Solitaire Games on Your Table - June 2014
Steve N
United Kingdom
Macclesfield
Cheshire
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cool Welcome one and all! Happy June! cool

Veterans of the SGoYT geeklists will know what to expect. If this is your first visit then well done for finding the brightest corner of the 'geek - prepare to be amazed at the sheer scale of solitaire gaming. Feel free to post comments on any/all of the items (and don't hesitate to add your own). We love talking about our games and it's great to generate some discussion.

Please do consider a visit to the 1 Player guild which is the hub of the solitaire gaming community, and don't hesitate to join - it's a nice thing to do.

If you'd like to be notified of future SGoYT geeklists then be sure to subscribe to the Solitaire Games on Your Table Monthly Geeklist SUBSCRIPTION THREAD. You wouldn't want to miss out now would you?

Forthcoming lists will be hosted by:

July 2014 Woelf
August 2014 petegs
September 2014 Malaiser
October 2014 dr.wheatie
November 2014 garyrbrooks
December 2014 Ryanmobile
January 2015 bikefreak

Thanks to Ryan for the chance to host this month!

Geekgold Giveaway

One of the many great things about the SGoYT geeklists is reading about such a diverse assortment of games. I'm sure I'm not alone in confessing that many are entirely new to me.

To be eligible for this month's geekgold giveaway (entirely optional) please append your posts with three full stars (summarising what is so great about your game) and one empty star (highlighting a possible flaw, or why it might not be for everyone). If you wish to focus your comments on a specific scenario, a specific variant or any other detail (rather than the game at large) then please don't hesitate to do so.

I hope it will be fun.
We might be able to learn a bit more about each other's games.
We might be tempted to look at games that we would otherwise have passed on.
I could end up buying every game that is mentioned.

At the end of the month I will use a random number generator to randomly select an item from the geeklist. If the entry features the stars (as outlined above) then I will award that user 100 geekgold. If not, I will randomly select a new entry until we have a winner.

Have a good month everyone!

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351. Board Game: VivaJava: The Coffee Game: The Dice Game [Average Rating:6.72 Overall Rank:1615]
Jacob Coon
Germany
Riedlingen
Baden-Wuerttemberg
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I picked up this game to be the first I own in my drinks that are addictive series (this one, Brewcrafters and Viticulture). After the first playthorugh were I played multiple things wrong, I went back, reread the rules and the game became so much simpler. It is a quick game, with some strategic choices to be made and it was actually more challenging than I thought it would be. i won the second game, but only by 1 point.

Quick
Portable
Dice rolling
Dice rolling, lots of randomness, naturally
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352. Board Game: Walnut Grove [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:1063]
Kuhns, party of four!
United States
Muncy
Pennsylvania
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...the grey rain-curtain turned all to silver glass and was rolled back, and he beheld white shores and beyond them a far green country under a swift sunrise.
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Finally played this for the first time tonight and I found it fun, but fairly easy. However, I wondered if I really could move more than once on the "Fall" turn, but the rules don't specify. It would make it harder. Of course, now that I've read the FAQ from designers I realized I played it wrong and my incredible score of 33 was not real. Oh well, I'll have to give it another go soon. It was pretty easy to learn. I'll have to play it a few more times before I give it the treatment.

Edit 6/7/14:
Played again the right way and got a 24. 25 is a win. So here's my star lineup:
the play is surprisingly quick, but still a fair number of decisions to make.
attractive, well made components (and who doesn't like gunny sacks?)
Keeps the theme well, with your decisions generally making thematic sense, as well as the options being limiting thematically.
I can see how it might get a little samey since the options do create decisive tension, yet are limited in scope enough that you are often choosing from several of the same options.

Still, my family history keeps me liking farming games, so it'll get played periodically for sure.

Edit #2: grammar whistle
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353. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:518]
Josh Malbon
United States
Santa Cruz
California
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Yay, first play of June.

This game actually got me to join The Geek almost exactly 3 years ago. I joined 5/29/11. I had some questions and the wonderful forums here solved them.
Then I fell in love with the place.

This game though. For a few months it rocked, right up until I got the Elf expansion for my birthday. Then I went on a tear winning a ton of games in a row and my old opponent refused to play anymore.

So, I haven't busted this out in a couple years. I refreshed on the rules last night, and this evening busted out a battle of Orks Vs. Dwarves.

The Orks started off strong and had the Dwarves' Quest Zone burning in a few turns. They turned their focus then on the Dwarves' Battlefield hitting if for about 5 HP's in one turn. 8 hits are needed to burn the zone. Two burning zones, YOU WIN!

I thought the Dwarves were tougher than that. I was rooting for the Orks, but the Dwarves got a hero in their quest zone...and soon were pulling in an extra 5 cards per turn, while the Orks were only getting 2 cards per turn, and a Dwarvish Scout caused the Orks to lose about 4 cards.

Suddenly by playing developments (extra hitpoints) in their Battlefield...the Dwarves also got a Hero whose toughness equalled the Battlefield's development meaning he gained defense when that zone gained defense. Then the Dwarves built some improvements that started to heal the damage previously done by the Orks.



The Orks had enough and Vomitted Troll bile over everything killed everyone. In the end it wasn't enough though. The Dwarf army won burning the Capitol of the Orks to the ground. The epic battle ended up taking two hours to complete. I thought the Orks were going to win in the first 20 minutes, they were only about four hits from doing it...but nay.

Lot's of grueling thought and important decisions.
All the different races have different playing styles.
You do not need to invest in the millions of expansions to have a great time.
You are fighting against yourself like a wargame. There is some hidden information, but it isn't that hard to ignore it in the spirit of fair play.

Solo Synopsis:
I quite really enjoyed this solo. I was thinking that an AI would be needed, but playing against yourself is quite alright. The asymmetric warfare really helps racking the mind and lessens the feeling of playing yourself. Rather like solving two different puzzles at the same time.

Goodtimes! Tomorrow I think I might try the Dark Elves versus the Good Elves. I never really got to try them before.
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354. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:518]
Josh Malbon
United States
Santa Cruz
California
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Played another match of Warhammer: Invasion. Playing it solo hurts the mind in a good way. Though keeping track of every ability for two-sides can cause some misunderstandings. Though I found my opponent very forgiving of mistakes.

Once again it looked like evil would triumph. The Dark Elves had the good pointy ears down to desperate measure. The Good elves do not have a lot of damaging units, most of their skills are in healing. Twice the Good Elves had to call on the Phoenix to clear all the units (good & bad) from the board...and then once again later.

Evil gimped two of the Good's best fighters, so they couldn't attack, but the Glittering Tower turned the tide.



The Good Elves had some tactics that caused damage to their own, and they had a unit that healed those units. The Glittering Tower causes 1 damage to the enemy for each unit that heals, so the Good Elves Sado-masochism actually did the Dark Elves in.



Uhh yeah, that wasn't how I expected to win, but it worked. laugh
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355. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:518]
Josh Malbon
United States
Santa Cruz
California
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Finished my final go through the races. Tonight evil triumphed over good. Chaos crushed The Empire.

Empire was able to get some hits on the enemy Capitol, but this was merely Chaos toying with them. It was quite the slaughter.

Next time, I am finally going to give a go at mixing up the different race decks to try to create some new unions.
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356. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:518]
Josh Malbon
United States
Santa Cruz
California
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OUCH!

I attempted using built decks for the first time:
Orks and Chaos vs Dwarves and Empire.

The Dwarves and Empire, I do not believe, got a single unit into the Battlefield, the entire game. They kept on having to play damage control. Their Battlefield was burning quickly from Crooked Teef Goblins that had double strength.

The Empire allowed for some defense from developments in their Kingdom zone, but the Quest zone could not fend off the Goblins and the Chaos Knights that joined the hunt.

I really should have mulligan'd the Dwarf deck in the beginning. They had some great buildings and tactics, but no units. Also the best Dwarf units that showed their faces needed lots of Dwarven loyalty that wasn't present. For at least 5 rounds a dwarven hero wanted to join the battle, but the resources were alway a buck short.

The Good Guys deck looks like it needs more 'cheap' units. Without the grunts, the Capitol ends up just being a target.
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357. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:518]
Josh Malbon
United States
Santa Cruz
California
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Pulled out my Ork/Chaos deck VS Dwarf/Empire deck for a rematch.
Last time the Orks trounced the Dwarves.

This time, I made one subtle change. The Dwarves got their Capitol board, rather than the Empire board. That one extra dwarven loyalty symbol made a huge difference.

The Orks started out good, after their mulligan. They put up a bunch of damage on the Dwarves' Battlefield: 7 Damage! Only 2 more needed to set it on fire.

But the Dwarves got some slayers out. The slayers could sacrifice themselves to destroy one attacking unit. The Orks didn't want to lose their big bad bruiser, so he sat back and waited and waited...

By the time the Orks had some tactics to remove the slayers, the dwarves got up some other unit that could nullify the tactic.

Finally the Orks found a way through to eliminate both problemed Dwarf units, but then the Dwarves copied the same tactic with the Twin Tailed Comet.




Flailing with no cards and one little worthless goblin, the Orks looked on as the Dwarves led by a Hero took the victory.
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358. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:518]
Josh Malbon
United States
Santa Cruz
California
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Built an Empire/Elf deck and a Chaotic/Dark Elf deck.

Chaos was no match. I never seen the good elves do so good, before this match. It helped that the random 10 neutral cards were some of the best.

I made a mistake a couple times, where I forgot to direct damage to the Chaos capitol everytime the elves healed. But that didn't matter. Their force was just too much.

The Chaos/Dark Elves need some more damagers to their battlefield, but I think most of the high hammer Chaos units are in the Ork/Chaos deck.

Might try this good elf deck against that Ork/Chaos deck next. See if this deck is something special or a one-trick pony.
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359. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:518]
Josh Malbon
United States
Santa Cruz
California
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Tried the Elf/Empire deck versus Chaos/Orks.

The Elf deck looked unstoppable. They had a ton of support buildings and developments in their kingdom earning a giant economy. Worst of all they had these elven knights that cancel all damage against them, so without card effects there is no way to defeat them.



One side of the capital burning, Grimgor arrived to change the fate. His arrival destroyed the entire elf economy and their defenses. Between his arrival and a few tactics to slow the elven attack, the Chaos/Orks were able to survive one extra round to put a pounding on the kingdom of the elves and seal of Chaos/Ork victory!



The balance of the original decks are amazing. Many many games go right to the wire.
Building different decks is fun.
Way too many expansions available.
Fear the great balance would be lost with expansions.
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360. Board Game: Waterloo 20 [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:4343]
Andy Cowen
United States
Union Springs
New York
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Seems appropriate for June 18th. I'm also stickering

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361. Board Game: A Week In Hell: The Battle of Hue [Average Rating:7.05 Overall Rank:5462]
Andy Cowen
United States
Union Springs
New York
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J Y
United States
Peoria
Arizona
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videos helped me pick up the game quickly. Started off fairly well, but rolled triple sixes in a battle, which caused the NVA infiltrators to slip behind my lines and undo the progress that I made. Then, I took a number of red hit markers, trying to make up lost time. Finally, on turn 3 the bridge over the Perfume River was blown, so I couldn't occupy zone F. Game over at the end of turn 4 because my defeat points would hit the max 10. Since, I wouldn't be able to occupy zone F and there wasn't any way to overcome that deficit. A great solitaire game. I enjoy it more than Phantom Fury. It would be nice if more games using a similar system were produced(Stalingrad, Arnhem, Aachen, hedgerow fighting in Normandy).

Has a great narrative
Tense, time pressure, nice map
challenging
rules a bit unclear in places, a player aid would be nice.
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362. Board Game: Where There Is Discord: War in the South Atlantic [Average Rating:7.92 Overall Rank:2047]
Brian Boyle
Australia
Sydney
NSW
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Only 5 days (out of 30) in. Not much invading going on but I have already sunk an Argentinean submarine and downed a Brazilian commercial airline by accident. The tide of international opinion is turning against me, comms are down on the HMS Invincible and things don't look good...

This is a very thematic (if initially slow) game. Very true to life for those of us who lived through the news(?) reports of the Falklands/Malvinas conflict/war in Thatcher's Britain. Hell of a way to get re-elected.
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363. Board Game: Wilderness [Average Rating:6.62 Overall Rank:4624]
Gary Barnett
United Kingdom
London
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Since this was sitting forlornly on my shelf I thought I'd get it out for a solo play. Set up (made up as I went along) was use four boards (for a very short game) using all three animals (snake, bear and one of the wolves) plus one random board. Then see how quickly I could escape from the wilderness... obviously it really isn't balanced in any way from play to play as you are dependent on the effect of the weather cards each day.

Anyway, I managed to skirt around a pincer movement from all three animals at one stage, camping out on some grassland next to water to restore my energy whilst I waited to see if they'd move off - they did! My initial search for food was unfruitful however (a one on the dice) and for good measure got me lost and moved back a space! However, I never managed to get myself into exhaustion danger territory and always had at least 5 energy.

I risked going into the village on the last board which fortunately paid off (they did not attack me) and completed my journey to safety at dusk on the third day (Day 3, Space 4 on Weather Card, with 2 energy remaining to be precise).

Since was out, tried a second game, this time with all four animal tiles plus two extra random ones. Got off to an easy start strolling across grassland mostly, with a diversion into some swamp, onto tile 2. However, problems started when I needed to stop and search for food. I failed to find food three times in a row, I think and each time dragged down my exhaustion - and caused me to be lost which unfortunately in my case involved going backwards. Twice I got moved onto mountain terrain where I couldn't search for food, meaning I had to move back to forest/grass before I could search - then I failed and got moved back to mountain! I was in a vicious downward spiral quickly nearing the point (3 energy) where I wouldn't be able to search for food anymore! Added to this, a bear and wolf were circling in the vicinity restricting my movement further. By day three, I was still (back) on the first tile!

I eventually succeeded in finding food and after a couple of sessions just resting, I was ready to proceed again. The next few tiles were less adventurous. I found the tribe, who offered my hospitality ready for the march across the final, desert, snake infested tile. Problems was that I'd left the last stream some way behind and moving across desert in daylight really causes the thirst track to speed up dangerously. I tried moving at night but got lost - going backwards again! Fortunately, day 7 revealed a brook (event card) to slake my thirst, allowing me to push across the desert. The snake seemed to be camped in the space next to the village, meaning I couldn't end my movement next to the village and had to work my way around for a final push from the north. I finally limped into the village in the afternoon (space 4) of the seventh day. It had been a punishing journey!

It could have been worse, I guess - at least I hadn't been attacked by animals!

As I think I've demonstrated, it can be played solo for the "adventure" - you just have to remove certain event cards (or just replace them if you turn them up) and ignore certain effects of weather tiles (furthest from village etc) and obviously you can only use the "good" side of the events cards you have (though this is the way I prefer to play it anyway - I don't like the attack side). Even solo, it's not at all easy to survive and things can go south pretty quickly!
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364. Board Game: Zombicide [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:393] [Average Rating:7.21 Unranked]
Matthew McFarland
United States
Pepperell
Massachusetts
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I held out for so long, including staving off temptation during the Season 2 campaign (knowing what I know, I'm actually glad I did), but the Secret Cabal's latest episode finally pushed me over the edge. In fact, I was listening to the tale end of their review on the way to my FLGS.



Anyway, got it home and after going through the rules (easy to understand and nicely done rulebook, though I understand it's a newer version) I set up the tutorial mission to get a taste. Things got underway well with Phil finding a second pistol and Ned forcing the door with an axe.



In our quest to find a safe haven in the building across the way, we took out a couple creeps in the road and crept up the roadway. The group stayed pretty close together to cross the road... only to find the other apartment full of zombies!!!!



So, the tutorial is obviously not meant to be crushingly hard or anything--though I think I ended up killing six zombies in my short jaunt, aided considerably by Phil's dual pistols--but even so I noticed I was a few bad rolls and missteps away from losing a some people. Right at the apex of kicking the door in and spraying the room down there were a good number of zombies nipping at our heels.



With many of the zombies put down during a quick session, our heroes set up camp in their new stronghold to await what would happen next. Fun stuff, and well done tutorial mission to give you a look at the mechanics and crazy to come.

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365. Board Game: Zombicide [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:393] [Average Rating:7.21 Unranked]
Matthew McFarland
United States
Pepperell
Massachusetts
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Second play, chose Mission 02 from the main rulebook since it's marked as 'Medium' and is supposed to be shorter. As it turns out, it was an extremely short session. shake



First things first, trying to decide whether to go through the building or down the street. The promise of useful items was too alluring, and Elsa cracked open the door.



That... wasn't what I wanted to see. But since Elsa has an axe and three actions still, she decides to go in and try to take out that Fatty. It was then that I realized all my dice only have pips from 1-3 on them or something. Since she whiffed with everything, the others thought they'd run in and help. They were wrong. Ned said screw 'em, and ran off alone with his pistol.



At a dead sprint through the streets, unable to open any doors, Ned realizes his only hope is to try and take out as many zombies as possible with his trusty pistol, and try to squeeze by to the Exit.



Unfortunately for Ned, a couple dogz ran up, and with him unable to land a shot on them, all was over. This was a spectacular loss.



It was cool to see the board crawling with zombies, but losing three out of four survivors on the second turn (or lets face it, the first) was crazy. Those dice, they are cruel. laugh
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366. Board Game: Zombicide [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:393] [Average Rating:7.21 Unranked]
reaching out from the in-between spaces...
United States
Baldwin
New York
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I'm not sure if I was tuned in to KS for the 1st campaign, but I ignored Season 2 because it looked costly and the feedback was it was a simplistic game made expensive because of mini's.

When the game finally was to be had cheap I nabbed it to see what the fuss was about (it is popular).

Nuts. It's a good game. My favorite horror genre is the Zombie, so I really like how this game has the dreading doom as the amount of zombies continues to escalate. I can see it being good in a group as dice chucking fun, but with the right soundtrack, playing solo is good too. Lots of interesting decisions to make, leveling up, searching for good loot, lucky rolls, etc. The game works.

I understand there are certain exploits that people can use to quasi break the game, guess I'll have fun trying to figure them out.

Now I'm trying to get those mini's I missed. This was another really well thought out idea, molding certain characters after movie characters. For example, the Nick mini is basically John McLane from Die Hard. Now you can create your own movie: Die Hard! The Zombie Apocalypse.

Jorune
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367. Board Game: Zombicide [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:393] [Average Rating:7.21 Unranked]
Justin
United States
Plano
Texas
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I want to get all my new/unplayed games played within the next couple weeks. Having knocked out Target Earth and wanting to get in to Labyrinth, I thought this would be an easy one to sneak in.

I'm not going to give much in the way of details here. You all have read enough session reports, you know how this one goes.

And it was a lot of fun. I don't think I've ever felt so overwhelmed in a game. The minis crank that price up, but I feel like it gives a sense of dread like no chit or card could ever pull off. Does the enjoyment have longevity? We'll see.

Case in point:


This is Doug. Doug was hiding out in a building trying to find gasoline for a molotov. When a couple walkers appeared from the shadows, he was forced into the open. He is resigned to his fate.

First impression stars:
Outstanding components.
Simple, logical gameplay
Sucks you into the narrative. I found myself imagining what the characters were saying to each other. I don't do that very often.
Can't think of anything for a no-star so I'll give a minor gripe: The board is huge. I would dare say a bit bigger than it needs to be, however, it serves the scale of the horde well. I just didn't have a lot of table space for the rest of the stuff.
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368. Board Game: Zulus on the Ramparts! [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:1579]
Denise Lavely
United States
Carmel
Indiana
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Went a couple rounds with the Zulus today - first time, I just did AWFUL, full defeat on round three - the Chest advanced 2, all advanced 2, and the Chest advanced again, and I did not have the barricades completed yet, so that was that soblue That took about 4 minutes, so I decided to try again, and THIS time I got my first Epic Victory, yay!! Got lucky card draws, rolled lots of 5s & 6s - the game ended when the Relief column showed up, but I only had two standees & one chit left, so another couple rounds & I could have wiped out the Zulu force completely.

I'm sure there will be more Zulus later this month!!
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369. Board Game: Zulus on the Ramparts! [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:1579]
Moe45673
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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Haven't played this one in over a year and the last time I did so, my solitaire gaming career had barely begun. Thanks to
Denise Lavely
United States
Carmel
Indiana
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Boomerang Phenomenon
United Kingdom
Gateshead
Tyne and Wear
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, I was inspired to break this out again. I wasn't disappointed, and the game is much better than I recall it being (probably because back then, I was bitter that I had noone to play with..... ie unenlightened )

The game moves really fast and the hand management, which is one of my favorite game mechanisms, is awesome. I lost after I got a bit into the night phase (but much further than I remember getting in my earlier games. Oh, how my gaming has improved in the last year!). It's a simple game with not much engine building other than the barricades, but the design is clever and it works. It's a lot of fun and, again, is excellent for a no-fuss hand management fix. This will see the table again soon.
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370. Board Game: Zulus on the Ramparts! [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:1579]
John Splittist
Switzerland
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Playing my first games of this tonight. Tragic defeat after tragic defeat. I made it to the night - once. Maybe I've just played too many euros lately, but the combination of chit-pull and die-rolling for the volleys makes me wonder whether I'm influencing anything at all...

Not ready to give s yet.

Update: 2014-06-17

Earned a draw!

Was very lucky in drawing an even distribution of advancing impi chits, and a lucky R when I needed a breather. I finally felt my selection of actions (good and bad) actually made a difference, although luck was still the dominant force.

A compelling historical background.

Generally excellent components.

A handful of simple mechanisms combine to make a fascinating, and thematic, puzzle.

The laser-cut counters, while substantial and good-looking, tended to delaminate (for me).

There is a lot of randomness involved in each game.
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371. Board Game: Zulus on the Ramparts! [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:1579]
Boomerang Phenomenon
United Kingdom
Gateshead
Tyne and Wear
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Played my 3rd and 4th games of it this month and continued my slump (in fact if I'm honest June has been one long slump with victory being a dish I haven't tasted enough in all my games).

Anyway, suffered back to back Tragic Defeats (that makes 8 defeats in the last 10 plays). In the second one I reached the last 4 cards at least.

Anyway, I still love the quick set up time and play time of this one.

It has just enough decision making, hand management and luck to keep me interested.

Still enjoying this after about 30 plays.

Small footprint
Quick game time and set up
Nice blend of decision making, hand management and dice chucking
Card quality isn't brilliant and is now becoming evident (should I go against my beliefs and sleeve?)
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