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Every Man Needs A Shed

Life and Games (but mostly games) from Tony Boydell: Dad, Husband and Independent UK Game Designer, Agricola fanboy and jealous admirer of Carl Chudyk. www.surprisedstaregames.co.uk

Archive for Tony Boydell

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a shoulder to cry on

Anthony Boydell
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One of the constant (and undeniably valid) gamer complaints about this time of year on BGG / Social Media is that while the Internets makes us fully aware of all the good new games to get our hands on, there are never any copies of those good new games available!

As a growing community, it is essential that we - the fortunate few - maintain a dignified and supportive stance to comfort our fellow enthusiasts in their time of need. For example, there has been a bit of a run of 'want to buy's on the UK trading groups for the excellent Azul; doing my (albeit small) bit for partners-in-gaming-crime, I recently posted this reassuring message:

Spoiler (click to reveal)


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Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:25 pm
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Sitting up straight on the back of a bus

Anthony Boydell
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It's been barely a month since my own semi-centurious celebrations but, of course, its that time for many of my pals too; thus, Saturday night saw a Beer Bus tour of the Stourbridge area (!) in honour of my goodest pal Malcolm.

Firstly, as I have remarked before, I pretty much owe ending up as a game designer/player to this short, ginger dwarf from Dudley; he introduced me to my first D&D session (Rocky Lane, Liverpool - 1987) which led to roleplaying during my sandwich year which led to board gaming in my sandwich year (a lot of Ikusa and Diplomacy) and thence, ultimately, the progression to Magic: The Gathering, Coppertwaddle and so on and so forth.

Secondly, by 'Beer Bus Tour' I mean a motorised pub crawl around the industrial West Midlands: doesn't sound very salubrious BUT every damn Pub we ended up in had a wonderful, wide-ranging selection of real ales and craft beers.


(clockwise from the top) The naughty kids (including Mrs B) at the back of the bus;
the birthday boy (that's NOT his real moustache); and,
our (bloody freezing!) carriage on this snowy evening.


Friday and Saturday had seen a healthy dump of snow in the region and we were warned of more for early Sunday AM; thus - with a nervous tum - we dispatched Arthur to his grandparents, Benedict to a friends and Fred was going to enjoy the entire house to himself...albeit for less than 24 hours. I feared less for the well-being of the contents of the Boydell Drinks Fridge than I did for me and Mrs B getting stranded in the midst of a Brummie blizzard! Thankfully, we were vigorously-refreshed and full of pie and mash by midnight and sat in front of a blazing fire in Malcolm's 'local' and cared not a single jot!


(clockwise from the top left) Plum porter at the Severn Valley Railway terminus;
Too Many Santas;
safely home at the end of a long journey home; and,
a lunchtime (teaching game) of Codenames: Pictures


Beer of the night was, for me, 'Enville' - a delicious, light and honey-tanged gluggable amber - whilst the biggest thumbs-down was a rank 'Coffee & Vanilla Ale' that made everyone who sipped it gag and retch!

We greeted a snow-silenced Sunday with paracetamol, hot drinks, bacon and black pudding and - after a session to teach the Halls how to play Codenames: Pictures - slow-drove the slushy roads back to Newent. We picked up Benedict (travelling a worrisome, hardly-thawed lane) but had to leave Arthur with his Gee-Peeps on account of them all being snowed in amongst the hills of Lydbrook. He'll be absolutely fine, of course: snow, no school on Monday and able to drink his own weight in Hot Chocolate.

Me? Well I'll be working from home today (see the drift-blown Touran above) and maybe get a couple of runs at December's Snowdonia Solo Challenge (see last week's post) - I can hardly let all of that proceed without having a pop myself, can I?
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Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:55 am
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Adventskalendar 11 - A proper State to find oneself in!

Anthony Boydell
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51st State: Master Set

Ignacy is a top bloke.

You'll find no negative feelings here.

You can go about your business.

Good day.
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Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:20 am
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Adventskalendar 10 - How are you pronouncing that?

Anthony Boydell
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Iquazú

Before I get to my rant, let's try and agree what the game is called:



Right!

Now to the promo itself!

...

Oh, crivens - I've run out of ti-
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Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:50 am
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Adventskalendar 9 - Flick 'em Off

Anthony Boydell
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I'm off to my best pal Malcolm's 50th birthday party today and will be riding around the West Midlands on a double-decker bus drinking craft beers and eating pies.

I have just enough time to toss off a 'mouthful', though:

Dexterity games like this and Ice Cool and Catacombs and their cardboard-sculptured ilk are a tremendous amount of fun...for EXACTLY THE AMOUNT OF TIME IT TAKES TO GET A DEMO AT A CONVENTION! Then, afterwards - and in the safety of one's own home/club session - you stare at the assembled components and wonder whatever the Hell possessed you to pay good money for poor quality Dolls House furniture / a movie set fit for a flea.

"Oh, but it was hilarious when {insert tiresome you-had-to-be-there anecdote here}!!!" they cry (with too many exclamation marks, probably). No it wasn't. It never works out that way ie. you spend waaaay too much time missing everything, hunting for lost pieces under chairs / pulling them out of pet's jaws and bruising your cuticles. Avoid.
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Sat Dec 9, 2017 6:35 am
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The Not-So-Grateful Dead?!

Anthony Boydell
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So, THIS box of retro gorgeousness arrived on my doorstep (from the USA) today!



I have absolutely no idea from whom but, if you happen to see this post, thanks very much indeed!

The actual vinyl LP that comes with it is pretty good too!

#intrigued
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Fri Dec 8, 2017 2:45 pm
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Adventskalendar 8 - A Load of Balls

Anthony Boydell
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Glüx? So unassuming on it's original release that even the designer didn't know it had come out!


They're just not trying now, are they? Queen Games - renowned manufacturers (and birthers-to-the-world) of the glorious Kingdom Builder, Alhambra, Wallenstein and Lancaster - knock up a Festive slab of giant smarties tokens for this bag-centric equivalent of a deck of coloured cards with numbers on them.

I must point out - in the interest of balance - that I'd never heard of this before today, have never played it, have no idea how it plays and have no inkling of whether it's any good or not. I merely judge it by the lame box art, the dull board and the supply of food-dyed Eucharistic wafers included. I'd send it to one of you but, like the Queen Games graphics team on this, I evidently can't be arsed.
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Fri Dec 8, 2017 6:20 am
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Adventskalendar 7 - O! The Delicious Irony!

Anthony Boydell
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It was the first thing I noticed.

CAN you see it?

It's something (indirectly) to do with me.

Can YOU see it?

It's subtle, mind.

Can you SEE it?

You'll probably miss it altogether!

Can you see IT?

Can you?

Answers below, please (if you can be bollocking bothered).

P.S. I'm obviously not going to shit where I eat on this one.
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Thu Dec 7, 2017 6:20 am
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What shall we do..?

Anthony Boydell
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(Photo courtesy of DeanH; song inspired by both him and Toc)

What shall we do with a drunken worker?
What shall we do with a drunken worker?
What shall we do with a drunken worker?
Early in the morning.

Excavate the path to Hebron station.
Excavate the path to Halfway station.
Excavate the path to Clogwyn station.
Early in the morning.

Dynamite the Jungfrau while it’s snowing.
Dynamite the Jungfrau while it’s blowing.
Dynamite the Jungfrau while it’s snowing.
Early in the morning.

Filling in canals and picking flowers.
Filling in canals for hours and hours.
Filling in canals and picking flowers.
Early in the morning.

Slide 'im down The Cog on the Devil’s Shingles.
Slide 'im down The Cog till his buttocks tingle.
Slide 'im down The Cog on the Devil’s Shingles.
Early in the morning.

Bury his Surveyor with a nice, big headstone.
Bury his Surveyor coz he's nice and dead, Tone.
Bury his Surveyor with a nice, big headstone.
Early in the morning.

Tunnel under water till he gets to Sangatte.
Tunnel under water in his sturdy mine hat.
Tunnel under water till he gets to Sangatte.
Early in the morning.

Back to the Pub for a right old skinful.
Can't go t'church coz he's much too sinful.
Back to the Pub for a right old skinful.
Early in the morning.

What shall we do with a drunken worker?
What shall we do with a drunken worker?
What shall we do with a drunken worker?
Early in the morning.

Send him to Darjeeling...
(to be continued)


When you place your 3rd (Pub) worker, place him with a game marker disc underneath.
When you return your 3rd worker to the Pub, leave the disc in the action space for the next round: the space cannot be taken by any player during that round.
Your worker cannot come out during the next round (because he is 'sleeping it off' on that action space!).
At the end of that subsequent round, remove the disc from the space - it is available for the next round (as is your sobered-up 3rd worker)!
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Thu Dec 7, 2017 6:10 am
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Adventskalendar 6 - A River Ranis Through It

Anthony Boydell
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By Zeus' sagging "clock-weights" but this is a proper sturdy sheaf of cardboard and no mistake! Not two days ago was I (rightfully) complaining about the (inexcusable) paucity of some so-called 'gifts' and then the Gods deliver this fountainous load right in to my shocked face! Mind you, the thought of a worker-placing, dice-drafting 'race' game fills me with mortal dread; perhaps we could shoe-horn even MORE mechanics in, eh? All one needs is 'hidden roles' and a bloody deck-to-be-built and you can call "Housey-House!" for that four-slice toaster you've had you're eye on for ages.

A great promo, then, for a Jury's still out game; perhaps I should check out the Designers' pedigree? That's usually a good indicator of quality*.

(scurries off)

Oh.

*(says the bloke who shat Scandaroon on to a rightly-indifferent public)
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Wed Dec 6, 2017 6:15 am
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