Bart's 2017 watchlist (mainly euro)
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I am primarily a euro game fan.
I don't like direct, negative interaction. The only exceptions are 2-player games, in those anything can happen.
I don't like auction/bidding games.
You will see hardly any party games around here, typical American-style games, negotiation, miniature games or cooperative games.
I will not put expansions on this geeklist.

As soon as games have rulebooks out, I will post my impressions after reading them.
I will try to limit myself only to games that have some real info on them, the ones boding well to come out in 2017.
You can check out my previous lists to see what I'm about:
2015 list
2016 list

I'm not particularly focused on Essen Spiel, as I don't attend it, so I will focus on the year as a whole.

There's already a 2018 geeklist .

1. Will buy:

2. Already have / pre-ordered:
- 1754: Conquest – The French and Indian War
- 4 Seasons aka Dazzle
- 878: Vikings – Invasions of England
- Biosphere
- Bunny Kingdom
- Calimala
- Caverna: Cave vs Cave
- Century: Spice Road
- Charterstone
- Chickwood Forest
- Chimera Station
- Clans of Caledonia
- Cobras
- Deckscape: Fate of London
- Ethnos
- Founders of Gloomhaven
- Gaia Project
- Die Gärten von Versailles
- Gentes
- Hannibal: Rome vs. Carthage
- Harvest
- Heaven & Ale
- Iron Curtain
- Keyper
- King's Road
- King's Will
- Lisboa
- Majesty: For the Realm
- Merlin
- Moa
- Napoleon 1806
- New York Slice
- Nusfjord
- Okanagan: Valley of the Lakes
- Paper Tales
- The Palace of Mad King Ludwig
- Photosynthesis
- Pioneers
- Powerships
- Pulsar 2849
- Pyramids
- Queendomino
- Rajas of the Ganges
- Reworld
- Riga
- Rise to Nobility
- Riverboat
- Rum & Bones Second Tide
- Santa Maria
- Santorini
- Star Cartel
- Sundae Split
- The Cousins' War
- The Fox in the Forest
- Transatlantic
- Twelve Heroes
- Tybor der Baumeister
- Unlock! Mystery Adventures
- Whistle Stop
- Yokohama

3. Nice to have if reviews are good / price is right:
- A Column of Fire
- Crystal Clans
- Downforce
- El Dorado
- Fantastic Park
- Mini Rails
- Minute Realms
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1. Board Game: 1754: Conquest – The French and Indian War [Average Rating:7.88 Overall Rank:1729]
Board Game: 1754: Conquest – The French and Indian War
Purchased via Kickstarter together with 878 Vikings: Invasions of England.

Will be published by Academy Games, probably in the Birth of America series. This is another entry to the list (alongside 878 Vikings: Invasions of England) that uses the same system as 1812: The Invasion of Canada and 1775: Rebellion. Funny thing is I own both, but played neither. So I guess it's high time I did and decided whether this family of games is something I want to deeply dive into or not ;].

I read the rules, it looks really neat, although it doesn't change the fact it's very similar to the 2 other games in the series. I'll have an eye out for it, but I won't be buying a new one in a shop, I think.
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2. Board Game: 4 Seasons [Average Rating:6.35 Overall Rank:8034]
Board Game: 4 Seasons
On my wantlist!

This is a simple 2-player card game that I wanted to add to the list some time back, but I forgot. And ever since I also forgot exactly how it played, but essentially along the lines of I-cut-you-choose. You have a hand of cards and you propose 2 cards from it. Your opponent chooses one to put in the middle and places the other one as theirs. Then your opponent does the same thing: you add one card to the common tableau in the middle and take one for yourself.
There are 4 types of cards with different numbers on them and you try to win majorities in those colors. If you win the majority you earn as many points as the strength of the color in the common tableau.

It sounds super simple, like say Hanamikoji, but it may provide those agonizing decisions.

11.09.2017: I purchased the game and even had an opportunity to play it. It's a nice little 2-player game. It's ok, I suppose. I might play every now and then, but I think there are better 2p fillers. The mentioned Hanamikoji is way better imo, provides more dilemmas. This one seems to have fewer dimensions . I can keep it, I can trade, I don't really mind.
 
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3. Board Game: 878 Vikings: Invasions of England [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:710]
Board Game: 878 Vikings: Invasions of England
Supported on KS.

Will be published by Academy Games, probably in the Birth of America series. If so, I wonder how similar is it to 1812: The Invasion of Canada or 1775: Rebellion. The game supports from 2-4 players and a partnerships mechanism, but I hope it's primarily a light 2-player wargame. I can see those chunky dice on images and cubes representing armies. If it's too similar to the two aforementioned games I probably won't be interested in it that much (since I already own two of them), but who knows, maybe it will have enough new interesting twists to the system.
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4. Board Game: Agra [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:960]
Board Game: Agra
I read the rules and unfortunately it's off the radar for now.

A game by Michael Keller (II) surely deserves a spot on such list. Not much is known other than the Indian theme and the fact it's got worker placement and area control in it. Michael has so far been a co-author of La Granja and Solarius Mission, and this is his first solo endeavor.

11.08.2017: I have read the rules and am somewhat disappointed. On the one hand it is at its core a worker placement game. On the other there is little interaction in this department. You can always place your dude on a given action space. If an opponent's worker is standing upright (i.e. hasn't been laid down for meditation) you kick him out and give that opponent a favor token. Yeah, they do come in handy, but it seems like it's a accidental interaction. Anyway, the vast majority of game revolves around things that non-euro game fans make fun of: changing one resources into others. That's the main point of the game. Four action spots give you four basic resources whose amount depend on certain layout of your private board (you can control how many resources of a given type you get, which is cool). The remaining 12 action spots upgrade resources to level 2 or level 3. You need a hell lot of resources, because they may enhance certain things you do, but primarily for set collection type of contract fulfillment. You will be delivering goods to nobles, to the guilds and to the emperor himself. There is also a concept of meditating, progressing on guild tracks, building buildings etc.

I normally don't complain about complicated rules, but it really struck me when I was reading the rulebook to this game. It is overly complicated, really. Without appendices the rulebook has 21 pages! There's a substantial amount of reading and information to absorb. I already foresee it's going to take long to explain everything to my playgroup. And it seems like the game shouldn't be complicated. Due to that it's definitely on the harder side of euro games. The game has also too big of an emphasis on resource optimization for my taste. You can get million potential bonuses from Notables, building and favor tiles. I mean, as I write this it sounds interesting, maybe it's actually a cool game, I don't know :?. But the game itself definitely doesn't bring anything new to the table. It's probably at least a decent incarnation of another euro game in which you shuffle resources left and right.

Overall I will gladly play it to verify my impression about its unnecessary complication and too long rules, but I will not actively seek a copy of mine, I just am skeptical about it.
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5. Board Game: Atlas: Enchanted Lands [Average Rating:5.85 Overall Rank:14247]
Board Game: Atlas: Enchanted Lands
Off my radar. I read the rules and it is not the type of game I usually enjoy. I will gladly play it though to see how it works in action.

After a great Gold West I'm willing to give J. Alex Kevern some credit. He also has Sentient scheduled for this year, but the one right here is a set collection / betting type of card game. Not too much info, but at least something. On my radar.

05.07.2017: This is a weird game. Cards are meant to be placed on the board in a certain pre-defined order. Each of the four rows should contain cards matching that row's symbol ordered from 1 to 8. Whereas row symbols are also ordered in a specific way (Dawn, Day, Sunset, Night). You play a card to it's pre-defined space on the board and try to bet whether it will be a part of a horizontal or vertical "run" (4 unflipped cards one after another). Once a "run" is formed all cards constituting to it are flipped and only correct predictions remain on cards. Flipped cards do not block horizontal "runs" (any number of flipped cards may be skipped). When it comes to vertical "runs" they may contain at most one flipped card. I won't deny, it sounds weird, and it's not the type of game I'm usually enjoying. I will not be looking for it, but I will gladly play it if an opportunity arises.
 
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6. Board Game: Azul [Average Rating:7.84 Overall Rank:46] [Average Rating:7.84 Unranked]
Board Game: Azul
I read the rules and it seems very abstract. Could be fine, but I won't be actively looking for it.

Yet another Michael Kiesling's game for 2017. The other ones (some co-designed) are Heaven & Ale, Reworld and Riverboat. This one so far says we're going to draft tiles, place them on our personal boards and then once in a while score our lots. Sounds cool, I just hope there's substantial interaction in here.

01.09.2017: I read the rules and what slightly bothers me is that the game is very abstract. I don't necessarily mind, but some of my friends will . You've got a nice personal riddle im the game, you try to grab the rights marbles to fill in the right rows, so that the tiles you want are at the end of the round transported to the right square that actually scores you points for adjacencies. There is interaction in the game, but you in order to leverage it you need to pay close attention to what your fellow players do, which is why I think 3p might be the sweet spot for it.

I'm not especially sold by it. It's probably a fine game, I might enjoy it. But I think it's a "wait for a bargain" material for me. I'll try to snatch it for the low in the future, or acquire in a MathTrade.
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7. Board Game: Ballistic Reign [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Ballistic Reign
Dropout from my 2016 list.
It's on the list, because I have certain trust in Level 99 Games.

It's a part of their upcoming 5-game series containing only 2-player dueling games. I love Pixel Tactics, didn't like NOIR or Sellswords and haven't had a chance to play any BattleCON game yet. Yet, I'm looking forward to this series.
 
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8. Board Game: Bärenpark [Average Rating:7.36 Overall Rank:285]
From gallery of Photodump
Just read the rule and I don't think it's a game for me, off my radar.

New designs by Phil Walker-Harding immediately get on my radar after such great titles as Cacao, Imhotep or Sushi Go!.

29.03.2017: I've just read the rule and it seems like a light puzzle game with hardly any interaction. I might be wrong, the rules were very succinct and I couldn't visualize everything properly, but so far it looks like it's not a game for me. It's off my radar, I will watch a review when one appears, but I won't be actively following this title.

01.07.2017: I've had a chance to play this game. It's fine, although it is 95% solitaire. There are certain racing aspects; whoever is the first one for an achievement gets more points. First tiles of a particular shape are also worth more. But essentially you're not interested in what players do, you try to optimize placements of the tiles and score the most points. The only interaction is looking at other players' boards to assess whether they are aiming at a particular; whether it's worth pursuing, whether you have a shot at it. Overall I don't regret playing it, but I don't feel an urge to play it again. If my daughters were older I'd consider it though.
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9. Board Game: Biosphere [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:3215]
Board Game: Biosphere
I just read the rulebook and it sounds like a solid area control race game with a bit of card drafting, themed around evolution, migration and reproduction of species. The problem is the game is currently only available at the publisher's website for €65 + shipping which is a bit steep. Although the game features 300 dice which are costly and they probably drive up the price.

The core concept is there are 7 random goals chosen for any given game. The first person to achieve 5 of them wins the game. They all have something to with controlling various territories on the common board - that is where your species (so-called "type") lives. Each member of your species is represented by a die. Dice are never rolled in the game, they just represent how long a given member will live. You will be tracking lifespan of your species for every territory type that exists in the game. Each round you will migrate (move members orthogonally on the map to reach new territories), breed (place dice) more members on territories where you already have presence or on orthogonally adjacent ones. You may also evolve by changing certain characteristics of your species. Those may affect lifespan, reproduction, movement, size or specific/general. The last two impact which cards can be drafted from the board to boost up other characteristics.

It probably sounds a bit convoluted, although I do not expect it to be a heavy game rules-wise. It's not Bios: Megafauna. But at the same time there are quite a few things you need to control to be competitive; specifically other players. This is an interactive game which is up my alley, especially since it's not direct, combat-focused. It's primarily area control and a bit of card drafting. What puts me off, other than the price, is action point allowance system in which you spend all points on your turn. If you have many of them other players can do nothing but wait until you're finished optimizing your points expenditure. Nevertheless, I remain interested.
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10. Board Game: Black Angel [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:679]
Board Game: Black Angel
Awaiting more details.

Gets a free pass on the list due to designers' pedigree. It's done by Sébastien Dujardin, Xavier Georges and Alain Orban who have such titles as Troyes, Tournay, Ginkgopolis or Deus under their belts.

Edit: Postponed till 2018.
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11. Board Game: Brasil [Average Rating:7.15 Unranked]
Board Game: Brasil
Looks promising, although I'm not a big fan of deck-building games, so we shall see.

What's Your Game? title for 2017, yet again from the the same team (Paulo Soledade and Nuno Bizarro Sentieiro) that brought you Madeira, Panamax and Nippon. Out of those I've only had a chance to play Madeira thus far, but I wasn't enjoying it that much. Too many rules and too long for my taste. I know these guys do have neat ideas though, so I'm always putting their work on my radar.

16.06.2017: It will not be released this year, unfortunately. But a KS campaign will likely begin.
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12. Board Game: Bunny Kingdom [Average Rating:7.46 Overall Rank:314]
From gallery of Gregaria
I'm hesitant, I'd love to try before I buy.

Well, the name is kind of silly, but I'm pretty sure it's heavier than it seems to be. It's by Richard Garfield and it features card drafting. I like drafting in its various forms, so definitely a solid contender for the list.

After a Nuremberg presentation we know a little more: players draft 2 cards a turn, and there are various type of cards. The most common are coordinate cards (e.g. C5) that point at a specific location on the board where you can place one of your bunnies. You typically want to diversify and place your bunnies on various terrains, so that they provide various resources (carrots on fields, fish in the water, wood in the forest etc.). There are also buildings on the board (I don't recall if players place them though), and you typically want to have as large a contingent group of your bunnies as possible, and a space with a building in that group so that the number of various resources you acquire in that group can be multiplied by the building's value. It sounds more complicated than it is. There are also mission cards to be drafted (end game scoring bonuses), events and something more.

24.08.2017: I've just read the rulebook. Polish edition is coming out, which will likely have lower price than imported English copies. The game is rather easy. There's a 10x10 grid on the board constisting of various terrains: forests giving wood, waters giving fish and fields giving carrots. Plains and mountains do not by default give anything. Each square has one card representation, therefore there are 100 such cards. The rest of the deck - mainly - consists of building cards and missions.

You are given a hand of cards, out of which you all simultaneously draft 2. Then you play the 2 cards. You repeat until all cards are drafted, and you do it over 4 rounds. When you play a card matching a square in the grid, you place your rabbit in it, period. When you play a building card you place a matching building in a square you already own. When you play a mission card you play it face down for end game scoring purposes.

After each round you perform scoring of all your kingdoms. Kingdom is a set of orthogonally adjacent squares you own. Number of points = strength * wealth of the kingdom. Strength is driven by castles in the region; those can be of strength 1, 2 or 3. Some are already on the board when the game starts, remaining ones show up from building cards. Wealth is a number of different goods produced by a kingdom: 3 basic goods (wood, carrots, fish), and 3 more from additional buildings. You do it for all of your kingdoms. Some may score as high as 21, some may score zero points. At the end of the game you also score for your secret missions.

And that's about it. I'm hesitant, because it sounds nice and simple, probably plays quickly and requires minimum explanations. However I'm wondering whether there's any strategy to it, whether it's a gamer's game material. If not, whether it's a solid family game material. I would like to try before I buy.
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13. Board Game: Calimala [Average Rating:7.19 Overall Rank:1217]
Board Game: Calimala
On my wantlist!

No much info on it other than it's a form an action drafting game that will be published by ADC Blackfire Entertainment that get a lot of credit for great Kraftwagen.

11.07.2017: Cover showed up and slightly more info. Placing a worker on a path will result in taking 2 actions a given path links. Distribution of those action spaces vary from game to game. Actions are not blocked, but instead action discs are stacked on one another and all players whose disc is there get to do their action on player's action selection (sounds nice!). When there are four discs, the oldest one is displaced to a council, whatever that means. Still awaiting more info though.

15.09.2017: Although there is no rulebook available yet I watched a very thorough presentation that gave me a decent idea about the game and I like what I see. Besides what I wrote above there is also an inevitable concept of set collection to fulfill available contracts. There are also certain scoring tiles randomly laid out in an order during setup. Once somebody's fourth disc on an action space is taken away it triggers a scoring of the next scoring tile in a row. So you want to make sure that at that time whatever you own or have achieved is the most opportune for the scoring. Sounds nice. Like sweet spot medium weight euro I enjoy.
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14. Board Game: Caverna: Cave vs Cave [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:594]
Board Game: Caverna: Cave vs Cave
Purchased and played - a keeper.

Agricola is my preferred pick, although I will play Caverna: The Cave Farmers if people insist ;]. I prefer Agricola thanks to its cards and replayability they provide. What's interesting, this 2-player version of Caverna brings replayability in a form of face down tiles on both players' boards. Once removed they represent buildings that can be built. Sounds neat, I like the theme, remains on the radar.

16.06.2017: I read the rulebook sometime ago and I think it looks decent. Polish edition has been announced, so I will wait for it and get in hold of it once it's out.

15.09.2017: So far I played it once and it's a keeper. Very solid action drafting + set collection game for 2 players. Although set collection is somewhat a stretch since you need resources to buy new room tiles or to exchange them for gold, which is essentially victory points at the end of the game. I don't know, maybe I'm strange, but I like the aspects of the game that I often saw criticized on BGG. Primarily, the random "setup". Actions will appear in a semi-random order. Moreover new room tiles will also be random. I didn't like when some of Uwe's games were perfect information from the very beginning, even setup. This one has enough variability for my taste. Secondly, I find player interaction sufficient, I'd even embrace more, as it is limited to action drafting and buying room tiles before your opponent does so (oh, and usage of an action tile from the last round). I prefer my 2p games to be highly interactive, this one is not on the "highly" side, but it's not a multuplayer solitaire either, which is great.
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15. Board Game: Century: Spice Road [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:238] [Average Rating:7.37 Unranked]
Board Game: Century: Spice Road
On my wantlist, unless the price is ridiculous.

This is the first game in the trilogy of games, let's see how the whole title works. I read the rules to this particular implementation and it looks like a neat set collection game mixed with hand building and card drafting. It is superficially similar to Splendor, as there are few rules, turns will probably be very quick, yet the gameplay is pretty rewarding. I have an impression that Century is more strategic and features more interaction than Splendor, which is great.

Each player starts off with 2 identical cards. Over the course of the game you will be acquiring new cards and they go directly to your hand. It is not a deck-building game per se, as there's no deck. You get new cards, you play the cards to your discard until you've played all your cards or you simply don't want to play the remaining ones. Then you can take the whole discard pile back to your hand. No random draw, you can pick any card from your hand, while playing.

On your turn you can do one out of four possible things:
- play a card from your hand
- take back the whole discard pile and thus have a greater hand again
- buy a new card
- get a VP card

There are 4 resources (spices) in the game; each one is better than the previous one. Beginning cards let you take the least worth spice, but better cards let you take the more worthy ones. There are also ways to upgrade the spices you have.

When you buy a new card you need to mind where it resides in the row. Like in many games, the more recent the card is, the more expensive it is. Firenze-style you need to place a spice (any type) on each previous card. So if you buy the third card from the row in the tableau, you need to place a spice on the first and on the second card. As you can imagine, the first card is free, and when you buy a card with any spices on it, you take the spices left there by (other) players.

Lastly, getting VP cards means discarding spices you have to match certain set collection criteria.

So all in all you try to get cards, so that you can play them to get more and better spices which will let you buy more cards, or even get the VP cards which seem to be the main source of victory points. Sounds easy, but the way you draft cards from the middle makes you pay attention to where you place your spices. Maybe you're actually helping your opponent get free spices? Still a light medium game, yet noteworthy. I'm sold.

16.06.2017: I've had a chance to play this game recently and I enjoyed it. It's probably not brilliant, but it's very decent and offers interesting challenges. The interaction isn't high, yet it's there to a certain degree, which I like. Polish edition is out, so I will keep my eye out for it.
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16. Board Game: Charterstone [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:280]
Board Game: Charterstone
I will probably look out for a new copy after all.

It's a late addition to the list. That's because I was by default skeptical about legacy games. I still am, I suppose, but at the same time my interest was piqued and I would like to give this one a try. It might be overhyped, I'm well aware of it. I also hope that as the game goes, more mechanisms get unlocked. I just wish it wasn't a bland place a worker to get a resource or trade a resource type of game.

I obviously would rather get in hold of a cheaper second hand copy. But it's not possible with legacy games, because you do permanent changes to a particular copy. So it's either full in or not at all :/.
 
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17. Board Game: Chickwood Forest [Average Rating:6.91 Overall Rank:6916]
Board Game: Chickwood Forest
Interested, on my radar!

It's a very late additional to the list, but that's because the game has been brought late to my attention. The gama is definitely on the lighter side of euro board game spectrum. It's a fair distribution type of game, along the lines of Coloretto or Zooloretto, in which all players build piles of cards to draft and then take a pile each. Unlike in the other games you can't drop out earlier, and there is always one more pile than the number of players. Players are dealt three cards and on your turn you need to play a card to one of the piles. Sometimes you need to play a card face-down, sometimes face-up. Then, once all players are out of cards, in turn order a pile of cards is taken. Most of the cards contribute to set collection scoring at game's end. You want to have many treasure chests of the same color, certain types of cards you want to have just one, some reward diversified approach, the other ones give negative points etc.

There is also a small area majority aspect. The cards you draft also tend to have certain influence points which you then place in a form of cubes on cards. There are 7 of them and at game's end each one is checked for majorities. The more players contributed to a given card, the higher the reward.

Overall it sounds like a nice, family-friendly tactical card game. I know it's not a groundbreaking title, but I will keep my eye out for it.
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18. Board Game: Chimera Station [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:942]
Board Game: Chimera Station
On my wantlist. I jumped on the KS.
Worker placement game in which workers mutate, nice ;].

The general idea of this Tasty Minstrel Games title is that it's a worker placement game with a twist. The twist is your workers are made of plastic, modular material. You add more elements to them: additional arms, claws, horns and what not. This mutation makes workers get additional powers. Some make you get more resources, another mutation always grants you victory points when you use that worker, you can push other workers out etc. I need to check out that last power especially, I hope it's not a negative interaction that will make me lose an action I want, I hope it's more in a I-will-use-this-action-although-it's-occupied fashion. A KS campaign is planned soon, in September. No more solid info as of now, I'll stay posted.

15.09.2016: The KS campaign has started recently. I also read the rulebook which I found so-so at best. The game looks solid, worker placement with a twist (those evolving workers), plus you can add more worker places to the ever-growing board, which is nice (they are not yours per se). There's also a chicken game, because one action lets you straight up score points from all worker places currently occupied by other players' workers. You don't get any resources for it, just VPs. There's no negative interaction, the claws I was initially afraid of indeed let you push other workers out, but those workers have already taken their action upon placement, so it's all good. Claws are only for the clawed player to resolve a normally unavailable action. Anyway, looks cool, I'll watch a runthrough to make sure there aren't any surprises. But KS, I don't know, will probably wait for retail unless the deluxe edition has something I can't miss (metal coins are not enough to lure me in).
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19. Board Game: Clans of Caledonia [Average Rating:8.02 Overall Rank:42]
Board Game: Clans of Caledonia
Supported via KS.

It is superficially similar to Terra Mystica when it comes to hexagonal layout, adjacency rules, the notion of having a "naval reach" (although in here rivers and lochs do not work alike), scoring tiles per round, the notion of income as you place elements on the main board as well as different clans with unique special abilities. So yeah, a lot of common things, but there's no terraforming, no cults, instead you've got set collection in a form of export contracts, you can buy/sell on the common market. I think this game is more centered on area rivalry, on who can reach certain spots first, I might be wrong though. It definitely looks interesting and I think it ends up being different enough from Terra Mystica to justify owning both.

26.04.2017: Kickstarter campaign is live. Backed.
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20. Board Game: Cobras [Average Rating:6.94 Overall Rank:4851]
Board Game: Cobras
I saw a presentation and am interested for a reasonable price.

I'm not your typical trick-taker. Rarely do I play them, but I have a soft spot in my heart for them, because I used to play those when no other games were around back in the days. This one has a nice timing aspect of trying not to take tricks for some time, and then take a trick at a very opportune moment. If you miss it, a lot of points may pass you by. It's currently on KS, but with shipping, currency conversion and all of that I don't think it's a good deal for me. I'll wait until it's available in retail, maybe it reaches Poland ;].
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21. Board Game: Coldwater Crown [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:1979]
Board Game: Coldwater Crown
Awaiting more info and a rulebook.

Designed by Brian Suhre whose 2015 Paradox I have not heard of until now. Will be published by Bellwether Games whose best known title is Antidote, which I own, but have not yet had a chance to play :/.

This one lured me in, because it has a peaceful theme of fishing various fish in various waters and promises a unique take on worker placement, in which you get an action on both action selection and action change. We'll see.

10.08.2016: I don't know, the presentations I saw thus far didn't convince me, so I decided not to back it on KS. However it's getting really positive buzz lately, so it remains on my radar, but it's definitely a try before I buy, because I have hard time envisioning how the interaction works in this game and whether the whole workers with values 1 or 2 thing is a gimmick or an actually meaningful mechanism.
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22. Board Game: A Column of Fire [Average Rating:6.56 Overall Rank:3507]
Board Game: A Column of Fire
I read the rules, it looks interesting, but I'm not enamored.

Little info thus far. The game is by Michael Rieneck, just like the previous two games in the trilogy (?): The Pillars of the Earth and World Without End.

22.06.2017: I read the rules and the game looks interesting. It's probably right there in the middle when it comes to complexity, family+ level I suppose. I can't really visualize how this game plays, I can't judge by the rulebook alone in this case. I will gladly play it, but I probably won't be buying it immediately. It's a very tactical game, in which you try to have the most scoring trading houses in various countries, but you also need to make sure that your current religion matches the one that won the conflict in a particular country. Cards will be drafted from the common pool with dice, which indicate how many rounds you keep the card for. Interesting stuff, I don't know, the more I think about it, the more I'm hyped .
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23. Board Game: Commands & Colors: Medieval [Average Rating:8.36 Overall Rank:2761]
From gallery of BoardGameGeek
Awaiting initial reviews.

I like Memoir '44 and love Battles of Westeros. I even own Commands & Colors: Napoleonics and The Great War, but haven't yet had a chance to play them. I can welcome another game from C&C system into my collection, but I'd rather hear more about it before I decide to purchase. I know the drill, I more or less know how C&C games play, so rulebook won't help me much, I'm interested in people's impressions.

21.08.2017: Pushed back until 2018.
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24. Board Game: The Cousins' War [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:2923]
Board Game: The Cousins' War
On my want list!

I've just read the rules to this small footprint card game by Surprised Stare Games Ltd and it immediately hit my want list. It's meant to last for half an hour and is based on the Wars of the Roses. So it's a historical / war game more in the vein of Twilight Struggle or even last year's 13 Days: The Cuban Missile Crisis, since it's card driven and you can either use a card for its event of command points. Plus there is area majority concept on the board, although there are only 3 areas to control. You control all 3 at any given time and you win the game. Whoever controls more at the end of 5 or so rounds wins the game.

Each round a battle will be fought. Players will start with a certain number of cubes (armies) on their side. You try to reduce your opponent's forces to zero to win the battlefield and that will let you place whatever's left from your forces onto the game board. The interesting thing is that battles are theoretically based on luck, but also on bluffing, since you declare to your opponent what you rolled and he may or may not challenge that result and make you reveal your roll. If that happens whoever's wrong will have to sacrifice one army. The opponent may try to accept the declared result and just fight it. There is a way to adjust a die by +/- 1, but you need to expend a card to do so. There are other ways (via command points) to place more armies directly onto the board, or make your opponent lose armies.

Overall it seems like a nice mixture of hand management, agonizing decisions when it comes to card play, bluffing and a bit of luck when it comes to dice rolls.
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25. Board Game: Crystal Clans [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:2367]
From gallery of joepinion
On my wantlist!

I have a soft spot for 2-player CCG-like games that are not collectible and do not feature prior-to-game deck building. I mean the likes of Neuroshima Hex, Pixel Tactics or Summoner Wars. Speaking of the last one, there's a new game coming out from Plaid Hat Games. It's been designed by a debuting Andrea Mezzotero, but Colby Dauch has also helped polishing the design.

I read the rules and the concept is similar to Summoner Wars: you place units represented by cards onto a battlefield. They may move and battle the opponent's units. They also have variable stats and special abilities. But that's where similarities end. First of all the game is based on a time track mechanism aka a variable initiative. As long as you have initiative (points to spend) you may perform actions. Each action will reduce your initiative and move more towards the opponent's side. As soon as the action marker (after your action) ends up on the opponent's side, it's his/her turn. It's been used in other games, but not enough imo. What is more, up to 3 of your units in a given space form a squad. Squad has a combined attack and takes damage starting from the top most one. Battles are resolved by each player playing a card from their hand. It will result either in a worse or better ability, depending on a rock-paper-scissors mechanism. Once such ability is applied, you deal your typical card game damage: all attacks are applied to defenses simultaneously.

The game is not about killing your opponent. Well, it is indirectly, but in reality you want to control 2 out of 3 crystal zones, because thus you can take an expensive action of claiming a crystal. The alternative way of claiming a crystal (for free though!) is when your opponent is force to draw or discard a card from a deck, but the deck is empty. That triggers reshuffling and you claiming any crystal for free. What is more, if your squad is alone on the opponent's home area you may attack that player which results in discarding cards from the deck equal to the combined attack. The game ends as soon as a player claims his/her 4th crystal.

All in all, I like everything I read in the rulebook. The only thing I'm not sold on is the rock-paper-scissors mechanism in resolving battles. Yeah, I know it's just an additional bonus, but still it seems kind of random, not on a bluffing side of things. I don't believe you have *any* idea what the opponent might play. Possibly later in the game, when only a handful of cards are around, who knows. I won't fool myself though, it's on a buy list, I'm afraid.
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