I enjoy playing this with my grade school age children. It is a nice, light, rummy-style game which offers some meaningful decision making and also manages to introduce the players to basic African geography. Components are quite nice for the price.
Wow. I really admire this game and would rate it higher if not for the length. I love the combination of stock market manipulation and track laying. The playing time is definitely edging towards my upper limit although I could see the game going significantly more quickly with more experienced players than I have experienced so far. I have also played and enjoyed the shorter game variant ($4500 in bank and no diesel trains). It cuts the time nearly in half and still offered a very satisfying game to me. Played the original version again recently and was really disappointed in the grind that the endgame became.
My rating for this game presents a problem. I have chosen to rate this a 6.5 because I like many things about the design but this is not a game I would like to play particularly often. It is a design that I respect for the richness of gameplay but I don't enjoy it as much as many others. I find the stock manipulation a little cumbersome and I have found myself screwed by my lack of knowledge of the tile manifest. I enjoy how the rules build upon the engine of 1830 and provide for some thematically variation with the government loans and possible state owned railroad company.
Excellent game that recreates a fascinating period in American history. The game is very well designed and every move has advantages and trade-offs. Z-Man has given the game top drawer production values as well. This game incorporates the historical feel and attention to theme of a wargame with the ease of play and tense decisions of a Euro.
Very good implementation of the Twilight Struggle system to a related (but greatly condensed) period of conflict. The "We the People" like battle card play for the Power Struggles made things interesting. I also like the idea of scoring the same countries multiple times and rewarding the communist player for holding out against the tide for as long as possible.
The track placement may feel like Transamerica and choosing company cards may feel like choosing tickets in Ticket to Ride but this game is quite a bit deeper than either of those. I like how the regional cards and the company cards interact and lead the player to develop rails in patterns that generally sketch out the history of railroad expansion throughout America.
Above average card game that can be played in a large group (up to 10). The game seems a bit overly luck-based to me but this might be a result of my lack of experience with it. Further play has shown me that it clearly becomes more strategic with fewer gamers but, unfortunately, not more fun.
Very cool card drafting Euro that allows for a variety of strategies in building up an empire. Decisions are neither obvious nor overly opaque and the game packs a lot of room for strategic manuever in a short time..
Interesting abstract game in which one masses power over intersecting lines to push 6 of your opponent's pieces off the board. The rules seem to encourage defensive play -- I even felt this a little in my very first game. The clicking of the marbles as they move is very nice.
I have only recently had the opportunity to play this game for the first time. It must have been outstanding in its day and it still provides an excellent gaming experience. In my one game, I've already had the experience of being shut out of the benefits of the early mergers by a poor tile draw. I don't consider the level of randomness a major problem, however, as I think the game has enough meat on its bones generally to balance the luck factor with opportunities for clever play.
Very fun, light, and quick Indiana Jones style adventure game. I enjoy the tension of fleeing the boulders and the press your luck elements involved in deciding to hold onto treasures or jettison them in the attempt to escape. Replay value is a bit limited.
Western US : An interesting map that plays well with six. Constraining early builds to track contiguous with one's own network is a big change and the continental linkage race adds some tension. Early money infusion is probably necessary because of the build costs in the Rockies and te building constraints.
Korea is an interesting map because of the major rule change which requires players to ship cubes to their destinations based on the goods currently in the target cities. A little more chaotic but still rewards both long term strategic planning and short term look ahead. Very good expansion.
I have played both sides of this map. The 1830's Pennsylvania map seems well designed. The coal bonuses are very tempting but it's tough to lay track over the mountains. The cities in the East make the track laid in that region very tight.
The Northern California map has several twists including a mega city in San Jose, the bridge from Oakland to Sanfrancisco and changing demand from Sacramento based on shipping into the coastal port. A map with some added spice but not radically different from standard AOS.
African Diamond Mines -- rewards efficient routes contrary to the usual order of business in AOS. MY first play was marred by a misinterpretation of the large white diamond in the center of the board which we used to accept cubes of any color. Obviously, this made the game strategically flat.
I have only played the America map from this expansion. I enjoy how the free 6 locomotive makes the game somewhat less tense and allows for a bit more creative goods shipping in the early/middle rounds. A good expansion for those who are looking for something that has the classic Age of Steam feel while simplifying the number of decisions per turn somewhat.
A very tight map in terms of goods production and building is expensive as well (the engineer option eases this a bit for someone each round). When played with three the brutality was softened by the fact that there was some elbow room. When played with 6, it was full-on nasty -- half of the players finished in the negative. An interesting a fun map overall.
St.Lucia is an interesting little map that makes for a tight two player game. Rules could use a little more explanation, I needed a trip to BGG in order to decipher exactly how the mechanic of delivering the cubes worked.
Barbados is an interesting experience -- my first solo game of AoS. The game loses much of the tension of real AoS when I am not paranoid about others stealing "my" big deliveries out from under me. That said it is a cute little optimization puzzle. My score for my single play was $53.
Have only played the two-player Jamaica map so far. Two-player Age of Steam definitely seems to lack something -- perhaps the tension of the competition for role selection. By doing away with the turn order auction in favor of a different mechanism and having only half a goods chart, this map streamlines things further. A decent map with high build costs and competition for entry to cities.
Very interesting expansion that offers three very different new games (assuming you have access to an extra copy of the board). The rules disallowing parallel routes and using others' track to move goods make the goods moving phase more easily to predict and significantly reduce the cutthroat nature of the game. The requirement of interstate delivery (if you don't choose the "Smuggle" option) makes for an interesting dynamic in the Central New England version. So far, I have only played Central New England (both maps at once with special rules).
This is the sort of meaty Eurogame that I prefer. The cards would seem to give this game a level of replayability that makes it even more impressive. Although I've only played a few times so far, I am very glad to say that this is one of those occasions where the hype seems well deserved. Played E and I, O and Z decks.
Although this game has something that I usually consider a fatal flaw -- namely, a high degree of randomness in a relatively long game -- I enjoyed it. The "fare wars" mechanic is very fun and allows for some wrenching decisions that force you to balance risk and reward with a strategic assessment of the overall game position.
Decent stock manipulation Euro game. In my limited experience the board play is not as tense as the stock race. There are usually several routes that one can choose that are all beneficial with only slight differences. Only the four smallest companies actually have specific destinations to achieve. It is very rare that I feel pressure to build with a certain airline just to avoid being cut off. The stock portion of the game is much more tense.
Very well designed game which offers a large number of meaningful decisions without being too overwhelming to play with the family. It appeals to those who enjoy strategy (in terms of when to select buildings or draw cards) and those who enjoy puzzles (in terms of how to place the walled tiles of one's Alhambra).
Well designed dice game that integrates elements of To Court the King and Kingsburg in a satisfying resource acquisition and building game. I may prefer the two player game to the full compliment of players as the colony placements of others can lead to odd kingmaking situations. Luck plays a role but alien technology cards can mitigate that somewhat. There is a choice of options each turn even with poor rolls and I enjoy the tradeoffs that those choices force you to make.
Very good train/stock game. Determing a company's value is an art and this game basically measures how efficiently you can master that art. The balance between developing companies and controlling the auctions is interesting.
Very interesting Euro which integrates the cube tower in determining the options are available each turn. The various phases of the game interact in clever ways. I am a fan of Feld's "point salad" games and I think this one is among his best.
Fun little battle game with a light historical veneer. The heart of the strategy (such as it is) lies in creating effective combinations so one needs to have a bunch of cards on hand (this is not a game that I would imagine plays well out of the starter pack). Games are very quick (five minutes) and often the die rolls will determine the victor. The cards are very well produced and have entertaining little historical details on them.
Solid Euro that reminds me of Settlers in the method of resource production and the way in which one uses those resources to build up infrastructure and earn victory points. The expiration mechanic sets this off somewhat and the race for key victory point objectives makes this a bit different but the lack of inter-player trading makes it significantly less interactive.
Excellent light civilization game that rewards several strategically diverse styles of play doesn't outlast its welcome. Warfare is difficult and costly but also has its rewards (temple destruction cards) and can be necessary at times to block a runaway leader. This game provides the tense decisions of a middle weight Euro and the negotation of a light wargame.
I enjoy the original Antike so it is no surprise that I also enjoy the two player version (only played online so far). The event cards are a slight negative in my opinion but their effects are mild enough.
This is a preliminary rating based on a partial solo play of one game. I appreciate how the game allows for speedy resolution of play but I miss the enhanced detail and customization of Strat-o-Matic -- especially in regards to fielding and pitching.
Interesting abstract that can be played with a chess set. I like the four actions a turn format. I like using my Zman set with the animal theme. Feels a little more crowded/constrained than most chess style games.
I have played this both on the iphone (a very good implementation) and face to face. It strikes me as a rather run-of-the-mill deckbuilder with nothing radically different to separate it from the pack but the quick setup (because of the single central draw deck) is a plus.
Decent expansion that offers additional options but does not seem to radically alter the base game. The difference in the card backs from the original set is a negative (I don't want to have to sleeve cards) but not a complete deal-breaker. The fate mechanism is a nice addition.
Probably the weakest member of the Harvest Trilogy but that's still impressive company to be a part of. Very multiplayer solitaire with only a few helper cards that encourage any sort of interaction. Probably best with two.
Although technically a trick-taking game, this is unlike almost all card games of its type because of the negotiation that goes on across the table. Further play has convinced me that this is an excellent game.
Very elegant two player area control game. I enjoy the difficult choices that one must make when allocating cards to the different cartouches. I also like the multiple victory conditions. Better short two-player game than anything in the Kosmos line that I have tried.
Very good economic game that involves managing money, inventory, r and d etc. I have the sense that my group plays too conservative;y as most cars sell with each turn (having played with both 3 and 5 players). I wish I knew how to how to maximize my profits in this game but I seem to be missing some strategic piece.
Axis and Allies was a game that I played often soon after its release when I was young. My rating, therefore, represents my sense of it as a classic. Although the gameplay was heavily unbalanced in favor of the allies, somehow it never seemed boring.
Fun,light wargame focusing on the invasion of Normandy. My one play of the standard (non-advanced) rules showed the game to have a remarkably easy flow to it. Very much the sort of game to introduce people to wargaming a specific battle with its programmed turn structure and relative simple ruleset.
Interesting two-player card game. It seems that the ability to look ahead and visualize long combinations is the key to success. I have enjoyed my preliminary explorations so far and expect my rating may rise with further play.
I am not a great lover of race games and have never thought this game worth the effort to really play competively but it plays fast, presents enough decisions to be interesting, and is very non-threatening to non-gamers.
Clever mass-market party/word game in which one attempts to compose faux definitions for obscure vocabulary words that could pass as legimate. The best rounds are those in which all of the players fool one another with their false definitions.
Tricky dexterity game that challenges you to anticipate which piece will not affect the overall balance of the plate much upon removal. As much a perception challenge as a dexterity challenge I suppose. More difficult than most games of this type.
Excellent use of theme in a game that can be fun with the right group but runs the risk of being a bit boring with the wrong group. Decisions are a bit too obvious and the game is therefore a bit too light for my tastes. It also can run a good deal too long. Nevertheless, it can offer a diverting experience that is accessible to non-gamers.
Interesting trick taking game with some variety in the collection of sets and in the nature of the way trump functions from others of its kind. The balance between ducking tricks and taking them is delicate. I did not manage that effectively in my first play.
Very intense strategy game. Despite the fact that it plays quickly and is only a deck of cards with a few pawns, this game presents you with more tense decisions and tricky puzzles than many larger and more complicated games. Update -- this game has become a huge hit with a bunch of people at the office; the cards are becoming worn from frequent play.
This may well be the best game of the Command and Colors system. The resource management aspect added by the war council and the Lore system is a welcome addition. I also appreciate the inclusion of battle back and moral boost rules from C&C Ancients. I happen to enjoy the (admittedly light) sense of historical recreation from the non-fantasy Command and Colors games and I also enjoy the rules for leaders and the additional units of C&C Ancients but on mechanics alone this game might really deserve the edge.
Scenarios Played: Crisis in Avignon, First Encounter (CtA), Burgos: Castille, Deeper in Castile, Free Companies on a War Footing
Well designed cooperative game with a traitor element. The theme is well integrated into the design in terms of the general structure of the game and the smaller details. The game can be a bit long though.
Adds three interesting elements to the base game -- Pegasus, Cylon leaders and New Caprica. I like Pegasus and the Cylon leaders quite a bit; the humans have not yet lasted long enough for me to explore New Caprica yet. I also like the new character choices. Solid expansion.
Very cool dexterity game. The wild pieces force the players to imagine comstructing their towers in very interesting ways. There's nothing better than finding the perfect use for a wonky piece late in the game. Some of the rule sets seem prone to gamey strategies that reduce the fun.
Very dry, mathematical game with gameplay that feels like one is solving a puzzle. I normally do well, or at least respectably, at games of this sort but seem to have a mental block in figuring out how to maximize my payout options through multiple trades.
Fairly interesting game of resource management. The "risk" element adds some tension and the bidding elements are nicely integrated. Not terribly thematic but still provides some atmosphere with the artwork etc. The card play has much of the feel of the cooperative LotR game to me, although everyone is obviously out for themselves here.
Fun, relatively light, Horror-themed dungeon crawl. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I've enjoyed this game. I can see how there could be significant game balance issues and replay might become a problem after frequent play but I appreciated the level of immersion into the theme that the game achieves with a relatively small ruleset. After several plays, I can say that all of the complaints about balanced gameplay and how one spends the first half of the game doing little but exploring rooms waiting for something to happen are true. Nevertheless I still enjoy the game very much and feel that it provides for a unique and interesting experience nonetheless.
Interesting game of drafting and then auctioning cards. It plays quickly, has some random elements and still allows for some strategic depth. I like how you seed the auction deck in part one of the game.
Blokus is an interesting and successful example of a rare class of games that I enjoy -- the multi-player abstract. I have played both against people and the computer AI. My rating has improved after about 10 plays.
Fun, light combat theme with an engaging theme and an interesting NYC setting. The game is fun and is structured in such a way to encourage combat (which nicely discourages players from "turtling" -- which is often a problem in multi-player wargames of this type. I think the different types of combat units and different means of transportation (limo, helicopter and speedboat) offer interesting tactical choices. The major criticisms that I have are the relatively long downtime in between turns and the player elimination aspect.
Interesting card game with very simple mechanics. In enjoy the base decks and the additional decks but have not yet explored deckbuilding. It is one of a very select group of games that my wife will play (although she does hate the geekish artwork). UPDATE -- my rating has increased with further play and additional decks.
This is a very interesting game with an interesting and unique mechanic that drives the construction of buildings for rewards of various types. Choosing which building to make your offering is often difficult as it often forces you to weigh the benefits of several competing possibilities. Other tough decisions include whether to use a card for offerings or for its power, whether to discard at the end of a turn and whether to run to the obelisk to make an offering or continue making offerings at builings and gathering more crystals.
An expansion that adds two significantly different mechanics to the game -- bluffing and ships. I am not sure that I love the new mechanics but they certainly add variety to the system. There are a few more rules specific to this deck so this is not an ideal introductory deck.
I have played using the emissaries and the extra three cards for each race but I have yet to explore deck building and incorporate the inquisitors. The extra ten cards give the game a little more time to develop before someone runs out of cards. I rate this a bit lower than the decks for the different races as I always randomly select different people each game but I will not always use these extra cards.
I have played using the emissaries and the extra three cards for each race but I have yet to explore deck building and incorporate the inquisitors. The extra ten cards give the game a little more time to develop before someone runs out of cards. I rate this a bit lower than the decks for the different races as I always randomly select different people each game but I will not always use these extra cards. Also, as I only play individual games and don't count dragons, the presence of the crystal cards is somewhat imbalancing as only some emissaries include them and those cards have no real function in the style of game that I play. How can one easily restore balance to the Phar emissary for instance who has two (useless from my perspective) crystal cards and thus lacks others?
Interesting deck that encourages one to make extensive use of paired boosters and retrievable character cards. This deck has been particularly effective in games that I've played against my wife; I have no idea why others seem to think it is weak.
This is another unique deck that encourages a different style of play. The cards must be used in gangs to maximize their relatively low earth/fire numbers as individuals. There are a number of cards that can be used to increase one's chances of getting the right cards in combination. I find this a very interesting deck to play.
Interesting deck that encourages the efficient play of boosters. I like the caterpillar/butterfly theme to this deck's artwork. As a classicist, I have to say that I find the mock Latin names to be awful.
This deck is very high in earth power and relatively weak in fire. As such, it's bascially the inverse of the Vulca deck. I like the 3 Storm support cards which are dangerous if one can get them out in combination. Often the threat of having one on the table can lead an opponent to try to end the battle prematurely.
Cute trading game with an interesting fixed hand order arrangement that makes it sometimes necessary to offer trades just to clear one's own hand of useless cards. The theme is a little bizarre and I think the game would be easier to introduce to nongamers if the "humorous" artwork were abandoned but it still works very well for what it is. Runs a bit long for what it is if people keeping insisting on hyper-optimizing their trades every turn.
Very cool, fairly meaty Euro with a lot of moving interlocking parts. There seem to be a variety of different viable paths to victory. Dice keep the game tactical but there is some real scope for long range strategizing as well.
Very nice trick-taking game with a unique mechanism that lends some risk to playing lower trump cards. You can hurt yourself by being overly bold and you can be hurt by being stuck with unfortunate cards at the end of the hand. I love how the plot of the short story guides the principal mechanism of the game. This would probably be a game that I would enjoy more with repeated play among the same group of players.
Another excellent Martin Wallace game. This may be the high point of the meaty Euro genre in terms of density of decisions and plenitude of options per turn. Very satisfying but it can be frustrating when one has a hand of nearly useless cards (admittedly this may occur because of a lack of strategic forethought). This game plays very differently as the skill of the players increases.
Absolutely brilliant multiplayer wargame that (lightly) simulates the settlement of Britain from the invasion of the Romans to the Normans. An absolute blast to play that infuses a huge amount of theme into a game that does not feel complex at all.
I enjoy Crayon Rail games. I found this map to be interesting as one has to decide exactly where one will branch off from the main North - South axis. Obviously, there is not enough time and money to branch off to every corner of the map.
Well done Euro that has a lot of meat on its bones for a short play time and an uncomplicated rule set. I like the opportunity for replayability that the rules for setting aside cards offers. The dice are used in an interesting way and give each turn a healthy dose of tactical choices while still allowing scope for long range planning.
Fun chess variant if you have four people. It must be played with with chess clocks under blitz conditions to prevent someone losing his game from waiting for help from his partner. Ultimately less satisfying than pure chess as victories feel like they are determined more chaotically and were not "earned" in quite the same way.
My only plays thus far have been with my family (including my four year old son who basically played a random card each turn) so I really haven't had the full experience of playing this against competitive gamers. I am giving my initial impressions though as I was able to get a sense of the gameplay from the experience and I feel that this is a very nice, although somewhat dry, Euro. The choices are significant and I could see some room for a variety of different strategic approaches depending on the cards in your hand and the actions of other players.
This is an above average word game. It is not as good as Scrabble but it plays better with 3 and 4 than Scrabble and is good for some variety. As a High School language teacher, I have played this in my class in Latin.
An interesting game that just doesn't seem to be one of Wallace's best efforts. The balance between Arab and Byzantine points lends the game its interest but often is irrelevant because of the Constantinople falling endgame.
The different loot cards (cash, diamonds, paintings) and their shifting values add portent tactical decisions and make the game a bit better than the first edition. Went over well with a mostly non gaming crew of Werewolf fans.
This is a good two player game that feels similar to Battle Line in some respects (playing number cards to win a row, using action cards to shift things in your favor) but has enough differences to make it an interesting game in its own right. A slight complaint is the small vote deck. The constant reshuffling is a pain and the cards are handled so often I'm sure they will show wear quickly. I guess adding two or three cards of each type would throw off the balance by allowing people to draw the same card type on successive turns but it seems there should be a more elegant solution.
Lighter, quicker than it's older brother 1960 while still managing to offer a good deal of the tense decisions of its sibling. Some of the cards seem like they are fairly generic in effect and I worry that the decks might get a little "samey" in feel over repeated play.
Carcassonne is an enjoyable, light tile-placement game that always looks very nice on the table. A number of people whom I play with have really taken a liking to it but I find it doesn't put me on the edge of my seat like some of my favorite games.
Enagaging and different Euro worker placement game with an interesting duel mechanic. Balancing money, board position and victory points gives this game a good deal of tension. I have not explored the expansions yet.
This is a very clever game that, like many of Feld's offerings, allows players to score points in a variety of ways. Choosing the best option available is often not at all obvious and it is necessary to keep track of one's opponents as well.
While this game shares elements with Suburbia, they are more siblings than twins. The mechanic by which the master builder arranges the market this turn is quite unique and the interactions of the rooms is much easier to track here. The quest to complete rooms and the irregular geometry of the tiles provide unique challenges as well. A solid middle-weight Euro.
Very interesting and enjoyable 2 player game. In fact this game is so rich that it would be easily be among my favorite two-player Euros if it were not for the long playtime. Perhaps if further plays reduce the playtime (maybe in combination with the 10 victory point variant), this game will receive the 9 or higher that it seems to deserve.
Excellent meaty Euro that develops the "Agricola" system in a new direction. Obviously this has some of the feel of Agricola but the exploration and cave development (building rooms) factors give the game a very different feel.
I can certainly understand why this game received so much attention after its release. It is a very well designed "gamer's" Eurogame. There seems to be an enormous amount going on and it's very difficult to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of the different options effectively. The playing time is a bit longer than most Euros and it is certainly a brain burner but this game has enough meat on its bones to make it all worthwhile.
Interesting highly abstract two-edged game of area control wherein you seek majorities in certain areas and try to avoid them in others. The nature of the placement mechanics though make it difficult to accomplish both at once. Special circumstances allow for tricky plays through cards and special tokens.
When I first played 18xx, I wished someone would design a railroad game that included the ability to manage track laying with buying share in the various companies without the very long play time. Chicago Express is the answer to that dilemma in some respects but the nature of the share always being subject to auction (rather than purchase) detracts somewhat from this game for me.
Best Children's game that I have ever encountered. My older daughter loves it. This game has been played in my house more than any other. The version we have is French and called Pique Plume. UPDATE: It's been several years since I returned from a trip to Paris with this game and it's still a family favorite. I've now become concerned about keeping all the pieces in order as I would like her to be able to share this game with her children some day as she has enjoyed so much. My son who was just born when I bought this now plays with me.
I love Web of Power and enjoy UberPlay's rethemed version. I miss the end of the first round house scoring in this version (in fact I may add it on my own) but I like the fortresses. Very tense and elegant game that plays quickly and always seems to produce close endings.
I think that this is one of the more enjoyable "old school" Avalon Hill games. It has a lot of die rolling, too much downtime, a few too many charts and plays a bit long, but, unlike many games of its era, it retains the hard to quantify "fun factor" despite its flaws. The combat greatly livens up this racing game and raises it above most games of that genre for me.
Very well designed building game. Although I've played many building games, the mechanics here feel unique. The graphic design could use some improvement -- the tiles seem to have been drawn with more concern for their beauty than their functional purpose. The game is a little fiddly and late rounds can bog down in mathematical calculations.
Interesting variation on the Command and Colors system that gives more of a traditional wargame feel. My original fear that this might be too close to the C&C games to be worth owning was off base. This is another light battle game but the rules differences are sufficient to justify owning it as well.
Scenarios Played: Fort Duquesne, Bunker Hill, Lake George
I really enjoy this game as it has enough to interest a gamer while remaining approachable for families and non-gamers. The balancing of the relative value of corruption and victory points is the highlight. I like the placement of mosaics, the closed fist offerings for sacrifice and the way in which the market piles are half-visible and half-concealed. Very clever and beautifully designed game.
I have always had a soft spot for Clue among traditional American mass market boardgames. This version improves upon the original in several respects. It eliminates the roll and move tedium, it is playable with 2 players and the search/make a suggestion mechanic adds a new degree of decision making.
Cool mainstream deduction game. This is one of the rare series games that is better than the original. It has a lighter (and shorter) Scotland Yard feel with enough interesting wrinkles to make it worth picking up in itself.
Very clever word game that forces the players (especially the clue-givers) to stretch their word association skills to the limit. Like Montage, it is a much better experience with creative and clever players. If the market for games accurately reflected the quality of their design rather than their marketing budget, there would be a copy of this game in nearly every home.
Gut-wrenching game that forces one to make decisions about which monster to place bets on. The basic choice is should one try to keep up with the other players making a lot of early bets or save tokens to place in the more reliable later rounds. Manipulating the monster powers lends the game some tactical depth. I prefer to use the original rules for the endgame as the game loses its tension if more than three monsters are standing when the deck runs out.
This is a good example of an expansion that offers "more of the same." These are quality historical scenarios that offer interesting situations on interesting new maps but bring little that's radically different to the system. I do not mean this as a criticism -- it's a solid product -- but it's really only necessary if you want/need more scenarios/options.
The complexity level is fairly modest but there is still a good amount of historical feel. The game is certainly infused with randomness of many different types but that seems appropriate to the nature of WWII squad level combat. There always seem to be interesting and significant decisions to make and I'm sure experienced players will generally defeat lucky amateurs over the long run despite the incredible swings of fortune. Scenarios Played: 1 Fat Lipki, 2 Hedgerows and Handgrenades 3 Bonfire of the NKVD, 4 Closed for Renovation 5 Cold Front, 6 Paralyzed from the West Down,7 Bessarabian Nights,8 Breakout Dance,10 Commando School, 13 Tussle at Maleme, 14 At the Crossroads, 30 Red Skies at Night, 102 Night Shift, CC: P Grassy Knoll
I give this game the same rating as the base game because the BGG rating is a measure of how much I would like to play it and my desire to play is equally as high as the original. For those looking to buy this game, you should consider how often you're likely to play it. If you play infrequently and are not a completist, CC:E has enough scenarios and variety on its own for quite a lot of play. If you need more scenarios and really want to explore British, Italian and French troops in new scenarios and on new maps, this is for you.
This is a tough one to rate. I enjoy Command and Colors Ancients quite a bit and have found the scenarios here to be just as enjoyable as the original game which I rate a 9. I feel that this expansion, however, ultimately doesn't bring a lot that's new to the table and so it is somewhat disappointing. By a strict BGG rating scale, based solely on my desire to play this, it should probably rate a 9 like the original but I would caution those looking for significantly new mechanics that this expansion doesn't really deliver on that front.
I have thus far only used the mounted board and red Roman units (Marian infantry) and not played any of the included scenarios. My rating reflects my rating for the series as a whole but my impression of the scenarios here is good from having read through the additional rules in the booklet.
Another excellent installment in the Command and Colors series. This one takes a bit of getting used to -- especially in terms of remembering the differences among nations. Melee is not as prominent asin Ancients.
Interesting CCG with some unique combat mechanics. The premise of dueling Conans is sort of odd thematically but it works fine in practice. Having only scratched the surface of this game, I am a bit concerned about game length and smoothness of flow, but that might well improve with further play and familiarity with the rules. The game is a bit too long for my tastes multiplayer.
Interesting card/board game with bluffing and hand management aspects. Although it can seem like a card game with a board that's really just an elaborate victory track, the determination of which areas to compete for and which areas to abandon is the key to strategic play.
Another excellent WWII tactical game that manages to hit the sweet spot for me between historical depth and modest rules complexity. A very playable, engaging game. I look forward to seeing what more is done with this system.
Scenarios Played: #1 Partisans, #2 The Gap,#3 General Petrov,#4 The Bunker, # 5 Monsters #6 Breakthrough to the Mzensk Pocket
Clever exploration and civilization building game with an unusual setting. My only play so far saw very little use of military actions so it may have been atypical. The end of our 4 player game seemed to creep up very quickly (possibly a result of how peaceful everyone was). I like the exploration mechanic and appreciate the copious designer notes.
I have only played the Conquest of the Empire II game of the Eagle Games edition (although I own and have played the MB original edition of game I). I found it to be a very nice game completely independent of the original -- an interesting graft of Euro mechanics onto a large scale multiplayer wargame.
Decent game of old Western gunfighting. The advanced rules help give a little needed heft to the simple ruleset without really complicating anything. Short playing time is a big plus. Scenarios played: #3 Shootout at the OK Corral, #8 Clairborne's Last Challenge, #13 Jailbreak, #20 The Big Showdown
Fun game that non-gamers and children particularly enjoy. Of course, the very high powerful make the game chaotic, but it should generally be possible to determine if you have a very powerful card on your head from the other people's bids.
Decent Party/Family game that (fortunately) plays very quickly. Replay value after one has gone through the (300) cards in the deck will almost certainly not be high but this is not the kind of game one would expect to play repeatedly with the same group anyway.
I am rating this as a children's game. This is an excellent variation on the typical "memory" game that is so popular with children(probably because it is one of the few non-dexterity games in which kids can routinely beat their parents). We play with only 2 or 3 rats in the game as the information gained from "rat plagues" is so significant that I feel the events should come more infrequently. The garlic provides an interesting hint of "screw your neighbor" to the game (although it nicely avoids direct conflict because you never know who will spring your trap -- indeed it might be yourself on a subsequent turn.
Unique voting game that offers some very light strategy and a few laughs with the right group. This is a fun game to play with my nongaming extended family -- the kids can play too with as much chance of winning in this chaotic game as anyone else.
I have owned this for many years and only had a handful of opportunities to play it. I did enjoy those sessions, however, as I recall the length was always a challenge for a game that demands a relatively large number of players to play well. In short, too few games played and even fewer played to completion to merit the higher rating that this game might deserve under optimal conditions.
Clever party game in the tradition of Apples to Apples. I am doubtful about the replay value but that's not really the point of the game so much as the humor that results from trying to intuit what the clue-giver is trying to convey.
Excellent, although somewhat long and AP prone, meaty gamers game. I like the interaction between trying to get majorities in an area with individual species and also trying to achieve dominance with the element markers.
Very interesting card game in which one builds a deck while the game is in progress. I love the challenge of trying to build the most efficient engine to power purchases. Further play with different card combinations has shown that this game has legs. Five player with 12 kingdom cards played until 4 piles run out works fairly well.
Interesting expansion that adds cards that go into one's tavern and can be "called upon" for effects. Also adds cards that level up to other cards and events which are actions that always remain available to buy in addition to the normal array of cards. All of these elements form a nice mix of additions to this deck building classic.
Interesting expansion that doesn't get much love on this site. I have enjoyed playing with it. I play with Alchemy cards mixed directly into the randomizers -- I might try to mix a few into the deck per game in order to make buying potions more tempting.
I like this new card very much. The addition of one of the "non-selected" cards makes for a whole series of interesting choices. This card has been attractive to players drafting for their decks in my limited experience with it.
An interesting expansion that brings ruin and collapse to the world of Dominion. Difficult times call for difficult measures and I like the interaction of the various cards of this set. The more ruins you have, the more you need to rely of scavengers and the other roles that are uniquely suited to that environment.
Interesting new set of cards -- similiar to the council house but it costs less and has the penalty of allowing another player to force you to discard the best card of the bunch that you flip. This was not selected much in my limited experience with it on the table.
Another quality expansion to a franchise that is becoming a bit unwieldy for those like me who like to play with all the options. The coin tokens offer a different take on the typical Dominion gameplay.
Still exploring all the cards but I am impressed with what I've seen so far. Pirate ship makes for a very interesting game and I like the Island card a lot as well. The duration cards add an interesting layer of complexity to the game.
Light game that has two phases -- a placement phase in which you must strive to place the most meeples and the race out of the city phase after the eruption. Both phases allow for some tactical moves but are also subject to a high degree of randomness. Still a fun game if taken as a filler.
Light bidding game with an interesting mechanic whereby all the money (contracts) remains in the game throughout (it just circulates from player to player). It's not my favorite auction game but a solid game nonetheless.
My initial impressions here are very strong. The pieces are well designed and rendered, the rules are well thought-out and (thankfully!)straightforward, and the game offers many opportunities for clever tactical play (I suspect the warband building aspects offer room for strategic variety as well but I cannot confirm that yet). The theme was not a selling point for me but the game itself is first rate. Oddly enough, beneath the well painted, hyperthematic minis and the plethora of dice rolling there is an elegant abstract game here. The combination of elements makes the game more than the sum of its parts. Unfortunately, it's collectible but one can obtain enough pieces to satisfy all but those interested in competitive play outside their circle of friends rather cheaply.
Very nice Rummy style card game. The key decision point comes in determining when to lay down sets of cards as one must weigh the desire to get cards out quickly with the benefits of buidling up a large set. A very good game for non-gamers.