$10.00
1st timer at Essen 09
Mark Tarver
England
Leeds
West Yorkshire
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Thought i would like to add my report from Essen from a first timers perspective.

Will add the reports of all the games i got to play and those that i just bought for the hell of it

I went to essen 09 for the 1st time and took to buddies with me to help share the experience.

The reviews will appear over the next few days. I think i suffered from board shock on the 1st day. I was overwhelmed with the size of the while event and a bit bewildered as to how on earth i would get a game of anything. Thankfully the nice people form out of the box games, grabbed us as we walked passed and gave us a demo on ninja versus ninja which settled us all down ready for the 4 days ahead.

Overall I got to play abround 30 games, which was a lot more than i expected. I think it helped that I had no predujice about what games to play so as soon as i saw an empty table we grabbed it and looked foward to what game would be thrust upon us.

I wanted to create this list also as a reminder of what games i did see before the memories fade.

Please comment on this list, sorry if format is rubbish this is also the 1st time geeklist for me too....eeep.

A final thanks to my buddies and all the nice people we met over the 4 days, memories that will last forever.

See you next year!

I have added to game reviews here as i couldn't find them under the boardgame section on the site.


Master fisher
Summary : A korean game where players have to catch fish. There are a number of tiles placed face down in the Ocean area. Players then have 3 ships to cast a net from. To catch a fish a player selects a tile, turns it face up so that all players can see what type of fish it is, they then put the tile face down onto one of the ships. This is a game about risk/reward and memory. Players need to remember what fish got placed where and when to just reel the fish in from the boat. If you reel the net in you place all the fish on that ship face up into your area. The more you have of a type of fish the more points they are worth.
At the end of the game players are only allowed to score 3 different types of fish. Points are deducted for any other types of fish the player has over 3.
There are a couple of special tiles that act as wild cards.
Verdict : A fun simple game, looked very made for kids, but very enjoyable
Bought : No, but would be on the list to keep an eye out in the future.


HatTrick
Summary : A game based on football management. You have a team of 11 player each with a star rating. You play with 4 players and each season you play all the other teams and the most points at the end of 3-4 seasons is the winner. There is the ability to play cup matches and get injuries and transfers.
Game results are decided by the home team rolling a dice, depending on the die roll you either get a home or away win, or a penaly gets taken to win or draw the match.
Verdict : Very basic, not much fun. Would appeal to young kids just getting into football.
Bought : No
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26. Board Game: Airships [Average Rating:6.45 Overall Rank:1197]
Mark Tarver
England
Leeds
West Yorkshire
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Giganten die luften (airships)
Summary : Players compete to complete airships for points and the Hindenburg for lots of points. Resources are represented by dice in this game and the airships require you to roll a minimum number using a specific number/colour of dice.
In order to be able to produce dice players "buy" other elements of their ship, from money,captians,engines to scientists. These are also obtained by rolling dice and each new addition adds to the number of colour of dice the player has access to roll for gaining future resources.
There are 3 colours of dice from white,red and black. Each colour has a limited set of numbers on with black having the highest (8).
Players need to balance there cards by being able to keep building the airships whilst making sure they are in a postion to start generating the red and black dice needed to build the higher levels of airships.
The game ends when either all 4 parts of the hidenburg are completed or the 4 piles of airships each have 1 card or less left on them.
Verdict : A brilliant game of random luck with the dice roll, but the luck can be offset by the player making sure they have a balanced resource generation.
Bought : Yes
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27. Board Game: HFP: Hard Furry Pets [Average Rating:8.33 Unranked]
Mark Tarver
England
Leeds
West Yorkshire
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Hard furry pets
Summary : Players take on the roll of an animal trying to get into the pants of a female girl!!! The artwork is excellent and the humour throughout the game is brilliant. The cartoony style reminded me of Happy tree friends. There is also a HFP cartoon available from the publisher or you can find it on youtube.
There are 2 main phases to the game, the 1st phase is each player gets the girl he is trying to "woo" and the card is face down, representing you being at the stalking stage. Once you obtain either the girls key item or are able to discard objects worth the correct nmber of panties (yes you read that right), the girl is flipped face up and that player can proceed to phase 2.
Each girl has 4 stats that the player must play cards to get each stat to the proper level. You have romance,morality and will power are the main 3. In phase 2 you must complete these 1 at a time by playing locations and objects. The 4th score is panties and this can be reached at any time during the game by playing panty cards. Once all 4 scores have been met congratulations you have gotten into your girls "heart" and won the game.
You can also play dressup cards on your self to help in your conquests, things like a darth vader mask with vibrating light sabre!
Within the location deck are also event cards which when drawn take effect straight away, this lengthens the game somewhat which is only a good thing.
Verdict : The one drawback to this game was that the rules were not written very well and were very hard to follow for the 1st game that was played. You will need 3-4 play throughs in order to start being able to have more of a smooth running game. The best tip I can give is that once you realise that the score board for your player is only really there so that the other players can quickly see how close you are to getting the number you require rather than as something to keep your current score on. We found that just adding up your own scores made the game run a lot smoother. Plus the counters that come with the game are a bit too big to fit neatly onto the score track so i would invest in some coloured cubes instead. But a great game full of humour and it made us laugh whilst playing it.
Bought : Yes
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28. Board Game: Make You Gunfighters [Average Rating:6.28 Overall Rank:4720]
Mark Tarver
England
Leeds
West Yorkshire
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Make you gunfighters
Summary : By the same guys as Dungeon War which i loved the artwork, so bought this.
verdict : Cards look great, got box signed by the author, not played it yet though.
Bought : Yes.
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29. Board Game: Gold War [Average Rating:6.83 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.83 Unranked]
Mark Tarver
England
Leeds
West Yorkshire
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Cold War
Summary : The expansion to Dungeon War bringin in an economic aspect to the game. Allows you to use your landmakers plus the ability to play mercenaries from your hand by paying a cost.
verdict : Same brilliant artwork and character to the cards. Bit on the expensive side for the actual amount of new cards you get, but I had been bitten by the Essen bug so didn't mind.
Bought : Yes
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30. Board Game: Kung Fu [Average Rating:4.37 Overall Rank:10478]
Mark Tarver
England
Leeds
West Yorkshire
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Kung Fu
Summary : A real time trading card game. Players have to train in certain martial arts moves. You train successfully by playing the cards required by the move card. Cards are split into 4 animal types from Crane to tiger etc.
The artwork looks great on the cards.
To obtain the cards you start off with a hand and you then in real time barter with all the other players to trade cards out of your hand for ones of the type you need. Once you have the cards you shout KUNG FU and place them on the table.
Verdict : The guys at the stand did a great job of talking us through the game and they also were open to a bit of haggling on the price.
Bought : Got them down to 7 euros so snapped the game up. Should be a lot of fun to play.
 
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31. Board Game: 7 [Average Rating:5.22 Overall Rank:10167]
Mark Tarver
England
Leeds
West Yorkshire
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7
Summary : A much hyped game from Wolfang. This was one of the games on our groups list to get a demo of. We were lucky enough to get one as it seemed to have a fair amount of pre-essen hype. The game is basically about hiring mercenaries and donating gifts to get better things and win the game, oh and the players can also decide to build a portal to win the game if they want to. As you can tell from the summary so far I have no real memory of what the game was about, for me the game lacked any sense of cohesion and it was just a lot of ideas thrown together, a lot of which could have been taken away without damaging the core game experience. The artwork was very good, especially on the Sin cards.
Speaking of Sin cards, this was a nice aspect in that you have sin cards which garner special effects, you get penalised from not using the sin cards, but use too many and a cataclysm happens, again just one of too many game mechanics in place.
Verdict : Good artwork but not a good game, far to loose for my liking and I felt needed to be stripped right back to a core game to make this a playable game.
Bought : No.
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