What We're Playing - September 2013
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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The idea behind these lists is to load what you're currently playing, or just played. It's interesting to see who's playing what, to see if people are playing the same things, and to ask questions that might otherwise be relegated to a forum about a game with the benefit of the responses coming from someone who has it fresh on their mind.

Here's last month's list: What We're Playing - August 2013

This Geeklist idea was created by:
jes m
United States
tulsa
Oklahoma
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1. Board Game: Deadwood Studios USA [Average Rating:5.91 Overall Rank:5373]
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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We got this at the end of August from the Kickstarter and cracked it open on September 1st. While the box is not the best quality and came damaged, the boards and tokens are of good stock. Not completely happy about the square business cards, but considering you don't hold them in your hand, it's fine.

As for gamplay - lots of fun! We enjoyed the original and this is just as much fun if not a bit more since they streamlined things. I'm definitely looking forward to playing this with our friends. While it is fine with 2 players, I think it'll be even more dynamic with more.

Oh, and I won 141 points to my husband's 133.
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2. Board Game: DC Comics Deck-Building Game [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:715] [Average Rating:7.03 Unranked]
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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Unfortunately, I've been sick all week so I haven't had much strength or concentration to play games, but on Thursday night, I was feeling a bit better and so we pulled this out since it's a light game. I know people make fun of this game, but it's fun and light and has a place in our library.

Sadly, this game didn't go well for me. I had Batman and not many equipment cards were coming up while my husband played Wonder Woman and there were lots of villains. I was able to defeat some of the big villains near the end, but not enough to catch up. So he won 52 to my 40.

I'm thinking that next time we play, we play with the variant where we each play two super heroes. That way, we'll have more abilities to pull on and won't be so easily screwed if certain cards don't show up. That is one massive deck.
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3. Family: Dominion
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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Friday I was feeling a little better in the evening so we played Prosperity and Guilds. I was doing very well in the game until the last round when my husband scored 21 points and ended the game by buying the last colonies. So he won with 75 points and I had 65. Definitely one of the highest scoring games we've ever played. I like big money - lots of fun!
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4. Board Game: Trains [Average Rating:7.20 Overall Rank:410] [Average Rating:7.20 Unranked]
Stuart Rodgers
United Kingdom
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Okay, I've never played Dominion so I know this is very derivative of that game (a direct copy with a board in some circles) but it's the board that made me buy this over Dominion. I always liked the idea of the deckbuilding but I like the tactile element of board games as much as anything else: throw in some "stuff" and I'm all over it.

I played this once yesterday and, despite getting a couple of rules wrong, thoroughly enjoyed every minute. After the first turn or two my wife and I were just flying through our moves. I'm writing this in the morning and will spend my dog walking time coming up with strategies on how to talk my wife into playing again this afternoon.

Instant thumbsup
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5. Board Game: Love Letter [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:241]
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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We got together with friends last night and we played this. It was new to one guy and he loved it. So much that he asked his wife to look it up on Amazon to buy a copy or two.

It continues to be a hit and I'm quite interested to see what kind of re-themes AEG comes out with.
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6. Board Game: Forbidden Desert [Average Rating:7.20 Overall Rank:300]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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Played his game three times last week. It was the first time we got to play this and I really enjoyed it, though we lost the first two games.

The constantly changing board, the cooperation with your fellow players and of course the use of all the items and the usage of water makes this a really great game. After Pandemic and Roll through the Ages Matt Leacock has a hit in this house again!
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7. Board Game: Let's Start a Band! [Average Rating:6.93 Unranked]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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A small game by a Dutch designer/Publisher. Only 100 copies have been made of this game and some of the parts are handmade.

Played this for the first time last week and I really liked it. Every turn you recruit a new member for your music band. With your band you creat new songs which will get you either fans or money. Money can get you some luxury goods, but fans will earn you points.

The fun part is in managing the band. Some of your bandmember will get you special abilities, but you have to pay attention, because if they will get too famous they will leave the band. And record sells will drop after that!
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8. Board Game: Dirty Pig [Average Rating:6.05 Overall Rank:4083]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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Definite not a two player game. Just some bad luck in drawing cards and you'll loose this game within 5 minutes.
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9. Board Game: Urbania [Average Rating:6.48 Overall Rank:3768]
Walter Hunt
United States
Bellingham
Massachusetts
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This is an example of a game where we admire the designer and want to strangle the graphic artist. It originally had some production problems with misprinted tiles, but even when resolved the graphic presentation is subpar.

To improve your experience:
- Print out the specialist images that show a sample building that matches. (The cream-colored and gray buildings are hard to tell apart.)
- When playing, remove buildings from the board rather than turning them over. It will be much easier to tell what's going on.
- If possible, trade for the Subsidy Contracts expansion (and use the "Italian politics" variant). It adds more to the game than you might think.

This is a remarkably clever game in a little package; we play it 2-player a great deal and like it a lot. Due to the graphic problems it's been overlooked, but it's worth a second look.
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10. Board Game: Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set [Average Rating:7.28 Overall Rank:331]
 
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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I have very conflicted feelings about this game. It's kind of a train wreck. The rules are a mess - 20 plays and several online discussions and we can't even figure out what they mean when they say refer to "your strength die". They have hundreds of cards that do dozens of things ("Oh, whee, it's my fourth different 1d8+strength weapon!" and they seem to actively resist actually letting you have cool abilities or pull of interesting combos.

But, it's got this character building campaign aspect that we really, really enjoy. It's a lot of fun to grow a character in power and try to find better cards and get new skills. We've found this incredibly addictive. We've played through the included scenarios with two different sets of characters, and late this weekend we made a custom character to bring us to an even 12 so we could start through on a third set.
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11. Board Game: Warhammer 40,000 (fifth edition) [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:2080] [Average Rating:6.73 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Technically, I didn't really play Warhammer 40K. I played a homebrew drastically simplified game that resembles 40K a lot.

Hordes of Nids managed to overrun and devour the Eldar.
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12. Board Game: Rise of Augustus [Average Rating:6.76 Overall Rank:845]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Played a few more games of this light and fun game. Great for a larger group as most of the play is simultaneous.
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13. Board Game: Mage Knight Board Game [Average Rating:8.11 Overall Rank:24]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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Taught this to a couple friends on Labor Day.

One of them is looking for a good soloable game, and has had his finger hovering over the 'add to cart' button on this game for a while. I offered to teach it to him so he could get a feel for the game before buying it.

We did the full co-op scenario, 3 players (2 new), and won. We used our 'for fun' houserule (everyone starts with one Advanced Action, one spell, and one artifact), but didn't increase the city difficulties because of the new players. I (Arythea) took out two cities while the other players (Norowas, Goldyx) jointly eliminated the other two cities.
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14. Board Game: Battlestar Galactica: The Board Game [Average Rating:7.74 Overall Rank:65]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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We got in another game of this, with Daybreak. We played our copy this time, and broke it in. Cylons won in a very close game that ended midway through the final jump cycle.
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15. Board Game: Defenders of the Realm [Average Rating:7.33 Overall Rank:428]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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Yesterday, a friend came over for some games.

We started off with Defenders of the Realm. He hadn't played this before, but had played Pandemic so teaching this was easy. The Wizard, Sorceress, and Eagle Rider won relatively comfortably (as far as this game goes), overcoming an early taint threat.
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16. Board Game: Escape: The Curse of the Temple [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:458]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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We then played a round of Escape, which somehow this friend hadn't played yet - we teach this game to everyone.

We jumped right in with curses, and just played one round (which we won).
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17. Board Game: Zombie Fluxx [Average Rating:6.01 Overall Rank:3013]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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Our friend brought Zombie Fluxx with him, which we played one game of.

I'd never played a Fluxx game before. It was alright, one of those games you can't take seriously and probably best played with a drink or two.
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18. Board Game: Elder Sign [Average Rating:7.01 Overall Rank:491]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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We capped the evening off with a game of Elder Sign. We won with just a few turns (2 more doom tokens, with one coming at midnight) to spare.
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19. Board Game: Eminent Domain [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:467]
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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My husband got this as a very late birthday present last week (his birthday is in March) and we cracked it open last night. It had been a while since I'd look into this game so I didn't remember that it had role selection, but I rather liked the mix of deck-building and role selection. I wish I had been able to better capitalize on the role selection on my husband's turns, but this game looks like it takes a few plays to really get into the strategy of it.

I really thought my husband was sweeping up the game since he focused on warfare and conquered a lot of planets. At the end of the game, he had a hand size of 9 cards due to 4 of his plants having +1 hand size. I went with colonizing and producing/trading to get points. I really didn't feel like I was doing well, but the end score was 41 to 41. My husband won because he had 7 ships while I only had 3. It's great to see that this game has multiple paths to victory and I'm looking forward to playing it again.
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20. Board Game: The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game [Average Rating:7.64 Overall Rank:111] [Average Rating:7.64 Unranked]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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Bought a second hand copy of this game last week. It included some expansions but I decided to give the base game a try today.

The game plays very well, thought the introduction scenario is pretty easy. Can't wait to give the other scenarios and decks a try.

Too bad the game has a typical FFG-rulebook. Doens't read easy and when looking something up you keep searching.
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21. Board Game: Trains [Average Rating:7.20 Overall Rank:410] [Average Rating:7.20 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Still finding this a brilliant and fun game and playing every now and then.
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22. Board Game: Bruges [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:217]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Played Bruges a bit more the other week. I really enjoy the gameplay, but it's started to bother me a bit how bad canals seem to be, and how strong the Engraver is. When everyone's plan at the end of the game becomes "draw all the brown cards I can and hope to get the Engraver", that kind of puts a damper on the fun.
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23. Board Game: Krosmaster: Arena [Average Rating:6.86 Overall Rank:1053] [Average Rating:6.86 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Picked this up mostly for the 'cute' factor. Haven't actually played a full game of it yet, but we've played some tutorials and the little mini game that came with a promo figure. Looking forward to trying the full game.
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24. Board Game: Eclipse [Average Rating:7.95 Overall Rank:39]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Last week, I wound up needing to skip work Friday so I could go see the doctor (nothing major, just a sinus infection). This worked out well, as it turned out a friend of mine who was going to be moving out of state wound up with spare time Friday afternoon so we were able to get together before he left.

He brought a friend of his, and picked to play Eclipse. This was a very fun game. We all had trade alliances, but I couldn't resist two valuable undefended sectors right next to me and betrayed both Jay and Wendy and attacked them. I set up threatening Lisa, who did have a big fleet in the area, hoping she would attack me and take the traitor away.

Jay responded to my attack by burning all his resources and sending in a huge fleet to take his sector back. This went badly; not only were my ships well designed to fight him, but the dice betrayed him in a spectacular fashion.

Wendy just built up a barrier and kept exploring and controlling new territory, and didn't try to fight me.

Lisa did attack me - but hit a bit harder than I expected, and outlasted me on maneuvering in the last turn so she could control where the fights took place. This was a bit painful!

I wound up tied with Wendy. A very exciting game!
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25. Board Game: League of Six: Loyal Retinue [Average Rating:7.26 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.26 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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I picked up the expansion for League of Six. I didn't know if this was a good add-on or not, but it's hard to get in the US, so I figured I'd grab the chance. We did enjoy the expansion; it's not a big change, but you get special abilities that last all game (or end game scoring bonuses) when you take tiles, which added a neat dimension to what is already a clever and interesting bidding game.
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