Livin' the 'Hai Life in Bangkok
Tyler DeWaal
China
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I welcomed SanktDavid to Shanghai for a couple of days of gaming and sight-seeing and then we both went to Bangkok, where the gaming and fun continued. Dave was well primed for the occasion, having spent several weeks taking on the fearsome NasalDemon up in Beijing.

It's an amazing opportunity to be able to play boardgames all around the world, but I wouldn't have it any other way- great food, great friends, great games, and some fun activities along the way.

We played 8 games (6 titles) in Shanghai and then 18 games (10 titles) in Bangkok. I've listed them by how much I personally enjoyed playing them and included a few non-game listings at the end.

The main goal was to play a couple heavier games that would be difficult to get on the table at home, with several filler games to mix it up. Dave took the overall victory with 13 wins to my 9 (didn't count coop victories). More importantly, the quality of gaming was quite high-level.

Enjoy and comment below!
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1. Board Game: Discoveries [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:596]
Tyler DeWaal
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We both agreed that this was the highlight of the gaming. It had a couple thematic and mechanic similarities to Lewis & Clark, but the game stands on its own and plays so tightly. Each move is crucial, it provided some really tense action. Dave won 2 of 3, but in game 2 I absolutely crushed him. Now I'm pumped to get this out on the table at home!

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2. Board Game: A Feast for Odin [Average Rating:8.17 Overall Rank:30]
Tyler DeWaal
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Dave wanted to get some more plays out of this since his previous plays had been up and down, and I enjoy Rosenberg games enough- this was tough and meaty and the first game I just tried to keep an open mind, and I'm sure it was frustrating to Dave as I kept asking questions and could never remember anything- hey, there's a ton of options! In the second game I managed to win by going heavy on the immigration (shouldn't it be emigration?), and then in the 3rd game, it was neck-and-neck but Dave pulled out the W. I actually really enjoyed this game and would play again! Definitely have to stay focused on your strategy and not try to "do it all." (but it's so tempting!!)

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3. Board Game: Troyes [Average Rating:7.77 Overall Rank:68]
Tyler DeWaal
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I was excited to play this, as it has mostly just gathered dust on my shelf and I remember quite enjoying it a few years back. The first game was mostly learning, but all three games were actually pretty good. This was right up there with Odin in terms of quality gaming. Officially it was a clean sweep for Dave, but unofficially, after looking back through the rules, I would have edged Dave in our third game. My fault for not being a good boardgame owner.

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4. Board Game: 7 Wonders Duel [Average Rating:8.14 Overall Rank:13]
Tyler DeWaal
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The "surprise" of the trip.

Bangkok has a nice little boardgame store called Boarding Time, right in Ploen Chit near where we stayed and near some good food places. We paid the fee to play their demo games in the store, and we really liked this one! It was our first and only play, and afterward we both realized why it is so popular. I kept trying to push for military, only to be rebuffed in Age III, but I had enough in the tank to pull out the narrow win. WAY better 2-player than the two-player version of the original 7 Wonders.

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5. Board Game: Patchwork [Average Rating:7.74 Overall Rank:59]
Tyler DeWaal
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This was another one that we played at the game store that we both agreed was really great. I remember briefly looking at this when it was released 'cause my wife is a quilter, but I didn't give it enough research back then. Big mistake. This game is fun, quick, tense, and we both enjoyed it. I still think the box is hideous. Definitely going on the list. I was on a winning streak and took the victory.

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6. Board Game: The Resistance [Average Rating:7.36 Overall Rank:188]
Tyler DeWaal
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I never really get tired of playing this game, and we had just enough people (wifey and some work buddies) to play 2 games in Shanghai. In game 1, I was resistance and had pinned the two spies, but couldn't convince my mates. Then I was a spy in game 2 and had the opposition running in circles.

No win stats since Dave and I were teammates both times.
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7. Board Game: Colt Express [Average Rating:7.18 Overall Rank:311]
Tyler DeWaal
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My family loves this game, as do I. We introduced this game to a couple of Shanghai friends and everybody loved it. Dave and I first played this at Essen 2014 and it was fun to play again. I was Doc and took the win by getting the strongbox and getting enough shots off in the final round.

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8. Board Game: Chosŏn [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:3461]
Tyler DeWaal
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I really like Koryo and haven't played Choson much at all, but it was great to bust it out. Dave was in control both games, but they were quite tense. This is a game where card sleeves make a huge diff.

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9. Board Game: Catacombs (third edition) [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:672] [Average Rating:7.71 Unranked]
Tyler DeWaal
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Played this with Dave, longtime friend Nathan Arp, and my 2 oldest sons, one of whom begged to play Catacomb Lord. Not sure why, but I just like dexterity games. It was Dave's first play and we teamed up as heroes for the win.
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10. Board Game: Roll for the Galaxy [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:62]
Tyler DeWaal
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We played this at the game store and I just couldn't quite get my mind into it- by the middle to end of the game, I had picked up enough and even won by playing 2 cards on the final turn of the game.

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11. Board Game: Ninja Taisen [Average Rating:6.55 Overall Rank:3925]
Tyler DeWaal
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First play for Dave, and he was aggressive right out of the gates, so I played defense. It worked against him in game 1, but the aggressive strategy worked perfectly in game 2. Yes, it's Rock-Paper-Scissors, but it's still a fun game.

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12. Board Game: ICECOOL [Average Rating:6.89 Overall Rank:783] [Average Rating:6.89 Unranked]
Tyler DeWaal
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Another dexterity game! Just a quickie to show it to Dave. We played with my son Evan who really likes games. I bested the rest.

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13. Board Game: Master Merchant [Average Rating:6.13 Overall Rank:5372]
Tyler DeWaal
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Played this 3 times (twice in the Shanghai Airport) and each one was quite unique. Certainly felt like a Kanai game.

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14. Board Game: 7 Kingdoms [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:8928]
Tyler DeWaal
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I remember liking this previously but didn't really enjoy it this time. Dave won handily.

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15. Board Game: Tumblin-Dice [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:614]
Tyler DeWaal
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We only had time for a partial game in Shanghai (ha, imagine packing this game in a suitcase!). No winner was declared. Hurray for flicking games.
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16. Board Game: JAB: Realtime Boxing [Average Rating:6.29 Overall Rank:2868]
Tyler DeWaal
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(we did not play this game)

We went to a local Muay Thai kick-boxing arena one night to watch 7 bouts, and the front-row seats were totally worth it. At first, we weren't quite sure what the fight strategy and scoring system were all about, but we quickly did some research and then the fights made more sense. There was only one KO of the seven we watched; Each fight was five rounds, with a flurry of knees to the side and leg whips in rounds three and four. It was definitely a local event, not some touristy show, with the locals all gambling during the course of each fight. Glad we did this.
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17. Board Game: Escape Room: The Game [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:806] [Average Rating:7.26 Unranked]
Tyler DeWaal
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(we did not play this game)

Dave and I have escaped in Europe and the U.S. and did 2 rooms in Bangkok: Escape Break (Asylum) and Escape Room Bangkok (Room 13). Both were pretty good and we managed to escape with minimal hints. I've yet to try an escape room boardgame, but would give it a try if the situation presented itself. Doing an escape room or two has become a tradition of our gaming get-togethers.
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18. Board Game: Travel all over Thailand [Average Rating:6.25 Unranked]
Tyler DeWaal
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(we did not play this game)

In addition to eating glorious amounts of Thai food (Khao Soi and mango sticky rice, yum!) and bustling around the city with the locals, we took a quick day trip to the ancient capital of Siam, Ayutthaya. We wandered around a few of the various sites for half a day, pretty impressive though not quite as cool as Seam Reap/Angkor Wat. Then we got snarled in Bangkok traffic on the way back, which was delightful *sarcasm*. Thailand is a fun place with lots of modern conveniences, I could definitely live here.
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