Games only YOU have played in March 2017
Ben Bateson
United Kingdom
Ross-on-Wye
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I don't know about you, but it seems to me that March - with five full working weeks therein - is taking forever. So it's all the more important that we are able to kick back and relax. What have been your truly unique games for relaxation this month?

The instructions are, as always:

Quote:
Look at your plays for the month of March, and then check out the games and see if you can find any games where you are currently the solitary logger of a play for March (or if the other loggers were actually in the same game session with you). Use your common sense in order to make the search faster. Obviously things like Dominion, Magic, etc. will have plenty of people playing them. Note: expansions that only you logged are fine, feel free to add them as well.

Then share any comments you might have. Are we missing something? How could this happen? What is your opinion of the game?


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1. Board Game: Tanzania [Average Rating:6.80 Unranked]
Larry Rice
United States
Irvine
California
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This was a small dice rolling/placement and tableau building game. I didn't much care for it as there was very little one could due in the way of mitigating chance...and most times if there was, you had to choose which method you were going to use to mitigate chance (IE, increase number of dice or modify numbers).
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2. Board Game: Attacktix Battle Figure Game: Star Wars [Average Rating:6.14 Overall Rank:5701]
sean johnson
United States
Edinburgh
Indiana
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My son and I were recorded the only play. We used Legos for terrain and my son had his clones hunker down behind cover. It was a sound strategy because he beat my Darth Vader led force.
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3. Board Game: Sweets Stack [Average Rating:6.79 Overall Rank:8934]
Larry Rice
United States
Irvine
California
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I was surprised to find my play the only one logged this month. This is a fun and fairly clever Japanese game in which you decide from a hand of cards which tetris type piece your opponent has to place. I've usually had pretty good results introducing this one to people if they know Tetris and often one person asks where it might be available. Happy to play this one most any time.
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4. Board Game: Rhode [Average Rating:5.94 Unranked]
Russ Williams
Poland
Wrocław
Dolny Śląsk
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One of several recent abstract games by Luis Bolaños Mures which we tried out this month (because of this). (We've also played Linage - I'm the only one to have logged plays this month, although I tried it due to fogus blogging about it - and Cation.)

Rhode is a square grid connection game; in Luis's connection games, he comes up with a variety of tricky ways to handle the problem of diagonal crosscuts in a connection game on a square grid.

In the case of Rhode:

A weak pair is a set of two like-colored, diagonally adjacent stones such that there is no like-colored stone orthogonally adjacent to both.

At the start your turn, if there are any friendly weak pairs on the board, you must place a stone of your color on an empty point that is orthogonally adjacent to the two stones in one of those pairs. If there are no such pairs, you must place a stone of your color on any empty point.

After a placement, all friendly stones, except the one just placed, that are part of any crosscuts are removed from the board, after which the turn ends. There will be no crosscuts remaining on the board at this point.

The game is won by the player who completes a chain of orthogonally adjacent stones of their color touching the two opposite board edges of their color. Draws are not possible.

NJames wrote a very positive review:
A connection game with shifting tempo
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5. Board Game: Scurvy Musketeers of the Spanish Main [Average Rating:6.08 Overall Rank:8200] [Average Rating:6.08 Unranked]
sean johnson
United States
Edinburgh
Indiana
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My wife and I are attempting to play through all of our games in a year. For some reason this is one of them. We were the only ones to play it this month, and we will not make that mistake again.
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6. Board Game: Giraf'Fun [Average Rating:4.00 Unranked]
Eddy Sterckx
Belgium
Vilvoorde
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By special request from the kids - aged 5 and 3. They're both very used to playing games and so I'm always amazed at what games they like more than others.

I think that this game is loved by them for the idea behind it: giraffes eating berries, thereby extending their necks and when you roll the toilet roll you have to go sit on the jungle toilet and poop some berries out. Hilarity ensues, but there's not really a game in there.
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7. Board Game: Booh Booh Castle [Average Rating:5.08 Unranked]
Eddy Sterckx
Belgium
Vilvoorde
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A Michael Schacht game, so you're expecting at least a half-decent game but here we have a good idea marred by the atrociously bad graphics design of the board.

I didn't even notice a particular staircase until somebody else used it. But it was the kids favorite game of the day, which shows they have other criteria to judge a game by.
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8. Board Game: D'r Af [Average Rating:5.91 Overall Rank:10079]
8-bit Matt
United States
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It's old, it's rare, it's chaotic, it's random... It's a Splotter.

Mildly entertaining meeple
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9. Board Game: Zombie Island [Average Rating:5.59 Overall Rank:11869]
Jerry Wilkinson
United States
New Castle
Indiana
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Bought at IndyCon for $3, and played earlier this month. It wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be, but it still wasn't great.
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10. Board Game: Whack a Catgirl: Crazy Characters [Average Rating:5.95 Unranked] [Average Rating:5.95 Unranked]
YaVerOt YaVerOt
United States
Arvada
Colorado
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I recently got my hands on this expansion, and got it played.
Also the only play of the basegame this month.
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11. Board Game: Bluff in Zoo [Average Rating:6.33 Overall Rank:7066]
J Rachfal
United States
Rochester
New York
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Kids were home from college break and we pulled out this card game. It's a bluffing game in the vein of Call my Bluff/Liar's Dice and Coyote. We had great fun with it.
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12. Board Game: A Line in the Sand: The Battle of Iraq [Average Rating:5.90 Overall Rank:9351]
Larz Welo
United States
Las Cruces
New Mexico
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Just this one for me this month, though there were 3 others I was close with.

This is a fun 6-player wargame that is pretty much completely unbalanced. At the beginning of the game, you will receive an objective which will be 1 of 3. Based on your objectives, you will probably have natural allies and natural enemies. The unbalanced nature of the game is that often, there is little that you can do if you're in an under-powered alliance or you're just isolated and unable to make any impact.

However, despite the unbalance it probably does reflect the Middle East of the early 90s because certain players just were terribly disadvantaged. Also, the superiority of US or even Israeli forces is indisputable, but they cannot hold up to a constant attritional grinding that the Arabs can put them in.

My 3 biggest complaints about the game are:
1) Many of the counters are misprinted. Either the flag on the back is wrong, or the color on the front is wrong. Kuwaiti troops should be Moderate Arab, but is a blue US unit. Also, there are some Israeli Air Wings that may actually belong to various NATO forces.
2) It can be not fun for a player if they get a terrible objective that no one else is sharing. This can cause a great deal of frustration for a single player. If 2 or 3 players get those objectives, it stops being a problem because they will form a natural block against the other "coalition".
3) Iran is super under-powered. Based upon this game, you'd believe that Iran has fewer military assets than either Syria, or Saudi Arabia, which is preposterous. I understand that they didn't participate in the actual conflict, but they should have some forces able to do something instead of a small handful of crap.

In our game, everyone except Israel and the Moderate Arabs won. The Moderate Arabs were attempting to contain/restrain Israel, which means they not only stay completely within their original borders, but must actually lose at least one space of land. Israel was attempting to achieve the conquest of both Jordan and Lebanon (restoring a Davidic Kingdom or some-such). And on turn 1, Israel started dropping nukes on various places. The conquest of Jordan was accomplished on turn 1, and Lebanon on turn 4, but on the final action of the final turn, Jordan was re-liberated by now radicalized Saudis. He held Lebanon which is why the Moderate Arabs also lost

Iran and Iraq were unified in their desire for Islamic Jihad (how much that term has changed in 25 years), and were able (thanks to Saddam's chemical attacks upon Israel) to achieve their goal of getting Jihad up and killing "the infidel".

The Volatile Arabs were attempting to become the premier Arab power by instigating Moderate Arab revolutions/conversions (there is a game mechanic where the Jihad scale goes up and down and when it gets high enough or low enough it can cause various countries in either the Moderate or Volatile block to switch to the other side. This can be confusing in gameplay because the color of the counters remains the same [there are no variant counters] but you're supposed to now remember that now Oman is controlled by the Volatile player). This was extremely easy to do with the Israelis dropping nukes. Every Moderate country except Turkey (which is immune because of the NATO connection), and Oman (which just kept getting lucky rolls) had switched to the Volatile side by turn 12.

The US/NATO player's goal was to conquer Iraq, which he did on turn 11.

There is a rule which we didn't realize until our game was completely over which says that if over 50% of your countries are conquered (a specific meaning) you cannot win anymore. So, in hindsight, Iraq also wouldn't have won, since both Yemen and Iraq were conquered, but that wasn't a big deal.

We were much too aggressive, all of us. However, we had a blast.
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13. Board Game: Igel Ärgern + Tante Tarantel [Average Rating:6.81 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.81 Unranked]
Robert
Canada
Ottawa
ON
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A handful of people played Igel Ärgern (none on this version) and I think that's great for this little abstracted hedgehog racing game from 1990.

However, nobody played Tante Tarantel. This was the first time for us on this side of the board, and I'm kicking myself for not playing it sooner. The spider decimated us!
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14. Board Game: Ruckus [Average Rating:5.68 Overall Rank:10811]
Patrick
United States
Orem
Utah
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My kids like to pull out random little games that aren't mainstream on BGG, so I think there's a good chance of us being unique in any given month. We had just gotten Battle Sheep which I had never heard of, so I thought it may an only played. Turns out lots of people are playing it, which makes sense because it's so easy and quick while still involving thinking. Our play of Bakong, which is good fun with young boys, turned out to be 1 of 4 this month.

I was surprised that our 3 plays of Ruckus, with my 7 and 9-yr-old and myself, were the only ones in March. I think this is a funny little speed game with a little bit of push-your-luck type tactics of how long to hold onto your cards. My boys had a blast, and I have enjoyed this with casual gaming friends as well.
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15. Board Game: Proton [Average Rating:5.03 Overall Rank:13928]
So it goes.
United States
Burke
Virginia
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My son and I played this at the bus stop a couple of times. This is a near perfect bus-stop game.
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16. Board Game: Patterns II [Average Rating:7.17 Unranked]
So it goes.
United States
Burke
Virginia
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Played this with my son using Kory Heath's "Paradigm" program. The scoring is different but the general gist is close enough for me. It was fun, though designing good puzzles is hard.
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17. Board Game: Hyle [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:4824]
So it goes.
United States
Burke
Virginia
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I know I'm not the only one because I had an opponent on SDG... I guess he doesn't log his games.
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18. Board Game: Amoeba [Average Rating:7.11 Unranked]
Carthoris Pyramidos
United States
Centennial
Colorado
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My two initial plays of this game with Looney Pyramids and poker chips were the only ones logged this month. I expect to play it more, though.


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19. Board Game: Feudality [Average Rating:6.50 Overall Rank:2622]
Carthoris Pyramidos
United States
Centennial
Colorado
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I'm shocked to have been the only one logging plays of this lovely Tom Wham joint this month. It's a current favorite with my daughter, although I beat her at it reliably.

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20. Board Game: Kakerlaken-Duell [Average Rating:5.36 Unranked]
Jonathan Takagi
United States
San Marcos
California
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I was surprised at this one, I'm guessing it's only because this has only recently been released.

This only shares artwork (and designer) with previous Kakerlaken games. This is a pure bluffing game, sort of similar to Phantoms vs Phantoms. You try and pull cockroaches to your side of the board by outwitting your opponent. "I need to move this one the most, did she put the red x on this column?"
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21. Board Game: MeM [Average Rating:7.38 Unranked]
Jeff Huter
United States
McCordsville
Indiana
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Played a couple solo games. Interesting concept. Looking forward to playing the 2P game.
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22. Board Game: Ritter Drachenfix [Average Rating:5.50 Unranked]
Chris Stanton
England
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More gaming with my daughters this month. This one not getting quite so much play this month as my 22 month old has taken to either banging on the door to the back room, demanding 'Game, game' or, if the door is open, grabbing one from the shelf & sitting down with it ready to play.

I mix my tiles up each time I uncover any but don't​ expect my 4 year old to.
Her hand is moving towards the dragon almost before the die has stopped rolling whereas I tend to move towards my tiles.
Currently my tile-turning speed is keeping me ahead on the win count but I don't think that'll be for too much longer.
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23. Board Game: Abande [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:5528]
Frederic Heath-Renn
United Kingdom
London
London
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On SuperDuperGames. My first victory, somehow! It's fun trying to set little traps for each other, and it feels oddly gentle and peaceful in a sort of Tokaido-esque way. (Don't ask me to explain why I think that.)
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24. Board Game: Attangle [Average Rating:6.95 Overall Rank:7502]
Frederic Heath-Renn
United Kingdom
London
London
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Also on SDG. I prefer this to Abande, though; that game has little mechanical constrained movements, like the escapement of a watch, whereas this is a game of big sweeping movements (kinda like YINSH), of bear traps swinging shut, of delicate structures collapsing like Jenga towers in a domino run of punch-counterpunch, of getting in each other's way and muscling in on each other and then getting in your own way and feeling like an idiot. The fact I am a bit better at it than I am at Abande is probably also a factor.
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25. Board Game: Trollmaster [Average Rating:6.89 Unranked]
Dave Peters
United States
Belmont
California
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Powers:Coleridge:Milton: Faith...must be, if anything, a clear-eyed recognition of the patterns and tendencies, to be found in every piece of the world's fabric, which are the lineaments of God.
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That's Tim Powers' fictional Samuel Coleridge "quoting" John Milton in _The Anubis Gates_.
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Most of my play hours this month were The Colonists. But I did manage to find one title for this list: トロルマスター Tororumasutā 'Trollmaster'.

If I've been unsuccessful in bringing it to your attention in earlier instances of this list, it's a little Fantasy-themed tableau builder, with a slightly more random than it truly wants action selection mechanism, and at least some room for cleverness. I like it a lot.
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