Solitaire Games On Your Table: August 2016
Eric Miller
United States
College Station
Texas
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Welcome to
Solitaire Games on Your Table
August 2016


The Home of “Together, We Game Alone”


If you are new to this list and just happened to stumble upon this by accident: Hello! We're glad to have you here! Take a look around, make yourself at home, and join in on the fun!
Feel free to post games you've played, comment on the games posted by others, and join the general discussion at the bottom of the page. If you are a regular: Glad to have you back and.. well, you know what to do!


Microbadges you might like:
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Guidelines
1. Play a solo game, or a multi-player game solo.
2. Post an entry on this geeklist and tell us about it.
3. Be nice, but most of all have fun.
4. See something you like? Give it a thumb.

A recent trend (which is by no means mandatory) is to include a thumbsup and one or two thumbsdown describing pros and cons of the game you have played.
Need to keep the wallet safe somehow and that might help a bit!


=== August is Back to School Month ===


That's right- time to send the kids (or yourself if you are in education like me!) back to school!!! Or at least get ready to go.... So the main "fun" challenge for this month is:

Tell us what you did this summer. Choose a solo game that represents something special (in a good way!) this summer. A trip? An event? An accomplishment? Let us know! Just put the header "What I did this summer" in your entry and tell us all about it. And since I'm used to getting questions from my students-
A No, it doesn't have to be a solo game, but it should be. Or at least played solo.
B No, you don't have to do this for every entry- just go through the games (maybe the previous SGOYT lists?) and use one entry to tell us about your summer.
C Yes, have fun with it! (Go all "Secret life of Walter Mitty" if you want!)



Yes, it's time for the Games of the XXXI Olympiad!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Summer_Olympics


GeekGold Giveaway

Notice the Olympic rings above? Yep, time to break out Reiner Knizia's Decathlon for some serious competition!

{EDIT} The Heptathalon is scheduled for Aug 12-13 and the Decathlon is scheduled for Aug 17-18. I intend to give away some for Gold, Silver and Bronze medalists! I've reserved the first spot to detail the rules, links and of course, the results!

SGOYT Resources

1 Player guild: Home Base for solitaire gaming

SGOYT - Monthly Geeklist Subscription Thread: So you never miss another month

SoloRPGOYT - Monthly Geeklist Subscription Thread: For those of you that like role playing

2016 Solo Challenges SUBSCRIPTION: Join the rest of us in failing to get high scores whilst competing against each other

2015 People's Choice Top 100 Solo Games: lock up your wallet before you click here

Solitaire Recommendations For Your Table: general recommendations by genre

The Solo Games Chain of Generosity: a wonderful way to pay it forward

1 Player Guild Trading Post: buy, sell, or trade with other 1PG’ers

SGOYT made me buy this!: what did you buy and who do you blame?

SoloPlay Variants Posted on the Geek: who needs an official variant?

SGOYT Spreadsheet: all the SGOYT data you could ask for

SGOYT Aggregator: Aggregation of each list's games by Ones Upon a Game, a wonderful tool!


Future SGoyT hosts:
September 2016 kikerl
October 2016 maloma
November 2016 garyrbrooks NEW
December 2016 & Beyond Available
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1. Board Game: 1944: Race to the Rhine [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:1262]
Matthew Galer
United States
Atlanta
Georgia
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Played as Monty and managed to finish in 25 turns.

Definitely think I can do better, but so far limited plays and much time between plays lowers my ability to see the flow of stuff on the board.

Still of mixed feelings about this as a solo game, need another play or two , and using someone other than Monty to form a more complete opinion.
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2. Board Game: 1944: Second Front [Average Rating:5.60 Unranked]
The play's the thing ...
Australia
Point Lonsdale
Victoria
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Going thirty-eight, Dan, chill the f*** out. Mow your damn lawn and sit the hell down.
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Set up and ready to start. Some interesting ideas about elite units and their effect on battles, both offensively and defensively. Will see how it goes.
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3. Board Game: 1960: The Making of the President [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:157]
Sander Kouwenhoven
Netherlands
Utrecht
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Due to my interest in the American election, I was really in the mood to play this again. Based on some comments in a thread about solo-ing this I created my own quick little system:

I played Kennedy, my 'system' played Nixon. The rules where as follows:

+ Kennedy plays normally, just like when I would be playing a real opponent.

+ Nixon draws a hand of cards like normal, but when it is his turn he only plays the top card. I'll have to use my best estimate whether or not to play the event or use for CP / advertising etc.

+ If Nixon is eligible to use a Momentum token to trigger an event on Kennedy's card I use the following rules: If triggering the event would result in getting the Momentum token back (for instance the Gathering Momentum cards) Nixon will always do it. Otherwise, if the effect of the event would be positive: roll a d6: If roll + amount of available Momentum tokens > cards in hand of Kennedy -> play it.

+ Last card of Nixon each round (or last 2 in the last 2 rounds) are added to the Campaign Strategy unseen.

+ Debates: Play the top card of the Campaign Strategy deck. If an illegal card is found, then draw a new one.

+ To make it more difficult for Kennedy, I ruled that after every round Nixon got to draw 2 random cards. The states indicated by these cards each got 1 extra influence for Nixon.

I enjoyed myself playing this system, but it is far from perfect. Had a lot of fun playing 1960 again though. It had been a while. Kennedy won easily, which was more a function of the system being too easy than me playing well.

thumbsup Played 1960!!

thumbsdown System needs working, you still need to decide for Nixon what to do with a card, so it is still quite like playing two-handed.

thumbsdown The debate system really needs reworking

thumbsup I think it would be possible to create a flowchart for Nixon, probably need to help him a little bit with things like added value for CP's, more random added influence at the end of the game.

thumbsup You can switch Kennedy and Nixon if you're feeling more tricky
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Scott Allen
United States
Freeport
IL
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On vacation last week, when the girls were out shopping or whatever, I had time to play 4 or 5 games of Todd Sanders' entry in the 2016 solitaire PnP contest.


(cell phone pic, sorry for the average quality)

No surprise that the graphic design is top notch.

It's a nice 15-20 minute game. I'd be thrilled if I could design a game like this. It's not perfect, though. I've won a couple times, but those wins seem mostly dependent on the luck of the draw.



Todd has hinted that he'll make some changes after the contest, and I can't wait to see what he comes up with. I might even - as an exercise of my design skills - try to adjust the rules somewhat and see what I can come up with (don't tell Toddninja).
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5. Board Game: 30 Rails [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:3904]
Israel Waldrom
New Zealand
Dunedin
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Decided to start solo games for this month with a game of 30 Rails, and managed to get my best score yet, of 103!



This was the first game in which I managed to get 5 of the 6 possible connections (still yet to get 6), and also the first in which I have managed to get all 4 of the stations connected to the mine.

I did make one mistake, and forgot to put the mine down before rolling for the first few rails, and put it down as soon as I remembered "hey, where is the mine?". It didn't effect gameplay to that point, and didn't advantage me either.

Still very happy with how the game went, and how well the strategy that I have been perusing has been working for me.

Great little filler

<summary> Fun dice rolling, rail laying PnP filler. Highly recommended.</summary>
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6. Board Game: 30 Rails [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:3904]
Mike Hostetler
United States
Omaha
Nebraska
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I'm a fan of PnP solo games, so when this popped up on the list in the last few months, I had to give it a shot.

One play, but I like it. Portable, easy to piece together (print out page, pencil, and dice of different colors). It's puzzle-ly and challenging. There is luck involved but you never feel like you are out of control (until the end, of course. You just have to take your last few rolls).

I ended with a score of 53, not bad considering I didn't connect Station 1 to anything.

I'll make getting this laminated real soon, esp with 40% off lamination at Office Depot!

http://www.officedepot.com/a/design-print-and-ship/

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7. Board Game: 30 Rails [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:3904]
Leigh Hathaway
Australia
Melbourne
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So the best thing about missing my flight and having to spend hours in an airport terminal was finally having the chance to break out 30 Rails.

I've had this PNP game in my bag for months and am glad I finally got the chance to play it as I was hooked from my very first game.

In my first game I thought i'd done really well managing to link up two stations and accruing a final total score of 10 points. Yes, laugh away if you want... upon consulting the performance chart I saw that I didn't even make the chart. The game designers clearly decided not to label this kind of awful but I got the message.



Regardless I continued playing up until boarding and then also smashed out some sheets during the flight, gingerly rolling the dice across the tray table whilst getting odd looks from the person sharing my arm rest.

By the time I landed I had achieved a high score of 42 and did a lap of honour up and down the aisle.



I'm back in work now and wondering if the photocopier is going to overheat with the rate i'm printing play-sheets.

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8. Board Game: 30 Rails [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:3904]
Laura Blachek
United States
charlotte hall
Maryland
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Played this earlier in the month and scored an astounding 16.. I kept trying for long connections and as my options dwindled i had to cut off most routes.

A day or two later my 5 Year old asked to play the train track building game, and we proceeded to pull it out. I rolled the dice for him and he picked the locations (with one or two suggestions from me ). He played two games, scoring 20 and 21 points.

Played it again yesterday and scored a much more satisfying 69 pts... Which still does not beat my very first play in which i unintentionally built a route of length 22 and managed 81 points in total.
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9. Board Game: 30 Rails [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:3904]
Iain
United Kingdom
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I decided to knock out a simple print and play game as I am finding some of these are absolute gems - and very easy to make is a plus.

30 rails seemed to get pretty popular a few SGOYTs ago, I think it was a PnP contest entry. It's a dice game where you are trying to build tracks between stations and a mine; each rolls shows what track you can build and where you can build it on the map.

I didn't really know what I was aiming for during setup so did it fairly randomly and the started building. I managed to connect a few stations but only the close ones. My final sheet:



The rules say the following score brackets:
40+ Okay
50+ Good
60+ Excellent

So I can only assume my score of 25 is atrocious. I can see myself playing this again
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10. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Robert Bruder
United States
Rocky River
Ohio
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Had a rare day to myself and took the opportunity to have a mini solo-con. I started off with a new acquisition, in 51st State Master Set. I borrowed Imperial Settlers from one of my wife's co-workers and the game didn't quite grab me. But the differences in 51st State, although minor, seemed like they would be enough.

My Buildings:


AI's Buildings:


Right off the bat, I enjoyed this one more - perhaps the theme drew me in. I played as the Mutants Union, beating New York 36-32. Being my first play through, I suspected that I missed a rule or two; and I did! I neglected to give the AI 2 VP's for every Connection Card they grabbed. Oops, I would have definitely lost.

Final Score (Boo-Yah, a Misinterpreted Rules Win!):



Can't wait to get this to the table for another go.
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11. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Byron Campbell
United States
Santa Clarita
California
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My first game of 51st State. I've played Imperial Settlers before, so I mostly knew what to expect, but I was surprised by how much I liked the art and atmosphere of this one (was expecting to like Imp Set more). I miss the faction-specific decks, but I think the extra step in resource management (from raw resources to contact tokens) and the concept of "distance" works much better in this version. I was not overly impressed by the AI, and I plan to try Rev's version of it next time (see this thread: Methods to increase the Solo difficulty). I'm gonna try Variant 2. After all, in Imperial Settlers, the AI razes twice, so why not here? It should also give me an opportunity to actually interact with the virtual opponent, instead of always having them pass by turn 3, before I have been able to generate any red contact tokens.

Here is a snapshot of part of my State at the end of the game. I won 39 to 24:



Edit: tried Rev's variant. I still won, but it was closer and felt more natural, and the AI actually triggered the end of the game, forcing me to scramble for points. This time I played as New York and won 43 to 38. I actually forgot to claim resources for buildings the AI razed in the first couple of rounds, so my score could have been a bit higher.

I think something that might work well for this game is to modify the AI's scoring based on the round number. Since this is a game of acceleration, it would make sense that the enemy scores more points in later rounds. I just need to figure out how to track the round #. An unused faction marker on the scoreboard might work. I am thinking that the AI gains 1 point for claiming connections and razing buildings, multiplied by the current round. So 1 point in round 1, 2 points in round 2, etc. The game typically lasts 4-5 rounds, so this would have a small effect, but would be worth trying out. I don't like the idea of giving the opponent even more buildings, since that just gives me more options each round.



Edit 2: Played a third game with the variant described above. It worked really well. Not sure if it's actually winnable with this variant, but the AI puts up a good challenge. Here's how I did it:

1) use a third faction token to track the number of rounds played on the scoreboard.
2) the points scored by the AI for razing or claiming connection cards scale with the round #, e.g. 1 point for the first round, 4 points for the fourth round, etc.
3) additionally, the amount of raze attempts the AI makes scales with the round #. The AI flips over 1 card in the first round, 2 cards in the second, etc. before passing. The AI doesn't pass after a successful raze, and there is no limit to the number of locations razed per round (1 location per card flip).

This made the virtual opponent very aggressive, which I think is a good thing in this case. I still managed to escape with only 1-2 locations razed per round.

I lost 36 to 38.

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12. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Marlon Kruis
Netherlands
Hoogeveen
Drenthe
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Finally got another play in for this great game!

Played one of the solo variants by random pick.
It gave me Merchants versus New York!
Which meant more building and dealing and less razing whistle

d10-1 Merchants 45
d10-2 New york 34




thumbsup Great artwork!
thumbsup Love the easy to learn and clear rules
thumbsup Really dig the tableau building here and the use off one central deck

thumbsdown The base set is not enough, 1 of the 2 expansions are a must to shuffle in directly.
thumbsdown Official solo variants aren't really a big challenge (but at least they are there!)
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13. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Hans Baer
China
Suzhou
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This time I tried out the two variants suggestion by
Reverend Uncle Bastard
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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I also wanted to play with the faction variants but my VPN was down so I couldn't google for it and bing is just completely useless at finding stuff...

Anyway, the game was a lot tougher and shorter than I'm used to. The AI destroyed quite a few of my production buildings and at first I had no brick income to make use of the ruins. Luckily the AI had a production building that gives 3 bricks when razed. With those bricks I was able to build a lot of my high cost buildings and get a good VP engine started.

At the beginning of round 4 the AI already passed 25 points but I could score a ton of points already off the action buildings (and from more upgrading).

Final score after counting buildings was: 42:33 which is easily the highest I ever achieved in 4 rounds.



Two rules questions:
Razing the AI costs 3 (production), 4 (feature) and 5 (action) tokens?
Can I upgrade an action building after using it in the same round?
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14. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Benny Grootjans
Belgium
Oostende
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Tried a solo game with the texans.
Didn't work out that great. I lost 40 to 29. Just couldn't get an engine going.

In my opinion a great game for solo play.

thumbsupthumbsupthumbsup
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15. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Marc Maier
United States
Darien
Connecticut
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Session 1:
(Base + New Era)

Me (Appalachia): 36 - Survivor
AI: 28


I randomly drew Appalachia, which for whatever reason is the faction I am most comfortable playing. And the cards I drew played right into the faction’s strengths. I steadily pulled locations which either produced or made use of brick to score. By game’s end, I had clay pits, a rubble trader and brick supplier; additionally, I made a first-turn deal for brick. I was thus awash in brick, and I was able to activate the scoring locations while having enough leftover for the occasional overbuild.

I also had more deals than I usually do when playing Appalachia thanks to another first-turn deal for a gas can. I kept converting this to blue contact tokens on my faction board, and was fortunate to have a lot of 1 and 2-distance cards to make deals with. I had two deals for VPs by the second round, which helped me stay close to the AI even as it grabbed connection cards every turn.

I was also fortunate in which locations the AI “chose” to raze. None of them turned out to be essential scoring locations, although an early one was a school which left me short of workers for most of the game. Indeed, workers were the primary bottleneck in my engine throughout the game.

In the final round, I triggered all the scoring locations I had, then finished with a burst of building/overbuilding to get nine locations down before the end. This was enough to provide me with a relatively substantial (for me anyway) victory over the AI, huzzah!


Session 2:
(Base + New Era)

Me (Mutants): 52 - Trader
AI: 23


Since I’d played Appalachia in my previous session, I randomly drew from amongst New York, Merchants and Mutants and pulled the latter. During the session, the cards I drew mostly played right into the Mutant strengths: heavy on locations either producing or using red contact tokens and guns. This, combined with locations giving benefits for razing and deal-making let me run away to my best solitaire score yet.

I made two deals for red contact tokens early, and these helped me raze two AI locations during the course of the game as well as numerous other cards in my hand. The razing was doubly effective for me because I built Trucks and the Rifle. Thus, in addition to the regular spoils, I received an ammo token and a card each time I razed. Trucks also brought in ammo for every deal made, although I only had five of these over the course of the game.

My hardest-working locations were the Arena, giving me plenty of guns each turn, and the Confessor which let me turn those guns into points. Both of these came out relatively early, and I was fortunate that the AI did not raze them. I built a shield producing location midway through the game to defend one of these, but the shield was not needed; the AI kept hitting other, less important locations, and the resulting ruins let me overbuild some more useful ones anyway.

In the final round, I used my red tokens to raze for bricks. I overbuilt to place an action location using bricks for points, then razed for gas cans which I then also used for points in another action location I’d overbuilt to construct. This final round was a doozy since all the razing let me keep drawing cards and gaining ammo thanks to Trucks and the Rifle. The AI couldn’t even reach 25 thanks to my razing of two of his locations, and I had a new high score of 52 earning me the rating of “Trader.”

51st State’s solitaire variant is not so competitive vs. the AI, but darned if it isn’t fun to see what combos you can pull off each game. Every session is different, and I love the puzzle of figuring out how best to use what the game gives me.
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16. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Benny Grootjans
Belgium
Oostende
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After yesterdays defeat with the mutants (not the texans like I said in my previous post), I tried again today with the mutants.
And I scored a victory. 32 points for the mutants, virtual player getting 21 points.

Hooray!! I'm a now ranked a survivor according to the rulebook .

Great game. thumbsup
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17. Board Game: 51st State: Master Set [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:256]
Rich Smithston
United Kingdom
Chippenham
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Played my 1st game of 51st State last night. The game was pasting me all the way. It finally won by about 12 points but then I noticed that you get to complete the action phase before totalling scores. I was playing the Merchants Guild and had finally amassed a hell ass load of deals. Using all of the stuff from my deals meant that I managed a final heroic frenzy of action and won by 5 points. I couldn't believe it! Huzzah!

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18. Board Game: 7 Wonders Duel [Average Rating:8.15 Overall Rank:13]
Hans Baer
China
Suzhou
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First time solo with the "Scott is a jerk" variant.
I was mostly denying Scott resources so he couldn't build his wonders early on. Unfortunately I couldn't keep this up forever and he trashed two of my buildings (one of them I was able to get back with the mausoleum).
Final score was 75-64:



Overall the variant is fun but maybe a bit too simplistic. Most of the time it was easy to let Scott have the cards that didn't help him all that much. I imagine that if Scott would prioritize buildings he could score higher and still be easy enough too manage.

E.g.:
Always prioritize resources until all wonders are built.
Afterwards:
red/green > purple > blue > yellow

Some open questions:
If it is unlikely to win science/military he should give up on red and/or green. What would be a simple rule to determine "unlikely to win"?
How to prioritize red vs green? Is there an easy way to check which one has a better chance of winning?
He's already cheating. If he also makes "smart" decisions will this make him too strong?

Might give this a try the next time I play. Maybe I can find the answers while playing.

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19. Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:209] [Average Rating:7.96 Unranked]
Peter Kossits
Canada
Montreal
Quebec
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Nice to see some wargames popping up in here again.

The ASL solitaire bot still lives. It's made the jump from Starter Kit 1 to full rules and I've played quite a few scenarios from Beyond Valor already.

One thing I like about ASL over other tactical games is how nicely it scales. I tend to like my wargames on the large side.



This is The Czerniakow Bridgehead right at the beginning of turn 1 of 10. The bot is the defending Russians and I am the attacking Germans. This is a strange battle that happened in Warsaw in 1944.

My troops are all the way up in the top left corner. They have to cross the small river using 1-2 nearby bridges and then fight through the city until we reach the banks of the Vistula.

The bot has to prevent this. The bot also has the typical defenders dilemma of having to defend a large front on which the attacker can concentrate and push through on only a small area. The bot is currently defending 4 bridges, but I only plan on using 2 of them for my initial attack.

Should be fun! This is the biggest scenario the bot has tried so far.
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20. Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:209] [Average Rating:7.96 Unranked]
Peter Kossits
Canada
Montreal
Quebec
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This is the Czerniakow Bridgehead continued from my initial report on page 8. I'm playing the Germans and the ASL Solitaire Bot is playing the Russians. Now on Turn 3. A sizable group of Germans has crossed the first river and is making good time towards the banks of the Vistula.

Russian troops are tightening the noose and are closing in.



Fun game. I've kept it set-up on my table all week and have been playing it in little spurts during the workday while waiting for things. I'm the developer of the app for Baseball Highlights and I'm preparing the release for the 1st set of expansions and I've had quite a bit of downtime while trying to test in-app purchases which I'm doing for the first time. ASL and the solitaire bot fills the void nicely.
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21. Board Game: Advanced Squad Leader: Starter Kit #1 [Average Rating:7.80 Overall Rank:413]
Jim Fardette
United States
Lawrenceville
Pennsylvania
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Retaking Vierville, German (BOT) turn 1 -

Entry locations unclear. What criteria is used to select the exact entry hex for each unit? I chose to use 4.3.1, section 3, Crit 3: Least distance to closest objective. So within 2 hexes of F0 is H0, and 2 hexes of P10 is N10.

MPh-

Western reinforcements:
Group 1 (447) Enters H0, can't see anyone so moves to H1 (random selection), can't see anyone so goes CX into I2 (4.3.1 crit 3 again) and stops.
Group 2 (7-0, 447) Enters H0, H1 (RS), I2, draws card 16/2+ so OK to move into J2 (crit 3 again). Def fire of 6 (-3), so attempt smoke placement and fail, DR=3, mDR=0, 3 KIA. The 7-0 and 447 bite the dust, 2 residual left in J2.
Group 3 (447) Enters H0, H1 (RS), CX to I2, stops.
(I might have done this wrong, should the CX units have gone one more MP into the street with a safe card draw?)

Eastern reinforcements:
Group 1 (467) Enters N10, card is 8/1 so OK to move, goes to N9 (crit 3 again), LOS to good order enemy in N5 so no CX and the unit stops.
Group 2 (8-1, 467) Enters N10, card is 16/2+ so OK to move, goes to N9 (crit 3), selects N8 (crit 3) but card is 6/1 so rejects it, selects O9 (criteria 4)which is safe so no card needed, no enemy in LOS so CX to O8 (crit 4).
Group 3 (467) Enters N10, 6/2+ so OK to N9 (crit 3), LOS to good order enemy in N5 so stops.

[see picture 1]



DFPh - No effect

AFPh - N9 has one target, I2 has two targets. Process N9 first because of higher FP due to not being CX. Only target is L5, so no card required, they firegroup at it and pin the 747. I2 draws a firepower >= 4 card which cannot be achieved due to long range, AFPh fire and CX status, so they instead firegroup at M5 which is the target with the most firepower. A 2 (+1), DR=3, mDR=4, 1MC breaks both the leader and squad in M5.

RPh- 8-1, 747 rout to N5

APh- Units in I2 do not advance out of their nice stone building. Units in O8 go to O7 (random selection) and one squad in N9 advances to N8 (crit 3). Since N8 is not a building, the other squad will not advance to that hex (stacking NA), nor does it advance into M9 (less cover, due to lowered hindrance) so remains in place.

[see picture 2]



OK, so that's it so far. Peter, let me know where I made mistakes in following the system.
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22. RPG Item: Adventurers Compendium [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked]
Ron A
United States
California
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From the Tunnels and Trolls Adventurers Compendium, the mini solo Seven Ayes, written by the T&T designer himself, Ken St. Andre.

You can create a character, or let the adventure pick one for you. I did the latter, and ended up with Grnisrath'h the Orc, stats as follows:

ST: 20
IQ: 11
Luck: 07
CON: 15
Dex: 08
Chr: 12
Gold: 500!

For weapons: Orcish scimitar: 4D6 +4, Sax (dagger): 2D6 +5 and a javelin, 3D6. OK, so not so great on luck or dexterity, but I figured I was well set up for anything else. Yah, we'll see how that turns out.

This adventure takes place in the Seven Ayes Tavern, located in the city of Frarrg, approx. 100 miles south of Knor*.

After leaving the scimitar and javelein with the bouncer (patrons are allowed to keep daggers with them), a rock troll named Big Burp, our orc Hero bellied up to the bar. IN keeping with the tone set by the bouncer, the bartender is a one eyed Ogre. Grnisrath'h orders swine milk, which comes served in a human skull. Being an Orc with a stout stomach, the swine milk is downed (and it STAYs down).

Now an elf comes up and asks if Grnisrath'h would like to wager some gold in a friendly game f Death Cubes? The Orc is no dummy, and figures there is some catch. However, the day a brave Orc refuses a challenge made by a sissy elf has not been seen, and Grnisrath'h is confident he can hold his own, even though the elf has 3 confederates.

He does well at the start of the game, winning 100GP fairly quickly before he then loses 3 rounds in a row to the elf, whose name is K'Neevle. Grnisrath'h is not a dummy, he figures K'Neevle is using some crooked dice, and decides to drop out of the game. Grnishrath'h is feeling the effects of the swine milk, and simply walks away, rather than accuse K'Neevle of cheating.

K'Neevle is not happy the Orc is leaving with his gold and sucker-stabs him with a elven dagger on the way out. Sadly, the elf was NOT a sissy, and Grnisrath'h ends up dead on the tavern floor.
















*Frarrg not shown on this map of Trollworld: https://deluxetunnelsandtrolls.wordpress.com/2014/12/26/merr... Ah well, it might have been destroyed or renamed. Far be it from me to question Trollgod.
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23. Board Game: Aeon's End [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:164] [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked]
 
Bradford Lounsberry
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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I just don't like building PNP games. Even just printing them out on normal printer paper and sleeving them is a chore to me. All that cutting... I'm just lazy I suppose cool

But I've been itching to play Aeon's End for awhile now and they had provided a PNP version for their Kickstarter Backers so I'm cutting out cards right now to play this week.

Has anyone else played Aeon's End yet?
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24. Board Game: Aeon's End [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:164] [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked]
 
Bradford Lounsberry
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Finished putting together my PNP copy of Aeon's End!





The PNP has a good chunk of the game included. It is co-op so you can play as 1-4 characters. Each character has a unique card and unique power. They also have different starting setups for breaches.

I chose Jian since she seemed like a good brute force flame thrower.



The character sheet tells you what your opening hand is and the order of the rest of the deck. You also never shuffle your deck. When your deck runs out you just flip your discard upside down and keep going. While you play the game you will know what is in your deck and, depending on your memory, the order of the cards. This adds a neat strat.... yeah you had me at no shuffling. Glorious.

Next you choose the Big Bad called Nemesis. It feels very similar to choosing a villain in Sentinels of the Multiverse as each of the Big Bad's turns he'll draw a card and play it. Then you go "What?! This is BS! Unpossible!" Each Big Bad has it's own game mechanics, set of Nemesis cards and other game components depending on whatever it does.

I chose Rageborne. He is focused on building up his Fury and doing damaging Strikes to take down the player.



The goal of the game is to kill the Big Bad or survive until he runs out of cards. You lose if you die or Gravehold (the last human city) loses all it's "health".

Next you need to set up the 9 piles of cards that make up the Supply. This is your standard market you'd see in other deckbuilders. You can randomize this or choose the 9 different cards that make up the market. I usually like randomizing, but I have enjoyed building the market to compliment my character and planned strategy.

Last thing you do is build the Turn Order deck. This deck is 4 player cards and 2 Nemesis cards that are shuffled up. Each turn you draw a card to see if the player or Big Bad is going to take a turn. I like this mechanic. Keeps you on your toes and adds a big of tension with each card draw.

I've played twice so far and lost both times due to Jian dying. The game is really brutal so far, but I haven't quite figured out the strategy.

thumbsup Always love games that have a lot of variety in setup. The PNP has 8 characters, 2 Nemesis, 4 difficulty levels and 99,000 possible Supply setups.

thumbsup The gameplay is really compelling. There are a ton of things to do each turn and you don't have the resources to do everything so it gets thinky. Every thing you do has purpose.

thumbsup Removing shuffling goes a long way to remove the tedious parts of deckbuilders.

thumbsup Plays great solo right out of the box. Plays the same as 2-4 players.

thumbsup Very challenging which is important to me for longevity.

thumbsdown I always like new games. Especially ones I've paid for. Always take my initial enthusiasm with a grain of salt. Remember dicemasters?
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25. Board Game: Aeon's End [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:164] [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked]
 
Bradford Lounsberry
United States
Thornton
Colorado
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Just finished my third game of Aeon's End. The first two games were a mess of messed up rules as is normal. But I had it all figured out for this third game.

I used Z'hana and Mist against Rageborne and triumphed with Z'Hana having 2 life left and Mist having 0 life left. If Rageborne had managed one more turn before I defeated him it would have been a loss.



Z'hana has the ability to heal Gravehold (the city you are trying to protect) and Mist has the ability to let an ally draw 4 cards.

After two losses to Rageborne I had a better idea of how to handle him. The biggest challenge is his direct damage to the characters. They only start have 10 health. A few solid strikes and they become exhausted. When a character becomes exhausted any damage they take is doubled and applied to Gravehold instead. This is bad.

I decided to focus on building charges to use my character's special abilities as often as possible while also making sure I cast spells every turn to get Rageborne's massive 70 health down to 0 little by little. I kept Gravehold healed and kept filling Z'Hana's hand with extra cards. Once she had her Breaches open (stop it! breaches are portals in this game, not pants, that is spelled breeches, pervert) she was able to combine together some great cards to do some big damage on her turn.

Playing 2-handed was so much fun and allowed me to pull off some crazy combos. Every turn had my left and right hands figuring out what they could do together. A lot of "if I do this then you could do that" type of conversations. Now I sound like a crazy person. I'm okay with that. The two characters finding ways to synergize together was the only way I managed to win.

When a Nemesis, in this case Rageborne, draws a Power it has a number of Power tokens placed on it. Each time the Nemesis has a turn a token is removed. When the last token is removed the Power activates. Think of it like a rumor in Eldritch Horror. Something bad will happen soon if you don't find a way to stop it.

I love this aspect of the game because you have other things to do. Using precious resources and time to stop a Power from activating is awful, but if you don't do it then it is awful. Sometimes you have to figure out a way to arrange the game state to minimize the Power's impact. Other times you have to spend tons of Aether (money) to discard it or discard a bunch of cards to get rid of it or whatever. There is a big opportunity cost involved.

Plus every turn that goes by moves you closer to the lower depths of the Nemesis deck. It is built in a way to have the hardest most damaging cards fill out the bottom third of the deck. Similar to the way you build the deck in Legendary Encounters: An Alien Deck Building Game

Anyhoo just rambling. Fun game. Each time I've played has been better as I figure it out better.

Tomorrow I'm going to try to take down Crooked Mask...

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