The Tyranny of Small Decisions

It's a blog on a board-gaming site. Pretty safe bet it'll be about board games then...

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Rubbish

John Shepherd
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Ovington
Northumberland
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There's one particular board game theme/setting that always seems to produce a very distinctive kind of waste product:

From gallery of MrShep


But what is it?

(Answer later today...)

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Sat Apr 2, 2022 11:00 am
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Recovery Path

John Shepherd
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In an alternate timeline, I held a games day in the Shepherd residence this weekend — the first one for several months.

But, yeah, note the “alternate timeline” prefix on that sentence. Sadly, in this particular universe… those plans were scuppered by the dreaded covid. Mrs Shep — though feeling considerably better now — is still in isolation. So we remain a bit of a plague house at the moment. No visitors for us, this weekend, unfortunately.

And to be fair… I’m not sure that folks would particularly want to be in my company this weekend either. Although I’ve been symptom-free for well over a week now, on Friday night I started to get a really throaty cough again … which has persisted all weekend. In fact, if anything, it’s probably a worse cough than I had at any prior point in my covid journey! Which, of course, set me wondering … Is covid remission a thing? Can your symptoms all go away, and then suddenly return in a stronger and fiercer form?

Obviously, I consulted google … because google is a totally reliable and sensible place to go for all of your medical advice. And it would appear that although remissive covid is a thing — (as is the notorious “long covid” … though far less prevalent in fully-vaxxed people) — a far more common thing to experience is for your immune system to have a bit of a hair-trigger response during recovery. So maybe it’s that. Despite the coughing, I am currently coming up clean on lateral flow tests. And there’s probably still some kind of lingering, floating coronavirus presence here in the plague house. So perhaps this is just my all-new, turbo-charged immune system cleaning out the junk? Fingers crossed.

Anyway, despite the disease quota in the Shepherd residence remaining annoyingly high, we’ve had a fair bit of gaming going on in the last few days. And it hasn’t all been the gentle stuff that I was talking about a week ago either! …there’s been some reasonably brain-hurty things on the table this weekend:

Five Tribes

From gallery of MrShep


After Mrs Shep’s resounding victory a couple of weekends ago, a rematch was definitely on the cards. In which she completely thrashed me again. Oops. #goodTeacher. Turn order bidding — specifically, lining yourself up for two consecutive moves whenever you can — is definitely a far crunchier thing in the two player variant. There's an awful lot of analysis paralysis going on when we play this now.

Hadrian’s Wall

From gallery of MrShep


Only our third play. I’m really torn by this one. It is definitely the most solitaire multi-player-solitaire game that I own. To an extent where you don’t even take turns — players just beetle away at their own sheets for 10 minutes, and then sync up again at the end of each round to process the Pict invasion and see what resources everybody is going to get to play with on the next turn. There’s only the tiniest, tiniest bit of interactivity. And sure… you might take an interest when an opponent flips a card to see if their gladiator gets killed, or whether they get the push-your-luck trade good that they were so desperately hoping for… but theres very little shared experience here. I’ve never before had quite the same sensation of “people sitting at the same table and playing the same game, but at the same time very much not playing the same game” — as Hadrian’s Wall gives.

But despite all that… it’s still an oddly-compelling thing to play.

Very strange.

and… saving the best until last?...

Food Chain Magnate

From gallery of MrShep


Just the introductory game though. Got to break Mrs S in gently to this one, I suspect

I’ll be honest … I was surprised by just how playable the introductory version of FCM is (My own initiation to FCM … many years ago … was straight in at the deep end with all of the bells-and-whistles, as I was playing with somebody else’s copy). Admittedly the introductory version is over far too soon, and you barely brush up against the more devious aspects of the game … but it definitely piqued Mrs Shep’s interest. So much so, that she fancies another play this afternoon. Maybe we’ll play with salaries this time — just to get cash flowing back into the bank and stretch things out another round or two. Or maybe we’ll just stick with the super-basic version that she enjoyed yesterday while she gets the hang of optimal staff progressions.

No need to rush, if you’re having fun, right?

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Sun Feb 20, 2022 12:22 pm
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Well, that all seems perfectly reasonable

John Shepherd
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Plague diary day three. Or, if you ask the NHS track and trace service, they're officially counting this as day 5. Which means I can start taking lateral flow tests in order to secure an early release.

Or, perhaps not such an early release...

From gallery of MrShep


...as you can see, the output of my first positive covid test has now been massively dwarfed by my completely awesome performance on the day 5 test. Especially when you consider the fact that the slightly-faint grey line on Tuesday took a good 5 minutes or so before it even became perceptible to the human eye, whereas that lovely dark-purple line on Thursday's result blossomed into life the very second that the fluid touched that part of the strip. Quite a wondrous thing to see, after months and months of negative tests, squinting at non-results, and wondering what happened when these things actually work.

And you would think, from this evidence, that I must surely be leaking coronavirus out of pretty much every pore and orifice and be super-ill by now?

But while I can't really vouch for what's happening on a microscopic virus-shedding level ... I'm actually feeling pretty much back to normal already. So, overall, my Covid-19 Omicron experience might amount to nothing worse than a couple of days with a very mild cough and being confined to barracks for a week. 'Phew. Think I got away pretty lightly with that one.

(Though at this point I should state that I've got a lovely cocktail of vaccine-induced antibodies floating around in my system -- Astrazenica x Astrazenica x Moderna, for anybody who is curious -- and I'm totally putting my complete and utter lack of covid-19-related awfulness down to a win for medical science. Well done, medical science. You rule!)

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Yesterday's quiz was interesting. I'm writing this blog entry before the poll actually closes, but I think it's safe to say that very few people (less than 2% at the time of writing) got the correct answer. The invoice from my first ever geek store purchase actually looks like this:

Order Items
-----------

Product = Dominion Promo Cards (Envoy & Black Market);
Quantity = 1
SKU = DOM_001
Price = $0.01

SubTotal = $0.01
Shipping and Handling Fee = $4.99


Fee = + $0.00
Coupon Discount: $0.00
Total = $5.00
---------------
Tax Total = $0.00



...Yep, you read that correctly. The asking price was one cent for a package with both promo decks bundled together, along with a $4.99 shipping and handling fee (which I vaguely recall was a flat rate no matter where you were in the world? ... though I'm prepared to be corrected on that one). It all seemed to make perfect sense at the time. Promos were -- after all -- just adverts for games, supplied to BGG by the publisher for free... so they were "sold" at next-to-no charge, with a small handling charge slapped on top. Which seemed pretty reasonable for the service being offered.

Times have certainly changed.



So... that one cent has become 10 dollars, over a period of 11-and-a-bit years. That's some serious financial appreciation.

Though, to be fair, back in late 2010 you could've also picked up a single bitcoin for approximately $0.09 of your change. So it's maybe not just the prices of BG promos that went a little bit crazy in the decade that followed...

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Fri Feb 11, 2022 7:10 am
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(also) Previously on The Tyranny of Small Decisions...

John Shepherd
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Board Game: Pandemic


Quote:
It was a good weekend, the weekend just gone. Well… apart from the bit where my boss sent me a text message to warn me that he’d tested covid-positive, mere hours after I’d spent most of the day cooped up in a small meeting room with him (Gulp). But, apart from the near-constant psychosomatic inner-voice nagging of “hey… is my throat feeling a bit scratchy now, or what?” … it was a good weekend.
Well… if there’s a moral to that paragraph from a couple of days ago, it is this: trust your inner voice when it tells you that something isn’t quite right.

I was a little bit suspicious on Saturday …but despite the vague feeling that something in my throat wasn’t-quite-right, the Lateral Flow test said “no, don’t worry, it’s fine!”. It also said “no, don’t worry, it’s fine!” on Sunday. (In fact, it said “no, don’t worry, it’s fine” twice … since I was a little bit naughty and tried a second test in the same day; I’d finished a box of nasal tests, and discovered that my newly-arrived box contained those awful old throat swabs — but then thought that it might be worth a shot with one of those too, just for peace of mind. And for science!).

On Sunday night, I had trouble sleeping; not with fever symptoms or anything like that; I simply couldn’t sleep for some mysterious reason… but Monday morning rolled around and my customary start-of-the-week, pre-going-to-work test was also negative.

Don’t worry. It’s all fine.

Which brings us to Tuesday morning. And finally … the long-expected second stripe on the LFT

See! I knew it!!!!

So, yes. I’m now a fully-qualified member of covid club*. Though not one with an over-abundance of symptoms; the aforementioned “scratchy” throat thing has now turned into a slight cough. But not a particularly bad one. Not yet, at any rate.

We’ll see.

And on a brighter note (“when life sends you lemons” and all that)… at least this takes a lot of the stress off my visit to AireCon next month

In spite of the British Government’s loosening of restrictions, and to their great credit, AireCon seems to be taking a very sensible approach to covid security this year. NHS pass required at the door, masks required whenever you’re not sitting down, and a rebuilt ventilation system in the venue which doesn’t recirculate any internal air (The AireCon AirCon? ….I KNOW!!!!). And now, on top of all that … I should be full-to-the-gills with all kinds of covid immunity by then, and not particularly stressed about catching something nasty.

So that seems like a good thing.

Just as long as the next few days go by without too much trouble, that is…

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*The first rule of covid club is: don’t give people covid.
(Of course that’s the first rule of covid club. Anything else would just be stupid!)
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Wed Feb 9, 2022 7:10 am
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Previously, on The Tyranny of Small Decisions...

John Shepherd
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Ovington
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Quote:
Now here’s a thing that you don’t see very often: a big vacant space in one of my game cupboards!

From gallery of MrShep


It’s a space that until very recently was occupied by an Escape:The Curse of the Temple big box.

And not only is there a void in my cupboard, but my games owned list has taken a bit of a hit too…
Hmmm. I wonder just what happened to that Escape:The Curse of the Temple big box.

I wonder...

I wonder....

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Tue Feb 8, 2022 7:10 am
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A pale sandy fawn color, a grayish tan, a light-grayish yellowish brown, or a pale to grayish yellow

John Shepherd
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I had every intention of writing another massive post this weekend, to make up for the lack of weekday content again (Well… at least … a semi-lack of weekday content. I mean, I did manage to slip out a long-overdue Kingdom Death Diary update in the middle of the week!). And, in principle, this putting-it-all-off-to-the-weekend thing seemed like a good plan. It freed me up to think about (and do!) other things in those precious weekday evening hours. And it took away an entirely-self-imposed pressure from a packed week of considerably-less-self-imposed pressures. Which was nice.

But, of course, the execution is often more complicated than the theory… and I’ve got to be honest, Saturday came around, and I found myself really struggling for the inspiration/motivation to write anything by way of weekend mega-post. And if you’re not really in the mood to write when the time to write arrives?… then, wow, that really shines through in what you create. I mean, it’s not so bad if you write a small weekday post, and you look back at it, and you think “hmmm… well…. that wasn’t so great. But it’ll do. I’ll just phone that one in anyway, to give the regulars something to look at”…. and click submit. But if the mojo just isn’t there for writing longer stuff — particularly stuff that’ll take a good cup of coffee and a fair few minutes for your poor reader to work their way through — well, maybe it’s just best to just bail out and wait for a bit. So I junked most of my first attempt at this post.

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Instead, let me just tell you about the best game that I played this week:

Homesteaders.

From gallery of MrShep


Remember my complaints about a parcel full of things that I bought in the festive sales, which was taking way too long to get delivered? (final transit time: 1 week. For a supposedly-next-day delivery service — Bah!!) … well, one of the goodies in that box was the 10th Anniversary Edition of Homesteaders. (well… more accurately: two of the things in that box were the 10th Anniversary Edition of homesteaders, as I tossed in the simultaneously-released expansion too, because it’s always handy to have the capacity for a 5th player, and heaven knows what’s going to happen to this game now that Tasty Minstrel Games has closed their doors…).

Anyway… I finally have it. And I’m starting to conclude that there are some very reliable indicators that’ll show me how much I’m going to enjoy a certain type of euro game:

a) How much beige is in the game? Beige tiles? Beige boards? …the more beige, the better!

b) Does the game has a loan mechanism. And if so, just how big is the stack of loan chits?

and:

c) If I put the artwork in front of a millennial BGG user, would it make them cry?

Homesteaders scores really highly in all of these categories. In fact, the only spot where it really lets itself down is in failing to use plain wooden cubes for resources … it actually uses some very fancily-shaped pieces of wood and — just to sky-rocket the cost of the anniversary edition — metal coins and VP tokens (which is why I prevaricated over buying it for so long). But… there’s an awful lot that this game seems to be getting VERY right here.

From gallery of MrShep


Just look at all that potential debt!!! AND the end-game VP penalty for holding on to those is based on triangle numbers. Hmmm… maybe I should add that to the list:

d) Triangle numbers.

You don’t see nearly enough triangular progressions in euro games these days.

But what about the gameplay?

Well… It’s an auction-driven city-builder, where you then place workers into bits of the city that you’ve built to make resources, generate VP, buy more workers, and hopefully create just enough left-over funds to win you the building rights that you’ve got your eyes on in the next round of auctions. Which you will rarely achieve, because it’s proper old-school eurogame that’ll drive you into debt, have you reaching for loans within the first couple of turns, and constantly require you to figure out your opponent’s “plan A” so that you can have an appropriate “plan B” to respond with. Repeat for 10 rounds, and then the person with the most prestigious city most VPs wins.

And I loved it. Auction games rarely work well with two players — but the particular mechanisms involved in this one (you compete in parallel auctions, but your bid can only be applied to one of them at a time) along with a super-neat 2-player tweak which throws a start-player-influenced neutral bid into the mix, really keeps the tension (and importance of player order) high. The machine-building all felt thematically appropriate and interesting … and overall, the game just felt really, really tight. So tight, in fact, that despite taking very different strategic directions, we both tied on points in the final reckoning (though I won on the tie breaker by having the most left-over cash!).

Simple game structure, with depth brought in through the variety of machine-building options, a finely-tuned tipping point on resource efficiency, AND the need to find that perfect balance between taking on just the right amount of debt and NOT going into an inescapable death spiral.

They just don’t make ‘em like this any more. I’m really glad I finally got a copy. (And it only took me 13 years…)

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Meanwhile, in real life:

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Despite all odds, I still seem to have still avoided being infected by covid. At work, 7 (out of 20) of my direct reports have reported positive since the start of the year … many of whom I’d been in close proximity to only hours before they tested positive (gulp!). Both of my parents are currently getting over a pretty bad brush with the disease too ... it really does feel like I’m dodging a whole hail of bullets right now. Perhaps I’m one of that small, lucky percentage for whom the vaccine grants full immunity? Though, no doubt, merely putting that thought in writing will guarantee a second purple line on tomorrow’s LFT...

At least the Omicron trend in everywhere-but-this-part-of the country seems to be downwards now. Maybe AireCon will turn out to be a viable option this year after all?

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Elsewhere:

“I fold” is a BGG blog that I look forward to seeing new posts on… not only for Michael’s game coverage and view-of-life-from-the-other-side-of-the-planet, but also for the fascinating glimpses into the world of Origami that wrap up* each instalment.

Origami is definitely one of those pastimes that I could imagine myself being drawn into … if I didn’t already have far too many OTHER pastimes that I only managed to tackle in a really half-arsed fashion because of a tendency to spread myself way too thinly. Anyway, it’s always nice to experience a little bit of that world vicariously, through Michael’s posts … so Imagine my surprise when I awoke to an item this morning featuring an unprompted homage to this very blog!

From gallery of gobo1572


WOW!

…thanks Michael — it is truly a thing of beauty!

(And, as we all know… Green is the best player colour. FACT!).

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*Ha! I didn’t even notice I’d done that until a pre-submission proof read.
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Sun Jan 16, 2022 2:43 pm
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Top games of 2021

John Shepherd
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Ovington
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From gallery of MrShep

Easiest post of the year, this one. Almost writes itself, this does. Simply flip through all of the new releases that you played in 2021, shortlist the best ones, and then put together a “top 10 of 2021” list, or a “top 5 of 2021” list, or whatever you think you can run to… bash out a couple of hundred words (or a youtube video!) saying how great they all were, put a nice clickbaity title on top of it (“Top games of 2021” should do the trick) ...and the job’s a good ‘un! Last year I even managed to stretch this nonsense out for SIX separate instalments. Wow! …So let’s see how I can do this year, shall we?

Right… here we go. The best new games of 2021 were…

Urm…

They were…

(Hmmm. Just let me think a minute)

My picks of the crop for 2021 are…

External image


Y’know what? For the first time ever, I’m not sure that I can pick any out. I mean… sure… there were some perfectly reasonable games released in 2021. But when I look back through the year… I just can’t put my finger on anything that massively excited me. It’s not like 2020. Back in 2020's round-up I was singing the praises of games like FaiyumHallertauMy CityUnder Falling SkiesSkulls of Sedlec. But this year? Nowt.

Is it the games of 2021… or is it me?

I don’t think it’s me.

Look, I could do a few honourable mentions: Hadrian’s Wall was worth a few goes (though the simultaneous play still seems a bit rough around the edges to me). Railroad Ink Challenge wasn’t bad at all. Moon Adventure packed a very impressive co-op experience into a tiny box. And the one play that I had of Maglev Metro made it seem like a perfectly fine age-of-steam/tramways sort of a thing (and you know that I’m always happy to play a perfectly fine age-of-steam/tramways sort of a thing!). But I’m not sure that I played a single 2021 release that I really want to hold up and evangelise. Not like the stuff that turned my head in 2020, at any rate.

(Edit: I should definitely add Great Plains to the honourable mentions; it's likely as close to a "favourite of the year" as I'll get -- if only I'd had more opportunities to play it! Thanks for the reminder, Martin G!)

Of course, I didn’t play all of the most popular things released in 2021. I more than likely missed a couple of real gems. After all, I missed Tokyo Tsujiki Market and MicroMacro Crime City in their year of release, but I’d totally add those to my favourite-games-of-2020 list now. And if I included reprints/expansions in the scope of this post, then the Grand Austria Hotel deluxe edition would be right at the top of it all. That was a lovely package, that was. Very happy with that.

But … rules is rules.

So my top picks of 2021 are:

<null>

Fight me!

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Fri Dec 31, 2021 7:10 am
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Batteries, un-punched.

John Shepherd
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Batteries. This week has been all about the batteries.

I feel like I’ve already written far too many posts that start with a sentence along the lines of “one unexpected side-effect of the global pandemic was…” … but I definitely feel like the simultaneous break-down of umpteen personal electronic devices — coinciding with the sudden “back to work” switch in lifestyle — was one such thing.

I suspect that too many of my mobile devices have spent way too much of the last year-and-a-half semi-permanently attached to charging cables. In a not-at-all-conducive-to-good-battery-health sort of way. Because why take them off the charger if you rarely leave the house? And I fear that the abrupt return to the daily rigours of a charge/discharge cycle has perhaps been a bit of a shock to their poor little lithium ion souls, after such a cosseted lifestyle

It all started with the face of my smartwatch unexpectedly popped off a couple of weeks ago — revealing a grotesquely swollen battery inside. To be fair… I fancied a newer model anyway, so that particular problem wasn’t the end of the world (though I might try a DIY repair just for the challenge of it… since it looks like a relatively straightforward replacement, and I never like to leave a bit of tech broken!). However, the fact that my phone has also started losing its charge stupidly-fast over the course of the last fortnight or so has presented a more significant problem. So on Saturday morning I decided it was time to pay a long-overdue call to the apple store for a battery service.

From gallery of MrShep
Bad lighting. It doesn't look nearly as dusty IRL.


It’s a while since I’ve visited the mall that houses my friendly neighbourhood apple store. Well, technically, that’s not entirely true — I’ve visited the branch of Marks and Spencer that lurks on one corner of the mall a few times in passing, and dashed into WH Smiths for some emergency stationary a few weeks back … but I’ve never really been deep inside, and had a proper look all at the changes that have come to pass during the covid years.

The battery swap was going to take an hour or so, which gave me the opportunity to wander off and have a bit of an explore. And… truth be told… it was a pretty bleak experience; apart from a thriving food-and-leisure quarter, things are looking pretty grim in there. The mixture of empty units, budget brands, vape stores, and “flight friendly rapid covid testing” pop-ups present but a shadow of the glory days of the 1980s … a time in which the place proclaimed itself to be the largest shopping mall in Europe …and even boasted its own roller-coaster (now, sadly, demolished)

Despite so many units standing empty, I think there’s a corporate policy against allowing charity shops in there (though to be fair, those tend to be a sure sign of a high street death rattle) … which is a bit of a shame, as at least those might’ve provided an opportunity for me to root out some unexpected board games while I was waiting for the work on my phone to be completed.

Instead… the only board games that I encountered during the trip were the usual shelves full of mass-market pre-Christmas tat, and a solitary Martin Wallace title in a discount book store (though presumably not one of his better offerings, as I didn’t recall very much about this one at all, and didn't have a phone to look it up on … so I left it where it was). That said, I was amused to also see a recent reprint of the 1976 Dad's Army board game in the same shop — I remember playing that one as a child, though it seems like a bit of a strange thing to be re-printing / pitching to the mass market in this day and age … so it’s maybe not too difficult to see why its gone straight into the remainder bins?

Anyway, my newly-refurbished phone was ready at the appointed time, and I found myself heading home… thinking about batteries and board games. And wondering if a tenuous theme of the day might fall out of the morning’s experiences?

But as it happened… WAY more than a mere tenuous-theme-of-the-day came at the end of this train of thought. Because if here is ONE battery-management-featuring board game which reigns supreme over all other contenders, it surely has to be Vlaada Chvátil’s Galaxy Trucker …featuring these little green tiles of misery, which few players would ever forget:

From gallery of MrShep


…and as I thought about this game, something notable occurred to me.

Which was this:

I COMPLETELY missed “annual not punching out Galaxy Trucker: Another Big Expansion day” last year — a momentous occasion previously celebrated in August 2019, and before that in August 2018. Talk about being discombobulated by the events of the pandemic!!

Well… more than 2 years since the last not-punching-out day… I can report that my copy of Another Big Expansion STILL remains un-punched

From gallery of MrShep


....buuuuut the event seems to have lapsed a bit now, so this doesn’t seem to be nearly as exciting an achievement for me as it once did

And I’m really short on shelf space at the moment… and pretty sure that I could get all of those bits into the main game box, if I tossed the insert…

Screw it. 7+ years on the shelf, and I’m finally punching that sucker.

All thanks to thinking about batteries

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Sun Nov 7, 2021 6:10 am
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Taking sides

John Shepherd
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I've always assumed that there's a right way to do this, and a wrong way to do this, and that everybody knew which was which.

BUT.. in the interests of science:

When you're punching out the bits of a new game, do you push the tiles from...

The side with the die cut...

From gallery of MrShep


The opposite side...

From gallery of MrShep


Or do you just prod whatever random face happens to fall in front of your fingers for any given sheet?

Poll
Which is it?
      284 answers
Poll created by MrShep


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Fri Sep 10, 2021 7:10 am
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Out with the old...

John Shepherd
United Kingdom
Ovington
Northumberland
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Sweet, sweet Liberty. That certainly seems like an appropriate thing to be drinking tonight (I say “tonight” because — as usual — I’m typing this post the evening before it’s published. Sorry to spoil the magic. Again.)

The reason: Yesterday was my last day on the job that I’ve had for over 8 years. Today I am a free agent!

Well… to be fair, it wasn’t really the same job that I walked into 8 years ago; my role had changed considerably, and — perhaps more importantly than that — the nice-to-work-for super-popular digital agency that I started working at all those years ago was subsequently bought out, de-branded, and merged into a slightly less-nice-to-work for super-massive outsourcing company with a somewhat-less-than-stellar reputation. So things had changed quite significantly. Still, I landed on my feet in the new organisation … and in times of global pandemic and uncertainty there are definitely far less secure places to work at than a big outsourcing company with a whole bunch of super-vital government contracts in its portfolio. So I hung on in there. For a bit. While waiting to see how the world changed.

But… you can only do a thing that you’re not really into for so long, can’t you? So today ... I am free!

At least … free until Monday. When I start working for a very different type of company.

Big and exciting changes lie ahead!

As you might imagine, there’s been a lot of winding-down-from-the-old and preparing for the new over the last few days … including returning my man cave / games room to more of a semblance of how it used to be in days of yore, rather than the somewhat chaotic combination of home office and games room that it became over the course of the last 18 months. The work computer is gone … along with a heap of other technical kit which was mostly just gathering dust. Plus stacks of work-related paperwork, work-related books, post-it notes etc.

And the room already feels like an altogether more relaxing place to be

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One thing which has become very obvious though, during the tidy-ups, is that there’s an awful lot of last-18-months board acquisitions in there that I don’t really have a (tidy) storage space for now. All of the cupboards and kallaxes in there are full. So it’s definitely time to start thinking about getting rid of the really old, to make way for the really new.

This puts me in a bit of a quandary: none of the games that I’m thinking of getting rid of are particularly top-notch stuff. I mean… most of it was sort of interesting, back in its day … but there are similar-but-far-better games which I would choose to play over those titles every time now. In days gone by, I would normally drop unwanted games into a convention bring-and-buy sale, priced very much to sell (by which I mean… genuinely priced to sell, at just a few quid each), and generate a bit of beer money … but there’s not been so many of those of late. I really can’t be faffed with lugging stuff to the post office on a regular basis and all the other administration involved with the likes of ebay / geekmarket. And I kind of shy away from the idea of dumping third-rate modern board games into charity shops. (Because what if that third-rate modern board game found in a charity shop turns into somebody’s very first experience of what modern board gaming is all about? That hardly sells our hobby to the world at large, does it?)

So… what disposal options does that leave me with? Well… I have to confess that I’m currently thinking of taking the lowest effort route of all: salvaging any nice components to a bits box, and simply chucking all of the cardboard bits into recycling.

Is that really bad of me? Should I really make a concerted effort to hoard all of these titles under a spare bed or similar, until conventions get a bit back to normal?

I can already imagine some of the (metaphorical) anguished screams that the suggestion of binning games is provoking from some readers … but if it was old magazines … or old dvds … or curtains … or something like that, I can’t imagine the decision to throw a thing away being anywhere near as tormenting as this is proving.

Hmmmm….

Perhaps we get too attached to our cardboard and wood?

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Sat Aug 21, 2021 7:10 am
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