his Rancher, and I got to play my Bandido again. Both Michael and I are about 1/2 an adventure from jumping up to level 4, which will be the first characters in any of the groups that I play that make it above level 3.

Finally, Michael and I visited the "Swamps of Death" with the Rancher and the Bandido. We succeeded.
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Tue Feb 3, 2015 7:13 pm
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My most played games of 2014, or "what's shakin', sun god!"

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
Arizona
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Last year I did three posts indicting the Good, Bad, and the Ugly games I played in 2013. This year I just didn't feel like it and I wasn't going to do any kind of recap. Then I got a bug up my butt and decided to look at the 10 most-games played this year, and then look at the 10 most-plyed of the previous year as well.

My most-played games of 2014

Because of a tie at spot number 10, there are 11 on this list. Eight of them were games I played for the first time in 2014 which I guess means the Cult of the New is strong in me.

Marvel Dice Masters: Avengers vs. X-Men
Times Played in 2014: 54

We managed to get through three of the six organized play weeks, but then the small group petered out. When the Uncanny X-Men organized play gets started I hope to get a small group that will be able to play through it.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords
Times Played in 2014: 46

Mike, Damian, Jerry, and I played through most of the campaign and finished it after the first of this year. Michael, Nick, and I are into the fourth adventure but haven't played in a while. I just reorganized my box to include the class decks and reset it so we could start a new campaign at the store, but I have everything recorded so Michael, Nick and I can resume at any time.


Splendor
Times Played in 2014: 39

A terrific game! I know a lot of people think it is dry, but I really dig the puzzle aspect and engine-building competition between the players. After playing Camel Up, I am shocked that Splendor didn't win the SdJ over it, or that it was even nominated at all.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played in 2014: 37

Almost all of these were played with the Alien Artifacts expansion without the Orb part. We thought it was fiddly and slowed the game down, but playing with just the cards was a nice change from playing with the first series of expansions.


Machi Koro
Times Played in 2014: 31

Once we started with the Harbor expansion, we played with it almost exclusively. I want the retail version of the expansion, but it is on the standard Pandasaurus schedule -- really late.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played in 2014: 26

This is both Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients mixed together. I would play this all day most Saturdays if everyone else was up for it. With all the extra stuff that should be arriving this year, I expect it to be fresh and blast to play the entire year.


Pandemic: The Cure
Times Played in 2014: 20

All twenty plays were in a three week period in November, and then I stopped bringing it along with me because I ended up with less room in the gaming bag because of larger games and my wanting to play older, deeper games. I can't imagine this being in the top 10 for 2015.


Run, Fight, or Die!
Times Played in 2014: 19

It was a big splash in September and then played occasionally since then. It's a fun dice game which has the feel of the zombie theme. There is a new Kickstarter for another expansion and I plan on backing it.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played in 2014: 16

Yeah, I am counting this both games separately. This one will likely see more plays this year as Mike, Damian, Jerry, and I are starting this set soon and will probably finish it before the end of the year, which would be at least 35 plays.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played in 2014: 16

If there is one game on the list that most people wouldn't expect to see, it would be this one. It's a quick dice game that captures the feel of Ra. Mike and I will play this on those days that we are looking for something that is not too taxing, but still fun.



My most-played games of 2013

Surprisingly, only one of these made the top played games this past year, and it was the game that most probably wouldn't have guessed would be on one of the lists, much less both of them. Some of it was these games grew old and part of it was the games that arrived in 2014 that jumped to the head of the line were so awesome.

Mystery Rummy: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played in 2013: 31
Times played in 2014: 8

Mike and I still play this. Playing it so many times in 2013 was just a aberration and I suspect it will see about 10 plays a year for the foreseeable future.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played in 2013: 23
Times played in 2014: 9

The Saturday guys suffered from bean fatigue and so did Mike, so we didn't play it with Hilary as much when I was over at their place to play games.


DC Comics Deck-Building Game
Times Played in 2013: 20
Times played in 2014: 8

If the Heroes Unite was more fun I think we would have played this more. Both Mike and bought the Crisis Expansion, but neither of us has actually read the rules. For my part, it seems like an awful lot of work to set it up as a cooperative game and it looks to make it more complicated, but that is not what I want when I play this. I am looking forward to some of the mini-expansions like the Arrow and JSA crossover packs, which will add a few cards to mix and some new characters. I didn't pick up Forever Evil because it was the attacks which I felt made the Lord of the Rings versions of the game system less fun to play.


King of Tokyo
Times Played in 2013: 19
Times played in 2014: 6

Like with the bean fatigue in Würfel Bohnanza, I think there was a little fatigue for this game. Also, Machi Koro, Run, Fight, or Die! and other games took its place at times. I expect it to be around the 10 plays a year range as well from now on.


Dreadball
Times Played in 2013: 17
Times played in 2014: 0

Mantic's handling of their Kickstarters soured me on their games and I was the driving force behind keeping a league going. Even then, it was hard keeping the group on task and I gave up on trying to get their games played.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played in 2013: 15
Times Played in 2014: 16

The one game on both lists. It just keeps plugging along.


Augustus
Times Played in 2013: 15
Times played in 2014: 6

The box size kills this one. I would bring it every week, and brought it a lot but then didn't bring it out because it was in a white card box and would sometimes forget it was in the bag.


Hanabi
Times Played in 2013: 14
Times played in 2014: 1

It flamed out pretty quickly. Sure it is fun, but there are other games that get the attention this might.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played in 2013: 14
Times played in 2014: 10

Not much of a change from year to year, but just enough to keep it out of the top ten plays. Heck, even the 14 plays in 2013 wouldn't have been enough to crack the list in 2014.


Elder Sign
Times Played in 2013: 13
Times played in 2014: 2

Another game that gets most of the plays with Mike and Hilary. They also play it with others and get their fix that way. I should try and get it played on Saturdays.


Guildhall
Times Played in 2013: 13
Times played in 2014: 1

This one dropped because it wasn't as popular with some of the regulars as it was with me and Eric, who life has prevented from joining us on Saturdays for the past year and probably for the foreseeable future.


Trains
Times Played in 2013: 13
Times played in 2014: 7

I would have thought this would have been played more, but it still wasn't completely forgotten. It spiked a little at the end of the year with Rising Sun releasing and now that there are several two-player maps, I suspect Mike and I might play it more when I am over at his place. I also finally got around to combining the cards from both sets into one box and will probably pack it along several times this year to get played on a Saturday.
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Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:45 am
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Games Played in November 2014

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
Arizona
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November was a month of new games seeing multiple plays, even longer games. Going into the month, I would have bet that Shadows of Brimstone might dominate the month's plays, but it was doubled-up by a new dice game based on another often-played cooperative game.

I'm also revisiting last November at the end of the post.

I played 26 games a total of 70 times and four expansions a total of five times. Nine (!) of the games were new to me and I played none of the games and two of the expansions in October. Here’s what I played in November:

Camel Up
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 5

Light, no real choices, and a horrible pyramid to dispense dice when a cloth bag would have worked perfectly at a lower cost. I can see why it would be looked at as the SdJ nominee, but it just doesn't feel like a winner to me. I really didn't like the moving of a stack of camels when the lower camel is moved, and all it really does is make the scoring more random than it needs to be.

I'll play it when Mike brings it out, but can't imagine ever asking for it to hit the table.


Castles of Burgundy
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2014
My Rating: 8

I never felt like I was having a good game. The tiles didn't appear right for me and I didn't adapt well to the ones that were available. We need to play this again.


Castles of Mad King Ludwig
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Just a different take on the Suburbia engine. And where Suburbia is a well-oiled machine with appropriate graphics and iconography, the Castles of Mad King Ludwig is a bit of a graphic mess with a lot crammed onto tiny tiles.

The information on the tiles gets covered up during the selection phases by the coins which are put on them.

I suspect there are too many tile types when playing with fewer players, but because of the reliance of certain tiles on other types it isn't something that can be adjusted when playing with two or three.

In our first game (which was with two-players) we never saw one type of tile and only saw two of the tiles for one of the end-game goal types. This meant the person who was able to get the two tiles by pure luck of the draw scored the eight points for being first and the other got nothing.

The bang for the buck is also low since you are buying a mostly-empty box for $60. After seeing the components, I thought it would have been a little pricey at $50, even with the extra air included in the box.

Like many of the second generation of deck builders failed because they lacked the simple brilliance of Dominion, this fails because it messes too much with Suburbia's streamlined excellence.

The combined graphic mess, apparent messy balance, and my perception that I would be spending a lot of money on an air-filled box means this is a non-purchase for me and is not something I will ask to play.


Cribbage
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 2/2012
My Rating: 10

Mike and I played a game of this for the first time in a long time. I thought we had played it more recently, but looking back it has been over two years. He and I both play it on the iPad and I suspect my playings on there and the phone are why I thought I had played it in person.


Dragon Slayer
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 6

The shiny newness gremlin has left the aura of this game already and my rating dropped a point. After five or six plays, it's just not something I will likely pull out and insist on playing. I'd play it because it is mostly a harmless filler, but there's just nothing exciting about it.

We played with Mike's retail copy and slight differences from the Kickstarter version were noticeable. The biggest was the missing score board, though I also missed the card to hold the dice for the collected dragon parts. I can be such a parakeet at times.


Elder Sign
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Unseen Forces.

It's been a long time since I got the chance to play this. Mike and Hilary get to play this with others so it doesn't hit the table when we play at their house too often. I've brought it along on a couple of Saturdays, but haven't gotten it to the table.

Jenny Barnes, Monterey Jack and Kate Winthrop teamed up to prevent Shudde M'ell from breaking the world apart. We defeated the tremoring terror in a timely manner.


Eminent Domain
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2014
My Rating: 7

It had been a while since Mike had played and he wanted me to bring this over. We broke it out, without the expansion, and Mike made the consume/produce strategy work and won a fairly easy victory.

I do prefer playing it with the expansion, though will likely play it again with Mike sometime soon with just the base game.


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

The best game from Days of Wonder in ages. I can see why some people might be prone to analysis paralysis when playing the game because of all the different options there are in the early turns. The limitation of having to place a worker of the same color in the final space is a great way to limit the choices and helps limit the amount of paralysis.

None of us had played before and Jessica was obviously having the hardest time comprehending the greater picture, but she chose a goal to work for and stuck with it while doing other things she could when working toward that goal wasn't an option. She ended up winning by one point.

Game two was with Nico and Nick. I picked up a Djinn that allowed me to activate to choose one of three Djinns and put them in play. We weren't sure if it activated when I played the new Djinn or not. It wouldn't have mattered much since Nick dominated and scored half again as much as Nico and I did.

Both Nico and Mike own this, so it's not likely that I will pick it up.


Garden Dice
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2013
My Rating: 8

I'd been wanting to play this again for a while and Nico mentioned an interest in picking it up, so I made sure I pulled it out to play so he could decide if he wanted to buy it or not.

He, Michael, Nick, and I played. I thought Nico was going to win because of the bonuses as he finished with five of the one-point veggies and another three, but Michael eked out a one-point win.

I had forgotten about the bonus points for the Scarecrow when I placed my Sun Dial and placed it in the 1/1 spot early on. That was a mistake and I need to remember that the next time I play, which will hopefully be soon with the expansion included.


Heckmeck am Bratwurmeck
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

We played a four-player game with each player having their own unique color of dice so there was no passing of dice around the table. This does speed up the game just a little as we weren't calling for the dice to passed along.

Mike agreed. Because as we played at his place with his wife, he said to let him know the next time I saw a dice order being made.

I may have overly-pimped the game.


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

We initially played this with three players. It was a lot of fun even though we played one rule wrong (that we know of). We weren't taking the items production buildings produced the turn we built them. I also didn't know the Samurai rules when I played the Japanese which didn't hurt because I ended up with a fairly easy win because of all the deals I made.

The second time was with Narani and Nico This time I got he Egyptians, Narani had the Romans, and Nico had the Japanese. Nico having to use workers for Samurai, slowed down the Japanese deal making we saw the first time, so much so that he finished a distant third. I was able to crank out the VP-generating buildings and lots and lots of Egyptian buildings to again run away with the game. This means I might win one or two more times and then never again as my strategies will stagnate and everyone one will adapt.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 7

Mike and I played this once. I finished with what may well be the lowest score I ever had -- 2 points! -- though I deliberately started my fourth path on the last turn because I decided to lose with style!


King of New York
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Just another King of Tokyo?

Not quite!

First up, the dice do not have the numbers to score points. Then there are buildings to crush, military units to fight, and a fame face. Yeah, it is very similar, but is different enough for me to consider buying it at some point.


Machi Koro
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Machi Koro: Harbor Expansion for all the games.

I won the game at Mike and Hilary's!


Marvel Dice Masters: Avengers vs. X-Men
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

Nico and I played a couple of games using a lot of cards from Uncanny X-men and I lost both times. Again proving that my team design skills are not very good.


Pandemic: The Cure
Times Played: 20
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Wow, this is very hard to win.

I like the game and dice implementation of the original game. It is more random than the original, but it's because there are dice involved. By nature, it'll be more random and if you were expecting something else then I think you might be delusional.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: The Hook Mountain Massacre for two games and Fortress of the Stone Giants for one.

We got in three more games of the campaign at Mike's.

Michael, Nick, and I haven't played any more in our three-player campaign, which is a shame. I would have guessed we'd be into adventure five by now.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

Michael and I continued a two-player campaign he started with Oloch the Warpriest and Damiel the Alchemist. We beat "The Grindylow and the Whale" and "Plugg’s Uglies" scenarios from the The Wormwood Mutiny adventure included in the box.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

I tried to come up with a line mimicking the Raymond J. Johnson, Jr. comedy bit, but couldn't get past "You can call it Ra."

No, I am not clever.


Roll Through the Ages: The Iron Age
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

This showed up on the doorstep at both Mike's and my houses. He, Hilary, and I struggled through a first play as we adjusted to the fairly significant changes between this and the original Roll Through the Ages. The second game was 10 days later when Mike and I played with Michael joining us. We still struggled with some of the rule differences, though it was smoother than the first game.

The third time was me teaching it to Nick, Nico, and Narani and it didn't flow well, though I believe Nick and Narani hadn't played the original and Nico said he had only played the IOS implementation of the original game.

The last time was with Michael and Nico. I was focusing on getting my harbors built up and was one turn away from really going to town and scoring big, but Michael ended the game. Nico won and I was a distant last.


Run, Fight, or Die!
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

A quick two-player game with Mike. There is a Location card which gives the player a Follower for each "search" icon they roll the next turn. This always produces a winner for the game. I am thinking about either removing it from my deck for a while or focus only on locations to try and find the card in every game.


Shadows of Brimstone
Times Played: 10
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 9

Played using both Swamps of Death and Cities of the Ancients.

Alex, Mike, and I combined the two boxes and played a couple of "Exploration" scenarios. The first was a small mine with just three rooms and our Preacher, Bandido, and U.S. Marshal had an easy time of it. The second time was a much larger mine and we managed to find the last room but were completely slapped down when we faced the second Goliath in a row.

The following week we played a six-player game. I swore we wouldn't do this because of how much the game would likely drag, but we were all set-up to roll when Tim and Nicki arrived so we just gave them characters and let them join in. Boy, were my expectations wrong – it was worse. Besides the time issue for the game, we had a couple of occurrences where bottlenecks ended up leaving higher initiative characters behind to get ambushed alone by monsters. Four is the limit for the number of players for us from now on.

Mike, Damian, and I also played three games one evening, losing the first one in a corridor before reaching the first room because six tentacles ambushed us and we rolled poorly. The next two games worked better for us and, at the end of the second delve, my Indian Scout came up just two wounds shy of killing a Harbinger in one round (thanks in large part to Damian's Preacher's damage boost).

Later in the month, Jerry joined Damian, Mike, and I and we started with new heroes. Jerry played the U.S. Marshal, Damian the Lawman, Mike the Bandido, and I played the Outlaw. Our motley crew delved three times into the mines, playing the "Escape" and "City of the Ancients" scenarios for the first time.

Finally, Michael had a chance to play the game. Alex was the Outlaw, Michael played the Rancher, and I tried the Saloon Girl. Instead of taking it easy on Michael and jumping into "For a Few Dark Stone More" we tried the "Terror in the Night" scenario. In the last fight both the Outlaw and Saloon Girl were knocked out, leaving the Michael's Rancher fighting it out with the brutally-tough Night Terror, running around the chamber, trying to stay out of its reach. The Rancher was down to one wound, missed the killing shot on the Night Terror which, luckily, missed it's chance to kill the Rancher. The rancher then ducked, moved behind the monster, and put a shot through the skull of the beast to save the day!

In another reference to old commercials, my Bandido is names Fredo (you know, kinda like "Frito")... shake


Smash Up
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2013
My Rating: 7

From this point on, I am no longer recording playings of the expansions since everyone I know has them all mixed together.

Mike and I battled it out. I had the Bear Cavalry and Tricksters and Mike had the Miskatonic University and Mad Scientists, which seemed like a fitting pairing. I thought I was in deep trouble because I had so many action cards and so few minions. Luckily, I was able to protect a high-point card and was able to finish second in one which was worth more points for not finishing first and eked out a slim win.

Has anyone made randomizer cards for the factions which can be printed at Printer Studio or Artscow?


Splendor
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

Jessica, Jonas, and I played this to end a Saturday. Always fun, even though I only played it once this month.


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

While it looks like Suburbia, it is more like a the tile-placement of Carcassonne on individual boards. The one down side for some is the only player interaction is the selecting and passing of tiles which doesn't have too much of an effect on the individual player strategies.


Tiny Epic Kingdoms
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 6

Tiny, yes.

Epic, not really (in my universe).

On the other hand, there were a lot of people really enjoying the game when Michael Coe was demoing it and some of his other games at the table next to ours at my FLGS so you might want to check it out.


November 2013 Revisited

The most played games in November last year were Bang! The Dice Game, which was new, and Mystery Rummy: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld which were both played four times each. That particular Mystery Rummy entry still sees fairly regular play at Mike's. We're both looking forward to the upcoming printing with the thinner card stock as both of our copies are well-worn.

There were just a few new to me games a year ago, unlike this past month. Here are the new to me games from last year with some current comments

Bang! The Dice Game
Times Played Then: 4
Times Played Since Then: 4
My Rating Then/Now: 6/6
Owned: Yes

Looking at this reminds me that I need to put it back into game bag.


Eldritch Horror
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 3
My Rating Then/Now: 7/8
Owned: No

We've played it both at Mike's and at the store. As I mentioned above with Elder Sign I haven't played as many cooperative games with Mike and Hilary, so it's not seen as much play as I hoped. Mike also mentioned that he hadn't played it in a while. Also some of our new attendees, Tim and Nicki, also like it a lot and, with a new expansion coming out soon, I expect it will be played either at the store or Mike's.


Lost Legends
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 3
My Rating Then/Now: 5/6
Owned: Yes

I ended up buying this because I was able to get the extra character and level one monster deck. I still don't think we've played it completely correctly but we're close. It's been a while since we played so I suspect the rules will be rusty. The trick is to have three when we play it again. More characters and/or more monster decks would be cool.


Trains and Stations
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 0
My Rating Then/Now: 6/6
Owned: No

I think Mike got rid of this so I doubt we'll play it again.
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Tue Dec 2, 2014 6:06 pm
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Games Played in October 2014

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
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It's a Shadows of Brimstone month! It arrived twice, or once and a half because of my impatience. Now the question is to paint or not to paint?

I've decided that I will begin revisiting the previous year's new to me games from the same month. This time I'm pulling from my Games played in October 2013 post. I don't know how long this will continue, but it could be a permanent addition to my monthly ramblings. That's after this month's games, so keep reading for more pointless, stinking content.

This October, I played 21 games a total of 46 times and seven expansions a total of 23 times. Two of the games and two of the expansions were new to me and I played 12 of the games and four of the expansions in September. Here’s what I played:


Archipelago
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 4/2015
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: War & Peace

We played a four-player short game and it was really short. We only saw one of the new cards. We also misinterpreted the common goal so we ignored it at the end. Alex ended up tied with Nick at five points, but Alex had the tiebreaker.


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

I finally got around to playing this, just about a year after getting it in a math trade. It took a while to explain it to Michael and Nico, but once we started playing it was very intuitive. I suspect Nico will be buying it and I would also like to get it played some more in the future.

As part of the trade I also have the Overfunding Achievements which I will mix in next time. One of the things included in them is a very handy floor counting ruler which shows how much each floor would cost, and that should help a lot when figuring out how much to pay.


Hanabi
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2013
My Rating: 8

Michael, Paul and I scored 19 points.


Heckmeck am Bratwurmeck
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 1/2014
My Rating: 8

I picked up some more custom dice as part of a group order on BGG. The dice are from Chessex and replace the original wood ones. Mike wanted a set and I got the extra for him and since he had the new dice, he, Hilary, and I played the game. Obviously, the dice knew who was going to be their new keeper since Mike won fairly easily.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 7

Ditto. (Last month.)


Machi Koro
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

The retail version is out. It is a little over-priced for the contents and the box is way too big for said contents, even if you take into account the cards from the two expansions which will be coming out.

The first time we played was with just the base game.


Mystery Rummy 4: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

Mike jumped out to an early lead, but I managed to pull out a win by winning the last two hands.


Pandemic
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: On the Brink.

Ebola.

It's here.

We tried to stop it.

We failed.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords
Times Played: 12
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Fortress of the Stone Giants, The Hook Mountain Massacre, and The Skinsaw Murders Each for four of the games.

Michael, Nick, and I continued the campaign. We beat "Sandpoint Under Siege" and the time wasn't the issue we thought it might be since it has to be completed with five fewer turns to do it.

"Jorgenfist" was very challenging. We lost the first time, in large part to not being able to beat the stone door barrier. We also had a couple of giants ended up making the 1 in 6 roll and got shuffled back into the deck. When we went at it again, the same barrier appeared in the same location! This time, Nick had a way of easily defeating it and we managed a quick win.

It was impossible for Valeros (me) to make the roll to be able to use items or spells against the Harpy Monks in "The Black Tower," but who needs weapons when you have fists of steel and thunder! Valeros punched out three of them with help from his friends and we easily beat this scenario.

Mike, Jerry, Damian and I continued our campaign with the second adventure, The Skinsaw Murders and went through the last four scenarios. We beat them, though one we beat on the last turn and another was also very close. (I don't remember which was which.)

We then started The Hook Mountain Massacre and made it through the first three scenarios, though we lost "Here Comes the Flood" the first time we played it.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

First up was a continuation of the three-player campaign with Michael who played Lini this time, and Matt who played Valeros while I still played Feiya.

We beat "Sunken Treasure," the fourth scenario of the Plunder & Peril adventure. "The Black Flag" is the last scenario of the adventure and we managed to lose it. Michael was down to no cards in his deck in the first scenario and was close to matching that the second game.


Praetor
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2014
My Rating: 7

This just doesn't work as well if extra worker camps don't show up early. If they aren't around, it's too easy for one player to play in last for a few rounds just to get extra workers and have a huge advantage.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

Welcome to the wonders of ancient Egypt, where the dice gods couldn't make up their mind. In other words, Mike and I tied.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Alien Artifacts.

Michael, Nico, and I played a quick game, and later in the month Michael and I played six two-player games.


Run, Fight, or Die!
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

The first three times we played this month were without the expansion. The first and third game ended up with ties when my character was reduced to zero life.


Shadows of Brimstone: Swamps of Death
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 9

I ordered a copy of Cities of the Ancients and Mike ordered this set off someone from eBay since our pledges hadn't yet shipped. Mike and I played a game using both sets. I played the Bandido and he played the Lawman, and it was a quick game and we reached the end room the Bandido was still fairly injured and was knocked out immediately and the Lawman didn't last much longer.

I also played two games with some of the Saturday crowd. The first mission last two map tiles as we had a huge encounter and that was followed up by three ambushes due to doubles on the "Hold Back the Darkness" rolls and a Darkness card that came up. The stranglers ended up with two elite abilities and we were overwhelmed by the sheer number of monsters.

So we started over and this time managed to pull out a win. As a healer, I prefer the Saloon Girl over the Preacher. Her ability to heal one point a turn from anyone standing next to her is awesome, though she really needs a bigger gun.

And arriving on Halloween eve? My pledge!

Mike and I managed to get one game with the combined sets, playing Preacher and the Gunslinger. It was going really well, even though I was unable to keep the darkness at bay for most of the rolls. We ended p in the big battle at the end in the Swamps of Jargono, looking like we were going to win when I failed the hold back the darkness roll again which led to 12 über-zobies showing up and dragging us into the dark, swampy waters.

Splendor
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

Two four-player games with Jonas and Jessica being new to the game. I pulled out a win in the first game and Michael managed to a win the second time when Jessica completed a card on her last turn and it revealed a card that he was able to complete and that gave him one of the bonus tiles.


Sushi Go!
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 8

A quick, light game. We taught Matt how to play, and he pulled out the win. I also picked up the Soy Sauce promo from the BGG store but haven't had a chance to use it.


Thunderstone Advance: Worlds Collide
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2014
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: Into the Abyss

Michael and I taught Paul how to play and he caught on quickly, winning the first game. I won the second time by beating the Heart of Doom, using primarily the Outlands fighters as my force without a single Thunderstone Shard in my hand. Its 15 VP was the difference in the game.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2014
My Rating: 8

There was another several-month period between playings of this once-regularly played game. Hilary won the game.


Trains: Rising Sun
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 10/2014
My Rating: 8

Nico and I played a couple of two-player games using the two-player maps in the set. From what I've seen of the new cards so far, I like them. The two-player maps are just as fun as the promo maps from GenCon 2014. I'm looking forward to integrating the two sets of cards.


October 2013 Revisited

The most played games in October were Suburbia and Augustus (called Rise of Augustus at the time) which were both played five times each. Neither have seen a lot of table time of late and I need to correct that. Part of the problem with Augustus is I often forget I have it along because it is stored in a small, whit trading card box without a label.

Here are the new to me games from last year with some current comments.


High Command: Hordes
Times Played Then: 2
Times Played Since Then: 1
My Rating Then/Now: 7/6
Owned: Yes (might sell/trade)

My opinion of the game hasn't changed that much, but the game needs to be played more than we will likely play it. I also have High Command: Warmachine which is still sealed and probably will sell it or trade it away.


Kemet
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 0
My Rating Then/Now: 5/5
Owned: No

I'd play it if Alex wanted to, but he hasn't brought it when I was playing, though I would much rather play History of the World. Maybe I should that to him some day? In the meantime, I don't miss playing Kemet.


Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Deck-Building Game
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 0
My Rating Then/Now: 7/6
Owned: No

Generally, I am not a fan of the abundant attacks on the Lord of the Rings version of the Cryptozoic Cerberus system, which this is technically not part of, though ir really is the same system. Too often you end up without enough cards to play your turn because of all the attacks and I was just not impressed by the new wall mechanism in this set. I can't imagine ever playing the recently-released The Return of the King Deck-Building Game, though I would if someone else bought it and either version of the DC Comics Deck-Building Game isn't available.


Neuroshima Hex! 3.0
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 0
My Rating Then/Now: 6/6
Owned: No

Technically it wasn't "new" because I had played previous versions, but this was my first, and only, playing of the edition of the rules. I'm not a huge fan of the game, but I seem to recall I like the way this version works better than the older ones.


Rattus Cartus
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 0
My Rating Then/Now: 7/7
Owned: No

I liked it and Mike has mentioned bringing it into play a few times, but it hasn't made it to the table again. I've also thought about buying it on occasion, but haven't. A couple of years ago I would have added it to my collection, but these days I am trying to lessen my impulse buys.


Renaissance Man
Times Played Then: 1
Times Played Since Then: 0
My Rating Then/Now: 4/3
Owned: No

Didn't like, sorry I played it, didn't want to play it again. Just thinking about this disaster was enough to make me want to lower my rating some more.
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Fri Oct 31, 2014 4:58 pm
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Games played in September 2014

Bobby Warren
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Glendale
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Zombies in the dungeon crawl, zombies in the dice game, at least there were none in the sushi!

I played 19 games a total of 62 times and seven expansions a total of 18 times. Four of the games and two of the expansions were new to me and I played 10 of the games and three the expansions in August. Here’s what I played:

Among the Stars
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

I pulled it out on a Saturday when there were four of us, and it was the first time Mike played with more than two. The next time I bring it out, I will play with the Ambassadors.


Ascension: Realms Unraveled
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 7

I enjoyed this latest version in the series which has multi-aspect heroes and artifacts and cards which morph into better versions.


DC Comics Deck-Building Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 7

I played a game with Josh from Tampa, who is working in Arizona for a few months and came down to the store for a second time on a Saturday.


Keltis: Das Würfelspiel
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 7

I played against Mike, which should be obvious to those who read this regularly.


King's Forge
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 5

Nico backed this on Kickstarter and showed it to us. It's not a good game, but not a terrible game.


Machi Koro
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Machi Koro: Harbor Expansion for all the games.

The first time was at Mike's with Hilary. Mike won. Surprisingly, it was also the last time for the month.

People keep asking when it will be released in stores. My guess is June. No, not June 2014 as originally announced, but June 2015. shake


Marvel Dice Masters: Avengers vs. X-Men
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 8

I really want to see some more dice and cards. Come on WizKids, lets see the next release!

I came in second at our little monthly tourney.


Mystery Rummy 4: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2014
My Rating: 8

I've been Caponed! I was shut out on the first round and ended up losing the game very badly.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords
Times Played: 7
Last Month Played: 7/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: The Skinsaw Murders for one of the games and The Hook Mountain Massacre for another one of the games.

Michael, Nick, and I finished the Hook Mountain Massacre and will begin the next scenario pack the next time the three of us play.

Mike, Jerry, Damian and I started a new campaign and beat all five of the first scenarios from Adventure 1: Burnt Offerings and also beat the first scenario of the next adventure. Our party consists of Amiri the Barbarian, Harsk the Ranger, Kyra the Cleric, and Seoni the Sorcerer.


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 8

Michael's set-up different groups of characters to run through the campaign like I did with the first set. We played the beginning of the five-player campaign and I played Ranzak. We lost the "Island Hopping" scenario, so we'll be trying it again at some point.

On another day he, Nico, and I played the three-player group of Valeros, Lini, and I played Feiya the witch. We lost the first scenario, beat it the second time, and then beat the next two scenarios.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 8

See the Keltis: Das Würfelspiel entry.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 8
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Alien Artifacts for all of the games.

One Saturday had Michael and I alone for much of the day and we played a bunch of this, played once with Ben, and once with Shawn.


Run, Fight, or Die!
Times Played: 14
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Zombie Horde Expansion for four of the games

Not another zombie game?

Yup, but it is one of the rare fun ones! I immediately went onto the internet looking for a Kickstarter version with the extra characters and follower cards. I won a copy and it arrived within a week.

I played a few games with the Zombie Horde Expansion, which adds some interesting things but it felt like it slowed the game down a little, but not so much that I won't play using it in the future. I thought having the different zombies in the same gray color as the basic ones was also not the best design choice, but they weren't that difficult to tell apart. I thought about painting their bases, but I doubt paint will stick on the plastic used for the figures. Mike said he might try washing the figures and then using a sharpie on the base edges to make them easier to differentiate. We'll see how that works.


Shadows of Brimstone: Swamps of Death
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 8

The pledge manager was sent! The pledge manager was sent!

Now, where are the boxes, huh? Huh? Where?!?!?

In the meantime, the Indian Scout, the Preacher, and the Lawman went looking for Brimstone and after entering the mines they were joined by the Rancher. We found a chamber which was infested by critters that messed with the minds, though that could have been the Preacher consuming some of the pouch full of whiskey bottles he had on 'im.

We came across a huge flying thing with big jaws and managed to beat it with just the Rancher and your humble Scout still on their feet, leaving the mines with some Darkstone for our efforts. on

Next up, the Preacher and I were hired to check out a claim bought by some company. We went in and discovered it smaller than we thought it was, but full of nasty critters. We were overwhelmed by them, barely surviving. The nearby town wasn't so lucky and was gone when we recovered enough to get back there. At the next town, I was able to get my injuries tended and bought a chest which holds Darkstone and protects the carrier from being corrupted. The Preacher wasn't as lucky at the doc's and his collar bone was still busted up.

We met up with another Rancher and decided to head into another mine to find some more Darkstone. We ended up findin' a portal that took us to some swamps which sure ain't part of this world. I suspect it is the home of those large flyin' things which we're now callin' Harbingers, because we had to face another one of them. Luckily, we had a lot of Dynamite and we managed to bring it and it's horde of smaller critter friends down. We ended up gatherin' a bunch of Darkstone and headed back to town.

I really am enjoying the game but already am getting tired of the exact same mix of monsters every game. While each set is a self-contained game I believe most people will want to have both sets because it doubles the number of available heroes, adds more monsters and a second Otherworld to explore.

I was also initially worried about the amount of corruption that the players would collect after playing the first two times, but there are ways to recover from it in town and we haven't had as much of it in the last three games as we the first couple of times we played.


Splendor
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/20/14
My Rating: 8

Just one game, played against Nico. I generally had it along, but we played a lot of Pathfinder Adventure Card Game and Run, Fight, or Die! which took much of the Splendor table time.


Sushi Go!
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

It's got a tin and I was not going to buy it, but I decided to when we were looking for something to play. It's a lot of fun as a quick drafting game.


Takenoko
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 9/2013
My Rating: 7

Nico dragged this out and we played it with Michael. We played the Gardener wrong the first game, only growing on the target tile. We played a second game, this time with the right rules.


Thunderstone Advance: Worlds Collide
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 8/2014
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: Into the Abyss

Another game with Mike using just Into the Abyss. We had a lot of expensive cards and it slowed the game down a little bit.


Trains
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: GenCon 2014 maps for both games.

We played a couple of two-player games using the Texas and Saitama maps from GenCon.

The designer of the Texas map, Steve Ellis, recommended reducing the number of components for the maps, and it felt spot-on when playing them. His recommendations are to use 16 each of the station and rail tokens and only use six stacks of cards.

Both maps are a lot of fun for two players and though reduced in size, they still have their own distinct play experiences.
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Tue Sep 30, 2014 2:05 am
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Games played in July 2014

Bobby Warren
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Wanted: Personal house plant/muscle. Limited vocabulary okay.

Yes, I am quite excited for Guardians of the Galaxy which opens tomorrow.

I only played one miniatures game this month, but it sure felt like it was a month filled with miniatures gaming goodness. That's because I built my Relic Knights figures, bought into All Quiet on the Martian Front, and I still want to play some more Warmachine. What are the odds that I will be able to play all three in August?

I played 26 games a total of 58 times and logged playing eleven expansions a total of 20 times. Four of the games and four of the expansions were new to me and I played seven of the games and three of the expansions in June. Here's what I played:

Ancient Terrible Things
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 7

Mike brought this to the store and we played it with four players. It still went by smoothly and was enjoyable. I suspect Nico will have ordered this by the time I finish my monthly recap a couple of weeks later.


Can't Stop
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 11/2013
My Rating: 8

I closed out the seven and the eight on my first couple of turns and managed a convincing win. I'm such a skilled die roller!


Castle Dice
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 7/2013
My Rating: 8

The last time we played this was the last time we played games at Nico's place, which just so happens to be the same weekend last year. That's a year between playings. Nico and I agreed that the very thick, non-standard box size makes it a difficult choice to pack when looking to take games to the store to play.


D-Day Dice
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Operation Neptune

Mike and I barely beat the Juno Beach II map, which we lost the last time we tried it.

It's best with two players and I really do not want to play it with four again.


Desperados of Dice Town
Times Played: 3
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 7

Two games with Nico and Michael. In the first, I managed to free my toughest guy early on and made them pay and pay until I won. The second time, Michael decided to copy that strategy and Nico seemed to follow. Then I managed to free most of my gang from jail, whittle down their money, then won by freeing my last member and having the most money.

The following week the three of us played with Paul added to the mix. Michael won that one.


Diamant
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 2/2013
My Rating: 9

We pulled this out and played for the first time in a while and, as is usually the case, we had a lot of fun.

Michael told his daughter to follow what I do because I always stay in longer than anyone else, so I decided to drop early a couple of times to grab the gems left behind and I managed to pull off a one-point win by playing against type. I'm soooo sneaky! shake


Flowerpower
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2012
My Rating: 7

Mike and I played this for the first time in few years. During most of the game I thought for sure he was winning because he managed the one large field, but I managed more two-pointers and pulled out a close win.

I was surprised this wasn't published here and am still surprised no one has printed a new edition.


Heroes of Normandie
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Back when this was on Kickstarter, there were several other games I was backing and I seriously thought about this one, but decided against it. Mike was in the same boat, but decided to pick it up recently. He and I played the first scenario and I really enjoyed it.

We then played the second scenario and had a few questions, but still enjoyed it a whole lot.

The map layout with the penalties and bonuses for entering/being in a terrain type are really useful and the system is slick.


King of Tokyo
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 5/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Power Up! and Halloween.

Five people. I died quickly. Stupid dice.


Legendary
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2013
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: Dark City, Fantastic 4, & Paint the Town Red.

Still fun and still greatly suffers from poor design choices on the cards, beginning with the tiny icons and poor font choices to busy backgrounds that seem to have been made just to enhance those bad choices. There's no way I would ever buy this game, though I will play it when Mike feels like it.

There is an application that randomizes the set-up and he found some nifty dividers on BGG which decrease the onerous set-up and tear down so it's just a pain and not a deterrent to playing. Again, the card design makes putting the game away a challenge because it can be so hard to see what belongs to what group. Simple recognition is not one of the strong suits of this.


Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring Deck-Building Game
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2013
My Rating: 7

We started with three players, which is ideal, and a fourth joined us. With four, there are a lot of attacks, but it isn't as bad as playing with five. Still, it was fun enough, especially since I was thinking about bringing the DC Comics Deck-Building Game to play that day.


Machi Koro
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Machi Koro: Harbor Expansion for all the games.

This game might also be called "Hilary attacks Mike" or "Mike's getting a headache."

That was especially true the second time we played. Mike needs a 10 or higher to be able to buy anything. I think he went ten turns without coming close to rolling a 10.


Marvel Dice Masters: Avengers vs. X-Men
Times Played: 12
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

When Mike and I play, it is usually with a group I created against something he is throwing together. These games are fairly competitive and I believe I have a overall losing record against him. This is without us using Gobby or Tsarina against each other, however.


Mystery Rummy 4: Al Capone and the Chicago Underworld
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2014
My Rating: 8

Mike and I are both looking forward to the upcoming reprint of this. His copy is starting to show the wear and tear and I'm ready to have a copy that has thinner, but still U.S. Playing Card quality, cards which will be easier to shuffle.


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

Expansion Played: On the Brink.

It's the end of the world as we know it, and I feel feverish… shake


Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords
Times Played: 5
Last Month Played: 4/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: The Hook Mountain Massacre

Michael, Nick and I played five games but had to repeat one of the scenarios which we lost the first time, so we are one scenario away from finishing The Hook Mountain Massacre and jumping into the next adventure.


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

This was a surprisingly good game. The use of dice to track the level of workers is a nice touch and the game play was fun. It's not likely a game I will buy, but I'll play it any time that Nico or Michael want to bring it out.

Watching Rhado's run through later, I noticed we were using the worker training and building that lets you use a retired worker. I'm looking forward to trying it again with those buildings correctly used.

We played it with those buildings correctly later in the month with five players and the Praetor Promo Pack thrown in. The tile which allows someone to grab the start player is the one which I would request being added in the future, but the other ones just made a long (five players, remember?) game, longer. Some games work well with the maximum number of players. This is one that is okay, but a little long.

Nico won the five-player game, racing up the last couple of turns by collecting a load of stone and wood and getting 30+ points an action by playing on the site which gives points for each wood or stone the player has. He beat me by a couple of points, which ended my run of domination with the first couple of games.


Quarriors! Light vs. Dark
Times Played: 4
Last Month Played: New to me
My Rating: 8

Upon opening the box and scanning the rules, I was disappointed because of the rule changes. I was hoping for more general dice that could just be added to the mix without a lot of new rules. Instead, there's a new version which can be combined, but which I will keep separate. In some ways, it feels closer to the Dice Masters because of the addition of the anchored spells (which are like global abilities) and the drawing of fewer dice.

It's a nice twist on the game and could have come in a smaller box making it more portable. The one complaint I have is there could have been a greater variety of dice in the set so we aren't using the same ones every game. Hopefully they will expand just this version of the game.


Ra: The Dice Game
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 4/2014
My Rating: 8

We quit the first game after the second era because Mike was so far ahead in everything. The second game ended up with me way ahead going into the third era, but unlike me in the first game he had a slight chance of coming back so we finished this really quick game. Total time played might have been 25 minutes for the 1 2/3 games.


Race for the Galaxy
Times Played: 2
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

Expansion Played: Alien Artifacts for both of the games.

These were three-player games with Nico and Michael. Michael and I split the games.

I do like the Alien Artifacts cards. And the new mix playing with them has me more willing to play the game than I had been in the recent past.


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

We ended early, but Mike I'd say was closer to winning. He said he thought I might be closer to winning, but since I am writing the game up, I am choosing him as the winner.

I enjoyed the game. It is a simple game, though it took us a while to play as far as we did. Part of that was we were looking a lot up in the rules and were just aren't used to the play style.

We plan to play again sometime relatively soon so we will be able to firm up the rules in our heads. I hope my Black Diamond figures will be painted and back sometime in August and I can start running with my main intended faction.


Saint Malo
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 9/2013
My Rating: 8

Speed Saint Malo!

Mike had 40 minutes, so we explained it on the run to Paul and rushed through the game. The speed really worked in my favor and I ended up with a fairly easy win while we finished in time for Mike to leave when he needed.


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

We was robbed!

Okay, so I haven't played Camel Up, but I really thought this was going to win the 2014 Spiel des Jahres and maybe it should have?


Thunderstone Advance: Worlds Collide
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 7

Expansion Played: Thunderstone Advance: Starter Set

This is a nice mix of cards. The Starter Set worked well on its own, though the monsters were a little tough for a starter set. Mixed with Worlds Collide, it makes a nice, diverse set.


Vikings
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 12/2011
My Rating: 7

Boy do I wish I knew how much money this game was going for until the reprint from Z-man came out. I would have sold it in a heartbeat! Not that it's a bad game, just that there are others which I am more likely to bring out than this. On the other hand, it sure was good to play it again. I got hit hard by not being able to feed my lads because there were an abundance of fishermen left in the bag at the end of the game. That meant all of us took a penalty.


Würfel Bohnanza
Times Played: 1
Last Month Played: 6/2014
My Rating: 8

I was able to make a lot of progress on my goals on Hilary's turns. She was so nice to me, rolling the things I needed when I needed them. Who knew that the same woman who lives for attack buildings in Machi Koro could be so generous?
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Fri Aug 1, 2014 2:15 am
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