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
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tulsa
Oklahoma
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A subscription Geeklist has been created for those who want to be notified of when a new list is posted: The What We're Playing Subscription List
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26. Board Game: Eclipse: Rise of the Ancients [Average Rating:8.46 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.46 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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We've had the Eclipse expansion sitting unopened for a while. Our fun play earlier in the week convinced us to finally open it up. Lots of cool stuff! I like the new techs and the interesting Ancient worlds.

We played a two player co-op game with this. Yes, we've been silly and have made a co-op variant for Eclipse with two.
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27. Board Game: Time 'n' Space [Average Rating:6.26 Overall Rank:3928]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Bought this a few weeks ago and hadn't had a chance to play yet. Since playing with a group wasn't going to be happening anytime soon, and it normally requires 3 or 4 players, we decided to just give this a whirl with a silly 2 player co-op variant as well. Worked OK.
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28. Board Game: Hanabi & Ikebana [Average Rating:7.48 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.48 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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The other evening it was a bit too late for playing anything but a filler, but we got in a game of our long-time favorite evening game, Hanabi.
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29. Board Game: Cardline: Animals [Average Rating:6.59 Overall Rank:1851] [Average Rating:6.59 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Picked this up yesterday. It's like Timeline, but instead of dates, you try to place animals in a line based on size, weight or lifespan. Probably won't have as many sets, but there three sets of numbers to use in the base game, so that should give it some variety.

Once the line was getting full, it was harder to figure out an animal's comparative size than I thought it would have been!
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30. Board Game: Flash Point: Fire Rescue – Urban Structures [Average Rating:7.63 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.63 Unranked]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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We played a two player game of Flash Point yesterday and (finally) decided to use the Urban Structures expansion. It adds some challenges to the game and provides some variety.

Flash Point keeps puzzling me. I really enjoy the game yet we don't play it very often. Its a shame....
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31. Board Game: El Capitán [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1428]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
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A first timer yesterday (my list of unplayed games keeps shrinking!).

Definitely a good game though we suspect it will be great with 3 or more players. At first it feels like randomnly placing cubes and you try to avoid loans. Later on you'll realize you can't do without loans and every placement of a cube has consequenses.

I hope to get this played with three players soon.
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32. Board Game: Babel [Average Rating:6.69 Overall Rank:1171]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
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Still one of the best and meanest two player game I own. By placing your cards right and using your actions wisely you can completely destroy the temples and civilizations of your opponent in one mere turn.
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33. Board Game: Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of Ashardalon Board Game [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:609] [Average Rating:7.17 Unranked]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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Darin and I played a couple games of this yesterday, just on the starting scenario (goal: kill 12 monsters).

We died horribly the first time, after killing 8 monsters. As the rogue and paladin, we had used both healing surges by turn 3 or 4. Lots of hits from the monsters, some unpleasant encounters, and not a single healing item drawn from the treasure deck.

The second attempt, with the fighter and cleric, went much better. We killed 12 monsters without using a single healing surge. The Dwarven Resilience ability (basically a free surge) helped with that, as did drawing healing items this time around.
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34. Board Game: Twilight Imperium (Third Edition) [Average Rating:7.87 Overall Rank:56]
 
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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We started the day off with a 6 player game of TI3, expecting it to take most of the day.

4 hours later, early in the 6th round, I was in the lead and I took the Bureaucracy strategy card. One of my options was the Game Over card. I couldn't not take it, disappointed as I was in ending the game early.

But that meant we got more games in...
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35. Board Game: Nottingham [Average Rating:6.26 Overall Rank:2665]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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Next up was a 5 player game of Nottingham.

Not much of our collection is suitable for 6 players (at least not for the time frame and present mix of players) so my brother went home to fetch a few of his games while the rest of us had a round of this, counting up points as he walked in the door with more games.
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36. Board Game: Road Kill Rally [Average Rating:6.42 Overall Rank:2805]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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This game is crazy awesome with 6 players.

One of the new players discovered pretty quickly that going fast isn't always good - he was moving pretty quickly in the lead, then pulled a tile with a hairpin turn. laugh

I won this, coming in first in the race (thanks to the shortcut tile, which allows the last player to enter the tile to jump to the front of the pack). Also, 4 of my 5 pedestrians scored were seniors, which are worth the most points. And I spent most of the game driving around with a Napalm Flame Thrower. devil
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37. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:371]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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More craziness ensued with RoboRally. With 6 players, the factory floor gets a little crowded.

We started everyone off with an option card, because they're fun. One player got the pressor beam, which allowed him to push a robot one space away instead of doing damage with his laser. He knocked two players into pits in the first two rounds.
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38. Board Game: Castle Panic [Average Rating:6.67 Overall Rank:880]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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The last game of the night was a 5 player game of Castle Panic with the Wizard's Tower expansion.

This was the easiest round of this game we've ever had. We only had one brief period where the board looked a little scary, but then the Berserker card came long. This card allowed the current player to draw a new card for every 'hit' card played; he managed to play a total of 11 hit cards in one turn. It was nuts.

We only lost a few sections of wall, and one tower. For good measure, we had the castle walls fully repaired before killing the last monster, so we ended the game down a single tower and with two sections of wall on fire.
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39. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:2358]
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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We had our monthly game designer meeting yesterday and it was fun. We didn't have a game ready this time as we just placed an order from The Game Crafter for replacement cards, but we were able to playtest other people's games and had a lot of fun giving feedback.

I find it very rewarding to help others improve their game. I love the collaborative effort and the end product shows just how important it is to playtest not only with players, but with other game designers. Both groups are important as you get different information from each.

And today, we're going to a friend's house to help play test his new game. Looking forward to it!

Of course, with all this game testing, it's meant we haven't played any produced games, but such is the life of a game designer. Such a first world problem.
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40. Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:138] [Average Rating:7.60 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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While I've been very insistent that Legendary is lousy as a co-op, I had an idea for how a variant to get it to work like a co-op which we tried for a few games today. Worked well enough to be fun and to keep tweaking, though there are some pretty hard obstacles to overcome.
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41. Board Game: Castle Dice [Average Rating:6.71 Overall Rank:2236]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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We've been eagerly awaiting Castle Dice since playing it a con last month. Got our copy Monday and played a game last night. Very fun resource gathering game!

And a thank you to Sarah for pointing this out to me in the first place, on earlier 'What We're Playing' geeklists.
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42. Board Game: Viticulture [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:140]
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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Played this with my husband tonight. I was really off my game and the randomness of the cards was really against me. While I lost 19 points to my husband's 25, I didn't make most of those points until the last few years. Sadly, a frustrating game for me, but my husband quite enjoyed himself. He likes adapting to the randomness while I prefer strategic choices & planning.
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43. Board Game: Guildhall [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:811] [Average Rating:6.97 Unranked]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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The basic set of Guildhall was back in stock, so we picked that up. Had a very close game of it. Everyone was within a point or two of winning, and we went around the table with every playing having a "if I can just get the right card, I win!" turn.
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44. Board Game: Space Alert [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:177]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Yes! Got to play Space Alert at the games day this weekend. This is my absolute favorite game, but since it is much more fun with at least 4 players, I don't get to play nearly as much as I would like.

We had two experienced players, one completely new player, and one player with minimal experience.

First mission, we got blown up in short order by a nuclear device that we failed to notice needed 3 people at once to disarm it. For the heck of it (and for training the newbie), we decided to see what would happen if we assumed the two people disarming had succeeded. What happened was that we would have been blown up by a series of enemy ships a few turns later.

Second mission, our captain ignored our warnings to stay out of the lower side areas while we vented the plasma conduits to repair the overloaded engine and got himself knocked out. But, hey, who needs him! We made it through the mission in otherwise good shape.

So, we continued on to mission 2 of a campaign flight. Everything looked so good...until I went the wrong way, bonked into a wall, and failed to refuel when I was supposed to, leaving us one shot sort of destroying a nasty swarm that practically ate the ship. We did survive though, despite the ship being ready to fall apart around us!
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45. Board Game: Seasons [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:176]
Brian M
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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I'd recently picked up the Seasons expansion and hadn't played yet. Had a very vicious game; lots of crystal-stealing cards in play!
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46. Board Game: San Juan [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:249]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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Played a couple of first timers yesterday and this was one of them. We played two two-player games and I really liked it.

In comparison to its big brother the card game is more luck driven. But because of the short length of the game this doesn't bother me at all.

Great game and I hope to play it more often.
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47. Board Game: Power Grid: The Robots [Average Rating:7.14 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.14 Unranked]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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I've played Power Grid a couple of times and found the two-player game just ok, but not great. I was advised to try the two-player game with this expansion and I must admit the game really gets better with this expansion (though I wouldn't use it with more than two players).

It's great to use the robot to block your opponent or make resources more expensive.
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48. Board Game: Mystery Rummy: Jekyll & Hyde [Average Rating:6.63 Overall Rank:2034]
Wesley Fechter
Netherlands
De Goorn
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My first ever rummy-game was the Jekyl & Hide game. Plays quick and is a great filler.
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49. Board Game: Innovation [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:304]
Adria D
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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I'm a bit behind on updating this.

Last Saturday, a friend came over for part of the afternoon. We tried a three player game of Innovation, which we found pretty swingy. Darin had no points (or achievements) until his last few turns, but was way ahead in tech. He ended up winning by finding a card that gave him an auto-win.
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50. Board Game: Village: Inn [Average Rating:7.86 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.86 Unranked]
Sarah Reed
United States
Rancho Cordova
California
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So we played Village with the Village Inn expansion today for the first time. Village was already one of our favorite games and the expansion definitely added to the experience. Sadly, I did not quite adapt as quickly as my husband and so he stole my victory with one of the new cards - the Cutpurse. At the end of the game, I had 55 and he had 54 and then the Cutpurse is scored. If you are in last place, you get 6 points. Otherwise you get 3, and well, obviously, he shot ahead to 60 and won the game. I thought I was far enough ahead and so I ended the game when I should have continued it for a while longer to get more points.

I found it a little distracting to have one more option when the game has so many already, but I think I just need another couple of plays to get adjusted to it.

But I am quite proud that I completed the travel section and went to all 6 cities, even though my husband was able to kill off his traveler first and claim the chronicle space.
 
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