All the Meeples of the Rainbow.

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Steph's New to Me List for June 2022!

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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Welcome to Steph's "New to Me" List 2021!


This year I have made the goal of learning 400 games!


Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/


Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV

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Steph's Awesome Spectrum Rating System!

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Steph's Sad Cloud Rating 1-2.5/10
Steph's Bland Rainbow Rating 3-4.5/10
Steph's Primary Rainbow Rating 5-7/10 (Solid Play)
Steph's Super Rainbow Rating 7.5-8.5 (Keepers)
Steph's Double Rainbow Rating 9-10/10 (Top Favorites)



June List
from Worst to Best








Fluffy Frontier:

Still in development and I hope there are many changes before the final product.


-/10 After 1 play (Not Owned - prototype)

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From gallery of punkin312
For-Ex:

It was just not for me. I didn't like the interactions and timing. I didn't like the fiddly chits everywhere. I didn't like the huge swing at the end of the game. Even with 3 players, it was chaos.


3/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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Lost Temple:

Might as well just select a random card and hope for the best.


3/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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Kooky Kalooki:

Luck of the draw card game along the same lines as Phase 10. The point system is ridiculous and really ruined the game for me. Not a fan.


3/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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TKO:

Rock, Paper, Scissors with a chance to block. Small box game that I am happy to never play again.


3/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
To Unlimited, and Beyond:

Crazy climbing game with a lot of math involved. I had a terrible hand of cards so I was out pretty early, so again, too much luck of the draw for a chance at winning.


4/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Prisma Arena:

Typical arena combat game with bright colors. It works, but it isn't a type of game that is interesting to me. So many rules for what should be very simple.


4/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Tembo:

Was hoping for better since NSV always puts out quality card games. This was more of a take-that frenzy. Wanted to like it but just didn't.


4/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Zombie Princess and the Enchanted Maze:

I am so not into the theme at all, so that didn't help. I am also not into take-that and in the game you are actively trying to send the Zombie Princess to turn other players. Eh, not a great game and definitely not attractive to help.


4/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Atlantis: Island of Gods:

This game is very abstract. The card management doesn't make sense and there are just too many possible actions that basically do the same thing. Needs a bunch of development to be a decent game.


4.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Barrakuda:

Quick filler game where you are aiming to collect coins first. There is a take-that mechanic which is fine for a quick game, but there really isn't much depth here and it was only fine for me. Not a game I would really want to return to.


4.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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Deep Vents:

Cool theme, but that was about it. An engine-builder that doesn't have many interesting choices. I especially don't like all the take-that. There are better Red Raven Games out there.


4.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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Batt'l Kha'os:

arguably better than I thought this would be. Tile-placement with area control and a race to points. It was interesting and worth playing, but ultimately not a keeper.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Blitzed!:

Real-time dice game to roll sets of numbers and ideally not lose points. Simple and forgettable.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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Sonar:

I didn't really care for Captain Sonar, but this played with 2-players so I figured I would give it a go. It comes down to the fact that I would rather just play Battleship.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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Squid Inc.:

Definitely, too much take-that involved in this game. I don't generally play optimally since I don't want to play with all the attacks. There is nothing wrong with the game per se but just not my cup of tea.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
TAJ:

Interesting theme and the gameplay is fine. I just wish it were a bit deeper in strategy.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Planes:

A game I have avoided since I heard not great reviews, but it wasn't so bad. This is a mancala-style game but I do think this game would be better if you had the option to move ANY group and not just a group with your markers. I can see if people played Automobiles and then played Planes why they would be disappointed, they are completely different styles of games.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Skull Canyon: Ski Fest:

A really nice Ticket to Ride alternative. I think the Yeti mechanic needs a lot of reworking and the lodge actions don't really line up. The game has a lot of nice mechanics, with just a few of them that feel off. It is worth playing to see if it works for you.


5/10 After 2 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Takamatsu:

It was interesting playing this immediately after Planes since they are both games where you are moving around in a circle. In this, you have slightly more control over how the board is manipulated. There is definitely more of an abstract feeling here since you can definitely over-think any possible move. It works, but I won't be picked to play it.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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Noah:

Found on BGA - Simple card game with a cute theme. Not much going on which is why after all these years, I am only hearing of it for the first time.


5/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Septima:

Perhaps the biggest disappointment of the month. I am always looking to try the next Mindclash game and they are almost always an auto-back on Kickstarter. I tried on TTS before buying this time, and I am glad I did. For a lighter game, there is still too much going on and it is too chaotic.


5/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Cosmic Run:

Push-you-luck dice rolling game. I actually like a lot of what is going on in the game, but it just runs too long since I know I will always push my luck and always fail. Best with 2-players, I wouldn't touch this with more players.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Bloodborne: The Card Game:

The concept is fine and the simultaneous play is good. I dislike the sniping and non-equal distribution of blood. I get why it plays out the way it does, but it just isn't fun when you are consistently sniped by other players' stronger cards.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Dragonwood:

Cute push-you-luck kids game. Easy rules and plays fine, just a bit long for my liking. I liked the updated version called Dragonrealm better.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Dice Theme Park:

Found on BGA - The game is still in alpha and it hinders the play, but I got a pretty good feeling for what the game offers. Perhaps it will be faster in person, but there is so much room for AP that just kills the chances that I will return to play this. It is a fine design, but just too many interlocking mechanics. Something really needed to be removed from this design.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Getaway Driver:

Neat 2-player game. It feels thematic and tight til the end. I am just not sure it stands out overall. It's not bad, but I felt I have seen what it has to offer.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
King's Road:

Area Control Knizia game. You can probably figure out how it plays just by that description. It works with 2 players but is likely better with more players. It is basically a cube pusher to gain control.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
LIE:

Small Liar's Dice style card game. It is essentially the same thing, but you are using cards. You have to form your hand of cards before the round starts so you can choose the side to use that show different pip values. I would rather be rolling dice is what this comes down to, but this is super small and portable so good if you are on the go.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
SHH:

I wanted to like this more, but people literally solved the same in the forums. So, there are issues. I love the photography used in the game, and I could see trying this again. I enjoy word games.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
FLY:

Interesting dexterity set collection game where you are dropping cards to cover flies. It works surprisingly well and is a neat little game. Nothing new, but works.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Disney Sorcerer's Arena: Epic Alliances Core Set:

One of my favorite "Arena" games. It is generally not a genre I enjoy playing since I just don't like going head to head. The hand management in this game is why this is rated significantly higher than others in the same genre. It is an interesting use of cards and pretty simple mechanics. I can see a lot of people loving this one.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Nuns on the Run:

I love hidden movement in games, so figured I should give this a go. It is a complete chaos and definitely could use an update with some of the "caught" rules. It wasn't a terrible time, but I would rather play most others in the same genre.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Shamans:

A hidden traitor trick-taking game. For the most part, I don't mind the hidden traitor part in the game, but I didn't enjoy the scoring. I think the game is close to great, but not quite there. It is definitely a game to check out if you enjoy trick-taking games or hidden traitor games to see if it works for you. I enjoyed this more than Mu, but they both give me an unsatisfying scoring system to where I don't really want to play either again.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Rival Restaurants:

Beautiful game with great production quality. The game is pretty good in general with a few mechanics I would just remove or change. I am not into all the take-that card play. I also don't like how restrictive the menu cards are at the beginning of the game. otherwise, I don't mind the simultaneous location selection and the negotiation. It is not a bad set collection game.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Triolet:

This is a perfect game for a kid learning math or just really any family. Fans of Scrabble will be attracted to this just because it has overlapping mechanics and looks just like a Scrabble variant. After a few plays, I can say it is a pretty cool game and worth trying. It would be perfect for a classroom.


6/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Talisman: Legendary Tales:

Not a bad little game. I actually compare it to a game like Andor: The Family Fantasy Game. A cooperative adventure game for the family. Simple to learn and very enjoyable. I like the bag-building element.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Neko Yashiki:

CUTE!!!! Love me some kittens. Was definitely more interesting than I thought it would be, so that was a plus. I didn't like going last and not having an even number of turns. Because of that, it ruined the game for me. I enjoy the push-your-luck mechanic in the game, that's always fun.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Beasts of Balance: Battles Edition:

Chunky cute animals in a dexterity game? Sign me up! There is an app that you integrate with the game, and it works like a dream. I would have totally been all over this as a kid. I love that you can unlock new creatures by trying new combos. As a strategy gamer, I am just not as compelled to return to this one, but I respect that it is a cool game and idea.


6/10 After 3 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Kinoko:

Very cute card game with some memory and set collection. Not a big fan of the scoring, but the card play is quite entertaining. I like not knowing what cards I am holding, it always throws me through a loop.


6/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Yosemite:

Beautiful 2-player game. Animals allow you to move around the board and you are trying to collect the animals for sets to claim photographs. It is a solid game, but it has all been done before. Nothing that exciting here.


6/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Harry Potter Labyrinth:

This was my first time playing a Labyrinth game, and I understand they are played exactly the same. Obviously, the Harry Potter theme is way better, so I wanted to play it. It ran long, but I enjoyed it well enough.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
BUS:

One of the better small pack games I have played. I had a lot of interesting decisions, and it just felt more strategic than the others. It was neat.


6.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Dig Your Way Out:

Don't you enjoy collecting spoons to dig out of prison? There are some take-that in the game, but it doesn't bother me too much since it is a lighter game. Works well with 2-players since you have a dummy player moving around. I like that you can join a gang and get an ability, it feels thematic.


6.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
The Magic Labyrinth:

This is a super cool game. One I would have been crazy over if I were a kid again. Glad to finally check this one off the unplayed list. A perfect family game.


6.5/10 After 1 play(Owned)

From gallery of punkin312



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From gallery of punkin312
Kauchuk:

Such a gorgeous game! I love the use of small rubber bands, it is clever. Very abstract, so you have to be into abstract games to enjoy this one.


6.5/10 After 1 play(Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Katamino:

Kinda surprised this is listed in BGG since it is very much a solo puzzle challenge. Perhaps it is old enough so it was in BGG before it became a ruling. In any case, it has held up over time. I love the polyomino challenges and they are super hard!! I haven't made it very far, but I did 7 challenges! This is one that I will want to keep around for a rainy day and for visitors to try.


6.5/10 After 7 plays(Owned)

From gallery of punkin312



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From gallery of punkin312
Raids:

It is hard not to compare this to Tokaido. I personally like this one more than Tokaido, I think the ramp-up during the game is greater and the set collection is more interesting. This was a pleasant surprise.


6.5/10 After 2 plays(Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Kitara:

Wanted to play this one because it was compared to First Empires earlier this year. I really enjoyed First Empires and I enjoyed this. Kitara uses cards whereas First Empires uses dice and tracks. The card mechanic here is interesting and hard to maintain, but that is good. It is a solid game and worth playing, but I do think First Empires is better.


6.5/10 After 1 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Magna Grecia:

Definitely a game I am glad to have tried. This is one that you have to play with a select group of gamers who enjoy this genre. Likely more fun with more players too. It is a game I would probably like more with a second play, so there is potential for this rank to raise with another play.


6.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Yak:

Such a beautiful top-quality game. I love the little Yaks! Overall really nice set collection game for casual gamers and new gamers. When playing on the stream, Michael and I really went into detail on the scoring system and found some flaws. I would play this game again no problem, but I do think the game would be better with different scoring.


6.5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
GEM:

My favorite of the small pack games. Really neat choices with when to bid and when to step back. Nice game and it is a perfect purse game.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Pressure Cooker:

Real-time set collection game. I like the tile grabs and trying to make the best meals. It is chaotic and fun. Not a beautiful game, but it works. Well, the score dials do not work, you do need to keep track of the scores on paper.


6.5/10 After 2 plays(Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Locke & Key: The Game:

This game is super thematic. I haven't read the comics or books but I did watch the first few seasons and love the show. This is such a cool theme with all the awesome keys. There is a bunch of take-that, but it doesn't bother me as much, you just have to look out for the combos and try and stop them.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Pylos:

Seems like a simple abstract game, but there is a lot more going on than first appears. This is a perfect coffee table game.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
War of the Worlds: The New Wave:

Not a typical war game, that it looks like it is. This is a deck-building game where each side has different objectives and different decks to work with. Very clever and definitely feels thematic.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312



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From gallery of punkin312
The Comic Book Bubble:

A simple buy low sell high game. It is total chaos, but there are definitely tough decisions and timing. It works well with 2 players and I would play with more just to see how it goes. I liked this and will want to see the final production.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Deckscape: The Mystery of Eldorado:

I really enjoy playing the Deckscape games, but this was one of the weaker of the batch I have played. It is a cool theme and I am glad that I have played it. I prefer others like Heist, Sphinx, & Pirates.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Balada:

Flip & Write game with a lot of different scoring mechanics to remember, but you can always choose between the card options available each turn. Everyone can play which is great, and there are strategies to go for. I enjoyed this one. Try it out and play along with our video.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Century: A New World:

This is my favorite of the Century games. It is simple to get into and has worker placement which I enjoy the most. I like that there is a point victory at the end of the game which I appreciate.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Tea for 2:

Quick deck-building game of War. Most people grow up playing War, and this game takes the basics and expands on that. Love the theme and the point system. Really nice game and perfect for 2 players.


7.5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Small World of Warcraft:

I love Small World and this is just more of the same! Some nice mechanics were added, and it has vivid colors. Just an all-around solid game and a lot of fun. Perfect for any Warcraft fan and Small World fan.


7.5/10 After 1 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Pessoa:

I knew I would really enjoy this one before even playing it. Such a weird theme but it works well and is completely different from anything I have seen before. I definitely recommend this game for ease of play and deep choices each turn. Pessoa is a delight and will remain on the shelf.


7.5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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Game of the Month!




From gallery of punkin312
Aeon's End: Legacy of Gravehold:

No surprise this game hits the top of the list. Aeon's End always continues to impress me. I will forever want to keep playing every box that comes out. A new AE Legacy game and I am all about it. This is NOT a Legacy game I would recommend to anyone off the street. You really will have a better time playing this game if you have prior knowledge of Aeon's End in general. It is super complicated to jump into this one, so be warned. I love it and can't wait to see what unfolds!


8.5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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New to me Expansions!





None





The Tally


January: 40
February: 31
March: 40
April: 75
May: 41
June: 64





Total new-to-me games for the year: 292!




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Follow along this geeklist to see what tv shows and moves I have been watching:





Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I often review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Fri Jul 1, 2022 10:00 am
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The Kinoko and Oltréé were found in Pylos

Steph Hodge
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Please thumb deserving posts

From gallery of punkin312



Hia Everyone!


Some new vids
Century: A New World


Founders of Teotihuacan



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Michael and I decided to give Oltréé a play on the Livestream!

We learned this back at BGG Con in November and had a blast! If you are into cooperative games with a narrative this is definitely a game to check out. There are several chapters to play in the game and you can play them on various levels of difficulty.

In the game, you will take turns performing actions. Each turn you will gain 2 actions. Each player also has an ability that will hopefully be helpful in everything you focus on. The goal isn't always clear as to how you will win the game. It will become clear as you progress through. You do have goals to work towards which are set at the beginning of the game.

Each turn you will also have to roll a die and move the timer along a path. On the path, a number of bad things will pop out and these problems will have to be taken care of by the players. You never really know what might show up. I love this unknown factor.

Sure, there is a bit of luck with the encounters and the dice rolls, but that is also something you can try to focus on and plan for by building more buildings to allow for more dice to be rolled. Again, another thing you can't plan for but you have to be ready for anything.

Since Michael and I had played the intro before, we knew what to expect when we played it again on the stream.

The first time we played the game we got completely wrecked. Playing again this time we knew what was in store so we could plan and do better. Even with the knowledge of the story, we were not positive we could win the game. Any moment could have put us in a tailspin and we could have easily been wiped out near the end. We had some seriously lucky rolls for the time track and for the encounters. It was an epic game, and that was on normal mode. We could have played easier or harder.

Both Michael and I really love this game and we were thrilled to get it back to the table. I really look forward to playing the other chapters and seeing what will happen. Oltréé is a smooth and solid game and one that so many people will enjoy. I hope everyone gets to try it! Check out the video below for some more rules and playthrough!

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Michael and I were looking for a quick card game to play and decided to check out the new Kinoko. New to me!

The first thing in the rules explains that Kinoko is a Mushroom in Japanese. And all the artwork makes sense now!

Kinoko plays 2-4 players and you will have to remove colors to accommodate fewer players.

The goal of the game is to gain 4 points over several rounds. Each round you will get a hidden colored card that will be your aim. You need to get those 3 cards that match your color in one set somewhere on the playing field.

There are 2 sets face-down on the table, one set in your hand that you can not see and the sets in the other player's hands that you can see. Each set will have numbers 1-3 on the cards.

In your turn, you will roll the dice and perform an action based on one of the die values. You will more likely just end up switching cards of a certain value. If you roll a 2 you can switch any 2 in play with any other 2. There is definitely a memory aspect to this game since there are so many moving cards and cards you can't see.

If you think that your set is somewhere in play, then you can call it the end of the round. If you are correct you will gain 2 points, even if you didn't call it you will still gain 2 points if your color is in a set.

The catch is that there is a cursed color and that color is revealed at the beginning of the round. If you end up with that color in your hand at the end of the round you will lose a point. You have to try and get that color out of your hand, if possible!

I have now played the game twice and have really enjoyed both plays. I think if you enjoy a game like Hanabi, this would be worth checking out. It is competitive, but you have a similar deduction aspect to trying to figure out what is in your hand. I enjoy not knowing what I have but trying to remember everything I have seen. it is a fun challenge.

I have only played with 2 players and really enjoyed it. This is a game that I will definitely want to check out with a full 4 player count. It will be crazy, but fun.

The scoring system is pretty weak, but it is sufficient. The game is fun enough to remain in the collection for more plays. Definitely worth checking out.

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Michael and I got to check out an abstract game called Pylos. New to me!

This game has been around a while! I am not sure how I haven't played it yet, but that's why I strive to play them all. This is the kind of game I like to think of as a coffee table game. I think of it that way because it is gorgeous to look at and simple to play with.

Pylos is a game for 2 players and your goal is to get the final ball on the top of the pyramid. The catch is if you can gain a square of your own colored balls then you can take two of your color balls off the board. This will prolong your actions in the game.

Each turn you simply place one ball on the pyramid until you can't place anymore or you make it to the top.

There is clearly strategy and tactics that I have yet to master. I am intrigued by this game. Abstracts aren't usually a favorite of mine, but there is something compelling about this and I want to keep playing it to see if I can get better at it.

I have only played a few times at this point, but I hope to play for a quick filler anytime I need a 2-player game.

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If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:
Dig your way out
In the Palm of Your Hand
Akropolis
Marrakech
Pylos
Quarto Classic
Quoridor Classic
Katamino
Suspects
IKI (2021)





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Mon Jun 27, 2022 11:00 am
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The Fluffy Frontier and the Barrakuda went to the Nightmare Cathedral

Steph Hodge
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Couple pics of Yamataï
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Some Vids from Weds
Pizza Master Revised Edition


Beasts of Balance: Battles Edition




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There was a recent successful Gamfound campaign for Nightmare Cathedral. There is a late pledge going on if you missed out.

I got to check out this game online a few months ago and played it during the B&D online convention.

The artwork by Zdzisław Beksiński in this game is creepy but super interesting. The colors just pop! It is cool that they were able to incorporate his artwork into this game that feels thematic too.

In the game, you will select actions where you will want to gain control on the board and use the followers you have to perform rituals and build forts.

The best mechanic is the tight action selection you have to plan for and figure out as you go. I personally enjoy the puzzle in trying to figure it out, but you can easily get caught in a bad loop of actions if you can't get what you what when you want it. It might be a bit rough for a first game, but as you learn the game, it will become more clear on how to make it all work.

I do think this game will run about 1 hour/per person which is not what the box or BGG says, so you should plan for the long game. Since all players will get to perform a follow action you have to be on top of knowing at which point in the action you are so then everyone else can follow.

Once the cathedral is built the nightmares come out and start to devour your followers, so you have to prepare for that, but they could possibly give you points.

It is interesting how everything comes together, but there are some aspects that might be overly complex, for what should be a relatively easy-to-understand game.

It is a game I wouldn't mind playing in the future, but it is not one I would ever choose to recommend to play. I think it ends up being too long for my liking, but I can see where this game would work really well for others. It feels unique and has interesting card play. It is certainly a looker and is worth checking out just for the artwork alone.


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Michael and I checked out a new small box game called Barrakuda. New to me!

In Barrakuda you are trying to be the player to secure 8 coins in your safe before the other players do.

Everyone has the same hand of cards that will match the locations on the board where the Barrakuda is swimming around. Your goal is to land on a location that the Barrakuda isn't or won't be because you will have to discard your coins to the location if they aren't in your safe. The Barrakuda will move by the dice rolled. One die is for the movement of 1 or 2 spaces and the other is for the location it is moving to.

Each location will give a reward to the player either being the only one there or a small reward if there are several people there. You can see the cards everyone has played so you can sort of plan for the location you want to go to. You will not know where the Barrakuda is going, but you can take your chances.

There is a mechanic where you will take back the oldest cards played when you find that action on the spaces. It can definitely be tricky, and you have the chance to control the Barrakuda with your special card, it is just knowing when to do that.

The overall gameplay is pretty easy to grasp for a quick light card game. There is some take-that with the movement of the Barrakuda and trying to attack other players.

It works fine for 2 players, but it is probably slightly more fun with more players and also slightly more chaotic with more. It is definitely supposed to be a lighthearted cute game, so you have to go in with a less-serious attitude. It will be fun for the family and the casual gamers. It won't work as well for deep-thinking strategy gamers.

I don't mind this game, but there are other games I would rather play with simultaneous card selection. Otherwise, it is harmless and I could play again if requested.


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Michael and I checked out another game on Kickstarter now called Fluffy Frontier. New to me!

You might not have heard of it, but you could probably guess that you are playing as a cat in space. meeple

Fluffy Frontier is a programming resource management game to gain the most points from the experiments you perform.

During the game, you will use your programmed tiles as actions. Actions will be to move around the board and grab resources or go to the lab to experiment. There are several actions to choose from, but if someone else does an action before you that might alter your plans.

You will play over 5 rounds so it goes pretty quickly. You have to pick the best actions to hopefully get what you need in order to complete the experiments. The major issue with the experiments is that it is totally luck of the die roll. You might fail and then lose all of your knowledge resources. It can be rough. Another big issue is the fact that all of the completed experiments only score if they have a flag on them, so you have to make sure to go through and collect flags. If you collect a flag that isn't matching yours, well the person who owns the flag will gain partial points for your experiment.

The game is pretty rough around the edges, I would definitely need this game to get cleaned up and developed better. It is still in development since it is on KS now, so we will see what comes of it for the final printing. Michael and I both feel like it needs a lot of development before it would be passable as a game to play.

It has a cute theme but needs work.

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Fri Jun 24, 2022 11:00 am
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In the Gravehold Comic lies the Sorcerer's Arena

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!


A recent Glory Islands Vid




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A new legacy game? Well not only a new legacy game but Aeon's End: Legacy of Gravehold!!! New to me!

I hadn't played Aeon's End before I played Aeon's End: Legacy, and it opened a whole new world I didn't know I needed. Now I have the full boat of Aeon's End on my shelves and I haven't looked back.

To hear there was another Legacy game, just brightened up my day and I was so excited to start the new game.

I won't get into the nitty-gritty of the 2 games I have played so far, but I will talk about the experience. In the first game, you will be given the choice to go one way or another and that will determine your possible starting characters. I do happen to know you will unlock the other characters later in the game and you won't miss out on much of any of the unseen content right off the bat.

The first game is quite difficult to get through, there are a lot of questions and little rules that could easily be missed.

This legacy game is NOT an intro into Aeon's End.

I can't stress that enough. I sort of wish they named it something completely different as someone new might see Legacy in the name and think they can just start playing it. If you already know Aeon's End well, then I don't see much of an issue jumping into this one, but you have to stick with it after the first game.

Michael and I read a lot of forum posts during that first game and it seems like it is a common issue for players. You can trust me that the game will clear up in game 2. That is as far as I have gotten and like all Aeon's End, I just want to keep playing more and discovering new content and possibilities.

I love that you don't have to stick to the character you chose in game 1 if you don't want to. You can try playing other characters.

There is always another surprise around the corner and into the next game. I freaking love it and am so excited to see what's next.

The photos below aren't really spoilers, but if that really matters to you then don't look, otherwise, I don't think you will find something spoilers in them. You can see some artwork in the character and cards.

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I love anything Disney-themed, so when there is a new Disney game I am definitely down to try it. This time I got to check out Disney Sorcerer's Arena: Epic Alliances Core Set. New to me!

In Sorcerers Arena, players are battling to knock out their opponents to claim points. It is a race to gain X points to win the game. If you are playing with 2 players then you will have to select 2 characters to use in the game.

The rules set you up with specific characters for the first game and fewer points. It is laid out really nicely to introduce you to the mechanics in the game. As you learn and play, the next games will introduce more abilities and powers.

In the basic intro game you will have a starting hand and then draw a card each turn. When it is your turn you will move and play action. There are move cards and there are action cards, but if you don't have a card or don't want to use a card then you can do the standard basic move or actions.

Since you are using 2 characters, you will shuffle both of those character decks together and draw from one deck. When you are using a character you can only play cards with that character's photo on them. Ariel can use Ariel's cards. It is pretty easy to figure out and the mechanics are smooth.

I am not one for arena-style games like this, but it really was better than most. It is better because of the hand management you have to do. You might have a strong character like Gaston, but if you don't have the cards to back up the moves you want, then it won't be as successful. It is a clever mechanic.

As you play more you will gain more abilities to think about as well, but you will also have fewer cards in your hand. You have to be skilled in knowing what to hold and what to discard.

This game will work great for families as the Disney theme is awesome. It is perfect to have an entry into the combat-style tactical grid game. I did enjoy this more than others in the genre, but I don't think it is a game I would frequently return to play as it just isn't my favorite type of game.

It is quick-playing and accessible which is what counts for new gamers and casual gamers. I know a lot of people who will really dig this one.


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I was sent a prototype of The Comic Book Bubble to check out beore the Kickstarter launch. New to me!

In The Comic Book Bubble, you are trying to buy low and sell high in a rotating market. After 4 rounds, if you have the most money you will win.

Each round will have 4 turns where players will simultaneously select the action they want to take for the round. You can buy a new comic from your hand to your shelf, Super Powers which will perform the action on the selected card, or you can speculate which will change the market of the colors on the cards selected.

If you chose to buy in the round then you cannot sell one at the end of the round, otherwise, once the market prices have changed you can look and see if you want to sell a comic depending on their current values.

The color theme represents the type of comic they are and you will find the price based on those colors when you go to buy and when you go to sell.

The game is fairly simple and accessible. Michael and I knocked out a few games including once on the Livestream if you were looking for a full tutorial and playthrough.

At first, I thought the game would easily be too chaotic, but you do have control over the cards you select and you have a general idea as to what will happen with the speculating. I can see with 5 players that it might be slightly on the chaotic side, but the game is so quick, you have to go with what you can when you can and it doesn't bother me.

I really enjoy the card drafting and all the different possible special actions. There is more depth than at first glance.

This game will have a solo mode, but it is great to know this game works great with 2 players and I think it will be fun with more as well.

In the end, I am pleasantly surprised by this one. It is a simple joy to play and look forward to seeing it fulfilled on Kickstarter in the near future. It will be a perfect introduction to this genre. I would be happy to play this one once it is published! Definitely, one I recommend to casual gamers and strategy gamers.


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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Wed Jun 22, 2022 11:00 am
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Pessoa loved to write about the Space Station over Yosemite

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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I was so excited to show Michael the new game Space Station Phoenix!

Space Station Phoenix is a game I learned back in April and just adored it! I was so excited for the recent release to hit the table again and I knew it was a game Michael would love as well.

If you aren't familiar with the game, your goal is to gain the most points. The game end has 3 possible triggers so you have to be on your toes for when the game might end.

During the game, you will take actions by spending gems and using ship actions. There are many possible actions and the bigger the ship the more powerful the action. You will use resources to gain aliens and station sections. Aliens you collect will unlock income and other bonuses in the stations you have.

What I think is the coolest mechanic of the game is the scrapping of your ships for metal. You need to scrap your possible action spaces in order to gain metal to help build your station bigger. Is it a very clever mechanic and really makes you think a few times about the actions that really matter.

I have to say the Livestream video below was exciting and I made a cool play.

There are so many strategies to try because there are so many possible stations that could be in play and in each game you will gain a different hub which starts you off completely different too. So much variety it is insane!

Even after 3 plays I still want to keep playing it and enjoying the strategies. I loved this game from the first play and still love it. I would highly recommend it to anyone who likes engine-building games with many paths to try.

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I was so excited to try out Pessoa once I received it! New to me!

I didn't know anything about Pessoa before going into this game. Thankfully, there is some background in the rules as to who Pessoa is, so you can get an idea of who he was. Apparently, Pessoa was a very passionate writer who would take on a persona. He created something like 75 personas but they were more than personas and he referred to them as heteronyms. In the game, you are playing as one of the heteronym characters.

The whole backstory is really interesting and it really ties into the game-play.

In the game, you will get 12 turns to gain as many points as possible. On your turn, you will either move your heteronym pawn or if you control Pessoa you can move his pawn. You may choose to rest instead which will refresh your energy.

There are only a few spaces on the board to visit for action. You will want to gain verse cards. The cards are really important for creating poems and for visiting the book store. At the book store, you will gain tiles that will help score more points for your poems. If you go to the Rossio you can crat a poem with the cards you have. You will gain points for a number of aspects including your personal ability and the color of the cards and how many cards you use.

Everything about the game is pretty simple to understand, but there is one other small mechanic that when you visit the book store or Rossio, if you play a card with a matching astrology sign, then you get a small bonus. This small mechanic makes the game have so much dynamic and added thought, it is awesome. Knowing you won't get a small reward for doing the action you want to do this turn, makes all the difference in the game. Small choices like that, make it deeper than it first appears.

After playing twice, I can say with confidence that this game is a winner. The mechanics are really nice and the game flow is easy. It feels fresh and thematic. It is a quick 12-turn game, but the choices you have are meaningful and will have you processing the whole time. This is a great game and one I would definitely recommend. Keeper for sure.

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Michael and I had some time and decided to knock out a quick 2-player game called Yosemite. New to me!

Yosemite is a tile drafting game where you are walking around the map, but you move according to the animal tile you are standing on. The animals you collect will be used in a photo you are looking to take! gathering points from the photos and the campsites and possible landscapes you will want to have the most points.

There are 5 animal types and each animal will have a different background to either gain a fish, campsite, or the ability to take a photo. The landscape tiles will have a token on them that can only be claimed by one person and they will add additional scoring for those photos taken in that landscape.

The whole game is pretty easy to get into and play. You are looking at a 20 minutes time play and it is pretty simple. You will need to use the rules for movement rules for each animal type, but it will be clear after a few plays.

Michael and I have played a few times now and he has kicked my butt in both games. I just got cornered in the Livestream video below and ended up losing a few turns for my poor plays.

For a quick game like this, I certainly think it is harmless and one that I could see playing again. I don't think it offers anything new or exciting, but it is beautiful. I think this will work for a lot of couples that game together and like the small 2-player boxed games. Definitely happy to have tried this.

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Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Mon Jun 20, 2022 11:00 am
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The Zombie Princess or the Shamans will Name the Thing

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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At the recent game night, we pulled out Shamans to try since we needed more than 3 players to play. New to me!

Shamans is a hidden traitor trick-taking game. The idea is to not push the marker to the end or the traitor will win. Each time a player doesn't follow suit the marker will automatically move 1 space. The players never have to follow suit if they don't want!

There are several colored suits and if a player finishes a collection by playing the final card in a color they will gain a reward.

The winner will lead the next trick, but there is also a cool reward for the lowest card in the matching suit by collecting a token.

On the tokens, you will find a variety of things, but the best is a dagger which might give you the power to eliminate a player for the good or bad. How well can you read every one? If you are the traitor this is a great plan!

There are definitely a lot of interesting mechanics in this game and if you like trick-taking games this is one to check out for sure.

For me, it gave me a similar feeling to Mu since you are always changing teams each turn and there is just no way of catching up sometimes if someone is just out in the lead. It is not something that excited me. I suppose I also don't like the race for points. I kind of wish it was some other scoring mechanic.

Beautiful game and I could play it again. I would like to try it again, but I have a feeling this is just not a game for me. I am not good at being a traitor, and I just don't like that mechanic in general. It will definitely work for the right group.

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Michael and I checked out a new game called Zombie Princess and the Enchanted Maze. New to me!

If you know me at all, you know I am sooooo not into zombies, but I do like tile placement so I figured I should give it a go.

In Zombie Princess, you are trying to cross the board to get your key and then make it back to the center without becoming a zombie in the process.

Each turn you will first roll for the princess to move and you can move her, ideally in the direction away from you and towards your opponent. If you reach another player they will turn zombie and then play differently.

If you move the Princess then you have to also as a tile adjacent to where she is to keep her on the move. After her turn, you will take your own turn by moving and possibly rotating a tile and playing a tile if you want. Pretty standard stuff.

This game definitely doesn't offer anything new or exciting. I am not into the very brown and flat board and I am certainly not the audience for the zombie theme.

After the 2 player game I had, I can safely say this is not a game I would return to as I have just so many other games I would rather play with these types of mechanics. It just seems forgettable in the long run.

This could work for casual gamers who love zombies.

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Back in Feb at Tantrum Con, we played a party game called Name The Thing. I just got my copy in and we decided to check it out during a recent game night.

Name the Thing is a party game where each turn there is one judge so you are playing the cards to the person judging based on the category.


Each player has a hand of cards and each card has a word on it and you will have to craft a phrase using 2-4 cards as a response. If your response is selected as the best you will take the cards as points.

You can play to a set amount or just play until you are tired of playing.

The game is super simple so we could play it late at night when these games are called for. I figured Susan and James wouldn't mind it so much, but I don't think Susan was having a great time playing. It is hard if you don't get some good word combos or your response just never gets selected.

In any case, that doesn't bother me much since it is just a party game. I just go in to just have fun and not to "win". For a quick game, you can't take things too personally there is too much luck of the draw with the right cards that work.

We had a few really clever rounds. When we finished the game, I took a picture of the sets that I won with so it would be interesting if you could guess the topics for them.

Michael did end up winning this game and I came in second, somehow. I usually lose this type of game since I am just terrible at it, but I have fun too.

This is a fun game for those who enjoy party games like Apples to Apples or Cards Against Humanity, it falls pretty close in line to those games, you just have more say in how you respond with Name the Thing.

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Some cool photos of the new Marvel HeroClix: Marvel Studios' What If…? Miniatures Game.

If you are into Heroclix, be sure to check out this new What If...? version!

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Fri Jun 17, 2022 11:00 am
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The Balada was sung about the Yak in the Triolet group

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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We recently played Rulebenders



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I was super excited to check out the new Pretzel Games title called Yak. New to me!

Pretzel Games/Plan B Games always has top-notch games with quality and production and Yak does not disappoint. There are actually amazing yak figures and a tiny baby yak that is just too cute!

When you open the box you will have to assemble the carts with wheels and the yaks with horns, but they will stay together when you put the game away. Yes, the carts actually wheel around the board and it is too cute!

The other major awesome components are the blocks. There are so many blocks! These black will be what you seek to collect during the game.

The blocks will be collected to help form a pyramid. The colors will matter for forming groups that will help to score you points at the end of the game. You can also play with common objectives for other ways of scoring, but having many groups will be really great for your end-game score.

In order to collect the blocks, you will need resources to trade with the cart that is in front of you.

The main rule we missed in the first part of the game was that if a cart has no blocks, you must refill it to 3 after your turn. So we started over. Very important rule!

Yak is a game driven by simultaneous card selection. The card you select will determine the action you will do, but you won't reveal your card until your turn, so the active player won't be influenced by other players' selections following theirs.

The game is a pretty simple resource management game to collect blocks. The yaks will walk around, but the catch is that if a white block is pulled from the bag, the yaks will do a 180 and start walking the other way. You can never be too sure that the yak coming your way will have the cart you were planning for. I like not being sure.

So I told you about the rule we played wrong so we started over and played correctly. The 4 player game was great since there were so many blocks coming into play and the board was ever-changing.

With 2 players you remove a yak and a single block color before the game starts. We explained the rules and did the full playthrough in the video below.

When playing with 2-players we really broke down the scoring in the video and ended up analyzing it pretty extensively. In the end, we decided the scoring is pretty one-note there isn't much variety in strategy since everything scores about the same no matter how you shake it. We both enjoy the game for sure and will continue to play it, but could see it getting stale after a few plays.

Beautiful and cute production with some simple gameplay that is just relaxing fun. Great for casual gamers.

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Michael and I had a short while so we decided to check out Triolet. New to me!

At first glance, this game looks like Scrabble but with numbers. Well, it is certainly similar, but some major differences.

In Triolet, players will have 3 tiles to work with and the object is to form groups of 3 that add to 15. You actually can't even have a group of 3 if it doesn't equal 15. You also can not have a group of more than 3.

As you play tiles you will score the points of the actual numbers and not the baby numbers. The baby numbers are the frequency in the game. It definitely confused me several times since I was an avid Scrabble player before I started playing strategy games regularly.

The board is set up like Scrabble too with x2 and x3 spaces but there is also an extra turn space. The multiplying spaces will only trigger for that tile once and not if it is included in a 15 scoring which is already doubled.

In the first game we played, I got completely demolished. Michael was laying 15s down like it was his job. I just couldn't pull the tiles I needed and the board was so closed off there wasn't much room for expanding. I lost by over 100.

The second game on the Livestream went much better and the board was much more open. You can check out the gameplay video below to see how it all played out!

This game is simply great for kids learning math and just general math enthusiasts. I certainly had a fun time playing and I would be happy to play it again. Glad to have played it.

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At BGG Con I picked up a new flip and write game called Balada. New to me!

In the game, you are trying to compose the best story from the travels of the hero. The more monsters to fight and the treasures found will all gain your some points. Over 12 turns for the first half and 12 turns in the second half you will want to gain the most points.

Each turn the players will have a choice of 2 cards. The region is also determined by where to place one of those 2 cards.

Each of the land terrains will get filled before the phase ends so you have to choose the card option that works best for the path you are creating.

Michael and I played our first game and thankfully he knew everything that was happening and could score my papers for me. There is definitely a lot of interconnecting pieces to this game and it helps if you know exactly how they all come together.

By the second game, I totally understood how to score and it wasn't an issue.

We did play on stream and if you were looking to learn how to play, Michael did a great job teaching it and explaining everything during the scoring if you wanted to play along. The sheets are on BGG to play.

I do this this game is a keeper. We both really like it. it is an interesting flip and writes and one that we will want to play going forward. It is available in the BGG Store right now if you were looking for some more flip n writes!

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:
Barrakude
Kinoko





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Wed Jun 15, 2022 11:00 am
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The Rival Restaurants on Planet Unknown were on the Skull Canyon

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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Hia Everyone!


We played Art Decko


Whale Riders: The Card Game



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At a recent game night with James and Susan, we all tried out Rival Restaurants. New to me!

In Rival Restaurants, players are trying to race to gain the most points. If you get to 20 first you will win!

During the game, players will collect income for money to spend at the different stalls to collect the ingredients needed for the menu items.

There will be a cooking phase where completing orders will happen and points will be awarded and trash will be made.

You have to manage your ingredients and your trash in order to complete the best items possible. You also have to be aware of the other players and the possible attack cards they will play on your to steal your food items and such.

There are ways to upgrade abilities and gain more income or gain a better option for menu cards.

I really like that each player will have their own items they will score better since their restaurant is a different food style, so they will gain extra if they cook a dish in that style. Each character is different too and will have a unique ability.

I don't mind the real-time nature of the game and trying to negotiate and figure everything out in a minute doesn't bother me. The attack cards are one of the issues I have in the game. I didn't feel like the cards were all that balanced.

James had the mafia cook dude that got all the special cards and was just attacking people left and right and gaining pretty big rewards for it. That role card left me feeling a bit salty. Okay, so maybe don't play with that character or remove some of the bigger OP cards.

In the opening hand, I got stuck with a really terrible advanced menu item so I just didn't even make it, and I lost horribly. Another house rule I would probably use is to draw 2 keep 1 advanced menu item at the start of the game, everyone else was scoring their advanced and I just was clogged up and having a hard time.

Besides those things I would change, I don't mind the game. I still don't think it is the right fit for me since I don't prefer race games as I always feel that it was all for nothing since it stops and I am unfulfilled with what I was working on. I guess I prefer a set number of rounds so I can plan best.

This game will definitely work for other players who don't mind the attacking cards. Hey, some people like those types of games, I am just not one of them. It was just happening far too often in our game and it made the game less fun for me.

Glad to have tried this.

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Another game we played that game night was Skull Canyon: Ski Fest. New to me!

In Skull Canyon, you are trying to gain the most points over 3 days. Each day you will get 4 turns each with 2 actions to take.

During the game, There are a few actions you could possibly take. You will collect cards as you would in Ticket to Ride. You can take a ride up the ski lift, or you can ski down a trail.

Several trails will have conditions you want to meet and gain bonus points with the cards you have.

At the end of the day, you will hang in the lodge and gain a bunch of cool rewards in a Tokaido-style worker placement mini-game.

At the start of a new day, you will gain a few extra cards to start depending on the weather conditions.

A major part of the game is the Yeti wild cards. When those are used in your set for a trail, you will activate the Yeti either by moving it or by causing an avalanche. When an avalanche is caused all players have to ski down one trail.

The whole game is pretty easy to grok and we played with a full 4players. Later Michael and I played it as a 2-player game that we played (video below).

After the first couple of plays, I can definitely say that I enjoyed the 2-player game a lot more than the 4-player game. There is so much chaos with 4 that I just didn't really enjoy the game as much as with 2. With 2, I had more control and the map is smaller, so everything just works well. I am sure the game is best with 2-3.

I liked this game pretty well, but I would rather it didn't have the attack mechanic to send everyone down the mountain. It is already hard enough to get up the mountain, just to have it all taken away from you before your next turn.

A few design issues for me, but overall a good experience and a game I would play again.



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I was so looking forward to playing the final copy of Planet Unknown.

I was so in love with this game since I first played it back in April 2020. Planet Unknown was founded by the Bears who play Musical Chairs in the Palace. Carpe Diem!.

Planet Unknown is a fantastic tile-placement game with fun choices and an amazing lazy susan. The finished game has a TON of board and a bunch of cool unique advancement tracks to try. I think at think point I have tried them all either in person or online. But the boards are nothing something I have explored so it has been very exciting trying those out.

Michael and I played a 2 player game on the Livestream (video below), so it took a minute to recall the rules, but they really aren't that hard to remember and the game is all about drafting the right tiles to get what you need and want from your advancement tracks.

We loved that play so much that we decided to play it again at our recent game night to teach James and Susan.

I finished that game with a completed board, but it wasn't even enough points to come in 1st or 2nd place. I was just so far behind in all the extra points from civ cards and tracks. I got most all my points from my board, but even that wasn't working well since my rovers were stupid slow and I couldn't clear all the meteorites.

Everything about this game is so cool and I can't seem to get enough. I love it so much so I do hope that everyone will get to check it out at some point. I just know so many people would enjoy this if they gave it a go. highly recommend!

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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New to the Collection:
The Comic Book Bubble
Carnegie





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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BGG SPRING IS AWESOME - 2022!

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!


Another BGG Con has come and gone! BGG Con is always an amazing time filled with friends and games. During the Spring convention, BGG holds a Storage Sale cleaning out some games from the collection to make room for other titles. It is an opportunity for me to run wild and pick up a ton of games on the cheap. As you can see from the final haul pic.

I always tell people to use me as an example of how they aren't crazy when they explain to their friends or partner that their collection isn't too big.

BGG Con wasn't so much about learning new games this time. I ended up playing a bunch of repeated games and teaching where I could.

DAY 0 of the convention I found myself with no voice. I only just managed to get back to normal once we were traveling home. It was really suckors to not have my voice during the con, but I still played plenty of games and had a great time.

In no particular order, I will just talk briefly about the games I played.


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Michael and I played a couple games that we got from the BGG Store starting with Ramen Chef. New to me!

I wasn't really sure what to expect, but the game is super easy to learn and play. There are a bunch of double-sided tiles and you set up a 3x3 grid of them.

You are trying to find matches by flipping over the tiles. It is a memory game and a set collection game. You want to find matches but you also want to complete order cards with specific ingredients.

Once the tiles run out then the game will end and whoever has completed the most orders will win the game.

Very light and simple. Good for the family or casual games who like Ramen. It has a nice look to it and is nice. As a strategy gamer, this didn't really do much for me, but I could see it working for the right crowd. I don't think this is one that I would return to playing anytime soon, but it was harmless enough that I could see playing again if requested.

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The next game we played that was also found in the BGG Store was Cakes!. New to me!

I figured this game would be another Rhino Hero game of just stacking cards to make tall towers. No, this is much more challenging. You have to hold a plate and stack it on the plate you are holding. It is way more entertaining!

This is also a speed game to meet the requirements of the current objective card. The catch is you can win by having the most points at the end, or if you have completed 10 layers on your cake the game ends immediately.

I am super short so I didn't stand a chance of completing 10 layers of my cake. It worked well in the first game and I won because we ended up running out of cards. In the second game, Michael neglected the scoring cards and just focused on making a 10-layered cake. I had all the points from the cards, but he was able to end the game prematurely because he had 10 layers!

Very entertaining and fun challenge. Everyone loves a good bell... well except the table next to you.

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By the end of the con, I finally saw Wonderland's War available in the BGG library so I took it out with hopes of teaching Aldie since he was wanting to learn it.

He wasn't available but Candice really wanted to learn it too so I grabbed Mihir and we played a 3 player game.

It was great fun, and this is a game I was happy to teach and play some more. Candice loved it and definitely wanted to play again.

I was fortunate and found Aldie the next day so we could play it with him since that was the one game he wanted to learn. Michael taught that game to Aldie, Lincoln, and Nikki so they could all learn it.

The 5-player experience was a bit long especially with 3 people learning and the huge table it was hard to read everything.

Having played 4 times now, I used all the different token abilities and definitely like some better than others. I have tried all the characters but Jabberwocky, but I am not even sure I want to use that character.

I am just happy to introduce this game to more people since I am fond of it and it has been one of the best games I have learned this year. It is simply fantastic. The more I get to play it the happier I am too. I hope everyone gets to try it.

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On the final morning of the con, I played a game of Fields of Arle with Mihir since I was up so early to return Wonderland's War to the Library.

Hey, Fields of Arle is my fav Uwe game, and any chance I have to play it I will take it!

Mihir said he hadn't played in a very long time. Fortunately for me, I just played in April at GoF and could easily recap him on the rules.

I think he was really happy to play it again. I told him he had to go home and find someone to play it with since he needed to practice more and get the rules down.

Of course, I won the game. I am basically a shark since I have played it so much in my gaming history. If I don't play against Ron, I am likely to win the game, but I still want to teach and show love for the game whenever possible. I just love playing it.

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Another game from the BGG Store we checked out was Little Tokyo. New to me!

Little Tokyo is essentially Animal Upon Animal but for adults. The pieces are hilarious and wonderful and there are 2 bases. You have to line up all the pieces and choose from one side or another for the piece to place.

You don't want to knock over either stack, or you will claim a piece and the 3rd time you knock over the stack you will lose the game. With more players, you can keep playing or just call it.

We played with 4 players then Michael and I played on the Livestream with 2.

I did absolutely horrible with the 4 player group. I just assumed this was not a game I could do well at. Yeah, I think I lost the game in 3 turns! I would just knock it over each time. They kept playing after I was out then they realized it wasn't as easy as they thought.

The table talk in this game is what makes it great. I think we were all just laughing our butts off it was hilarious.

The 2 player game was just as fun and I did much better. The video is below. We ended up playing twice I think. Check it out! Michael was being a wizard with his placements. He was balancing like it was his job. I snapped a pic below of his balancing skills.

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Candice called me over saying that she was trying to learn Tang Garden.

I love Tang Garden and I was happy to join as the 4th player and teach the game so they didn't have to try and learn from the rules.

There was a recent KS that happened and I had been playing the cooperative game. It was cool to go back and play competitive, but I still have to say I love that coop mode better!

They were glad I sat down to teach since they were on a time constraint.

We played super quickly and most everyone got the rules as we were playing. One player was having a hard time grasping the actions, but we just helped out where we could.

It was definitely a low-scoring game since we were hard pushing the ending and not really looking for the best play at all times.

I did end up winning with 30 points and Candice was right behind me with 26.

Still a good game and I am glad we could play. Everyone got a good feeling about what the game had to offer and I think everyone really liked it so it was a success! This is a game I was happy to get back to the table and play again. I think it is just lovely.

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I ended up learning a game called Inkling. New to me!

It is possibly too abstract for me since you can form words or patterns to try and get others to guess the words on your card.

Quentin was pretty out there with his examples, but during the actual play, I totally understood what he and Candice were doing. They were less clear about what I was doing though. I suppose that was okay.

You do want people to guess your words since you score more points, but you also score points for guessing others too.

I had the best overall score so I ended up winning with 21 points.

This worked great with 3 players. I wonder how crazy it would get with more players or if there might be an imbalance for someone who is just terrible at the game, it could be a big disadvantage.

I would definitely play Inkling again since I like the challenge, but I kinda feel like it will be more forgettable in the long run.

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I picked up Sumatra in the VFM and I KNEW the perfect person to teach me the game would be WEM. New to me!

A new Knizia I hadn't been able to play until now and no better person to teach than the Knizia master WEM. Even better than WEM liked the game!

I didn't really know much about it so I was sort of going in blind but figured it would be a very Knizia-style game.

Yep, you are collecting sets in a new way. You have to move around the island collecting various touristy things. Seeing animals and flowers and meeting people. You also want to have wifi.

I really like what this game is doing with the movement of your meeple around the island. It was interesting to see what happens if you get caught behind the tour guide and when you choose to push forward and push your luck as to what you will find ahead.

The game is really interesting and I had a fun time playing it. I dunno how it will hold up after several plays, but I am happy to give it some more plays to find out. It is neat.

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Michael, Susan, & James were all all learning Calico. I was a bit hesitant to sit and play since I wasn't sure if they would enjoy it, but I knew I already loved this one so I join them!

It was clear they were liking the game okay, but that no one was really loving it. This is the main reason why I haven't suggested it at game day since I didn't think anyone would really love it.

There is some luck involved with the tiles coming out, but you do what you can. Nothing will ever be perfect in the game. At least with more players, you will have more opportunities to see more tiles. In the solo game, you don't see many tiles at all.

I still love this one, and I think everyone was happy they learned the game. I am just not sure it will be hitting the table at a game day in the near future. Hey, I love the solo challenge too, and I know this game isn't leaving my collection. It's fantastic so I am happy I did get to play it.

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In the BGG Storage Sale I managed to find my past grail game Colors of Kasane. I just had to pick it up again and have a backup copy of the game. This is is original Japanese game too with the buttons.

I simply love this game and I am happy that I got to play it 3 times during the con. I played a few times with WEM and Beth, who had both played before. I later taught Quentin and Candice how to play and that was great since I got to expose new players to the game which I love.

This is just a game I am not very good at, but that's okay, I still like the limited hand movement and melding system the game has to offer.

I think if I ever find the "new" French edition I will have to pick it up too. I want all the editions! This game is just so different that it stands out for me. so happy I found this game in the sale. Mine mine mine mine.

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From gallery of punkin312


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Beth wanted to learn 7 Wonders: Architects so we played a few games of that.

I like playing this game going for all the VP cards and not even worrying about building my wonder. It is how I play online and in person.

I win maybe 50% of the time with that strategy. I think I surprised WEM a bit when I won the first game we played with that strategy. I didn't see any blue cards in the second game and it was super quick so I didn't do so hot in the second game.

Happy to play this game. I think it works fine, but I still much prefer 7 Wonders.

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One of the ksdj nominations is Auch schon clever so I wanted to try it. New to me!

This game is perfect for the Ganz Schön Clever universe. It is super cute and you can still get a bunch of combos.

Sure, there is some luck of the draw but it is meant for kids or a light roll n write.

I actually enjoyed it the most from our group. I think Susan hated it and Michael was okay with it. I thought it was cute though. I would gladly play it again.

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Another game from the sdj area was Top Ten. New to me!

We played several games of this during the convention. WEM had his special copy with all the questions and he wasn't willing to share that information with the rest of us so most of my games were with him nd his hand sheet of magical questions.

Okay, this totally fired Wavelength. Sure, there is a time and a place for Wavelength, but I would always choose to play Top Ten given the option.

In Top Ten, every player will have to think cleverly and form a response to the question at hand. There will be a judge and everyone is handed a number from 1-10 generally 1 being worst to 10 being best. If you have the number 6 you have to think of an answer to the question that would make the judge place you in ranking order so that your 6 would be revealed in the right order.

You have to hear other players' responses and evaluate how to answer the question so you don't throw off the judge by guessing the number order incorrectly.

I loved this so much and we all had a ball playing it. I simply can not wait until they release this in English. It will be my go-to party game from now on!

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WEM had a card game to check out called Plotters, Inc.. New to me!

This game is also found in the BGG Store. Immediately it made me think of the game David & Goliath that I learned last year.

It is a trick-taking game where the winner wins cards and the loser of the trick also wins cards. You don't want to collect all the different clors though, so you have to be careful.

We played with 6 players and it was too many people I think. It is probably best with 4 players.

We ended up playing 3 rounds, but the rounds were longer than I would have wanted in a trick-taking game. It was really interesting though and I would be happy to play it again.

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Okay, I didn't actually play Looping, but I looked at it and it looked really cool. I love the Roller coaster theme! Found in the BGG Store.

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Michael and I played a push-your-luck game called Piraten kapern. New to me!

It is a cute dice game. I am glad we decided to play with 2 players since it wouldn't be any good with more than 2 and just a longer experience.

You can simply get bad rolls and lose the game, but it is still fun to try for the big luck rolls and catch up. It is possible to catch up if you hit big.

Fun to try but not a game I would want to play again.

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Michael and I taught WEM how to play Décorum.

We ended up playing two 3 player games. the first game went really well and we ended up winning pretty quickly.

The second game was much harder and we took a dinner break so that didn't help.

We did manage to win the second game too but it took basically all the turns we had to make it happen.

I think Decorum is a great game and it is really interesting to play with new players to see how they respond.

At a recent game day I ended up teaching Susan how to play as well and we played 3 games. I think she was really digging it too.

There is something special about this game. I am glad I have played many times in the past week.

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Aldie wanted to play a game of One Card Wonder.

I first played this in prototype form back when it was on KS. The game didn't really impress me then, but there is nothing wrong with it.

I was fine to play it again, it just doesn't excite me much.

I generally don't like the race to win game and this game is a race to complete the wonder first.

It was fine playing it again, but I probably don't have to play it again.

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Aldie was all about Foundations of Rome and I was definitely interested in learning it. New to me!

I didn't know much about this game other than the over produced giant gamebox filled with miniatures.

Foundations of Rome is a city building game where you will acquire plots on the game board and build up your buildings. Each building will score differently either producing income, population of victory points for the surrounding building types.

This game is very easy to learn and play and it plays in about an hour which is cool. I compare it to games like Big City or Acquire.

I really enjoyed this one, it was definitely one of the best games I played/learned at BGG. Many great decisions to make and strategies to pursue. This is a game I will look to play again for sure, I really enjoy it!

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I got to teach Aldie how to play Marvel: Remix.

There was kind of a lot going on, so we ended up only playing the one time. We played with 5 players and I don't think everyone was enjoying it as much as I love it.

I would have liked to play a few more times, but that's okay. Playing just one time is enough to enjoy it.

This is a game I will always want to play. I love it!

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Another ksdj nominated game I got to try was Magic Mountain. New to me!

This game is arguably not good with 5 players, but honestly, I just didn't enjoy the game much at all.

I do think it would be great fun for kids, so that works well. As far as a dex game goes, it was just mediocre. Not many interesting choices and just wasn't much fun.

I even like Plinko (from Price is Right) but, this was just fine. Maybe if the presentation was different I would have liked it more. Hard to say.

I would play again, but won't be rushing to do so.

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The last ksdj game I had to try was Quacks & Co.: Quedlinburg Dash. New to me!

Aldie was kind enough to teach me and a gaming couple already at the gaming table. If you are familiar with Quacks, this is the kids version of the game.

The powers are simple and the whole game is just a race to the finish. The powers of the tokens you pull will move you on the path and if you can reach the end first, you will win. There are bad tokens that will put you to sleep, but if you have 3 of them then you can buy new tokens with your rubies.

So it is very much like Quacks, but simpler.We just played the basic game and I understand that the other powers for the tokens are more advanced and are a better gameplay for the ones experienced enough with the concept and perhaps not young children.

I would go back and play again, but I don't like race games so for me the game was just ok. I wasn't blown away with it and I would much rather play teh original game. Glad to have tried this though.

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Playing some games with Michael, James, & Susan we tried out UnNatural Selection. New to me!

This game is sort of like Apples to Apples since there will be one person who will select the best result. The differences is that everyone will throw in the first card and then the other two cards will be used as traits for ANY of the cards on display. So you are either trying to make your card fit the theme better by adding on traits on you can ruin the other players answers with trait cards.

The whole game was pretty funny and we did have a great time playing. It was pretty crazy how the trait cards really related to the themes that were coming up.

The one downfall with the game is we saw ever card. Allof the traits and characters and all of the themes. If you play with even more players then you will see everything a few times over. I do with there were more, but otherwise I had a pretty good time playing this one. Works well for a party game.

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Next up we tried a game called Garden Eel Go!. New to me!

Oh myyyyyy the cards are so cute! SQUEE! Who knew underwater poo could be so cute.

This is a simultaneous card selection, but you also don't want to select the stack that the active player picks or you won't collect a card. Some cards are bad and some are good, so you have to be careful on what you select.

It is a neat little collection game with cute art. I liked it well enough and I would play again no problems. I do think I liked it best of all of us playing though.

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We had another small card game to try called White Elephant. New to me!

As you might expect the rules are just the same as the holiday White Elephant game you play at a Christmas party. You are looking for specific gifts to walk away with and with the most value.

It was super cute and I could easily play this game with my family around the holidays. I know there is another White Elephant game that came out more recently and I would be interested in trying that since it has better artwork and just looks more fun, but this works fine.

Again, I think liked this best out of anyone playing in my game. I thought it was cute.

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More small box games and this time we played Nobjects. New to me!

This was probably the worst of the batch of games the 4 of us played.

Nojbects is a party game with finger drawings on the table. You are trying to guess what people are drawing and if you do you get a point. The more points you have the harder the picture you will have to draw.

The drawing cards are just so bad and they don't seem balanced. I duno, I just didn't have any fun playing this game and I generally like drawing games. It was just uninteresting and not worth the time.

Eh, they can't all be winners.

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WEM had read the rules to Splitter so I was all about trying it out. New to me!

I like rolln writes in general, but this one was pretty forgettable. There was nothing wrong with Splitter, but nothing to reallymake it stand out either.

When you roll the 2 dice all players have to use each value on mirroring sides of the board. You are trying to form groups of the same number to score points.

It works and we played a few times. I certainly liked the game, but won't go running out to buy the game.

Glad to have tried it.

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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The Next Station has come cool Art Decko of Finding Nemo

Steph Hodge
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Michael and I played a round of Art Decko.

I have been playing this so much on BGA it was really cool to finally play the finished product in person.

This is such a fantastic game and I am so happy it is readily available for everyone to get and play now. Ta-Te really has created something special.

If you aren't familiar with the game, there is a really interesting deck-building mechanic. the cards you buy will have a few ways to be used, and as the game goes on the value of the cards will increase as more of the same colors are purchased and displayed. It all just makes sense and has a great flow. Several ways for the game to end which results in a variety of strategies to try out.

I have played this game a lot the past year, but can't seem to get enough. I am very pleased that Michael enjoys it as much as I do and was willing to play it. I did end up winning with 181 during that game.

I have included my video playthrough of my BGA play. Michael and I will be playing on the Livestream pretty soon too to show off the final product. Such a great game I recommend playing it!


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Michael and I had recently played Clue Dexter so we were all ready for more Clue with Clue: Finding Nemo. New to me!

I do have to say I prefer the theme of Dexter vs Finding Nemo, but there is definitely a large audience for the Finding Nemo theme. It is a great family game for kids and adults.

I always loved Clue growing up, so I already know so many people will grab this for the title alone.

Definitely happy to play it and see what it had to offer. I like that you have to find Dory who is lost and not Nemo. That was a cute twist.


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I have played like 100 games of Next Station: London on Board Game Arena. I really felt I had to write about it. New to me!

It nearly hit the top of my New to Me list for May, but just missed. This is such a fantastic network route-building game and works incredibly well on BGA.

You can play with added goal cards and added pencil abilities, but the basic game will offer a lot of ways to score points anyway. I prefer to play with everything thrown into the mix though.

There is a deck of pink and blue cards with shapes on them. 4 shapes and a card that is wild with all the shapes. There is also a special break card that will let you create a new line from your existing line.

You will have 4 rounds where you pull cards from the deck one at a time until all of the pink cards are drawn then a new round starts. Each round you will use a new colored pencil to draw your route. You will try to go into different regions and visit a lot of spaces in one region. You also want to cross other routes to gain points.

Everything about this game is so elegant and wonderful and it plays out so nicely. I am highly obsessed with it at the moment and will absolutely need to get a copy when I can.

Check it out if you play on BGA, I think you will really enjoy it.

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Don't forget to pick up my Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022! https://stephsshop.ecwid.com/



Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
From gallery of punkin312





New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


External image
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All images in this post are copyrighted, owned, and controlled by Steph Hodge Photography, unless otherwise noted.
Please contact me if you would like to purchase or use my images in any way.
Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
Thank you.
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