JP's Gen Con 2014 Geeklist
Johnpatrick Marr
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Buffalo
NY - New York
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My first Gen Con (2013) went by in a colorful blur so I endeavored to do a better job of documenting my experience the second time around. Having a better sense of what I was getting into certainly helped and I dragged along three newbies for The Best Four Days in Gaming, 2014.

I've included some impressions of games played and events attended, but keep in mind these are just my opinions. I've met enough folks that really enjoy Phase 10 to know there's no such thing as an objectively bad game.
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1. Board Game: The Wheels on the Bus [Average Rating:3.90 Unranked]
Johnpatrick Marr
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A local gamer was good enough to organize a chartered bus for WNY locals headed to the con. An absolute improvement over driving myself, even though I switched off with two other drivers last year. It was an absolute education in geek culture since someone bravely managed the day's entertainment with The Last Dragon, Flash Gordon, Dark Dungeons and Dorkness Rising. I'm already RSVP'd for next year. Thanks, Mark!
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2. Board Game: Hot Tin Roof [Average Rating:6.16 Overall Rank:5930]
Johnpatrick Marr
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After settling into our hotel on Wednesday night, we arrived in a downtown Indy already rampant with geekery. We opted for eating first and will calling later, but were put off by the waits for spots in the immediate vicinity. Despite my "My only request is that we don't eat at Dick's Last Resort" we found ourselves sitting at their bar. Of course, 20 minutes of being ignored and having our appetites slowly sapped away we decided it was a nice evening for a walk. I'm still not sure who that restaurant is for. We ended up at Tin Roof a few blocks away. Actually quite a good and affordable dinner. Recommended! The oddest restaurant we passed on was the Weber Grill Restaurant; I've never seen an eatery based on such a specific cooking utensil. In our current dystopia the George Foreman Grill is more famous than George Foreman.
 
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3. Board Game: Abyss [Average Rating:7.30 Overall Rank:324]
Johnpatrick Marr
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Thursday morning I was mobbed up with everyone else outside the exhibit hall, still not sure which direction I was going to run (I mean walk swiftly) once the opening bell was struck. When push literally came to shove I decided to see if a deluxe Doomtown Reloaded was in the cards for me. By the time I got to AEG, the separate line for the deluxe edition was longer than the general line, so I kept walking and got into one of the first tables for Abyss. The demoer was busy with multiple tables so after the intro, we were somewhat forgotten and got to play a full game (to seven nobles). A really well put together game. While in some ways it's a standard Euro with auctions and a bit of push your luck, everything about getting from pearls to points was really enjoyable for me. This is on my eventual buy-list, but since it's Asmodee (and their games get pretty good distribution) I didn't feel the need to pay the MSRP premium (as I seldom do).
 
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4. Board Game: Argent: The Consortium [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:456]
Johnpatrick Marr
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One of my first stops last year was Level 99 Games for Pixel Tactics. This year their new worker placement was on my radar. Everything about this game looks top notch with neat minis that each have a particular power when used as a worker and a variable board that makes up the university. Rather than victory points you're competing for votes to become the arch chancellor of some kind of anime Hogwarts. I'm not sure votes vs. VPs are any different mechanically, but it all felt very thematic. I just got a quick demo of the game, but it was enough to convince me to become a "late Kickstarter" when they e-mail me the details on that. This even though I'm not generally a fan of the anime art style. Level 99s new two-player card game, Sellswords, looked good as well. Chibi is okay for some reason :3
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5. Board Game: Epic Resort [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:2811]
Johnpatrick Marr
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Floodgate's Legacy: Gears of Time was my surprise hit last year, but I wasn't sure about Epic Resort after watching a demo video and I passed on the Kickstarter. I really enjoyed the in-person demo at the booth, though, and Epic Resort is back on my radar. I didn't pull the trigger on a buy, because I'd really like to play the full game first. I love the look and mechanics, but I couldn't tell what kind of arc it has from the few turns I played. I did notice it was sold out by Sunday, though. Good going, Floodgate!
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6. Board Game: Mad City [Average Rating:6.24 Overall Rank:5472]
Johnpatrick Marr
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I would spend a lot of time at the Mayfair booth over the course of the con, helping my friends get ribbons for the set collection scavenger hunt that eventually nets you a 50% off coupon. The first game I demoed was Mad City, there's definitely room in my collection for real-time games that can support a decent number of players. This was fun and I could see it supplanting Mondo, which I really like, but has a learning curve that's quite punishing to new players. As is the case with a lot of Mayfair games, though, there's just something slightly ugly about the game components (box art is cute but unreflective of the insides).
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7. Board Game: Summoner Wars [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:369] [Average Rating:7.31 Unranked]
Johnpatrick Marr
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I'm not a hardcore Summoner Wars player, but I love the game system and find that Plaid Hat does a great job running their tournaments, so I'll always try to get in on one at the con. This year I chose the "run four different armies" format and started off with some wacky summoners (Mad Sirian and The Filth) which did better than my tried and true Jungle Elves and Mountain Vargath. I had a great time and used the gift certificate award to subsidize a purchase of the new Mice and Mystics expansion which frankly looks delightful and causes my 13y/o Brian Jacques obsessed heart to squeal with glee.
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8. Board Game: City Hall [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:3735]
Johnpatrick Marr
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Thursday evening we made our first trip to the Tasty Minstrel Games upcoming game demo hall. This room was an absolute highlight for me, which I'll talk more about later. Looking around the room I was thinking "Damn, did I back everything in this place?" You really got me now, TMG, you got me so I don't know what I'm doin'.

The first backed game I got to play was City Hall with the designer, Michael, doing a great job teaching. The game was a little bit role selection, a little bit auction, and a little bit Acquire style land grabbing. I thought the scoring system where you multiply the two point currencies together for your final score was really interesting and my group agreed that the decisions were delightfully agonizing. I walked away looking forward to this showing up on my doorstep. There's a just a certain tightness to this game that makes it feel like a real battle of minds and wills.
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9. Board Game: Imperial Settlers [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:129]
Johnpatrick Marr
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There were two games I preordered prior to Gen Con, breaking my general policy on not paying MSRP for anything. One of those was Imperial Settlers, the newest from Portal Games. Neuroshima Hex is one of my favorite games of all time, so I have a soft spot for their designs. However, and I realize I'm going to get some flak for this (I already have from my local group), this was my disappointment of the con. Admittedly this is largely due to the HIGH expectations I had going in, and I'll also admit that while I really wanted to like 51st State there was just something too clunky about it and I could never get into it. So maybe my expectations were misguided. That being said, I think the player interaction in what is essentially a resource-to-VPs Eurogame is way too open ended.

My friend ended up playing team Japan, and obviously much of the game is driven by them when they're in play. Their powerful buildings are offset by the fact that other players can blow them up. So clearly the onus is on other players to "balance" this faction by blowing them up just the right amount. I just don't think that's fun, either for the Japanese player or the other players. It doesn't feel good to gang up on a player, or to be ganged up on in this sort of game where you're just trying to build your little card civilization. At least in some other civilization games you're limited by spatial considerations (you have to get to someone to attack them), but in this abstract game you're just pointing and shooting so it's as easy to attack one player as any other. All that being said, our game ended up with Japan actually winning despite having a somewhat miserable time. I mentally put this on my trade list right away even though I know one play isn't really enough to judge.
 
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10. Board Game: Sheriff of Nottingham [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:244]
Johnpatrick Marr
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The second game I preordered; saw a preview video from Dice Tower con and had to have it! It was nice to get the promo pack from Arcane Wonders, too. Haven't cracked it open yet, but I think it'll get some good play.
 
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11. Board Game: Johari [Average Rating:6.39 Overall Rank:4133]
Johnpatrick Marr
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We started out Friday morning in the Mayfair section of the Boardgame Hall. While we found Mayfair generally lacking when it came to teaching/demoing their games we wished more companies would have an area where you could essentially check out a game from their library for tickets. Plus, you gotta get those ribbons!

I wanted to try Johari and was undaunted by the small box so I figured we could sit down and learn the game from the rulebook. It seemed to go pretty well, although there was a moment of horror when I thought we'd been playing a major rule wrong two thirds of the way through. The rules are slightly ambiguous (when do you decide to take gold cards as cards or on the money track when you acquired them through a trader action?), but we feel we got it (mostly) right. This was a group pleaser, and if it played one or two more players I would have picked it up, but 4p is a player count with steep competition in my collection. Turn order is hugenormous in this game, which we didn't realize until a quarter of the way in. The way our strategies slowly diverged as players acquired new powers from the lords was really neat. I'm a sucker for variable player power games. Actually, the more I think about this game, the more I regret not picking it up!
 
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12. Board Game: Family Business [Average Rating:6.10 Overall Rank:2424]
Johnpatrick Marr
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Now that the exhibit hall was open we got back to the important task of demoing! But first, a quick stop at Mayfair to pick up a sheep ribbon. We played a quick 4p game of Family Business, a kind of archetypal "take that" card game where your characters politely queue up to be murdered. I can't take a mobster off the hit list without making a "BZZZT" sound as it seems more like a Bond-villain style conveyer belt of death than anything else. It is what it is, there's some hand-management type strategy but generally you either have a counter card or you don't. Since you always draw up on other players' turns when you play an interrupt there's very little incentive not to always counter when possible.

Also, now that I entered this into a geeklist I noticed it's from the eighties, so that's kind of impressive in and of itself. Good on ya, Family Business!
 
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13. Board Game: Shadowrun: Crossfire [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:620]
Johnpatrick Marr
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Back to new stuff. I'm not generally a co-op game fan, but this one had me interested. We had a great demoer with an obvious love for the Shadowrun setting, which was fortunate since, like most co-op games, this isn't much more than a puzzle game of the what's-the-most-efficient-way-to-match-your-symbols-to-the-board-state variety. With the theme, though, and the neat way they integrate an escalating threat with the event cards I could totally believe I was a street samurai. I would happily play this again (and again), and for the record I have no problem with the legacy sticker mechanic. I think you'd be getting a LOT of play out of this box before that became an issue. I'm more concerned that the limited play modes (missions) could get old, but not actually that concerned because I do think things will play out differently every time, especially as your characters evolve.
 
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14. Board Game: Tomorrow [Average Rating:6.39 Overall Rank:4001]
Johnpatrick Marr
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Genocidal Risk/Diplomacy hybrid, Tomorrow, caught my friend's eye so we headed to that booth. Copies of this game were floating around my local group, but I hadn't gotten to play it. The demo technique itself was somewhat divisive, with some members of the group feeling like the demoer dominated the proceedings while I thought she kept things moving pretty well. Of course, I was allied with her the entire game so there's that. Trying to get an entire game in with each demo might have been a bit much, and the sale's pitch was a little intense, but overrall I thought this was a very good-looking, well thought out game that I have no desire to play again. If you like stab-happy dice rollers, though, give this a try, there're some actual decisions to be made and mechanics to be experienced somewhere in the fray.
 
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15. Board Game: Trains [Average Rating:7.22 Overall Rank:370] [Average Rating:7.22 Unranked]
Johnpatrick Marr
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Over at AEG HQ, I played in the Trains tournament. After two close games, I didn't make the cut, but it was fun to see strategies that have not come up in my game group. There was a lot of "wow, I've never seen someone try that" coming from all around the table. This continues to be one of my favorite deck-builders and Dominion continues to lie in a pool of its own blood while Trains whistles innocently with its hands behind its back. I can't wait for the Rising Sun expansion! Well-run tournament, AEG.
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16. Board Game: Warhammer 40,000: Conquest [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:603]
Johnpatrick Marr
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On a quick visit to the exhibit hall to see if any FFG demos were open there was a seat for the new Warhammer 40k themed LCG. I've played a bit of every FFG LCG to date, and I think they all do something interesting, essentially "solving" some complaint about classic CCGs like Magic. After one play of Conquest, though, I couldn't see what the hook was. I do like the bluffing of deploying the leaders, but it seemed like a rich-get-richer game with little opportunity for swings. I also think the Smash Up/Blood Bowl style of competing over objectives that is at the core of this game is a little tired. This will not unseat Netrunner from its throne as my favorite LCG (although LotR comes close it basically rules a different kingdom).
 
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17. Board Game: Harbour [Average Rating:6.59 Overall Rank:1244]
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Back in the TMG unreleased games room I found a game of Harbour wrapping up. I asked if there was going to be anyone teaching another round and two of the players from the last game volunteered to stick around and teach me, which was great of them.

This was a real winner for me, and mid-game I texted my friends to come meet me to try it out when they were done wherever they were. An elegant distillation of Le Havre is what it felt like, so the comparison that everyone is making is an apt one and not just based on the similar theming. I love how the goods market is volatile without being totally random and unpredictable and adjusting it between turns was incredibly straightforward. No fiddliness to be had, here! It seems like there are a few viable strategies and some will be enhanced by your starting character. I was some sort of steampunk robot that was good at quickly getting out cheap buildings and the other two characters (oops) were the giant that starts out with extra production capacity (anchor symbols). The only element that had me worried was how powerful the thieving building seems. Unless you tech up (with anchor symbols), most (all, in my 1 play) actions are giving you a net of two goods. The thief does the same (although it would have been three net in a 4p game), but the other players are losing goods so it's even better. You don't get to choose what goods you're getting but it still was the most tapped building by far. We didn't have a rulebook nearby and played that you couldn't give a thieving player a good type he was already maxed out on, but if that was wrong it's not quite as powerful. Still, I can't wait to get my kickstarted copy of this and play it a ton!

I was so excited about Harbour that I stuck around and taught another group that was gathering right as our game finished. I have to say this room had a really great vibe, and I'm not sure what to attribute it to. Maybe because there were so many designers around excited about their upcoming games? Or maybe the excitement of the players since they felt they had contributed to the games via kickstarter? Or it could just have been the overrall strength of the designs. Whatever it was, everyone was friendly, having a good time and willing to help you get into a game. There was very little in the way of awkward standing around waiting to be noticed.
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18. Board Game: Scoville [Average Rating:7.22 Overall Rank:516]
Johnpatrick Marr
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My third and final TMG prototype (or, really, pre-production game) played was Scoville. My friends came down to the TMG room right as I finished teaching Harbour so we looked over our shoulders and Scoville was just sitting there player-less in all of its pepper-meepled glory. Showing the large-heartedness I mentioned above, another player came over when he saw that we wanted to get a game going and gave us enough of a run through to get started. The rules were straightforward (and the player aids helpful) enough that I don't think we ever had to consult the rulebook following that explanation. It also helped that everything felt in line with the theme, so I was never disoriented in any of the phases. Another praise for this game is that the value of turn order was very apparent from turn 1. They printed arrows on the turn order track showing which phases resolve from first to last and vice versa. Blind bidding for turn order is not my favorite mechanic, but worked out very well in our playthrough. By all rights this should be a smash hit for TMG: the game is beautiful, easy to teach, plays up to six and is actually very meat-y (vegetable-y?). I might be looking at it through backer's-goggles, but I think it was my friend's game-of-the-show and it wasn't on his radar at all prior to playing.
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19. Board Game: Valley of the Kings [Average Rating:7.13 Overall Rank:627] [Average Rating:7.13 Unranked]
Johnpatrick Marr
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I was the only one of my group to score an AEG Big Game Night ticket, so I headed off in that direction. Wow, what a line! But they moved us through and into the event quickly. I was impressed with their ability to absorb so many gamers into the space.

I wandered along until I found an table with a free seat and it was for AEG's tiny Egyptian-themed deckbuilder. As luck would have it, the designer was there to animatedly answer any questions! I'm glad this was the case since the player aids are quite bad (seriously, read the "set up" side of that card with a straight face). The gameplay, though, is something quite unique. I can imagine the gasping and spit-taking following this statement if you haven't played the game, since finding anything unique in a deckbuilder is akin to extracting blood from a mummy. Still, I think you'll find that you're using your brain in unexpected ways when you play this, especially if you come at it with expectations from other deckbuilders. It's very feasible and desirable to get your deck down to five cards for a good part of the game. This was a lot of fun and innovation in a very small box.
 
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20. Board Game: Istanbul [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:91]
Johnpatrick Marr
United States
Buffalo
NY - New York
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've owned this game since it became available a month or so ago, but hadn't gotten it to the table yet. I thought "what better way to learn than at AEG's own game night?" Indeed, I sat down with a couple and we had a very nice teacher, although I don't know why it seemed so intimidating; it's a very straightforward game with one major objective, snatch those rubies! The "easy" board setup does seem too easy, though. The way different paths to victory are right next to the resources they require limits the player interaction BUT we only played to a few rubies so maybe as players realize you're pulling away they're able to put a kink in your works over the full game. I really liked the mechanics and will be fearlessly pulling it out in the near future and I'll start with the recommended set up but if it's too easy for me to win with the get gambling tech-gamble-buy rubie-profit strategy I'll mix up the tiles from there on out.
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21. Board Game: Say Bye to the Villains [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:3076]
Johnpatrick Marr
United States
Buffalo
NY - New York
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I held off on buying any of the small box AEG games this year, even though they looked interesting, because I knew I was coming to the AEG Big Game Night and figured one or more of them would be in the swag box. I saw a number of people had already gotten their bracelets snipped and were carrying around big AEG-branded boxes so I went up and collected mine. Here's what we got:

Valley of the Kings: Yay!

Expansion Map for Trains: Double-yay!

Doomtown: Reloaded: Damn it, AEG, just when I thought I was out... you pull me back in. I told my friend to physically restrain me from purchasing this since I don't get enough play of my other beloved card game, Netrunner. I basically have time for one "lifestyle" game and I had recently dropped Netrunner as a regular thing for X-Wing. No ragrets there, but Doomtown did look tempting. People were pretty psyched to get this, even though I imagine many of them had already bought in. Great thinking/marketing on AEGs part, too, since for this game to succeed (and expansions to sell) it needs a large player base. I'll get it to the table, soon but put it down as a tentative yay until then.

Romance of the Nine Empires: I had no idea what this was (is it some L5R insider thing?) UNTIL the bus ride home on Sunday when someone put on The Gamers: Hands of Fate. Oooh... Still this is a really insider baseball thing to put in the box. It's going to be a hard sell to get my friends to learn a fictional card game (which I hear is quite a rules investment) when there are so many living ones out there. This will probably stay in shrink until the apocalypse after which future civilizations will find it in the rubble that was my attic and launch Romance of the Nine Empires: Reloaded as a CCG (since they haven't developed past blind booster purchases, yet).

Smash Up: Monster Smash Edition: Meh. I know there are people that like Smash Up, but I am not one of them and I'm mildly sad that it seems like it has become AEGs breakout hit ala King of Tokyo for Iello (although I don't mind a game of that as much). I have friends that play Smash Up so it's decent trade bait.

Final Verdict: Even for just the exclusive Trains map and Valley of the Kings, the price of admission isn't bad, coupled as it is with a well-organized demo-night, which is the real spirit of the event. Receiving some nicely subsidized board games is great, but I think the proper mindset going in is that you get to try out the new hotnesses and the box is just a kicker. Well done again, AEG, many more of my monies will be flowing to you including some bucks for...

Say Bye to the Villains

My last demo of the Big Game Night before reuniting with my group was the new small-box co-op designed by everyone's favorite tiny game purveyor, Seiji Kanai. I'm the one in my group who buys all this guy's stuff. They're just so neat and compact! I'd been really enjoying his new take on the Love Letter system, Lost Legacy as of late. This is his first co-op design that I've played, though. Even though we played in easy mode (giving the villains fewer situation cards than normal) we were still only able to defeat 3 out of 5 villains in a stunning defeat for our samurai. There was lots of good table talk and excitement with the game. And even though our playthrough went a little long I could see this playing out in 20 minutes or so. I'm not a big fan of "you can talk with your team but can't explicitly state what's on your card" type games, but for whatever reason it didn't bother me in this design. Probably because on my turn I can say, "Okay, I can make you a lot faster so you have a better chance of hitting first against that villain," and then you can say, "Sure, that's a good idea," and then I immediately play the card and you see that you have +8 to speed. I also kept thinking of Hanabi for whatever reason, but I'd much rather play this. It's fun to spend your ten turns or so tailoring your starter samurai into a mean, lean fighting machine and then excruciating as you flip up the unrevealed situation cards in front of the villains to learn your party's fate. I don't think this has infinite replayability, but enough for me to pick it up.
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22. Board Game: Ascension: Realms Unraveled [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:1123] [Average Rating:7.62 Unranked]
Johnpatrick Marr
United States
Buffalo
NY - New York
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Thanks to the valiant efforts of the organizer and the help of my traveling companion, the Gen Con no ship math trade went off without a hitch (as far as I could tell). And I was able to quickly head around the corner to Stoneblade HQ for the Ascension tournament. This was... not as well organized. It took quite some time to get off the ground and when they finally brought in enough copies of Realms Unraveled the players got down to ripping them open and setting them up. After this hiccup things moved along pretty well, though. I didn't get to the elimination round, but I really like this game and Realms Unraveled is the best base set yet, in my opinion. Upwards and onwards for Ascension!
 
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23. Board Game: Ortus Regni [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:2618]
Johnpatrick Marr
United States
Buffalo
NY - New York
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Alright *long intake of breath* Ortus Regni. I'm especially sensitive to advertising, not insofar as it sends me into a rage or makes me feel compelled to purchase whatever's being advertised but like a particularly itchy scab. I'm totally taken out of movie narratives by product placement, for instance (ahem, X-Men: Days of Future Past). So you might understand why my travel companions, emotionally healthier individuals than myself were totally confused why I kept walking through the ICC all "Gah! There it is again!"

"What?"

"That Celtic knot on the pillar, I think it's from Ortus Regni!"

"What's Ortus Regni?"

"A game that's been haunting my Facebook feed for a year!"

"Uh, whatever dude. Hey, look at these cool messenger bags."

"Gah!"

Okay, so we can all agree that if trying too hard was a crime, Ortus Regni would be serving consecutive life sentences, but was the game any good? I had to find out! It took me until Saturday to make a conscious effort to find the right room for demoing, and when I got there I was presented with a cross between an Apple store and Medieval Times. These folks had clearly brought a gun to a knife fight. I don't want to rag on whatever mysterious billionaire is producing this game, though. The demoers were very knowledgeable and professional and they even had a sort of table concierge to help direct traffic. I saw a couple guys shuffling through some decks and sat down to join them. They had bought the game earlier (and 3-4 player expansion), made some decks and brought them back to test them out against the demoer. I thought, "Okay, this bodes well for the quality of the game." I luckily had one of the teaching decks covered with text. I was able to get into the game pretty quickly, but shortly got rolled by the two pros at the table. I think I was able to experience most of the game mechanics before my last Lord was assassinated, though.

I... still need to play the game more. I think the game is good, although if you asked me what makes it different than any other trading card game where you pre-build your deck I wouldn't be able to tell you. If this is any indication, one of my friends came into the demo hall while I was playing, stood right next to me, had a conversation with the concierge and then walked out AND I HAD NO IDEA HE WAS EVER THERE. That never happens to me. Another friend demoed the next day and I couldn't wait to get his impression, but he just kept saying "I have... thoughts." The best I can say is that this is a game (and an advertising campaign) that wants to make you feel like an insider. There's a sense of achievment to recognizing the earl cards on sight, encouraged by the lack of text. It forces you to internalize some of the mechanics. There was a minute or two where, in lieu of explaining the game to our other two companions we just pointed to all the pictures on the Gen Con bag and said the card names. I encourage everyone to try the game for themselves. I will say that it wins for most useless game chrome, though. Why the chunky wooden card holder for all the cards you aren't using in the game? When I saw it I thought you were maybe selecting orders to be carried out in a sequence or something. Nope, it's just a card holder.
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24. Board Game: Hot Tin Roof [Average Rating:6.16 Overall Rank:5930]
Johnpatrick Marr
United States
Buffalo
NY - New York
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Hot Tin Roof Pt. 2

Nope, not the restaurant this time, the new game from Mayfair. This is a game about cat intercourse so violent that it results in the utter annihilation of the two felines. Or maybe a Rudyard Kipling-esque tale of the origin of fish.

"Daddy, where do fish come from?"

"Well, honey, when two cats love each other very much..."

I liked the game well enough, but this is essentially a stripped down version of Steam or another pick-up-and-deliver style game. Like Steam, you can really get yourself into a bind if you aren't playing well, or even if the other players are taking all the high-fish-payout actions before your cats can rendezvous. Our third seat player was so low on tin cans that he would have had to take at least two turns of passing if I didn't choose to let him take a valuable spot. Kind of cut throat for a family game.

It's also kind of strange how quickly the game escalates once a number of catwalks have been built. Eventually, as soon as you place your cats they ram right into each other. I couldn't help thinking that particle acceleration would have been a better theme, WACKY particle acceleration. Oh, and the player colors make no sense, we had a hard time figuring out whose bridge was whose over the course of the game. It's just another case of that slightly off kilter Mayfair graphic design I mentioned earlier. I'd play this game again, but I'm not adding it to the collection.
 
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25. Board Game: Saint Petersburg [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:232]
Johnpatrick Marr
United States
Buffalo
NY - New York
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Oh dear, I feel like I'm getting on a negative streak. Three of us signed up for a "Saint Petersburg Mini Tournament" so we'd have at least one event that we were all involved in (well, all but one). It was my first experience going to this particular board game room, which I won't bother calling out by name, but I'm sure if you made any kind of effort you could figure it out. This was a VERY poorly run little event. We all love Saint Petersburg so no problems there, this is a classic game. However, the event started very late and there was a lot of weirdness with the folks running it. There were a number of people that wanted to get into the tournament with generics, so one of the GMs went off in search of additional copies. When he didn't show up for awhile, one of the ticket holders tried to get a refund. This caused the other GM to come back and essentially kick out all the generic ticket users which left us two players SHORT. Then we petitioned that GM to let two of them back in so we could have three 4 player tables. The hostility melted away once we started playing, but it was a strange and awkward experience none of us wanted to repeat. We will be staying away from this GMing company in the future.
 
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