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Only the FINAL GIRL!

Steph Hodge
United States
Tennessee
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Hia Everyone!

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


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




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Wednesday night we were excited to have AJ from Van Ryder Games come hang out with us on the Twitch Stream and show off one of the new Season 2 Final Girl films Final Girl: Terror at Station 2891!

I don't know how to categorize this game. Are the featured films counted as expansions? So is this a new to me expansion? I think I will treat each feature film as a unique expansion.

Final Girl is currently on KS with several days to go for Season 2 Feature Filmes. You can also get all of S1 during this KS.

If you aren't familiar with the series, it is a solo adventure, which I actually like to play as a cooperative game where we discuss decisions together. I have to say if you are into the horror genre at all then this is definitely a game to check out. It is totally thematic.

On stream, we played Terror at Station 2891 and this is actually a very different type of feature film because you don't have a villain right off the bat. There are victims that have been contaminated, but we aren't sure if any of them are actually bad or not, you have to make tests on them in order to find out if they are organisms that need to be taken care of.

As you play out the game, you will find out who has been infected for the worse and who hasn't.

AJ explained the rules in the video below and we actually did an EPIC job controlling the situations that arose.

There was an added mechanic with a helicopter where you had to get the victims to the helipad and get on the helicopter so they could travel back to the airport away from the station. Uki was our Final Girl and she was pretty awesome. Once we were able to save 4 girls, she gave us a sweet power that allowed for a guard action I believe it was to automatically happen each turn.

I was very impressed by this feature film. It felt different from the other ones. So I can definitely say VRG is keeping it fresh with new ideas.

It was helpful to play again with other people since my first game of Final Girl: Carnage at the Carnival went so poorly. I didn't really know what I was doing, so I was just trying to figure out the mechanics. The dice were just not cooperating with me that game. I find the carnival theme the most fun, but I did choose a more difficult entry into the series.

Once AJ left the stream, Michael and I continued the night with a game of Final Girl: The Haunting of Creech Manor! (New to me Expansion?)

We were playing against the Poltergeist and we had a rough go of it. It reminded me of my first experience playing in the carnival!

I think we might have done well with AJ because he is the lucky charm. It was pretty hilarious how fast our game against the Poltergeist went south. The first event was brutal! Girls throwing themselves out of windows, yikes. Okay, so we lost it pretty quickly. Maybe we will do better next time.

So far I have played three of the feature films and have really enjoyed the experiences. There are so many cards that aren't used in each game so it will be a COMPLETELY different experience next time we play. I love that about the games. You just have no idea what will happen next.

After three plays I think I finally have the flow down a little bit. It was nice to play the Poltergeist after Station 2891 because it gave me reassurance that it wasnt just me who fails. The game is actually very difficult. It's a fun challenge to work through, but it can get out of hand pretty quickly if you don't manage it properly.

I will have to make sure to check out the other feature films I haven't tried yet. I am kind of a wuss though, I definitely am not into the horror genre very much, but I have managed three so far, so I can do more. I CAN DO ET!

Definitely make sure to check out the KS happening now. Definitely glad I have gotten to play this a bunch the past few weeks. Very cool game. To the keep shelf!








New to the Collection:
Cupid Crisis





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 Jan 21, 2022 12:00 pm
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The Corrosion was an Ill Omen in Jiangnan

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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Hia Everyone!

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


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



Tonight we are playing Final Girl on Twitch.tv/boardgamersteph with special guest AJ from Van Ryder Games!

On Sunday we played Galaxy Trucker


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I have been super excited to try out Corrosion since I only heard interesting things about it. New to me!

First off, I wanted to point out that you can buy metal gears separately that is so awesome and wonderful! The punchout gears are also cool and shiny, but the metal gears are just perfect.

Corrosion is an engine-building game where your engine will corrode away, so you have to manage everything you are doing within a limited time. The game ends when the white victory points run out from the supply and, of course, the goal is to gain the most victory points.

During the game, players will take turns taking one action each turn. There are a lot of little steps to make up the big picture.

Each turn is pretty simple since you are either playing a card for its action, or you are rotating your wheel one location clockwise.

If you use a card to perform an action, any other player with a higher value in the same color can choose to follow your action by using their own card. The actions don't have to match on the cards, but the active player's action will be the action all players take if they choose to follow.

Whenever a card is played for the action it is placed into your factory in the location numbered the same as the card whether it be the active player or the following player.

There are many possible actions you find on your assistants. You might gain one-time machines, turning machines, chrome machines, other assistants, or resources. Generally, if you get the chance to follow, you should since it is an off-turn action, and the more turns you can claim the better!

Turning the wheel will trigger a lot of different effects. If there are any turning machines then they will all trigger. They typically give resources or abilities.

If the wheel rotates and the X region hits a one-time machine then that machine will trigger. Wherever the X region is after all activations, any machines in the region will corrode and disappear along with any unused gears still remaining in the region. The cards in the X region will now go back to your hand so you can use them again.

The cards with bigger values are great for following other actions, but it will be a while before you get them back. A "4" value will take 4 spins of the wheel, unless you find another way to get it back into your hand.

The white victory point tokens are what triggers the end of the game, and those are controlled by the chrome machines. Each time someone takes a chrome machine, another VP token is added to the 3rd machine in the line as an incentive.

The game isn't quick, but if you find a way to keep taking chrome machines, then it might end sooner than expected.

In the first game, we decided it was a learning game so the 4 of us cut the game in half by only using half the VP tokens the normal game would have been. Michael totally rushed the ending that way, but it was actually a good experience since we were able to figure out the game and get a good feeling for what was going on.

In the second game, we played on stream. The video is posted below. It is a full rule teach and playthrough and you can see it is pretty long. I do anticipate it will get slightly faster, especially with 2 players.

It is the kind of game where the more players you add the longer it will be. I anticipate about 45 min per player, especially for the first play.

Michael and I both really enjoyed this one. It is super crunchy with great decisions each turn. VP's are hard to come by so you really want to focus on getting them where you can. I can't wait to see where this game leads. I hope it is a huge success and that they make an expansion in the coming years. I think after a few plays, it might start to feel same since all the machines that corrode are very similar, and it could use some additional options, but even still, I will plan to play this more. Definitely a good fit for the heavy strategy gamer out there. Very enjoyable!

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I was excited to get Jiangnan: Life of Gentry back to the table.

I first learned Jiangnan backing November and had a great time playing it. I requested a preview copy to help promote it during their KS launch. The KS launch is happening on Jan 25th.

Jiangnan is played over 6 rounds and in each round, all players will get to perform 3 actions. The player with the most points at the end will win.

Each player will have a set of 12 tiles to begin the game. These 12 tiles are used over the first 2 rounds to help determine the actions that the player will take. On the game board, there are 6 areas each with a unique action, and they are all pretty easy to understand. The challenge is that you will only have 4 action tiles available on your turn, and you will choose one to use for the action, and then the tile left that is closest to the right on your board will be discarded for the benefit at the bottom half of the tile.

You have to be careful not to discard tiles you will want to take the actions of later since you might not get that chance again. Even though you lose that action tile, at the end of the first 4 rounds you will draft 3 new tiles that will be added so you will always have 12 tiles going into rounds 3 and 5. The tiles get better and better each time you draft too.

Managing these tiles is key to success for sure, but there is another element that I really love in this game. That is trying to figure out the best actions to take alongside the boat positions. At the end of each round, the actions you take will also grant you positions on the boat aligned with that space during the round.

Boats are super powerful and will give the person who has the majority some power. Maybe they will determine what will be scoring for the remainder of the game, or if it is a private boat, they will just score points depending on the scoring conditions of that boat. Either way, it is super powerful. So powerful that you might choose a location for an action you don't want at all in order to gain the majority on a boat.

Those are the really tough decisions that I really appreciate.

I have now played 3 times and the game has really grown on me. I enjoyed it the first time and the times since, but I still can't shake the final boat scoring for all 5 boats. I still think it needs to be re-worked a bit or perhaps fewer points. In the games, I have played the boat scoring really swung the game to where the points are just all over the place with like 100 point difference at times.

Fortunately for the playthrough below it wasn't that different but actually close in scoring since I was actively focused on controlling majorities. It is definitely a challenge and must be weird to balance. I do still think that element needs work, but the core of the game is really great and I have enjoyed playing each game!

I look forward to seeing how well it does on the KS next week! Definitely check out the video below and the KS if this is a game that interests you!

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Michael and I had only an hour so it was a perfect amount of time to try out Crime Zoom: Bird of Ill Omen. New to me!

A few months ago I tried my first Crime Zoom game, and this one had a very similar flow with a story/crime that unfolds along the way.

The Crime Zoom games are pretty interesting since you will have to figure out the path and the story. Sure you can just flip over every card, but you will want to find all the answers by flipping as few cards as possible.

The Bird of Ill Omen had a lot of 'real' circumstances that I found to be believable. Of course, it was all very over the top for a murder crime, but it wasn't what we expected it to be by the end. We missed some of the questions, but we were able to answer the big questions.

I think Crime Zoom is a solid series with interesting cases to solve. the 60-minute timer really hits the mark and it is just what I am looking for in these types of games. Scratches the itch in a nice way. Definitely recommend it if you get the chance.

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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.
Thank you.
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4 Comments
Wed Jan 19, 2022 12:00 pm
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The Transformers played Hammer Time in Anno 1800

Steph Hodge
United States
Tennessee
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From gallery of punkin312



Hia Everyone!

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


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




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James and Susan came over and we plays several games! One of the games we checked out was Transformers Deck-Building Game. New to me!

It's been a long time since I have seen Transformers, and I never really got into the series at all. (My time Power Rangers was the coolest).

While Transformers is a Deck-Building game, it is certainly a new twist on the genre. In order to gain cards to your deck, you will have to first find it in the grid of cards and acquire it by first exploring the location. What's unique about this is that you will have movement values and charge values, so you are moving around this grid and who knows what you might find. You will likely find enemies that will issue attacks, so you have to prepare for such a battle.

Each player also has its own special character that has its vehicle form and its transformed bot form. Most people know Optimus Prime, so I chose to play as him. Each formation gives a player advantage all unique from one another.

There are several ways to play the game, and honestly, it is probably best as a cooperative game. We chose to play as a competitive game. The Transformers are a group of heroes so it would likely be more thematic if you play the cooperative game.

To win, you will need to collect victory points for your vault by defeating the enemies and possibly finding treasures along the way.

In our game, we had a crazy first turn event happen where all of the robots and every card would act as an enemy and in order to defeat it, we needed to deliver 4 pink energy cubes to that location. It took most of the game before someone (me) actually went over and did that. It was a situation that I really needed to take care of because of how Optimus Prime works. He wants Robot to be added to his deck as a companion since he gains benefits from activating those cards.

I knew Michael was winning most of the game since he was gaining a lot of points from barely helping other players succeed at beating the enemies. You cant refuse the help, but they will also gain the points for helping and you are the one who has to spend the time and resources on your turn to try and actually defeat the bad guys. Usually, you just stumble on the enemies since you don't know what you are exploring when you choose to explore a card.

It was definitely a different sort of deck-builder and pretty interesting. The actual battles were probably a bit more complicated than they had to be since we kept going back to the rulebook to make sure we were doing everything correctly, it really blows the game down a lot.

Michael did end up winning which was because I was damaged and needed assistance when I really didn't. Doh!

Anyway, I liked this game okay, it was a bit long, but I can see playing again. I do think fans of Transformers and fans of Deck-Builders will be impressed. I would definitely recommend it just to see how it changes up deck-building in general. Glad to get this one played!

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I knew it would be a long game, but I have been wanting to play Anno 1800 for a while now since I got the copy of the game. I first learned it last year on TTS and really enjoyed it so getting it to the table was exciting for me.

This is the resource manipulation game. It has more resources than ANY other game, at least that I can think of. I haven't played the computer game, but I did read somewhere that Martin Wallace hired someone to play the computer game to make sure the game was totally thematic. So, I anticipate if you enjoy the computer game, you will like this board game.

In Anno 1800, your goal is to complete cards in your hand to gain points, and to do that you will need to gather a bunch of resources to help along the way.

Turns move quickly in the game since you only do one thing at a time. Players use worker cubes to get the resources you need to craft other items to add to your board or complete a card from your hand. Completing cards not only gives points, but they give other one-time abilities that are super helpful.

The game ends once one player has depleted their hand of cards, but you will continuously gain cards throughout the game, which makes it hard to do in a quick manner.

An interesting part about this game is the trade tokens. You can spend trade tokens to gain resources off of other players' boards. They simply get one gold from the supply to compensate for that. While I don't generally like trading games like this, it really is done well here since it happens a lot and when it happens it seems to happen evenly across the board.

I can see why some people might not enjoy this game. There is a lot to look at and the rinse and repeat of actions can be more like work than fun.

For me, I quite enjoy the puzzle of trying to get my cards completed as well as gaining points from the various zoo cards. I like the flow with the quick turns and the whole general process. The ending is definitely odd, so it works and feels different.

Michael was able to sneak out a win by rushing the end of the game when he saw his chance. I needed a few more turns to get everything I wanted in play, but I had so many people I could play that gave extra actions that I wasn't too far behind him when the game actually ended. It was a close one.

I certainly didn't mind playing with 4 players and I think Susan enjoyed it but maybe not as much James. I know Michael liked the game and the process so I anticipate he will go look for the computer game.

Great game, glad I finally got it to the table. Recommended to those who like managing resources and hands of cards. It will be pretty long especially for your first play. I look forward to playing again on stream soon!

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Stop! Hammer Time! New to me!

A new Haba game with pretty gems! I had to try this one! James and Susan were still up for another game and this is a quick one so why not!?

Hammer Time is a new dexterity game where you use the box to hold the gems. Each turn you will use the hammer to knock off the gems from the box to try and collect the colors you need to fill the mining carts. There are also wild gem cards that can be claimed on your turn if you knock over specific gems that meet the requirement.

This is a super cute kids' game! Perfect for the younger crowd ages 5+!

I enjoyed my time hammering the box away and trying to collect the gems I wanted. It was fun for me, but my gaming companions weren't very impressed. Okay, so it isn't for the strategy gamers, but for the family.

The only change I would have preferred would be that the game end not be a race to finish the mining carts. I always feel unfulfilled with race games like this. Anyway, Hammer Time is a game I could play anytime, it is harmless, and who doesn't like hitting things with hammers!?

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New to the Collection:
Taj Mahal





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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Mon Jan 17, 2022 12:00 pm
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The Fort in Maracaibo was overrun with Cats & Dogs

Steph Hodge
United States
Tennessee
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From gallery of punkin312



Hia Everyone!

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


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


Played Set a Watch


Small Islands


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Michael and I wanted to learn a new expansion and figured it was a good time to try out Fort: Cats & Dogs Expansion. New to me Expansion!

Fort is such an interesting game since the deck you are building isn't really YOURS. I mean, it is since you can use the cards and prioritize what you need and want to do, but the fact that you add all the unused cards each turn to your yard is very interesting. At the end of each turn, the active player will select a kid to recruit from any yard or park, so your friends are not safe from being poached by other players.

The new expansion adds a few modules, the cats and the dogs. They work differently and can be played together or separately.

When you play with the dogs, you will be adding dog cards to the initial deck for each player. They take specific requirements in order to claim them and put them in your dog house, but they will give pretty cool rewards, and there are points to the player who has the most dogs at the end of the game. The main catch is that The dogs run away from you if you don't end up claiming them to your dog house. If they end up in the yard, they will run away to the next player automatically.

The cat module will add in various cats! You will add in 1 per player! During the game, if a cat's requirement is fulfilled then it will move into your territory. At the end of the game, the cats will score for the play who controls them.

It is a super small box expansion, but it adds so much to the game. More to think about each turn while still planning for the big turns and follow actions.

It was great to get Fort back to the table. I quite enjoy this deck-building game. I had a pretty strong deck of cards that I was using to my benefit collecting a lot of toys and pizza tokens in one shot so I could advance my fort level. I seemed to have the game in the bag, but I didn't claim any dogs during the game so Michael made up points with his pups. I still managed to win with 38 points to his 33 points.

Nice expansion that incorporates well with the base game. Would recommend it. Always glad to get this game to the table.

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Back in December, there was a new app released for Maracaibo and it is awesome!!

I always love playing Maracaibo and it has been far too long since I last played a game with other people. The app is a new way to get my fix! It had been so long since I last played that going through the tutorial was great for reminding me how to play and what I could do.

I was able to jump into a game after that with ease. I played on the very easy mode and ended up beating the AI! I shouldn't be too excited, but I was since when I tried on Normal mode, I got my butt handed to me over and over. I have played 4 or 5 times at this point and just can't seem to beat the normal mode. I am apparently not very good at this game. It is quite a challenge!

Once I feel like I have the base game down, I will try playing the campaign mode which is super awesome that it is even included! You can also choose to play pass and play mode with people which is a great option.

I LOVE this app and this game. If you haven't played it or you need a new app to get into, then I highly recommend this one. So happy to have it.

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Michael and I played Smoothies recently. New to me!

Smoothies is a neat roll n write game that I picked up at a recent VFM I believe. I thought it looked cute and didn't really know much about it. I love roll n write games!

In Smoothies, you will roll all the dice over the 2 bowls then you will select one bowl to use for your turn. The more dice you use the bigger the value and the more boxes you can check off, but you will have to mark that bowl type regardless of the amount of dice you actually use on your turn. So, you will want to manage which bowls you use since you will run out of turns quicker if you keep selecting the bowls with the most dice.

On the flip side, when it isn't your turn, you will get to activate one die from the bowl that isn't chosen by the active player.

There are a bunch of spaces on the big grid of colors that have bonuses to claim when you mark the spaces.

You know, combos! Who doesn't like a great combo!?

Anyway, the game is super cute and fun to play. I don't think it is the best of roll n write games, but it is worthy of remaining in the collection for variety. I am super happy to get it played and I am happy that we were able to show it on the Livestream on Wednesday and Isra showed up for a while to join us. So much fun!

Glad I found it in the VFM.

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New to the Collection:
War of the Worlds
Smallworld of Warcraft
Minigolf Designer Expansion





Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Fri Jan 14, 2022 12:00 pm
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The Final Girl was found on Dinosaur Island at Cape May under the Static Blood Moon

Steph Hodge
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Over the past few weeks I have gotten to play Cape May three times! New to me!

Cape May is an area control game where you move around the board building buildings and gathering income. Every person has hidden goals and there is a collective scoring at the end of the game for each of the four areas.

The game is played over 4 seasons, each with 3 rounds. During each round the active player will choose 3 actions to perform and then the next person will go. Everyone has a hand of movement cards that may cost money to play. Moving is an action they can do and pulling all the movement cards back is an action they can do. Building in an adjacent vacant lot is a possible action of upgrading a building they control is an action. Depending on the area of the build, there will be income adjustments that will be granted based on the type of building.

Shops will provide more income, but the houses once upgraded will be worth a lot of end-game victory points.

Each turn there is an event that will start the round and it could be good or it might cost players money depending on what happened.

Cape May is very elegant. It honestly just makes me want to sing Hello Dolly since the artwork and a meeple have a parasol. The game is easy to learn and play, and I really have enjoyed my few plays so far. It works great with 2-4 players as I have played with all player counts! I love the use of movement cards and how the income works.

I do think that the shops in the sand are a bit too powerful especially if you get them in the first season since they just generate so much more money. There might not be enough value in building landmarks in the Gravel area, but I suppose that is thematically correct to the actual Cape May, though I haven't ever been.

This is a game I would suggest playing and I very much look forward to playing again soon.

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Over the past few weeks we have played a few games of Dinosaur Island: Rawr 'n Write.

I was so happy to finally get this copy since I learned it online last year and just loved it!

We ended up playing a 4 player game with Michael reading the rules since I wasn't prepared to teach the game. It was great since I was able to immediately turn around and teach it to Dfube and Colourfly on New Year's Eve!

Dinosaur Island: Rawr & Write is easily one of the best roll n write games out there. I love the drafting of the dice and using the DNA to create dino cages and a park. So many juicy decisions that I love. The theme shines through and it is just a joy to play.

This is a pretty deep roll n write that will take longer than most in the genre, but even still it is great fun.

The more I play this one the more I love it. Why don't the dice ever roll what I need when I get to choose first?

Anyway, this is a game I would highly recommend and will gladly play anytime!

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At BGG.CON I was handed a new prototype that will be hitting KS in the coming months called Static Blood Moon that I was looking forward to trying. New to me!

Static Blood Moon is a 2-player dice drafting game. Over three rounds, players will draft the dice and fill up their stars for various patterns that will score points. Each round the points and patterns will change up, so you have to think about drafting the dice a bit differently.

Each turn, you will draft 2 different colored dice from the board and place them on the player board. You will want to create patterns of the same color and numbers in sequence.

Each player will also receive 3 bonus tokens that will give some sort of advantage during the round like manipulating a die or choosing the same colored die in a turn.

This is a game that I could easily get into. I like the pattern building and the dice drafting. Michael was clearly better at visualizing his board than I was since he was scoring more than me each round! Maybe I was just focused on the wrong patterns and I should have been trying to block him.

There was nothing I could do! Michael destroyed me that game.

This is a pretty game and one that will catch the eye of many. It is a really neat 2-player game that sort of reminded me of Sagrada since you are placing dice in patterns.

I enjoyed this one and will be interested to see how the KS goes and if anything changes in the rules. We will show this on the stream at some point too. Nice game.

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Just yesterday, there was a new Kickstarter that just launched for the second wave of Final Girl! New to me!

Well, the core game with Final Girl: Carnage at the Carnival was the game I played. Thanks to Michael for reading through the rules and I ended up playing a solo game, since it is a solo game! This new KS will have all new movies to play out.

I wanted to mention that we will have AJ from Van Ryder on our Twitch Stream Jan 19 at 5pm as we play out one of the scenarios! Join us at twitch.tv/boardgamersteph.

So Final Girl is a solo game, but you can choose to play it as a coop game where you discuss decisions.

In the game, you are the Final Girl and you are trying to kill the serial killer on the loose. There are a number of cards that you can use to help move around the board and save innocent victims. Everything you do will cost time and will involve dice rolls to make the different checks.

I was dead before the game ever started. I didn't really know what I should do, so I just spent all my cards and went for the big moves taking the victims as I went. Unfortunately, my rolls were terrible. The puppeteer sent out the puppet minions to help slaughter the innocent.

Since there was always a kill, all of the victims would run left and right, there was no controlling them! I didn't even get one victim to safety.

Basically, I have a lot to learn so I can play this game with a chance of winning. I have no idea how to play well, or what strategies to try. I do think the theme is super dark, and I haven't really ever been into the Horror genre. I don't see horror movies like the ones presented in the different scenarios. I picked the least scray IMO to play.

If you enjoy solo horror games, then you really need to check this game out. It is dripping with theme. I like the challenge though!

Don't forget to come hang out and learn more about the new KS on Jan 19! Gonna be fun to hear the insight into how this all came to be and to see what the new scenarios will add!

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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.
Thank you.
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Wed Jan 12, 2022 12:00 pm
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Ni No Kuni and Harry Potter Blazon the Dinosaur World

Steph Hodge
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Tennessee
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Hia Everyone!

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


Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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Last year Michael and I learned Talisman: Kingdom Hearts and then just recently a new edition of Talisman came out called Talisman: Harry Potter. New to me!

If you are familiar with Talisman, you can easily pick up and learn Kingdom Hearts or Harry Potter. It is safe to say, the Harry Potter version is the BEST Talisman version ever!

Well, I love Harry Potter and this game is so totally thematic. There are a lot of cards and events that work just as they do in Talisman, which is why it is so easy to jump into this newer version.

We did find a lot of issues with the rules because there were so many things unanswered and the questions not answered in the BGG Forum too. Aside from all the questions we had, I thought the game was pretty good. I could see playing it again.

This is a game that gamers who enjoy Talisman would enjoy, but if you don't like Talisman, I am not sure this is the game that will change your mind unless you totally love Harry potter. Many characters to select from which is also awesome for those HP fans.

definitely happy to check this game out, and will continue to play all the Harry Potter games that I can! One of my favorite IPs!

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Blazon is now on Kickstarter! A prototype was sent to me so I could check it out! New to me!

Blazon has a pretty interesting theme about crafting the perfect armorial bearing. There are strict placements for the various designs and you have to pick and choose how the shield looks by drafting the appropriate cards and playing them.

During the game, players will use cards in their hand to pay for other cards that are being placed on their board. Depending on the type of card being played, you have to follow the placement rules according to what you choose. For example, the tincture feature is generally a specific color, and you aren't able to place the exact same color next to one another on the board. This is all stated on the game board so it is easy to remember how the tincture cards work.

Each game will have different goal cards to try and work towards. There are also points that are scored whenever cards are placed on the board as well.

Whenever someone reaches the next multiple of 10 point space there is a bonus handed out to that player and everyone else gets a herald token. The herald tokens are worth one point if they aren't used, but they also have a bunch of abilities that might prove to be more useful.

Michael and I have now played a few times since we played it on the Livestream (below).

Blazon is a pretty quick tight game. Every point matters since, in the end, it will be a close finish. I love trying to puzzle out the goals and how to best place the different cards gaining the color and symbols you might need. The gameplay feels familiar, but the theme is totally different and new. I have enjoyed my few plays and look forward to seeing how the Kickstarter turns out. Nice game.

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Michael and I wanted to check out Ni no Kuni II: The Board Game. New to me!

Now, I haven't played the video game so I can't compare it to that, but I can say it feels pretty thematic and the artwork is awesome, especially if you enjoy anime. the art reminds me a bit of a Ghibli film.

Ni No Kuni II is a cooperative dice-rolling game that is family weight.

The game is played over 5 rounds. Each round there are quests to overcome and monsters to fight. The rewards will be resources that are used to build up the kingdom. The ultimate goal is to build up the kingdom with enough defense to protect against the boss and the remaining monsters in the display.

The buildings you build will also provide benefits like extra resources or rewards for beating a monster.

Each player has a character with special a special ability. There are also little friends that you have to help fight. There are stats for different types of weapons and the values that the characters have. Each value represents how many dice they will get to roll against the monster they go up against.

This works great for a family game night. Easy to learn and play, and it is just fun to roll dice and see what happens.

Michael and I played a couple of games at this point including once on the Livestream. In the first game, we won, but it was close since I had a few poor rolls and it ended with a few close calls.

In the second game we played, we picked up a few really great buildings in the first round and proceeded to CRUSH IT HARD. I think we had every building in play to have the max strength by the end of the game. It was pretty crazy.

In both games, we ended up winning. I do think it is a bit easy, but that is fine for the length and style of play. I do wish there were a few more bosses to take on since we played both already and I feel like have seen what the game has to offer. Even though I have seen what the game has to offer, it is one that I like and would easily play again. Happy to finally get this played.


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Michael missed out on some games and I thought it would be a great idea to play Dinosaur World with James and Susan.

I learned this back in November and enjoyed it. I was glad to get it back to the table. I could easily teach it to them since I had played it so recently and the rules are straightforward enough to easily explain from the rules.

Sure, there are a lot of small rules and things happening since it is a pretty deep Euro game.

During the game, there are common goals to work towards so I always focus on those goals and which dinos to try and acquire.

In this game, we needed 6 red dinos... the most dangerous type! I picked up a few dino cages that could host those T-Rex dinos. Since I was getting them early and often, I was rolling in the points and excitement. I kept my security up to maintain the threat from those dangerous dinos.

Everything seemed to be going pretty well for me, I also had a clear advantage since I had played before.

I picked up a bunch of tiles that I could activate for a lot of excitement during the game too. It worked out. I won the game with 80 and Susan was at 54 and James had 49.

I believe they both enjoyed the game well enough. I definitely liked it more than my second play. I do think the little boredom tokens are totally fiddly. The game is also a total table hog, I think we used every inch and we definitely had no extra room for Michael to even play with us.

We will have to check this out on the stream at some point since I think there are a lot of people who are interested in learning more about this one.

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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.
Thank you.
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Mon Jan 10, 2022 12:00 pm
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The Cat Lady needed to Cover Her Assets before the School of Sorcery cast the Hokito spell

Steph Hodge
United States
Tennessee
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Well, it's no Ginkgopolis...
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Microbadge: Robin Williams fanMicrobadge: Picture of the Year - 1st placeMicrobadge: All the Meeples of the Rainbow blogMicrobadge: Great Big Sea fanMicrobadge: Peter Lik fan
Please thumb deserving posts

From gallery of punkin312



Hia Everyone!

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


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



New vids
Illusion


Boba Mahjong (ON KS NOW!)


Hens



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Michael and I were looking for a quick game so we settled on Hokito to try. New to me!

We have tried the other games in the series and if you are familiar with the series you know they are abstract games. They all sort of have the same feeling and artwork.

Hokito definitely has the most interesting gameplay and it starts with the random setup on the board. Players will take turns moving a piece equal to the number on the tile skipping over any empty locations. stacks with 2+ tokens can only land on other stacks of 2+, and single discs can't land on stacks.

It is pretty straightforward and works well. It does come down to whoever can claim that HUGE stack at the end of the game will win, but perhaps with more plays it will become more defensive and there will be more tall stacks than just one.

Easily my favorite in the series so if you were looking for an abstract game for the collection, this would work well. You can get this series on the BGG store. Glad to have tried it.


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Next up, Michael and I chose to learn School of Sorcery. New to me!

School of Sorcery is a 2-player only game where players are trying to race to get 13 points first. The cards you acquire will have the points needed to win and will have special abilities.

In the game, you will roll your 3 dice and then allocate cards to each of the dice. The cards will indicate how many crystals you will allocate to each of the cards at the matching location. There is a portal space that players can assign their crystals to any of the locations from there.

Each card will have specific requirements for how they can be claimed by the players and how much control is needed.

Every card has a special ability or way that it will score, so you have to pick and choose how you want to place those gems carefully so you don't let your opponent gain a bunch of points.

I enjoy the theme in this game and I like the mechanics for the most part. I do think there are a few too many things going on, for example, I don't really like the portal and the re-roll tokens. There are already cards that will flip your dice over, and I think that is enough to still keep it interesting.

This is a game I could play again, but I do think I would want to house rule a few things beforehand. It probably just needs a bit more development.

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Michael and I weren't looking to learn any last-minute games before the end of the year, but I wanted to try the expansion Cat Lady: Kittens. New to me Expansion!

I had been meaning to try this one for a long time since it is so small and Kittens!

This new expansion adds a bunch of kitten cards to the deck of cards. You can play with the treats expansion just as easily.

In Cat Lady, you are drafting rows of cards which might include cats and food and toy, and other types of cards. Now you will be drafting Kittens as well. Each Kitten card will take any 2 foods, or it will automatically be fed by a mother cat that shares the same color of fur as the kitten. They get paired up as cat and Kitten. So Cute!!

That is really all the rules, so the Kitten expansion will forever be in my games of Cat Lady. Easy to incorporate and play with even when teaching the game.

Michael and I had a super close game. I had a LOT of pairs of cats and kittens, but I wasn't sure it would be enough. Michael had all the toys and other points for everything else. He ended up winning 72 to my 69!! It was wicked close, I should have had it! Noooooo

Always fun to pull this game off the shelf. Maybe we should show it on stream sometime.

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James and Susan came over one day and we decided to play Cover Your Assets.

We had played this a few years ago so everyone was familiar with how it plays out.

Cover your Assets is a small box card game where you are collecting sets for points. The catch is that you can steal other people's sets that are on the top of the pile.

This is a light take-that game since you will definitely get your sets stolen at some point during the game. The sets that are stolen get lush with points since you need to add cards to the sets in order to steal them and the owner could possibly defend them too.

During our game, I managed to sneak a win. Michael stole from James and I stole from Michael and Susan stole from me and then James stole it back for a HUGE STACK OF CARDS. It was unbeatable, except I found a way. Not really sure how it all went down, but I weaseled my way back into claiming that set as my own and covering it with another set to help secure it.

I was pretty impressed I stole it back. I ended the game with 481. Susan was second with 325 and James 291 and Michael at 235.

It is a neat card game. There is a new edition of it with the new box artwork. It is a fun family type of game. You can't take it too seriously. I do think I enjoy the other game like it called Cover Your Kingdom better. There are more opportunities and special abilities that make it slightly more interesting for me.

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New to the Collection:






Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Time to Ramp it Up across the Last Aurora in the Mechanica to Tiny Tina's Robot Tea Party

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!

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When Buck came over we ended up checking out Last Aurora. New to me!

I have to admit, Last Aurora doesn't really look like a Euro game, but with the card mechanic and the resource manipulation, it is very much a Euro game.

During the game, players will manage their convoy including the people in the group and the resources that can be stored in the vehicles. The goal is to make it all the way to the finish. The further ahead you can end with the more points you will get. There are other ways to score points as well, but it is important to keep up with your opponents.

The way you activate your crew is really interesting since they will go into a rest round unless you manage your provisions well enough to keep them going from round to round. The more people you can activate each turn the more stuff you can acquire. Maybe you can gain upgraded vehicles, or resources, or pick up new crew along the way.

Everything is important, you don't want to be in the lead since you will have to deal with ambushes that will happen, and the other players might not be around to help deal with them.

I think we all really enjoyed the game as we were playing. The mechanics are interesting and new and it is fun to figure out how to manipulate everything you have each turn. We ran into a few hiccups towards the end of the game that we questioned. For example, we didn't have ANY vehicles once we got to the 3rd deck. I am not sure if that was just our play or if that happens often, but it was a bit rough going.

There are a few expansions for this game, and I would definitely be interested in checking those out to see how they change up the game. I feel like the game is like 90% there for me, but some things just didn't turn out great.

This is a game that I will remember and it is a game I will want to play again. It could easily have a higher or lower rating with more plays, so we will just have to see what happens!

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Another game we got to the table when Buck came over was Mechanica. New to me!

I learned about this game at PAX U and thought it looked super cool. I love the idea of puzzle pieces creating a machine to convert resources into advanced resources. Those resources will eventually get shipped off for contracts and points. The conveyor belts are cool and the puzzle pieces are even cooler.

During the game, players will produce resources for their conveyor belts and send them down the line to the trucks for delivery. The pieces they buy will be added to the line and have cool powers to upgrade and duplicate resources etc.

Each turn, the active player can buy any number of pieces from the wheel and common piles. the wheel will populate with a new tile each turn, so there will always be something new. Once the tile stack runs out and there are no more tiles on the wheel the game will end.

I think the mechanics are interesting and the gameplay is straightforward. When we played it was clear there was a major flaw in the game, however. Michael chose to never buy one upgrade piece for his machine except for the production purple pieces which he got a few of them. He was generating orange and purple resources from those tiles and had no need to gain machine parts. he would produce and sell and it ended with him completely dominating us. He had over doubled our points.

Michael's strategy was just way too good. The only way I can think of that we would have gotten anywhere near his score would be that we could completely run our full line each turn (like him). As it stands right now, if you buy machine parts that convert the resources, those resources will get stopped for the turn, they don't move straight through. The more machine parts you have the slower your production will be and your turns are limited and precious.

I want to like this game, but with a clear flaw in the game, it is hard to do that. It seems like a major oversight, but I have only played it once, so we will see what happens in a second play. Because of that dominating strategy, it seems like there is only one way to really play, and that makes it less fun.


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Since we had Buck over all day we decided to play a faster game and this time we chose Borderlands: Tiny Tina's Robot Tea Party. New to me!

I have heard of the little robot Claptrap, but never played the videogame with him in it. He is a silly robot and in this game, you are trying to craft a silly claptrap robot with cards.

It is a simple game where you are just playing cards down to either your robot body or another player's robot body. You are trying to mess up your opponents with take-that attack cards and by simply placing the wrong parts on their bot.

The theme is cute and I can see it being fun for non-gamers, but for me, it was a LONG slugfest of a card game. Oh, you are close to finishing your bot, here is a card to ruin that and you have to start over. It was time and time again, which never seemed to end.

Yeah, this game was so not for me, but if you are looking for a light beer and pretzel kind of game, I can see it working for you.

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One other day when I was playing games with James and Susan, I thought we could play Super-Skill Pinball: Ramp it Up!. New to me!

I figured I could teach it easily enough since I had played Super Skill Pinball the first game in the series. Ramp it Up is just the same with new boards, and it is also standalone so you don't need the first one to play this new one.

If you aren't familiar with the game, it is actually highly thematic. In the game, you roll the dice and everyone will choose to use either of the dice values for their action. The ball will move around your board as you try to gain combos and bonuses from the different sections like you would in pinball.

They hadn't played before so I taught the basics before jumping into the details of the casino map we chose to play.

In the new Ramp it Up game, there is actually a second part to the map where you can shoot the ball high into and keep it alive longer from the top region of the board. There are new bumpers in the upper region too. It is not so easy to get into that upper region, but once you get in there you don't want to lose the opportunity.

With the casino board, there is a security guard walking around and he will put you in jail for a turn if he catches you, so you want to avoid that, if possible.

It was a great game. Susan and I totally lost early since we took a chance and nudged the die by 1 and then of course the next roll was a double so we BOTH fell early. James just totally killed us that game, but we still had a great time learning it.

Susan went out and bought it for her youngest and he has been totally loving it! Yay! Passing on the good times to other gamers is always the best. So happy to have played this. I hope we can play it on stream sometime in the near future! Everyone can join in too when we do!

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Thanks for following along!

Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


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Disclaimer: I am a contract Employee of BGG. I review games that are provided by the publisher. I am not compensated for my blog content.
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Steph's New to Me List for December 2021!

Steph Hodge
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From gallery of punkin312


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


This year I have made the goal of learning 400 500+ games!

What an EPIC YEAR for NEW GAMESSSSSSSSS - I have never learned so many in a year since I have kept track. Looking forward to 2022!


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


Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
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Steph's Awesome Spectrum Rating System!

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



December List
from Worst to Best






From gallery of punkin312
Flam-boozle:

Basically Hangman. I didn't find it compelling or interesting. It is just not a game for me, it seems.


2/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
The Final Word:

Several word games are included in this box. I can see how they might be fun for non/casual gamers since the rules are simple. I played a few of the games and found they could really use some balancing development. They weren't much fun for me at all.


4/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
The Arabian Pots:

I love that this game can be played with blind gamers. As far as the actual game it isn't that great. shaking pots to get them in a tic-tac-toe pattern. Shrug, it's a game.


4/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Canopéa:

I wanted to play this because I enjoy Celestia, but this is a simple dexterity game and very different. As far as Cooperative dexterity games go, this really wasn't very good or innovative. I was expecting more.


4/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Bahama Taxi:

On BGA - Perhaps a bit one-note, but I do like how the cards work in this, it reminded me of Free Ride a bit. I can see why it would bore people, but I think it was fine.


5/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Borderlands: Tiny Tina's Robot Tea Party:

I have no connection to the robot character claptrap, but this game is all about building him a body. It is very take-that, so in general, not a game I enjoy. I didn't find anything wrong with the game, it just isn't much fun.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Magic: The Gathering – Game Night 2019:

Yep. Magic the Gathering has now officially been played. I get why people like it, I just think it is okay. I am not big on this type of card play.


5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Las Vegan:

on BGA, this is a new trick-taking game. I thought it was fine and I would play again, but there is nothing about it that really makes it stands out.


5/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
School of Sorcery:

I like the theme and the idea of the game. It was all just too much. If I were developing this game I would change a lot of things from various card abilities to the portal. Just didn't work very well for me.


5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Pantareï:

A simple abstract game that sort of reminded me of Tak a bit. Pantarei is faster and simpler, and I am glad I got to try it. This will be interesting for abstract fans.


5.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Tavern Tales: Legends of Dungeon Drop:

Cute card game where you try to collect gems and get to 30 points first. You have to try and bluff and gain access to the caverns for the gems. I worked well with 2-4 players and was interesting to try at 2p. I like that there are variants included in the box for various play options.


6/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

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Talisman: Harry Potter:

I haven't been into the Talisman games I have played. This is the best of the bunch just because I love the theme 100%. Not sure the character abilities are balanced much, but it doesn't bother me too much. This game is clearly just a re-theme and now much development went into it. Some serious issues with the rules no one seems to address on the forums. Glad to have tried it and could play again if some questions are answered.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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Hokito:

My favorite of the 3 games since there is a lot to think about each turn. In the end, it is an abstract game and comes down to the final few turns to really determine the overall winner.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Lowdown:

I liked the dice version of this game. The card version worked fine and actually reminded me of Gnoming A Round. Both games are fine, but nothing groundbreaking going on here. It is forgettable in the long run.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Catapult Feud:

Who wouldn't like flinging boulders across the table at their opponent? It sounds like simple joys and it is. Fun dexterity game and is great for kids and families.


6/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Elf: Snowball Showdown:

Silly luck card game with a snowball theme. We were all laughing and having a good time, but it isn't much more than a lighthearted card game without many choices. You can pick who you attack, so there is that. Harmless and easy holiday game.


6.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Love Letter: The Hobbit – The Battle of the Five Armies:

Great theme, not a game I particularly enjoy playing frequently but can appreciate why Love Letter became so popular. I would be happy to play this again, but it doesn't wow me.


6.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312



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From gallery of punkin312
Arch Ravels:

Bright bold colorful game with great pop culture references throughout. The gameplay is straightforward and accessible. Great for young or new gamers. I have a few issues with it such as the balance of the player powers and the event cards, but the overall experience is a positive one. After 3 plays, I am not drawn to play it further but would play on request.


6.5/10 After 3 plays (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
신묘한 사다리 (Mysterious Ladder):

The best version of Chutes and Ladders ever. Cute monkeys and an impressive game board that makes it super exciting for kids. Definitely for the younger crowd, but still very enjoyable.


7/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Gremlins: Holiday Havoc Card Game:

Never seen the movie, but the theme might not be important? Gremlins is a real-time pattern recognition game and I love those! We had a fun time playing this game, maybe since I enjoy it so much. Reminds me of Chadango and makes me want to play that.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Video Vortex:

Didn't know much about this one, and certainly didn't know that it was a deck-building game! I do like Star Realms for the streamlined small box it is. Video Vortex is very much like Star Realms but with a few added mechanics and life points. Tons of player abilities that are interesting. I do think it is just a few too many mechanics, but in general, I liked what it was doing.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
The Key: Theft at Cliffrock Villa:

Played one Key played them all? This is very much the same as the others, which new puzzles to solve. Easy to jump in if you already know. Works well and would recommend to those who already love the Key series!


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312



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From gallery of punkin312
Riftforce:

This is a 2-player dueling card game, works a bit different than you might imagine, but you are still trying to fight over the areas by eliminating your opponent in locations. Cool deck abilities and combos to figure out each game. It was definitely interesting and I can see the appeal. I liked it and would try again, but it is a bit long for what it is and isn't exactly my taste in games.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
That Time You Killed Me:

A new abstract game with a time-travel theme. Multiple layers to move around and face-off your opponent. There is also a campaign to work through that adds in new obstacles to overcome. Pretty cool game for those who enjoy abstract thinking.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Disney's Kingdom Hearts Perilous Pursuit:

I actually learned Fantastic Beasts Perilous Pursuit this year, and this is essentially the same game with a different theme. One mechanic has changed, but the heart of the game plays the same. Cooperative dice rolling that is sort of like Yahtzee to gain matching symbols. Players work together to overcome the different monsters at each location. I really enjoy the series and think it is a lot of fun to roll all the dice and just see what happens.


7/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Mechanica:

Such a cool idea for a game. I love building the factory and converting resources. From the first play, there seems to be a super OP strategy and that is what worries me. Will try again, but based on what happened in the first game, I am not sure it will be a long-term keeper.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Blazon:

Hitting KS this week and I played the prototype game. The theme is different and cool. I just learned the Hodge crest and so it is interesting to learn more about the different symbols. I like card drafting and there is a bunch of possibilities. Quick pattern game to score the most points and it works well. I liked it.


7/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
The Rocketeer: Fate of the Future:

New 2-player game with a bunch of multi-use cards. I haven't seen the movie but the game still felt super thematic to me. Beautiful game. Different ways to score points and it is fun to see how you can use the cards each round to gain the upper hand. I think many gamers would appreciate this one, especially if they play 2-player games.


7/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Stella: Dixit Universe:

I really like this new take on Dixit. Found on BGA if you wanted to try it. This is a streamlined Dixit where you don't have to think of creative responses. It is neat, but I can see why people might not enjoy it if they don't enjoy the other Dixit games.


7/10 After 4 plays (Not Owned)

From gallery of punkin312



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From gallery of punkin312
Last Aurora:

Super solid game that I am excited to try again soon. This game will possibly go higher or lower with more plays since it was sort of hard to judge on the first play. A lot of the mechanics are innovative and cool, but there are a few parts of the game that I question and think might need some development. Overall, this was a surprise and worth trying.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Ni no Kuni II: The Board Game:

Cooperative dice game where you are trying to build up the city and defend again the monsters that are trying to attack. Pretty simple to learn and play. I definitely enjoyed the experience and will play again, but I worry about the replay and it getting stale in a few plays.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Super-Skill Pinball: Ramp it Up!:

Thematic roll n write game! If you love Pinball then you will likely enjoy this one. It really feels like you are trying to combo up and keep that ball alive and well to gain all the points. This is the second game in the series and it is just as cool.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
The Kringle Caper:

Fantastic to play during December since it is thematic and Christmas! Loved the puzzles. A bit easier than Independence Incident, but both games are great. I look forward to playing more in the series!


7.5/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Kids Chronicles: Quest for the Moon Stones:

So super cute for the kiddos! I would have LOVED this growing up. Kids are spoiled these days with so many cool games and this is totally fun for the family. Too simple for strategy gamers, but amazingly awesome for kids. Perfect gift for your niece or nephew. I still want to play through it all too.


7.5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
The Goonies: Escape With One-Eyed Willy's Rich Stuff – A Coded Chronicles Game:

If you enjoy The Goonies, you will enjoy this game. It's a fact. Fun for the fam escape-style game with puzzles to decode and it is thematic to the movie to the T. Good times.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Smoothies:

Delightful roll n write game. I didn't even know that when I opened the box. I figured it was a card game! really solid RnW game though and one I am happy to play again soon.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
The Night Cage:

Innovative tile-placement game where you are exploring the dark looking for keys and an exit to escape with all of the other players. Lookout for the nightmares that will try to harm you along the way. Such a challenging cooperative game but super fun to try and succeed. Definitely worth trying out!


7.5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
The LOOP:

Cooperative game with a super cool cube tower that spits out cubes into 3 possible locations. Love that tower! It is a challenge to beat Dr. Faux and all the clones. Great game with cool card interactions.


7.5/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312




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From gallery of punkin312
Cape May:

There is a really elegant game here. I love the ease of play and how you manipulate the movement. There is a lot to consider and it is just not difficult to play. Really enjoyable.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Ultimate Railroads:

This is based on the Asian Railroads expansion inside the box. The expansion is awesome! it adds a new Industry track that is shared among all players. The game is a bit too open though and I felt I could do everything I wanted to. Still super cool and I will want it. I played on BGA.


8/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Set a Watch:

Really awesome cooperative game where you beat up the baddies and have cool powers. Sort of reminds me of a small Pathfinder game which I love. Very excited to play the expansion soon!


8/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
The Adventures of Robin Hood:

Such a cool game! A big campaign adventure game with easy-to-learn rules where you can just jump in and start. I love the big book included in the game too. Awesome turn order mechanic and how the events work. Cool theme and worth playing.


8/10 After 2 plays (Owned)

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From gallery of punkin312
Legacies:

Has the potential to increase after a few more plays. Didn't officially play the entire game yet, but man I love everything going on in this game. Such a heavy euro game that is awesome. Super excited to get it back to the table.


8/10 After 1 play (Owned)

From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312
Animals in Espionage:

Fantastic 2-player card game with the I split you choose mechanic. This is a game I will always want to play and never refuse to play. I love this! I played all the variations and love them all!


8.5/10 After 5 plays (Owned)

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Game of the Month!




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Ark Nova:

Wow, this is a big game! This has a lot of cool mechanics and a lot of card interactions and combos. I really enjoyed working out the different actions and cards. It is no wonder that so many people have been digging this one. I can't wait to own it!


9/10 After 1 play (Not Owned)

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New to me Expansions!




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Fort: Cats & Dogs Expansion:

Neat small box expansion. The dogs are a fun add-on since you are trying to collect the dogs and they run around each deck of cards. I wasn't feeling the cat module as much as the dogs. Easy to add in if you enjoy Fort.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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Cat Lady: Kittens:

Cute kittens! I think this little expansion adds a lot without adding a lot. Definitely easy to incorporate into the game. It's great.


7.5/10 After 1 play (Owned)

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Watch Michael and I talk about our Top 10 Games played in December!




The Tally


January: 27
February: 44
March: 35
April: 40
May: 49
June: 54
July: 37
August: 92!
September: 37
October: 40
November: 70
December: 45





Total new-to-me games for the year: 570!



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





Happy Gaming!!!



-Steph


If you like what you saw, please thumb!

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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 Jan 3, 2022 12:00 pm
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The Public Market Pantarei in the Valley of the Vikings had Arch Ravels

Steph Hodge
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Hia Everyone!

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


Thanks to Dfube, I now have a chance to sell some cool All the Meeples of the Rainbow shirts!
If you enjoy the blog and want to support me and my good friend Dfube you can check them out here: https://bit.ly/3lzvtcV
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At PAX U I got Valley of the Vikings that I was looking to try again! I first played it at BGG Spring when it was nominated for Kinderspiel.

Michael hadn't played before, but since it is HABA, it is pretty easy to get into.

No matter how many players you play with, you will always use the 4 boats and extra boats are dummy players.

Valley of the Vikings is a dexterity game where you are bowling a ball to knock over the pins in the middle of the board. The pins you knock over will move the corresponding players on the dock. If one of the player discs falls off the dock then scoring will take place and everyone left on the dock will score loot depending on their location on the dock.

Once all of the loot has been claimed the game will be over and whoever collected the most will win.

This is such a cute game and I have had a blast each time I have played it! We just played it on the stream with Senor Azul as a 3rd player and it was hilarious, I definitely recommend checking out the video.

I love this game it is a definite keeper for me. It feels totally different than any other dexterity game I have and it is great!

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When Buck came over I knew it was a great time to try Public Market again.

Public Market is a polyomino game where you are collecting fish to sell at the market. You are looking to collect the most points from the fish you sell and the collections made.

Each turn the active player will decide which fish they will pay to obtain, then whoever spent the most will go first to either fish for the turn or go to market for the turn.

The fish you sell at the market will gain you points and/or ongoing benefits. In addition, you will check your ice crate to see how many bonus coins you will get for how filled it is.

There is a huge bag of fish that is in one big display, once that bag is empty it will trigger the end of the game.

This is a game that really works better with more players since there is a bidding aspect too. I think there is an alternate rule for 2 player games.

Most people know I love polyominoes and tile-placement. Probably because I can just see patterns pretty well end enjoy finding them. There is certainly a lot to think about as you select which fish you collect for both the icebox and the market selling.

I am glad I got the game back to the table. I think it is super solid and I would be glad to play it again sometime soon!


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James and Susan were over one night and I thought it would be nice to play a great-looking game with easy-to-follow rules. We played ArchRavels.

I played this at PAX and enjoyed it and knew it would be a nice game to include in our game night.

Arch Ravels is a resource management game where you are collecting yarn to craft into various items and projects for points. It is an easy action selection game to gather resources or craft items.

I have now played 3 games of this and I like it well enough. I am fully convinced the player boards are not balanced at all. It is clear that some are much better than others.

As far as the rest of the game plays out, it is a solid game that is really nice to look at. I love all the pop culture references those are super clever and just fun.

I can look past the clear balance issues, and I would play again. We ended up playing on the livestream and I was playing Neeha, who is clearly OP. Rebecca is clearly underpowered.

In the end, I am not sure if it is a keeper at this time, it is dancing the line. After 3 plays, I do feel like I have seen what the game has to offer and I like it. As I said, I like the game, and would play again. It is definitely worth checking out, especially if you have a connection to knitting or crocheting.

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From gallery of punkin312


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From gallery of punkin312




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Michael and I decided to play another game from the 2-player abstract set that we got from Beth who runs the BGG store! This time we played Pantareï. New to me!

In Pantarei, players are trying to take control of the discs, and whoever can capture 7 discs first will win. The catch is when you move a stack it can only be 1-2 discs and it has to move the number of spaces that the symbol says. You can only move if your colored disc is on top.

The game is actually pretty simple, but you have to take care to note your opponents' pieces at all times since they can simply jump on top of stacks with the right piece.

It is a super-fast abstract game. I think I like it since it is simple and quick. You can always just play again.

This is a game that I liked more than MANA, but it is still an abstract game. Definitely glad to have tried it and I would play again. Not sure it is a game that will be hitting the table all that frequently.

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New to the Collection:
Recent FB purchase:
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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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Fri Dec 31, 2021 12:00 pm
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