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You need to Lawyer Up before the Vienna Connection finds Shards of Infinity in their Distillery

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!

Now on Kickstarter!! Thanks for the support!

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Join me Wednesday at 5 pm CST for more fun games! https://Twitch.tv/boardgamersteph!


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All around FB and Instagram I was seeing the new game called Distilled and when Dave put out a call for reviewers, I knew I wanted to check it out. New to me!

I am a big fan of alcohol-making games like Viticulture/Tuscany and Brew Crafters and Distilled looked a bit like those with regards to hefty decision making.

As you can probably guess from the name, Distilled is a game about the distilling process used to form alcoholic beverages. You will a bunch of sugars and some yeast and water to form various labels. you will also need a barrel and some glasses for the final product.

Distilled is played over 7 rounds and each round you will get to distill up to 1 label. Players will take turns buying cards from the market in preparation for the distilling process. There are upgrade cards that will be either equipment or assistants to help give you special abilities. There are ingredient cards, and also an item row of barrels and bottles.

There is also the basic market board where players can grab up to 2 cards from there each round. They are generally much cheaper and help you move your distilling process right along.

Once the market phase is complete, each player will get to distill a product. For each sugar card added to the mix, one alcohol card is also added. You can have as many yeast and water cards as you want and as many sugars. But each label requires specific types of sugars and if you don't need that exactly then you will likely have to make straight-up vodka instead. Vodka and moonshine are the basic labels that everyone can create and don't offer many points, but will still give you the chance to sell your product at the end of the round.

The craziest part about distilling is that you will remove the top and bottom card of the mix and put it back into your pantry. There is a bit of push-you-luck when it comes to making the label you are shooting for. If you remove your signature ingredient then it seems like you aren't making your signature label... you are making vodka. I actually really like this mechanic. It leaves you a little bit nervous about how the mix will turn out. Of course, you can try to avoid any issue by adding EXTRA ingredients to ensure that you will pull cards that don't matter to the mix. Now, the alcohol cards are supposed to help mitigate that luck a bit, but even still, I have been busted a few times in the games I have played.

If you make a label and the actual label token is available you grab it and if you choose to sell your product you can take a sweet bouns from your player board. In addition, you add up all the coins gained from the cards used and the points on them as well. You need the barrel and bottle too.

Some of the labels will need to age before selling them so you will need a special barrel to age in and then you can't sell it the turn you make it, you have to save it for another round.

Money is super tight so if you need to age your label then you want to be sure you are ready for the next round with no money from the sales of the previous round. Very tight game and if anything goes sideways or doesn't fall into place then you can be crippled in the next round. There is an action to take if you don't sell and you basically can lose up to 4 points to gain $4 and that can DEFINITELY come in handy when planning for the next round for what you might need.

So after 7 rounds, the player with the most points will win.

There are hidden goals and public goals to work towards as well and that is always a blast!

In both of the games I played, it was super tight until the very end. Michael was actively trying to stop everything I was doing. My hidden goals generally line up with the common goals so Michael was shooting for them and ultimately blocking my goals!

In the first game, I was the pirate and he loved making the Rum and collecting bottles. I worked on a bottle collection and ended up scoring a bunch of points for the bottles.

In the game we played the Livestream, I was the girl who had the discount on ingredients. I was getting all sorts of cool discounts. Because of that, I was very focused on getting upgraded ingredients and getting a bunch of points from that. I was also trying to do DIFFERENT labels from Michael even at the cost of the common goals. I did manage to get my hidden goals in that game.

From the first play, I learned I could probably attempt to distill something each round so in the second game I worked on making sure I was ready to distill each round for max income and points. Even if it was a simple Vodka label.

In the first game, I won with 101 points and Michael was just behind with 98. The second game was also super close where I won with 109 and Michael was at 104.

I have to say I had a lot of fun playing this one. Tough choices and super-tight through the whole game. The only thing that was bothersome was the limiting label tokens. In each game, I missed out on gaining a label token because they were all done. I didn't like that at all. With more players, I anticipate the labels not running out as fast. I was told I would probably like it better as a 3 player game or even as the solo experience.

This is a well-designed game that is super balanced and even had a great rulebook. Not many prototypes can pull that off! Distilled is now on Kickstarter for a few more days so I hope you get to check it out. It is super thematic and deep. Definitely recommend it!


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It was time to get serious so Michael and I tried out the new game called Lawyer Up. New to me!

Thankfully, in Lawyer Up, you don't need to know anything about the law or how a trial is run, but if you do know about that stuff, you will definitely have a thematic feeling when playing the game.

There are different cases to check out and variations on the different cases to play. Once you settle on the case you will know how long the game will run. The more key witnesses there are, the longer the game will be since each witness will have to be called to the stand.

During the game, the witnesses will be called to the stand and each player will take turns playing cards to help their side of the case. Some cards will be played as arguments, evidence, or procedures.

The way you can play cards depends on the biases the Witness has an association with. Basically, you can only play cards where the symbols line up with the previous card played to the argument on your side.

Ultimately you will want to win the argument with any given witness. You will win the chance to influence the jury. It all comes down to having the majority of the votes from the jury.

It took one round before we got the hang of what was going on. There is definitely a way to go about playing your cards to ideally set yourself up for future cards, but also leaving yourself open with the possible abilities on the cards that might trigger.

During my game, I was just trying to win the judge's favor so I could use my tokens and activate actions. I just wanted to win each witness card, and I did fine in the first few rounds. Once we got a bit into the game Michael started throwing some punches and took my key witness away for a surprise witness and my whole round was busted. It was a rough surprise!

It really came down to the wire. The final round is where it counted. Michael could win the round and win the game or I could win the round and win the game. It was a nail-biter for sure. Thankfully, I had the cards to pull it out and take the jury's vote in the end for the win.

I have seen a lot of comments on the Geek saying that they think the final round is just too important in being the deciding factor for who wins the game. As I have only played the game once, I don't have a good idea if that is what happens the majority of the time. Regardless, I had a fun time playing out the courtroom drama.

This is definitely a game I will want to play on the Livestream to show it off a bit. I think it is a really nice game with a lot to offer. If you are in the market for a pretty thinky 2-player card game this could fit the bill. One to check out if you play 2-player games at all. There is also a solo mode that could be fun too!


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When we went to Ohio to visit with Jon and Lainie, I was excited that we could learn Shards of Infinity. Since then I have gotten the game and the new expansion called Shards of Infinity: Into the Horizon. New to me Expansion!

If you are unfamiliar with Shards of Infinity, it is a deck-building game where you are attacking the other players, and the person left standing will win the game. There are a bunch of cards that will help you gain hit points, and life, and possibly shields to help you block incoming damage. You will want to increase your mastery level so you can gain better abilities and possibly trigger the almighty Shard of Infinity for its auto-win attack.

Now, the new expansion Into the Horizon adds in a bunch of new cards and abilities that just get mixed into the main deck of cards. There are new villains that will pop up and wreak havoc that we can attack and gain small rewards. There are also Destiny cards that are new. These Destiny cards are claimed when a player hits 5 mastery and one of the cards is chosen. These cards have unique abilities for the rest of the game. The faster you can claim them, the better since some can really help you right away.

It was easy to incorporate these cards into the game when Michael and I decided to try it out.

I wasn't finding my combos at all. Michael seemed to always be one step ahead of me. I think that was because one of the Villian cards came out sooooo early and once defeated, that player would gain a destiny card. Michael was able to pull off the defeat and then had 2 destiny cards for the rest of the game. It was super powerful. I wasn't gaining any really good attack cards so I was just a sitting duck. It was literally a matter of time before would kill me.

Every time I did manage to give him some damage, he would gain it all right back with his healing combo cards. He was unstoppable. Not only that he was right at the 30 mastery level and could have defeated me that way in another few rounds.

I was toast!

I didn't mind losing though. I always like the challenge of trying to gain combos and just deck-build my deck as best as possible. I really enjoy this game so look forward to finding the other expansions and seeing what they have to offer as well. Nice addition.

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I figured it was time to check out another case game from Portal Games called Vienna Connection. New to me!

Vienna Connection is a new release and has a similar vibe to that of Detective: A Modern Crime Board Game.

Like in Detective, you will be using the internet Antaresdatabase to submit answers and find clues that you are given from the case you are unfolding.

We found it pretty easy to get into it since we are familiar with these types of games, and you really just need to let the cards direct you in the way to go.

So in Vienna Connection, there is a mechanic where you are finding puzzle clues and you will keep track of these clues in the database. If you find all the clues you need and you run out of time, you will then have to do the final report and answer some questions. I actually really liked that we had clues to find while we were uncovering the hidden story.

The game starts you off with the goal of finding the coded card that has disappeared. We know someone has died who had it last and it is our job to track it down.

We followed the leads and found files/reports that gave us answers. There are A LOT of files in the folder so there is still so much to uncover in the different cases.

This was actually the first time that did fairly well on a mission. Michael was on the trace and put together a lot of the clues. Our instincts were on point this time around. We had a totally Mission Complete!

We found all of the codes we needed to and a lot that has to do with the overall game that we will need in the later missions.

The game has 4 missions that run about 2 hours each.

Michael expressed that he enjoys this type of crime/case-solving game best. He likes how you work through the evidence and follow leads in this game vs others. I had a pretty good time. I wasn't really interested in the STORY as much as I was interested in the process and the choices you get to make.

I had a good time playing this one and I would like to finish out the missions to see how we do overall. It was nice that we actually accomplished something. I don't think we accomplished much in the detective games that we have played so far. So this would be the game I would want to continue first before the others. I still have them all so I hope we can work through them all at some point.


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In case you missed it here is Steph's Hodgepodge of Gaming from Friday!





New to the Collection: I was a bit behind...
Almanac Crystal Peaks (proto)
Stronghold Undead
Crack the code
Distilled Proto
Cat Lady Kittens
City BUilder Ancient World
Sheepy Time
Ecos New Horizon
Almanac Dragon Road
Dirty Money
Castle Party (dupe)
Sky Tower





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 often review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Mon Jul 26, 2021 5:55 pm
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The Blue Railroad lead to the Kastles where you have to Crack the Code to see the Enchanted Plumes

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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I was excited to try the very beautiful Enchanted Plumes. New to me!

How could I NOT be attracted to this game? There are peacocks with up to 10 colors on them. SO PRETTY!! So many colors!

Enchanted Plumes is a card game of creating the most luscious set of plumes for a peacock.

The game is all about collecting the most points from each bird that you start. Now the catch is the back row of feathers are going to be negative points, so you will want low valued numbers in the back. You can't start placing feathers in the row below the back until you are ready since you can't ever add cards to the back rows. In addition, when you place cards to the next row, it must be a color that is already represented in the row directly behind it.

You are building the bird as a reverse pyramid and each row has to be complete before moving to the next row.

The cards are worth their face value as either positive or negative. When playing with 2 players you will have 0-6 values, but you can play with a bunch of people so the card values can range up to 9 with more players.

The final card in the bird is turned facedown and will score the same way except when the bird is complete you will gain additional points equal to the number of cards in the bird.

Each turn, the active player will have to play 1-2 cards and then either draw cards from the top of the deck (no more than 6) or swap cards from their hand with the cards in the train. Exactly 2 cards have to be taken or swapped.

It was clear, I wasn't sure what I was doing in my first game. I was just playing all the cards. I mean, the more cards the better right? No, not better! You will ultimately get stuck with some higher valued cards that you will HAVE to play, and if you don't have a spot for it then you have to start a new bird and those will be negative values.

let's just say, I had some problems! I learned though and tried to fix my mistakes in the next game when we played on the Livestream.

Nope! Even though I was lucky on the card draws in the second game, Michael still controlled everything and he ended up winning both of the games we played.

I guess I have a lot of learning to do and maybe stop taking big risks.

Anyway, I have to say I really enjoyed this light card game. The end result is something special to see too. I love the results of the nice peacock you create. The whole game is just fun. Definitely a keeper for me! If you like card games this is one to check out!

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A recent game I got and really wanted to get to the table is Crack the Code. New to me!

I didn't know what kind of game this was, but I certainly wasn't expecting a legacy/campaign. So, I was quite pleased to open the box and find cool envelopes and boxes.

There is a 4 part campaign game where you will play different missions for each part. As you play through the game, you will unlock new materials and get harder missions.

Crack the Code is a cooperative game where players are moving around marbles in order to complete patterns.

Using a deck of cards with actions players will take turns drafting cards to manipulate the marbles. Each player can see all of the marbles except for their own. There are tokens to help keep track of the marbles in your area though.

The intro game I played was pretty easy. Even when you play with 2 players, you still use the setup for 4 players and will manipulate the marbles how you see fit. Even with everything being pretty easy, we still had to go through most of the cards. I think we had one remaining card by the end of the game.

You definitely don't have actions to spare so you have to manipulate everything with care and consideration.

This is a game we will definitely show off on the Livestream at some point. I am very excited to play this one further. I really enjoy the puzzle it presents and it is even better that it is cooperative! I really enjoyed the first game and want to play the harder levels soon!

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I had to prepare Michael for Train-Theme Games night on Twitch (this sunday) so we played a game of Railroad Ink: Deep Blue Edition.

It had been a long time since I played this last time. It did show up on BGA, but I haven't played it on there yet.

Since he was new to the game and concepts, we just played the basic game without the use of the extra blue dice.

It was cool to get this game back to the table. The game always seems to end quicker than I want it to, but I can still get a decent score. I just want the FULL board of huge connections. It just never works out that way.

Michael did end up beating me 48 to my 42. I just couldn't get the right rails in the final second to make it work the way I wanted to. Hey, at least this game I managed to remember to use the bonuses. I recall in past games I forget to use the bonuses.

Cool game, I look forward to showing it off on the Livestream on Sunday.


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From the unplayed collection Michael and I tried out Kastles: Medieval Mayhem. New to me!

Kastles is a small box card game where players are beating up on each other to take down their opponents' castle walls. Whoever can do that first will win the game.

There are a bunch of cards that will trigger off of other cards. You know how it goes. Very much take-that and luck of the draw.

I was doing pretty well with regards to attacking Michael, but he always seemed to have a block and counter-attack. Not only that, but he managed to pull the dragon out for the ultimate win at the end.

The whole game seemed to work fine, it just didn't my type of game. The artwork is cute and it is was fast enough. I can see this being good for some people, but it just wasn't great for me.


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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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The Almanac showed the way through the Islands in the Mist towards Sweetlandia where there was a Dice Throne

Steph Hodge
United States
Tennessee
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Hia Everyone!

Tonight at 5pm CDT join us as we play awesome games! over on: https://Twitch.tv/boardgamersteph!

Tonight we will be checking out
Gorinto
Distilled
Enchanted Plumes


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I haven't gotten the chance to check out Almanac: The Dragon Road, but I recall hosting the interview on the BGG stream last summer and really wanting to play it. When I contacted Kolossal about a possible reviewer copy of the game, they were interested in having me check out the new Almanac: The Crystal Peaks. New to me!

Almanac Crystal Peaks is a sequel to Dragon Road. It is not an expansion as it can be played as a standalone game. I am told that the games will be able to be combined if you have a bridge of some sort to make it happen, so I will learn more about that when the time comes.

For now, I will get to talk about this upcoming game that is set to hit Kickstarter the first week in August. We will be sure to show it off on the Livestream that week as well.

The Almanac series is pretty cool because it has an innovative book mechanic that will help guide your game.

Almanac is played over a series of 6 rounds, and each round is a new page in the book. It is almost a collection of minigames. You will be collecting resources and fulfilling contracts and expanding your carts and selling resources all for the money, which is points at the end of the game.

During the early part of the game, you will want to gain extra carts to hold more goods and possibly get more workers to take more actions in each round. Gathering a bunch of resources is great since you can sell off one type of resource for points at the right spaces. As the game moves on the amount you can sell your resources for will increase.

After the worker-placement step is done on each page, the players will have a blind bidding phase to bid on the guide position. If you are the guide you will choose the next page to turn to for the next round. Then there will be an encounter. The guide will encounter the card and resolve it. Sometimes the other players will have to also encounter it as well. It isn't always bad though.

Since we were playing the prototype, we were missing some of the components like meeples and dice. What you see in my photos aren't final components at all, so just keep that in mind. Everything is subject to change during the Kickstarter and further development.

The game is actually fairly straightforward so it was easy to get into and start playing. We didn't really know what would be a good strategy, but I figured trying to get more meeples is a good way to start. I tried collecting some resources that would allow me to pick up a cart.

It wasn't until the second round that I was able to get that extra cart though.

Since each page of the book has a new set of rules to follow and obey, you have to go take what you can get when you can get it. I was working on fulfilling contracts too. If you can get those into play earlier, then you can start claiming the rewards from them. They will also give you a bunch of points at the end of the game too.

I was feeling pretty good, but then all of a sudden Michael started turning in tons of resources for so many points. I didn't know if the contracts I had were enough to cover the number of points he was collecting from selling resources.

We encountered some weird rules with a few of the pages which I reported back to Kolossal to clarify going forward. So we played a few things incorrectly, as expected with prototypes. I still wasn't sure what would actually happen in the end. It felt like we each had a lot of points, but it was impossible to know who would win.

Turns out I was much further back than I anticipated. Even with the bonus of 10 points for having the most empty containers in the end. I was still only at 248. Michael was way far ahead with 307.

Now that I see how the game is played out, I will have a better idea on what I want to do going forward. Yeah, the pages will change up. We only say 6/19 pages so there is still much to explore.

I have to say I was impressed with this one. The quality of the book and the exciting new pages to discover each turn. It is all just fun. Easy to learn and play too. This is a cool series of games and I very much look forward to checking out Dragon Road.

We will stream this game on Aug 3 after the KS has started. We hope you can join us and check out the gameplay!

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During the VS challenge on my Twitch channel, I put up Stardew Valley: The Board Game VS Dice Throne: Season One ReRolled. The channel voted that we play Dice Throne! New to me!

We will play Stardew sometime in the near future, but since the channel voted on Dice Throne we had to make sure we learned it in time for the stream. Dfube and Colourfly ALWAYS play it on their twitch channel and were the ones who recommended this game in the first place. So I ended up getting it because of them. "ONE OF US" They would chant all the time once I said I got a copy.

Dice Throne is an OBVIOUSLY a dice game. This dice game is an all-out battle to defeat the other players. This is probably a game that shines with 2 players though.

In this Season One Rerolled box, you will find 8 characters each with their own tray of cards and dice and tokens. Since each character is totally different from one another, there can be a steep learning curve.

The game is nicely laid out on a player aid, but the terms and system can be tricky to get used to. On your turn, you will get the chance to play cards before rolling dice. Then you will roll dice looking for Yahtzee combos to activate on your player board. Since each character is different, you might get to deal damage of some sort, or health up. there are tons of special tokens and abilities that can trigger. It is all about how you want to work your abilities and if you want to push your luck when rolling dice to try for a better combo.

If you do deal damage then the other player might be able to defend with their defense roll. Finally, to end your turn, you can play any number of cards if you have the combat points to spend.

So you keep going back and forth taking actions until one player has zero life and the other player will win.

In our first game, we decided to try easier characters so I was the Moon Elf and Michael chose the Barbarian. Both of these characters were pretty easy to pick up and play. We had to figure out all of the terminologies and that was enough when learning.

With the Moon Elf, there is a lot of evading and sticking status tokens on the other player. I was doing all sorts of tricks to make that happen. Michael was losing extra rolls and I was getting stupid lucky rolls with my evade rolls. When he was able to deal damage to me, it was A LOT of damage. I was down to 1 life and I thought for sure my days were numbered. I somehow managed to attack for just enough to kill him off before I died.

Yes, I managed to win that game! It was a shock to me as well. It is just how the cards worked out and my evade rolls. It was a cool match though since we both managed to get our Ultimate abilities without the use of cards to help make it happen. Pretty cool match.

When we played on the Livestream the other day it was less cool. We played with very challenging characters and it made for a rough game. I didn't know what I was doing with the Thief. I didn't understand a lot of the abilities or what I was even doing. Michael was having terrible luck with his dice and ended up busting a lot of the time.

It definitely made for a less than exciting stream. We will have to check out the Season Two characters and get that on the stream sometime soon since we want to showcase the game in a great light vs and okay light.

Right now, Michael and I are on the fence with this game. We had a great game and a not-so-great game. I think we just need to play a few more times and really get into the game a bit more. Try out some other characters and see how it goes from there. Definitely a game I am happy to play again and finally check out. Amazing production and fun times.

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Ever since BGG Con 2019, I have been looking to play Islands in the Mist! New to me!

I was SUPER excited to find out Stronghold was bringing the game to the US and that I finally got the chance to play it.

Just looking at this beautiful game, I knew this would be one that I would enjoy. Tile placement and hot air balloons! It actually reminded me a bit of Helios since you are placing land terrains down.

The game is pretty easy to grasp. Each turn, the player who is on the highest valued space with their balloon will be going first. The one on the lowest space will get to roll and control the dice. The one rolling the dice will take both dice and toss them. Then they have the chance to reroll both of the dice one at a time if they want. The dice will dictate which way the hot air balloon will fly for the turn. The other die will either have a special ability for the balloon or generate energy or a tile for all players.

Once the dice are set, the first player will move their balloon in the direction the wind is blowing. They will get the first pick of tiles from the clouds in the center of the table. Those tiles will get place immediately adjacent to where the balloon is, or they can be held for later, or they can be trashed and converted to energy.

Energy is useful since you can spend it to advance further along with the wind, or used to come to a halt and change directions. If nothing else, you will score points at the end of the game if you have energy left over.

You are trying to place tiles on the board to form big groups of the 6 types of terrain. There are a bunch of ways to score, and reasons to cover spaces on your board. The bigger the region is generally a good thing.

The game will end once someone has connected all 6 of the borders to the central site. This doesn't mean that each terrain must meet at the center, but if there is a connection of any terrain type to the center from each side, it will count.

There are monuments and cities that will score points as well, but they will disrupt paths to the center as they are not terrains.

The game has 3 modules to try out.

Michael and I have only played the 1st module a few times. I learned first the first game that controlling the dice is a super powerful thing. I could see the way Michael wanted to fly and try to go the opposite! Sure, you can't have full control on the dice, but even throwing a reroll is super powerful.

I didn't really have a plan going in, I just tried to gain majorities with statues and make the regions as big as possible.

We kept going in one direction on the map, so the game ended up being longer than expected. Not in the sense that the game was actually long, but that we covered a majority of the board before it ended. We scored pretty high because of it. I wasn't sure who would actually win since I knew I was getting a bunch of points for the statues. Michael absolutely dominated with cities though.

Michael won that game with 102 and I was at 89. I had my revenge when we played on the Livestream though.

I have to say I was really impressed with this game. I love the use of the balloon and how you place tiles. Everything happening is super interesting and I love drafting the tiles too. There is a lot of control if you have enough energy. Knowing when to toss a tile for energy is important and when to place a tile is important.

There are so many things to consider. I simply loved this game. Totally right up my alley and a game, I am happy to add to the collection. I can't wait to try out the other modules. I am very much looking forward to playing this again in the near future.


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Michael recently picked up some donut holes from Publix and it was like perfect timing to play some Sweetlandia. New to me!

In Sweetlandia, the player who has collected the most points will win the game. Points are actually donuts in this game, so it was a perfect treat to have actual donuts when playing.

The game is played over 3 rounds. Each round will have 5 turns. Each turn, every player will select a card from their hand to use for bidding on the cards in the display. The person who has the highest bid will get to select the card they want first and so on.

Each card will have a number of points, but might also have abilities that will trigger immediately.

Sweetlandia is a simple set collection/drafting game to gain as many points as possible. At the start of each round, all of the cards are shuffled together to form a new deck. You only get to save "everlasting" cards from round to round.

Michael and I played it pretty quickly. The game plays up to 6 players so it might be better with more since there is more competition for cards. As it was, we didn't seem much tension for the cards and often got cards we wanted.

I did manage to edge out the win that game. I had a few everlasting cards that were able to add to my score each round and that really helped. I wasn't sure that I could pull out the win because the final round was just soooo bad. It was equally as bad for Michael though as we weren't able to fulfill any of the common or hidden contracts. we had to rely on the points from the cards.
Worked out for me with my winning score of 94 and Michael was just behind with 89.

This is a cute game with a fun theme. I have certainly played games like it in the past, but it is pretty cool. I like the simultaneous bidding and how everyone has their own unique deck of cards to bid with. Definitely not much depth, but it works. Will be playing it on the stream for sure. I am not sure how much replay value there is though.


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New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Wed Jul 21, 2021 12:00 pm
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In the Lost Cities there was a Castle Party filled with Juicy Fruits, but you have to take Mass Transit to get there :/

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Now on Kickstarter!!

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I was super excited to check out the new Juicy Fruits. New to me!

Honestly, I didn't know much about the game other than the fun theme with player boards and tiles. Little did I know the fruit bits are HUGE and amazing. They were the first thing that I noticed when I opened the box! They are so impressive and unnecessarily huge, it made my day! Some games just give off happy vibes, and this is one of them.

During the game, you will be moving your fruit basket token in a direct line on your board. The number of spaces it moves over is the number of tokens you can claim of that fruit. With fruit you just collected or any you have in your stash, you can deliver to boats on your island, or to the community market board. If you decide to do that you will score points for what you just delivered! If you are playing with the juice factory, you can also deliver to that before the end of your turn.

As you deliver to the boats you will remove the boats from your board which is open up locations. By opening locations on your board you will gain opportunities to make longer movements with the fruit baskets.

If you fulfill a boat then you can't fulfill a market tile. The market tiles have all sorts of abilities or ways to score additional points. The market tiles will also push the end of the game faster. Once a certain number of tiles from the market have been taken, then the game will end. It will depend on the number of players in the game.

In general, the game is pretty easy to get into and Michael and I could easily set up and get going. It was clear what I needed to do from the moment I figured out the mechanics of collecting fruits. I was off and running.

Michael was definitely off to a different strategy by using the juice factory a lot. He gained a bunch of points from that. I was highly focused on clearing my board and gaining all the high valued boats out of my way. Once I did that, I tried to pick up a few market tiles that gave a bunch of points, but gaining some of those tiles really blocks your board from the longer movements, so you have to plan those carefully.

I ended up winning with 104 and Michael had 95 so it was pretty close. I thought I was doing way better than he was, but he was doing different things and making points in other ways.

This is a super cool game, I am glad we got to check it out. I know a lot of people who will totally dig this one.

We even got to play it on the Livestream last night so that was great to play again!

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A new Lost Cities game showed up and I was itching to play Lost Cities: Roll & Write. New to me!

If you are familiar with the original LC card game or any variation on the game then you will figure out how to play the roll & write game pretty easily.

You will get the chance to start a column to double the value at the end, like in LC. If you start the column, you won't then be able to go back and double it later. There is no "majority" winner though. You can gain bonus points if you cross the 20 point mark first though.

The 6 dice are rolled and the active player will select a colored die and a numbered die. The number they select will be entered into the column and it must be equal to or higher than the previous number. Only if it is first can you take the 0 as a 0 and mark the column to be doubled. Once a number has been placed in a column the 0 is then effectively a 10.

There are bonuses to collect from the different columns. You can excel forward with the up arrow. That allows you to add to any column one more number. There are also pots to collect. You will cross off a pot on the right-hand side. Those pots will score you a bunch of points if you can collect them all and if you cross the 20 point line before other players for even more bonuses.

If you choose to not take a die combo you cross off the far right column. If you mark your last empty space in that column you are out for the remainder of the game.

The game ends when all players have filled that column, or if all of the 20 bonuses have been claimed.

It is fairly simple and easy to play. Michael and I have played twice now since we did show it on the stream the other day.

You can try to push your luck and take a combo of dice that might not leave a lot of leeway for further advancements unless higher numbers are rolled. Michael did that a bunch in the game we played on stream and he said he should have taken more passes earlier since he was shut out of too many opportunities later in the game for having all higher values in his columns.

So, that is something to think about.

Our scores were super high. I anticipate with more players that the scores will decrease significantly since everyone will be going for different things and the columns might finish faster.

I think it is pretty cool. The game will feel pretty similar from play to play though. Even with 2 plays under my belt, I am not running to play it again. I feel like I have seen what the game has to offer, but I enjoyed the experience well enough. I will definitely play again. I liked it.

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Another small boxed game I was looking to try was Castle Party. New to me!

Castle Party is a flip&write game with the most adorable artwork. Monsters are having a party and each group wants to hand together at the party. Your goal is to get big groups of the different monsters with ideally their kings a part of the group as well for extra bonus points.

Each turn the active player will draw the top card from the clock deck and it will have a shape on it. Starting with the active player they will add a monster card to the table to start the formation of the shape. The next player must add to the shape and so forth until the shape has been made. Each player will have to add the shape to their board with the monsters in the orientation that they see the shape exactly.

Since players are viewing the shape differently, each player will have a different objective and want to add monsters to the shape according to how it will work on their board.

There are also clock cards that will appear during the game and on the 3rd clock card, that will be the end of the game.

In our game, Michael was pulling all of the single 1x1 shapes and it was helpful, but I really needed a specific few monsters to get everything in line.

Early in the game, I made a huge line across the board and I didn't realize how limiting that would be later in the game.

By the end of the game, I had to throw monsters in the water since I didn't have enough room in the house. Ideally, you don't want to throw monsters in the water even though the artwork suggests that all the water animals are having a good time. Guests in the water will be negative points. If they are just outside on the bridge they aren't worth any points at all, they were just waiting to get in.

Pretty interesting game. Definitely takes a playthrough to really see how the board will shake out at the end. Make sure to save room for the unicorns. laugh ninja AND plan for the Pumpkin-head speech for a bunch of bonus points.

I definitely enjoyed my time playing this one. Michael liked it less so. I think he felt a bit trapped on how he was playing cards and the placement rules. There are very restricted rules on the special actions to take and how people can select them.

I think there are asymmetric boards to try out, maybe I will enjoy that even a bit more. That is something I would definitely like to try. This could be another great game for the month of Halloween. Not sure I will get Michael to play it very often, but I think it is a keeper.


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I am always up for some cooperative games and Mass Transit is a small coop game that fits the bill. New to me!

In Mass Transit, players are working together to get all of the commuters home from work. If all 6 meeples make it home, then players will win. If the deck of cards runs out or a player can't play 2 cards on their turn, then they will lose.

This is definitely a filler game since it is super fast to play and easy to get into.

Michael and I have played a few times and we haven't managed to win yet! There can definitely be some luck to the draw, like if you don't get any walk cards for the whole beginning of the game. You will need walk cards in order to get to the different stations to catch the transportation.

But, there is also the timing of the cards you play. If you simply play all of your cards each time, you might be rushing the end too fast. Sometimes you just have to pace how the cards are played to make sure that the other players can play their cards.

We didn't do great the first time, and I really thought we would win the game we played on the live stream. We were SO CLOSE!!! Check out the video.

Really easy game, perhaps without many interesting choices to make. I didn't mind playing it and would like to play again to try and win, but it is a bit plain. There are other cooperative games that have better choices to make.


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New 10v10




In case you missed it here is Steph's Hodgepodge of Gaming from Friday!





New to the Collection:
Almanac Crystal Peaks (proto)
Stronghold Undead
Crack the code
Distilled
Cat Lady Kittens
City BUilder Ancient World
Sheepy Time
Ecos New Horizon





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 often review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Mon Jul 19, 2021 12:00 pm
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There was a Battle of the Merchants of Magick becasue of the Linkage in Menara

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!

My 2021 Awesome Gaming Calendar is Now only $10!


It's Friday!! Every Friday you can join me on my Twitch Channel for Steph's Hodgepodge of Gaming. Join me at 2pm Central!



Join us SUNDAY at 5pm CST for more fun!!


Some Games from Wednesday!

Canvas


Skull King


Herbaceous


Greece Lightning


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When James and Susan came over we played a few games including Merchants of Magick: A Set a Watch Tale.

I am so glad I thought to play this one because I always have so much fun playing.

Susan is always skeptical when there are dice involved because the dice hate her. She doesn't lie though, every time she has to roll dice she rolls the worst possible combo of dice! In this game, it is even worse since dice are used by all players.

James was all about DRAGONS this game. He wanted to fulfill his sponsored hero, so he needed to get Dragon items. That made me want to get Dragon items as well since I was passing cards towards James and wanted to put a stop to him collecting the items.

I did manage to get a lot of weapons so I made sure to get that bonus too.

James and I actually TIED with 76 but I won on the tie-breaker for having completed more orders! Woo! Susan was just behind us with 73 so it was a close game all around!

Oh man, I had so much fun playing I hope they decide to make an expansion for this game!


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James picked out one of the games since he remembered really enjoying it before, so we played Menara.

I always enjoy playing this game even though I am terrified to play it! I don't want to be the one responsible for the tragic and inevitable crash that will happen and end the game with us losing.

Thankfully, I am rarely the one to make us lose, even though I have never won the game!

We actually made the tower 9 levels tall this time!! It was super high, but James had to get all fancy and try to place a level off to the side. Yep! James made a level 3 part of the tower fall down. We were still within the limits of a "win" so according to the rules we won, but really, it felt like a loss to me. Let's just say #MistakesWereNotMadeByMe.

Always fun playing this game even if it is super stressful! Love it so much!

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Dan was around so we played a few 2-player games on BGA. We ended up learning Battle of LITS. New to me!

This a 2-player abstract polyomino game. You are looking to protect your shape and cover your opponents' shape. Whoever has more of their shape showing at the end of the game will win!

It was pretty easy to play, the more complicated thing is to remember you can't place a full 4x4 with pieces, there always has to be one empty square. Since we were playing on BGA it won't let you cheat anyway, so that was fine. Could be easy to forget though.

I managed to win that one, I don't really know what I did, but I was effective in blocking enough of my spaces so Dan couldn't snag the victory.

It was a nice game and I could easily play it again. I am not sure there is anything special about it, but it was worth trying for sure.

From gallery of punkin312


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Dan and I also got around to trying Linkage. New to me!

In Linkage, one player is trying to create 12 or more groups of colors and the other player is trying to have less.

Each turn, the active player will place one of their colored tiles anywhere on the board, but it can not be played adjacent to the tile that was just previously placed the turn before.

I figured it would be super easy playing as the player who needed different groups, and yeah I could easily make new groups, but Dan was very effective in connecting the bigger groups.

In the end, I edged out the victory by getting 12 groups! Woo!

This was okay, I have played games similar to this. I could see playing again, but there is nothing too exciting about it.

From gallery of punkin312


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New to the Collection:
Fleet Dicey Waters Exp
sweetlandia
shards of infinity
Ascension
Merv
Ascension Eternal
shards of infinity Into the Horizon
Andor Family Fantasy Game
Exit Sacred Temple






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 Jul 16, 2021 12:00 pm
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Steph's Awesome Gaming Calendar 2022

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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Hey Everyone!

This is my 8th Year making an Awesome Gaming Calendar!
http://kck.st/3B66hRu

I am so happy with the result here are some of the images

From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312



Every game I have linked to this blog post has at least one image included somewhere in the calendar



7 Wonders Duel
Aqualin
Baron Voodoo
Beez
Beyond the Sun
Boomerang: USA
Carnegie
Cartographers
Cascadia
The Castles of Tuscany
Cloud City
Darwin's Journey
Dream Runners
Equinox
Escape the Room: The Cursed Dollhouse
Firefly Dance
Fossilis
Galaxy Trucker
The Game: Quick & Easy
Gods Love Dinosaurs
Gnoming A Round
The Grand Carnival
Hadrian's Wall
Hallertau
Hide 'N Cheek
Holi: Festival of Colors
Honey Buzz
Islebound
Jekyll vs. Hyde
Kodama Forest
Let's Make a Bus Route
Lost Ruins of Arnak
The Magnificent: SNØ
Mandala Stones
Mariposas
Meeple Land
Merchants of Magick: A Set a Watch Tale
Museum
My City
Mystery Rummy: Jekyll & Hyde
Nanga Parbat
New York Zoo
Nidavellir
Not Alone
Ohanami
Paleo
Pan Am
Pandemic Legacy: Season 0
Paris
Path of Light and Shadow
Pingyao: First Chinese Banks
Point Salad
Raiders of Scythia
The Red Cathedral
Red Rising
Renature
Rococo: Deluxe Edition
Sagani
Santorini: New York
Seven Bridges
Sleeping Gods
Tales of Evil
Tawantinsuyu: The Inca Empire
Ticket to Ride: New York
Tiny Epic Dinosaurs
Tiny Epic Pirates
Tokaido
Trekking the World
Truffle Shuffle
Unfair
Unmatched: Cobble & Fog
Village Green
Viscounts of the West Kingdom
Whistle Mountain
Why You Lying!
Winter Queen


Thanks for checking it out and the support! heart

-Steph



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Thu Jul 15, 2021 8:05 pm
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The Gravity Superstar named Carnegie searched Nidavellir to Rob a Bank

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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Hia Everyone!

Tonight at 5pm CDT join us as we play awesome games! over on: https://Twitch.tv/boardgamersteph!

From Sunday!

Karuba


Underwater Cities: New Discoveries


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When Buck was over we convinced him to play ONE final game, and that was the fabulous Nidavellir.

I can't seem to get enough of this game. I am so highly addicted to playing it on BGA at this point, and any chance I can play and teach it in person I will take it.

It is so funny since there are certain conventions for this game, as I have been playing among the best of the best on BGA. When you play with people who are learning or less familiar, everything I know is basically thrown out the window.

I still always happen to go for the green strategy. I suppose it is just my favorite.

I did very well this game, but Michael surpassed me . It was a sad day! Michael won with 314! I was at 309. I think anything over 300 is a very good score.

GAWD I LOVE THIS GAME! I just keep playing and playing. This is one I would never turn down a play of.

From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


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Also, on BGA there has been development on Carnegie!!! YAYAYAYAYA

Carnegie was my favorite game that I learned last year and it continues to shine and be awesome. Now with more departments and features I just want to keep playing it! We have played a few games online recently and I just wanted to comment on it a bit.

The first really cool change is the tabs! The tabs are now double-sided! You can choose how you play before the game starts. The final space on the tabs will allow you to score your donations extra times if you qualify to do so. That is so awesome. There was one game I used all the new tabs and pulled ALLLLL the tabs out fully. It was quite an accomplishment and I scored a ton of points from the donations, it was about all I did. It also means that the train donation isn't the most obvious choice going into the game.

So, each of the 16 departments will have a backside with a different effect. I would highly suggest playing so you aren't going to use ALL Side B tiles. I did that once, and it was just so restricting. A lot of the tiles will be for end-of-the-game scoring, which is AWESOME, but having some of the A-sides to help you get there, is much better. There are a lot of conversion types of tiles, and tiles that will evaluate your position on the board and gain you resources from that.

So many cool departments.

Derek won one of our games, and Shrey won another. We are all still trying to figure out the best path to take with the new tiles.

It just continues to impress me and is a game I simply LOVE. If you haven't had the chance to play this one yet, I would highly recommend it.

We ended up playing on BGA during Sunday's Livestream. I got DEMOLISHED! Too many actions I could not play since I didn't have any money. Nothing fell into place the way I envisioned, so let's just say... #mistakesweremade video below!

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Michael and I decided to try out How to Rob a Bank. New to me!

How to Rob a Bank is a 1 vs many where one player is playing as the cops, and the other players are playing as the robbers.

When playing with 2 players, the robber player has to play as a few robber hands.

Over 3 rounds the robbers are trying to capture the loot and the cops are trying to stop them.

I found it pretty easy to put a stop to the robbers. We were also playing really late at night so my memory might have been better than Michael's. There is definitely a memory aspect to this game and the cards that are played and in what order. There is a slight programming mechanic at play here. So, you just have to hope for the best. But some of the cards have multiple actions to choose from when it comes up so there is a chance to change your mind.

As the cops, I found it pretty easy to evade when I needed to or tackle when I needed to.

In the end, I totally won the game, I don't think Michael even really had a chance. He did manage to get a few bags of loot, but he needed more to win the game.

This game was fine, but just didn't really work for me. I can see why people would enjoy it. I would prefer to play Burgle Bros instead. There were parts of this game that just didn't feel fun. So I don't need to play it again.

From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


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Dan and Shrey were up for a few games, so we checked BGA and found one to learn called Gravity Superstar. New to me!

Right off the bat, Gravity Superstar reminded me of Ricochet Robots. The board is set up in a similar way, and you are moving sort of like you would in that game. The games are objectively much different though.

In Gravity Superstar, you are trying to collect stars in sets to score at the end of the game. You will use cards from your hand to move on the board. It depends on the way you are facing to determine how you gravitate to your next position.

Pretty simple game so we could easily jump in and play. I didn't really have a strategy going in, so I was just shooting for the same colors. It was working pretty well until it wasn't.

Yeah, Dan won that with 24. boo. I was at 18 and Shrey had 17. I think we can all safely not play this one again. It was fine, but there are just better games. I suppose it was one of the better games we have played on BGA, so there is that!

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New to the Collection:
Island in the Mist
Lost Cities Roll & Write





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.
Thank you.
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Wed Jul 14, 2021 12:00 pm
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The Loony Goonies Never Say Die to a Disney Villainous when on an Ares Expedition

Steph Hodge
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From gallery of punkin312



Hia Everyone!


Join me Wednesday at 5 pm CST for more fun games! https://Twitch.tv/boardgamersteph!


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When Buck was free we got together for a game day! We got to check out several games and even learn one from the large unplayed stack! Since Buck has all the feels for the movie The Goonies, I felt it was time to play The Goonies: Never Say Die. New to me!

To prepare for the game, I actually watched the movie for the first time EVER. I caused some friction on BGG when I actually claimed to not enjoy the movie very much. To be fair, the movie is SO DATED and super cheesy. I didn't grow up with the movie, so I don't have all the feels as Buck did. That is one reason why I wanted to play with Buck since playing the game with someone who loves the film, is clearly going to be a better experience.

The game is a cooperative adventure, but one player (Michael) needs to be the GM. Michael had to act as the negative forces and control all the monsters and paths in our way. The game has 9 adventures to work through.

The Goonies will start without really knowing the destination or the objective of the game. That will be revealed as they advance into the various rooms searching for clues. The GM will be in charge of knowing it all and how to progress the game.

I don't want to reveal too much about the game. I will say that Buck and I won the first adventure. I think Michael did a great job hindering our experience and trying to make us lose, but Mikey is a pretty strong character, and Buck was playing as Data so had a bunch of cool toys to help us along the way.

This game is a great intro to the dungeon crawl type of games and is very kid friendly. I have to hand it to Funko they are really providing a thematic experience with their recent releases. This is a pretty cool game and the 3 of us will definitely continue the adventure. It was great since Buck went home and re-watched the movie and texted us and said "ALL THE FEELSSSSSSSSSS" he was loving it. I do think this will be a one-and-done game once we play through the scenarios. We know what will happen and it basically will ruin a second playthrough. I am not sure I would be interested in re-playing scenario 1. But, I do think it is worth checking out.

From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


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When Buck showed up he actually brought along his game of Disney Villainous to play. He is usually not one to request specific games to play, so Michael and said sure.

Buck said he was normally playing this as a solo game multi-handed. He was very interested in playing one of the characters that he could not play solo though.

So we played! I tried my hand at playing Jafar! He has soooo many steps to win the game. He needs to get the lamp and the genie and then control the genie! Gah, I wasn't even sure I could make it work at all. Cards were coming up in my favor though! I managed to get a pretty good handle on what I was trying to do and I was feeling pretty confident that I might actually win the game.

I got the genie under my control and was only a FEW steps away from winning when Buck managed to pull his win out of his hat. I duno where it came from. I also figured he would win the game since he had been playing it on the regular. Michael and I just play every so often.

It was fun to play again, but still feels kinda long with 3+ players. I don't mind it though and I certainly like to see people happy when playing a game, so it worked for me. Glad to get it back to the table. Love me some Aladdin too.

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From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


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I was itching to play another game of Terraforming Mars: Ares Expedition again.

Buck was all about it! He loves Terraforming Mars, so was definitely interested in checking out the new Ares Expedition.

In this game I was having a very hard time finding the synergies I was looking for. I didn't really gain many blue cards to get cool actions. I was all flipping the lakes over. I seemed to have an easy go of that. Once that was completed, I was a bit lost.

I was actually doing pretty well, but the cards I was collecting didn't really have points so I was relying on my in-game points to carry me to the end. It didn't work, of course.

Michael totally swept it at the end with the card points. He won with 57 and I was at 47 so a full 10 points behind. I just didn't have those card points! Buck was at 31.

Buck said he liked it okay, but not as much as TM. He really loves building the cities and getting awards. I get that, but I also don't need that. Ares is much better IMO! So glad to get it played again!


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312



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Buck pointed out a game he wanted to learn called Loony Quest.

I am always happy to play Loony Quest!! Drawing games are so much fun!! This is also a spatial game since you are trying to create lines from point A to point B. All around, awesome.

This time we were playing Level 2 and I was just not on my A-Game. I was fumbling all over the place. I duno what was up, I am usually much better at this game.

Even the final boss I managed to mess up completely! Ugh, I totally lost it. It was a sad day, but we still got to play some Loony Quest so it was happy in the end.

I still need to play the super hard levels and expansion materials. I have it all, I just never played it.

From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


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In case you missed it here is Steph's Hodgepodge of Gaming from Friday!





New to the Collection:
Masstransit
Enchanted Plumes
Allegory





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 often review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
Thank you.
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Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:00 pm
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Completion of Dan's Visit! ALLLL THE REST

Steph Hodge
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From gallery of punkin312



Hia Everyone!

My 2021 Awesome Gaming Calendar is Now only $10!


It's Friday!! Every Friday you can join me on my Twitch Channel for Steph's Hodgepodge of Gaming. Join me at 2pm Central!



Join us SUNDAY at 5pm CST for more fun!!


Some games from Wednesday!

Suburbia


Bullet♥︎


NMBR 9


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This blog post contains so many games that I just can't write up full reviews for everything! NO TIME!!!! But I will at least touch on how it went and what I think about the game.


I FINALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLY got to play my new edition of 7 Wonders!! We played a few games of 7 Wonders (Second Edition). I am not counting this as a New to me game since it really is exactly the same as the first edition with slight changes.

Both Dan and Michael enjoy this game best at 3 players, but for me it definitely loses its spark with 3. I find so much more joy in seeing a lot more cards and with 5+ players you even get MORE new cards introduced. So with 3 players it really loses something for me.

Both Dan and Michael enjoy it more since you are interacting with everyone at the table.

Anyways, we played so I could grab some pics, then we played on the live stream to show it off. I managed to win both of the games we played. Maybe because I have played hundreds of games but also know how to navigate a 3 player game well enough since it was the recent BGA Arena Mode setup.

I am just happy to get 7 Wonders played. This is a Top 5 game for me and I will ALWAYS play it. I love it so much. Very cool there is a new edition, I think I will end up keeping both editions because I am crazy.

From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312


From gallery of punkin312




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A lot of the games I mention in this blog are off of the unplayed shelf that doesn't really have a high priority, but still games I wanted to play.

One I was very much anticipating on playing was Canvas. New to me!

Easily one of the most beautiful games in a while. I love the idea of buildings artwork with clear see-through cards to form patterns.

I don't mind an easy/light game, I actually love a lot of games that would fall into this category.

Canvas pulls people in with its beauty. Our 3 player game was fine. The gameplay definitely doesn't hold up to being as awesome as the artwork.

During the game, you are drafting cards to form various sets and patterns with the colors at the bottom. If you actually strip away all the artwork and use color blocks I am sure the majority of the people playing this game wouldn't like the game anymore. It is basic.

There are goals you are trying to complete over and over for the 3 paintings you do. Everyone in turn will be fighting for the same cards to score those patterns.

Honestly, I think the game would be better if there were hidden goals and not common goals, then people wouldn't be looking for the same things.

There is a standard drafting game where you have to buck up the cards you pass over to get to the card you want. Eventually, you will have to craft your painting with the best pattern possible.

I heard there is a new expansion coming out soon, and maybe that will help this game a bit, but I certainly have my doubts. It honestly needs some development to make it more interesting for me.

Ultimately, I am saddened to say I don't think this game is a keeper, I will play again, and probably on the stream at some point, but after that I am not sure there are legs for this. Maybe I can craft my own game using the beautiful components. It is top notch production for a mediocre gameplay.

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Dan wanted to finally learn Fields of Arle and I was ALL ABOUT IT!

Love Arle so much and I definitely don't get to play it enough. It is one of those games that has a special place in my heart and I will always love it.

I recently played a few games of Arle on the Livestream as a solo game, so I was ready to teach Dan.

We didn't play with any of the expansion or anything.

I told Dan to shoot for getting over 100 points. Most people won't score over 100 on the first play, but sure enough, Dan was able to do just that. He managed to get 104 because he decided to listen to me for once! Well, he took my advice in getting a cart in the first round and using it each season to the best of his ability. He also got a 15 point building which I said to aim for.

I managed to win with 118, and even I don't take my advice very often since I try a bunch of different strategies. But, I did get a few carts and a bunch of buildings. I sort of left the animals up to chance and didn't focus on them at all.

Great game, I am so happy we got to play! Dan even said he liked this as one of Uwe Best! Woohooo!! So good! Maybe there is a chance he will play again with me some day. So much love for Arle!

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We checked out a game called Inquisitio. New to me!

This is a very weird card game with a gruesome theme. Basically, you are getting interrogated because you are suspected to be a witch. Will you be found guilty?

You are just trying to stay innocent, but you will eventually be tortured.

Okay, the game is rough. The artwork is terrible and the theme is terrible. It was hard to get past that. If you can, then you might enjoy the cardplay. At least the game is fast and we were able to breeze through the deck of cards and finish the game.

Since I declared myself guilty pretty early on I ended up super losing this game. I didn't quite understand how it all worked, so I was just trying things, and that was clearly the wrong path to take.

Michael won with -9 points and Dan had -11, and I was much worse.

Yah, I can safely say I don't ever want to play this game again. It is just not my cup of tea, but I am sure someone will enjoy it.

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Next up is a game that has been on my unplayed shelf for YEARS!!! It was about time I got to play Age of Assassins. New to me!

Age of Assassins is a super weird drafting game where you will end up with a front line and backline of cards. The backline will be revealed after all the cards have been drafted though. Then you go through each card rank and try and gain points. You might just die depending on what happens though.

It is really luck-dependent, but it is pretty hilarious. I think the biggest issue is that the game isn't in English so we had to keep referring to the card list and how they were scored. If I cared enough I would have paste-ups for the cards, but I am not sure it will get to that point.

By the end of the game, I was pretty familiar with the cards, so perhaps it is easier after several plays.

Since we were playing 3 players we needed the dummy player, and that was just a luck fest of cards, so automatically this game would be better with a 4th player.

Finally happy to play this, but I don't think it is a keeper. I did enjoy it though and will definitely play again.

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Long ago there was a Miniature Market order and I picked up Crossing to try. New to me!

Since you need 3 people to play, it was time to play it!

Crossing is a game all about collecting gems! Players will simultaneously point to a gem stack and if they are the only ones pointing at it then they will collect gems to their boat. They aren't safe once they are on the boat since you have to take a turn to protect and stash your gems otherwise players might snatch them from your boat.

It is definitely a light game, but it is fun to simply try and collect gems. One for the family since the rules are simple and silly.

I think I ended up winning because I had the most sets of gems. I was a hoarder...

It was good to try, but this will surely find a new home. I mean the bits are amazing, so it is worth checking it out just for that.

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Long ago I played Guildhall and remember enjoying it enough that I eventually picked up Guildhall Fantasy: Alliance so we played! New to me!

So my main concern with Guildhall is the length of the game. It was very long the first time and outstayed its welcome. I wasn't sure what to expect with Fantasy Alliance. Sure enough, it was a similar time and it was super long.

I have a feeling you will get faster at playing the game when you know all the cards really well, but the Fantasy Alliance cards have all sorts of weird actions and iconography. Eventually we were all able to get it down, but it is still a bit slow.

I liked it well enough, and Michael ended up liking it more than he though he would, so it was a success? Probably not a keeper, but I would play again. It is an interesting set collection game.

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I taught Dan how to play Showdown Tactics!

Man, I love this game!! It is so much fun trying to deduce and figure out the values your opponent has played.

I don't think Dan liked it as much as I do, but we played 3 matches and I won 2/3! So good!

This game is probably hard to find, but I think it is just so clever. I hope it becomes readily available for people to pick up. There is something simplistic about it that is elegant and fun. So glad to play again.

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An Uwe Rosenberg game that I just haven't ever played until now was Nottingham. New to me!

There is probably a reason for that though. Nottingham is a pretty forgettable card game where you are trying to collect sets in your hand to fulfill orders.

The whole game is fairly basic which is why it is so forgettable. There is a slight take-that mechanic but wasn't too disruptive.

A week after we played this game I ask Michael what he thought about Nottingham and his response was, what was that? He honestly couldn't recall the game at all. That is basically this game. It exists but definitely not the best, and certainly not the best Uwe game.

Apparently, I even won the game with 99 points Dan had 91 and Michael 89, so it was a close game. I know I was trying to get the contract fulfilled and less of the sets which could be stopped. It seemed to work for me in the long run.

Again, the game was fine, but I don't think I have to play it again. ALWAYS happy to try an Uwe game, so definitely glad to get that off the unplayed shelf.

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More kids games!! We decided to try out the adorable Pyramidos. New to me!

I HAD to try this game, I mean it is soooo cute!! The setup is an amazing structure. Pyramidos is actually a dexterity game.

Trying to pop the balls through the river to the building site on the other side of the board.

I have to say we were TERRIBLE at this game until we finally got the hang of it a bit. It was a rough go at first though.

I am just pleased that I managed to even get one ball into the pyramid at all. I wasn't sure I would be able to but with some practice, I got the hang of it.

Dan was using some sort of lucky wizardry and hopped the borders and managed to get into the display. He even managed to get the final cap which will win the game.

I consider it a success! So glad we played it. Pretty sure I don't have to play it again though. Cute for a kids game. HABA is great at that for sure.

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Dan made me play a terrible game called Maze. New to me!

I guess this is a game. But each player is controlling their own maze and movement in their own maze. It it really a race to get to your finish line first.

Totally luck of the dice and really no interaction. It was pretty terrible. I don't think Dan enjoyed it much either.

Some games should just stay in the decade they were made in.

I am not even sure I am happy I tried it, but that's okay. One added to the list.

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I had forgotten that I had actually played Enigma before, but I had.

Regardless, I wanted to play it and I knew Dan wouldn't mind playing it. There are a lot of puzzle types of games and it is even better since you can choose which puzzle type you would like to do that each turn.

Ultimately you are building up a big network of tubes to score if you can enclose it.

Poor Dan was having a hard time completing the puzzles at the start, but he got a few towards the end. It wasn't nearly enough to catch me though! I was knocking it out of the park figuring out all the puzzles I was picking up.

I think I really enjoyed this game enough to keep on the shelf and I totally wasn't expecting that to be the case, but the puzzle are super challenging and fun.

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Dan said he hasn't played many Unlock games and this was my chance to play Unlock!: Escape Adventures – Squeek & Sausage since I hadn't! New to me!

Without spoilers, I just wanted to have a few comments. The game was pretty good. It was really good up until the final puzzle which wasn't great. So my overall feeling was that I still enjoy it more than the EXIT games, but was kind of a stretch at the end.

Glad I finally got it off my unplayed shelf since Michael had already played it before.

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Dan generally likes trying abstracts and I really wanted to play Ctrl. It is a super cool game and Michael just didn't really enjoy it much so I had to take the chance and play with Dan!

When you play with 2 players you have a hidden goal color that you will score at the end of the game, so you have to try and be sneaky about it.

I had figured out Dan's color by the end but he pegged me as the opposite color. I was trying to throw him off, but I think that also hindered my own color as well.

In the end, Dan won with 45 and I only had 39!! Nooooooo I lost! I tried my hardest though. Glad I got to play it. I was reminded how fiddly this game is. The cubes don't like to stay put and it makes it frustrating to play at times. It is unfortunate since the actual gameplay is super fun, but the fiddliness gets in the way and then it is really hard to find other players.


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I knew Dan would want to play Let's Make a Bus Route: The Dice Game since he was considering importing it.

This game I have played a bunch of recently so I was ready to teach no problem.

It went really well for me, so I am guessing experience will make you better with this game! It just makes me anxious to play the Mars board. It is not that killed Dan or anything he managed to get 94 and I was only at 97 so it was super close.

MOAR Let's Make a Bus Route! So glad to get this back to the table again. I might have to try some solo modes soon. Really cool.

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Dan showed interest in learning Red Rising since we had been playing so much Fantasy Realms!

I was definitely up for playing some more Red Rising since it is one of the best games I have learned this year.

Obviously, I love the card combos and powers. It is so funny since Michael rated it so highly last month before playing Fantasy Realms, but now says that he enjoys Fantasy Realms more. Dan also said the same thing after playing Red Rising this time too.

I am definitely of two minds. I can see always playing Fantasy Realms over this because it is so much faster, but the cards deck in Red Rising is HUGE and I don't even think I have seen all the cards yet. It is cool to have other motives and objectives as well as the hand of cards.

I really enjoy both games a whole lot!

Dan scored 261 and I was the winner with 284. I managed to win that one somehow. I think was the one who triggered the end, but Dan had the last turn since he was the yellow player. It was good! Very happy we got to play! #keeper

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Another game I have really enjoyed this year has been Dream Runners and I knew Dan would too!

This is a great game. I love trying to puzzle together all the pieces to make a 3x3 grid. I still manage to lose this game each time.

My problem is I try too hard to get everything to line up perfectly! I still like the challenge though. It was a success in the end since Dance enjoyed the game as well.

You can find this game pretty cheaply at this point, so I would highly recommend it. So much fun!!

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More 2 player games since we had some time, I taught Dan how to play Aqualin.

This is really a great little 2p game. I was the color player, and I honestly think it is probably easier to play as the color player. It is just harder to see the shapes, in my opinion.

We did end up tied with 16, so I think it was a shared victory. Simple abstract game that will work for anyone who plays 2 player games. Always happy to play it.

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Another off the unplayed shelf we tried was Noxford. New to me!

Honestly, everything I read about this game was negative so my bar wasn't high. I figured it would be a one-and-done situation. Unfortunately, the game didn't even reach the bar I had set for it. Even with the cool steampunk theme, it was just not a good game.

The game is an area control card placement game. I think the game is primarily ruined by the cop cards that are moving around the board and are canceling the adjacent people. You are also doing a lot of take-that plays by playing on top of other people's cards. Ehhhhh there are just so many things I don't enjoy happening in this game, but we played it.

it was clear that I needed to gain the best spot in the whole city. I used my best card to get in the best space on the board and the cop could not reach me once it was fully surrounded. It basically won me the game since most of the other board was canceled by cops.

Yah, I won with 14 and Dan had 9 and Michael was at 5. At least it was fast otherwise I am not sure we would have continued playing it! Hey now we know for reals.

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Dan didn't really know which games he wanted to play so I suggested we play Minigolf Designer since I knew he would enjoy it!

Little did I know that Dan has no idea what an actually Minigolf course looks like because if he did, he would have made a minigolf course!

His holes were all crazy walking all over the place to get to the next hole etc.

He was just playing to experience it because it was so freaking late at night. I think we played in like 30 minutes or something crazy fast. It was no surprise that I ended up winning.

I can't wait to play this game with more than 2 players to be able to see a bunch of tiles in the display.

This is such a cool game!! I love it, so I hope everyone gets to try it out at some point. Especially if you enjoy minigolf!

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I knew I wanted to play all the word games with Dan while he was around so we tried out Spell Smashers. New to me!

So, I really like checking out word games. This has an interesting concept where you are using words to fight against the monsters. After each battle, you will be able to use your coins and gain rewards or other bonuses to use in a future battle. If you get a wound then you get a bad card into your hand that isn't great.

The whole idea is really cool. Playing it is much like any other word game and the downtime is what kills the game. Trying to think of all the best words to use. I think it is just a bit too fiddly for my taste, but in general, I totally enjoyed the game.

I even ended up winning the game with 29 points to Dan's 24 points.

This is a game I would definitely play again. I don't think it is good enough to stay on my shelf though. It is a situational game like EVERY word game. So many people just don't enjoy word games and with all the downtime, it just doesn't work great for me. Super cool to try, and yeah, I would playa again.

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I had played Arbos Apfel before, so I was definitely interested in checking out Arbos. New to me!

SUPER SIMPLE dexterity game. Definitely too simple. Roll a die and place some branches and leaves on the tree. Really not much strategy here. The tree is on a ball base so it is rolling around, but it is just not very difficult to place things on it.

Dan ended up winning since he ran out of pieces first since he was lucky.

The game is just not very good, but I am always up for playing dex games. Definitely not a keeper.

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When I got the Cerebria: The Inside World kickstarter I ended up with Cerebria: The Card Game and I finally pulled it off the shelf to try. New to me!

I LOVE the artwork in Cerebria and it is a game I still own and will play on rare occasions. The artwork is just amazing, so it was only natural that I would want to play the card game eventually.

The card game isn't really highly praised, but I still wanted to play it.

There is a small game here, but it is definitely more frustrating than fun. There is no real balance for going last in turn order and there is a fair bit of luck depending on what flips up and at what time.

It was fast enough for us to play through, but we were all wanting it to end pretty quickly. It was clear this game was designed and added for the KS during the KS. Ugh, just not great.

Finally glad to play it, but not a game I would return to.

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Another game from the unplayed shelf we finally got to try out was Skyward. New to me!

This game is so beautiful and there is the really cool I split you choose mechanic!

The major issue with the game is that there is SO MUCH to know with each card and what people are doing that in order to split each stack as evenly as you can, you really have to evaluate all the cards and everyone's situation. IT IS TOO MUCH!

The whole game ends up being much too long and totally overstays its welcome when you are trying to play a fast card game. I wanted to love it, but really I just can't ever see playing this one again.

Dan said when there is an I split you choose mechanic the choices have to be easy to evaluate, and this was certainly not that.

Glad to finally play it, but not one I want to play again.

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Since we had time, we played one of my current favs called Ohanami.

Ohanami forever! I love this game so much. I will always choose to play this.

My problem is that I generally try to collect pink cards, and I generally can win because of it and all the risks I take. But this time the cards were just not falling into place and I totally threw a bunch of cards away, and that is not a winning strategy!

Michael won with 162, Dan had 161, and I was 156 so all in all it was fairly close!

I wanted to play again, I always do, but it was a no-go. Sad! I want more!

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Another kids game! This time we played Chicken Cha Cha Cha. New to me!

Oh Man, I thought this game was going to be a racing game. Okay, it was a racing game, but it is definitely more of a memory game! You have to reveal the matching picture from the center in order to move forward on the track. You can keep going if you correctly match the picture!

Yeah, kids will do much better at this than adults. laugh We were like 10 minutes in without moving very far at all. Eventually it was all coming clear and I was able to bounce bounce bounce right ahead of the other chickens and stole their tail feathers.

So, I somehow managed to win the game. But, while the pieces are AMAZING, the gameplay is just not for me. I am not really into memory games like this. Glad I tried it, obviously. so cute!

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Another small card game we got to test out was Mercatores. New to me!

I remember when Lincoln was talking about this game so much and he really enjoyed it so that is how it was on my radar.

The game is a pretty light set collection, but the choices you have to make in the second phase of the game are super interesting.

If you are looking for a new card game, this one was pretty interesting if only for the second part of the game.

Michael managed to win our game with 12 points and I had 9 and Dan had 8. So there is room for improvement.

The art isn't great so it is very forgettable in my opinion. While it is a nice game, I doubt it will see much play.


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Since we were short on time we had a chance to play ONE MORE with Dan before he flew home. We played a game of Tuki.

It had been a while since I last played this, but Dan knew he would enjoy it as he liked these 3D puzzle-type games.

It really only plays 3 people, and if you play with 4 then one person has to sit out, so that is less fun.

For a real-time puzzle game this is pretty great, and I am glad we broke it out. I am just sooooo bad at it. I definitely was last place in our game. I had to watch them duel it out for the winner's title, but Michael won in the end!

Cool game.

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New to the Collection:
Meadow
K2
Dice Throne Seasons 1 & 2






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Fri Jul 9, 2021 12:00 pm
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It was during Fairy Season on Friday the 13th and Alice was Out of this World when she found the Sacred Anansi Vault

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!

Tonight at 5pm CDT join us as we play awesome games! over on: https://Twitch.tv/boardgamersteph!



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MOAR GAMES WITH DAN!

I am not really into horror films, but I had one sitting on the shelf for a long time since it requires 3 players. Since Dan was here we checked out Friday the 13th: Horror at Camp Crystal Lake. New to me!

Based on my experience with this theme, I figured this would be a 1 vs many type of game, but I was super wrong. Friday the 13th is actually a push-your-luck game! You will want to gain the most points from the items you collect each round.

The game is super simple since on your turn you will either pull a token from the bag or return to camp. If you ever have 2 Jason tokens then you will be caught and bust for the round. So you can push your luck or use cards to help mitigate that if you have them to use.

We quickly jumped into this game and I was busted almost immediately. I had to take my chances going into round 2 since I was already so behind. Thankfully, I picked up a few good cards to help me out and collect the items and sets that would gain me a bunch of points.

Dan seemed to take my bad luck and just keep picking Jason tokens. After that first round, I was able to hold my ground and just keep a steady pace. This really worked out for me since I somehow won the game with 87. Michael was behind me with 87 and Dan had 46.

My first thought was this really didn't need to be a 3 player game, we could have played it as a 2p game and made it work. My second thought was some of the cards seemed way better than other cards so they really helped me out a bunch.

The whole game is super light and can work well for casual gamers who are just looking for a laugh. I didn't really get a horror feeling while playing this so the theme was weak in my opinion. But, that was fine by me since I don't like the theme anyway. Definitely happy I got to finally check it out and find out that I actually didn't mind playing it! Could be a good one to play during October!


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We played a new card game called Anansi. New to me- ish!

So this game is actually reimplementing Eternity which I have played before. They are both beautiful games: Eternity and Anansi. Anansi actually has shiny cards and so vibrant. You really need at least 3 people to play this game so it was great that Dan was here to play with us.

This is a small card game and would likely be even better with more players since you are playing tricks. The catch is that if it becomes your turn you have the chance to not play a card and take a face card. You will need a face card for each trick you end up taking in the game to get the most points possible, you will have an even amount of face cards and tricks.

If you are leading the trick you can't take a face card. It is all about managing the balance between the 2 things you are collecting.

We played through this game super fast. I was pretty good about collect the faces I needed with the tricks I collected. I think I was accurate on 2 of the 3 rounds and in the final round I missed it by one, so I didn't get the bonus but I still get points for the matches I did collect.

Whatever I did wasn't enough since Michael won with 21, Dan had 18 and I was at 17. It ended pretty close though! No one really sucked at this game so that was pretty good. I would definitely be interested in trying with more than 3 people to see how the dynamic for the face card changes. Nice game, I am glad I got to check it out again.

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Since Dan enjoys Alice in Wonderland and likes word games, it was only fitting to play the new Alice in Wordland. New to me!

In Alice in Wordland, you are trying to think on the spot different words that will fit into the given category. The catch is you can't use a word that has any of the letters that are on display in the middle of the table.

Each round you play as a specific Character with cool abilities that will help you during the round. The teapot is used as a timer, and the round is played in real-time. When it is your turn you have to think of a word that fits the category. Say "circus" and you can't use the letters "J, E, G" You will say something like "Acrobat" and hit the teapot. If you run out of time when you are thinking then you are out for the round. So you keep going around and around. The last one standing will gain a point.

As you can imagine, I am terrible at this game! I basically need all the help I can get so we had a 15-second timer, and I still managed to be first out each round. I do like a good challenge and it was great to have unique abilities to help me along the way.

Of course, Michael and Dan can think and come to answers much quicker than I can. I just can't focus, or worse, I focus on words that use the forbidden letters.

I still enjoy the challenge though. Michael ended up winning 2 rounds and Dan won one of the rounds. I was super last though.

Alice in Wordland is definitely a light party game and will work well for casual gamers and people who like real-time games. The pressure is on! Could make a really good late-night parry game since it will bring some laughs I am sure. I will play again if the opportunity rises.

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Next up we decided to play Fairy Season. New to me!

This is a card game I got to demo on the BGG live stream last summer and really wanted to check out. The artwork is beautiful and the gameplay seemed interesting too.

Players will have a hand of cards and try to shut out the other players by playing the highest card. Once a player plays a card that one more can play on top of, then they will claim the pot in the middle for their score pile. It is face up since there are greedy goblins that might come steal cards from your collection.

Fairy Season is very much a take-that game, and unfortunately not really as many choices as I first thought there would be. I am usually into climbing games, but with all the goblin action cards in play, it is really hard to have any sort of control.

The game plays out pretty quickly, so it didn't outstay its welcome but had it gone on much longer I would have suspected that Michael or Dan put the game to a stop. Since you only go through the deck one time, it wasn't bad.

I have to say I was a bit disappointed with the game, it was a let down, since I was expected to really enjoy it. In any case, I am definitely happy to finally get around to trying it. In the end it was just too much take-that and luck of the draw for my taste, but can see it working for the right group.

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We tried out Sacred Rites. New to me!

I didn't really know what type of game this was, and I thought it might be a storytelling game. Nope! I would actually directly compare this game to a game like Spyfall. Sacred Rites is played over several rounds and the rounds are faster than a game of Spyfall.

Each round the windows are mixed up and players will grab one of them. As they are facedown you don't know if you have a non-window shield. Then the special card with the word is passed around. It might be a word like "moon". Everyone will look at the card through their window shield, and if they don't have a window to view the card then they will just have to improv well enough to fool the other players at the table.

Everyone will have a special wooden tile that will be how they communicate for the round. It might be "clothing" or "drink". Each player will have a different word.

Once all players have "seen" the hidden word then the table is open to whoever would want to start. So with "moon" and "clothing" Michael stood up and showed his butt with the motion of pulling his pants down since he was "mooning" us. I knew the word to be "moon" and I knew exactly what he was referencing. Dan was clueless.

Everyone will have to give a clue about their "sacred rite" and it can be a word, sound, drawing, or really anything to convey something.

I am so bad at lying and trying to read the table as to what the hidden words might be if I didn't know. What is cool about the game is trying to guess the word and gain points if you CAN guess it! You will also gain points for guessing who the imposters might be.

This will definitely be more fun with a big group of people having a great time. I really enjoyed this one and I do think it is a Spyfall killer. This moves at a brisk pace and each round you will get a new window card so you will likely have to be an imposter.

really cool game and fun party game I would recommend it for sure.


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Another game I got to demo on the BGG Livestream last summer was Out Of This World and now I got to play it! New to me!

Out of this World is a cooperative game with a campaign of several levels to pass. You can play on a variety of difficulties to scale it for children or just really difficult if you are that good.

You are working together to collect the cards you need to fight off the monsters that show up and gather enough items to win the scenario. You have to do all of that before the timer tokens run out!

It is fairly simple to get into and start playing. Dan was hesitant because he isn't into coops so much. I also feel like this could be modified to have a 2 player variant, but, we waited to play with a minimum of 3 players.

We were just playing on normal mode and found it pretty easy. Maybe the cards just fell in our favor, but we ended up losing 1 or 2 timer tokens by the end. It felt super easy. We didn't have any issues. Maybe one round we ended with a monster, but that was it, we were able to take care of them, no problem.

So I think, moving forward, we will definitely boost the difficulty up a bit. You can easily add in more monsters and that will definitely make it more difficult.

The whole gameplay was pretty basic though. I can see it working better for families and kids because there isn't that much depth to the game. It is basic. I actually really dislike the artwork, I find it a bit offputting. But, I do love the 90s, so I was hoping for a bit more fun. So while I would continue the campaign is it was requested, I don't think I would ever request to continue it.

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Since it needed 3+ players we decided to play Vault Wars. New to me!

There is a new expansion that I have to try out soon, but I hadn't played the base game so figured I would start with that before jumping in with both feet using the expansion.

In Vault Wars you will be bidding on treasure chests with the coins you have. If you win another player's treasure card then you will pay them your money, if you win your own then you will toss the money out to the bank. What you win is dependent on the treasure chest card.

Before you bid, the owner of the treasure card will look at the treasure assigned to it and then might have to show some of them to the other players to help give a value. The owner must first make a bid and the other players can then overbid if they want, but the owner only gets one chance to place a bid.

The goal is to collect cards that will gain you a lot of points for different sets and hidden goals.

In general, the game is pretty simple. Once you get into the flow a bit, it comes together. There are people cards that will give a one-time bonus when used, but it might have been one too many mechanics for me. I sort of like my auction games on the simpler side of things, but I suppose gaining a person could be critical when facing a chest with a lot of things you really want so the people can give you more control over that.

I was having a hard time winning bids I wanted to win. My hidden goal was to have dwarves items or something and every time I would bid Michael would simply over-bid me, or I didn't seem to have enough. Maybe I wasn't pricing my treasure chests well enough and then I wouldn't get paid. I was more often than not pitching all my cards for coins each round since I was so poor.

Since nothing seemed to go my way this time, I super lost with 23 points. Michael did end up winning with 48 and Dan had 34 so I was super far behind.

I dunno what happened. I am usually much better at figuring out good values and grabbing decent things. I was soooo off this game though.

This is an auction game I think I need to play a few times, I had fun and will definitely want to check out the expansion to see what it adds. I worry about there being too many mechanics for me to really enjoy this one though. We will find out after the next playthrough!


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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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