What Did You Play This Week? July 10-16, 2017
Bill Kunes
United States
Cincinnati
Ohio
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With the week behind us it's time to post your week's mini-session reports and stories to answer our favorite question:

Microbadge: I obsess over microbadge alignmentMicrobadge: I obsess over microbadge alignmentWhat did you play this week? - Edition 429
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thumbsup Don't forget to thumb the geeklist so we can keep our gaming conversation on the front page all week!
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1. Board Game: Century: Spice Road [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:237] [Average Rating:7.37 Unranked]
Board Game: Century: Spice Road
Bill Kunes
United States
Cincinnati
Ohio
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Not much gaming this week...

Tuesday
2x - Century: Spice Road
Microbadge: Running fan - 3.0 mi 24:18 (8:06) - humid and drizzling

Board Game: Century: Spice Road

With two wins my wife's opinion of Spice Road has improved. She has a better understanding of how to leverage her cards for more effective trades. We also saw additional cards that we didn't see in our first play that assured her there are more options available than the relatively flat first play experience. I get the sense she likes to push the pace getting VP cards early and ending the game with one more card than I can acquire as I chase.

Thursday
Microbadge: Running fan - 4.0 mi 33:25 (8:19) - warm, humid afternoon

Saturday
Microbadge: Running fan - 6.5 mi 54:06 (8:20) - 27:03 out, and 27:03 back
3x - Century: Spice Road

After my early morning run, my wife and I sat down for coffee and a few games of Century: Spice Road. She cleaned my clock sweeping a convincing hatrick of wins. It goes with out saying that this is now one of her favorite games. I tend to focus and desire to leverage trades while my wife just goes for VP as fast as she can and simply out paces me in collecting cards. The first game was close with 6 cards each (81-79), the second it as 6 to 5 (85-69), and the last 6 to 4 (80-52). Ouch!

This was a light week of gaming, but Spice Road has caught on for my wife. You may recall last week she was a bit underwhelmed by her initial play, but after seeing more cards and options it has clicked for her and she has been crushing it--winning all five plays this week.

meeple Keep playing...
BK's Hardcore 10x10 in 2017 List at 65/100
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2. Board Game: Century: Spice Road [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:237] [Average Rating:7.37 Unranked]
Board Game: Century: Spice Road
99 Boardgamers
Belgium
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Hi again!


I can't remember when, but I can asure you that we played multiple, oh yeah MULTIPLE
games of Century: Spice Road


Board Game: Century: Spice Road

Board Game: Century: Spice Road
We played until everybody had 1 win! ( so we played at least 25 times zombie)




A few days ago we played Orléans Trade & Intrigue

Including the famous 'Neue Ortskarten N°1'

Board Game: Orléans: Neue Ortskarten N°1


And the very famous'Neue Ortskarten N°2'

Board Game: Orléans: Neue Ortskarten N°2


... Not to mention the fabulous 'Orléans New Places Vol III'

Board Game: Orléans: Neue Ortskarten N°3


We got our very unfriendly 'Intrigue Board' ready kiss

Board Game: Orléans: Trade & Intrigue


...some random 'Hour Glass Tiles' zombie

Board Game: Orléans: Trade & Intrigue

Board Game: Orléans: Trade & Intrigue


And we pumped it up with the lovely Trade Order Cards!! Ooohhh! kiss


I won!!
And.. (as usual).. first place gets a very handy Splendor Lunch Box!! kiss


Board Game: Splendor


Any conclusions? zombie


Board Game: Orléans: Trade & Intrigue

meeple Orléans (Trade & Intrigue & stuff) is one of the best games with a Kidnapper and a little bit of Fraud in it!


PS: I like those new Trade & Intrigue Place Tiles as well !!
"The more Places, the better!!"
Board Game: Orléans: Trade & Intrigue




Years went by, and we played
La Granja


Board Game: La Granja: 2nd Edition Promo Cards

...including the 2nd Edition Promo Cards! ..."No Promo, No Party" zombie

thumbsup My highest score ever!! 95!! (Without cheating)


6 A.M.
Time for Splendor at breakfast kiss

Board Game: Splendor


Our game setup was slightly different, but it looked amazing :

Board Game: Splendor


No one won, due to foul play

meeple Splendor is easily one of the best games with poker chips in it!


mintcamel

I can't remember the exact day, but that day we felt like playing some '2 player games'

...Starting with Haspelknecht

Board Game: Haspelknecht

Board Game: Haspelknecht


kiss This is one of my favorite €-games that also works well with 2

And, let's not forget..

Board Game: Haspelknecht

meeple Haspelknecht is one of the best games with a 'Haspelknecht-Upgrade-Tile' in it!!


"Never underestimate the power of a Haspelknecht" zombie



During that day, we also played

Fungi (Morels)


Board Game: Morels


A very beautiful mushroom-set-collection game that deserves a heavier brother,
something like 'The mushrooms from (name of an ancient city)'

whistle

Suddenly, someone stood up and shouted loudly:

"Let's play a game that has camels in it! zombie"



So we played Jaipur
Board Game: Jaipur

Board Game: Jaipur

Game setup messed up again, the rule says: 'the market' only has 5 cards! laugh

meeple Jaipur is by far one of the best games where you can exchange Camels for Leather!



In the late hours we all wanted to play
Barony & Barony Sorcery
Board Game: Barony: Sorcery



The game really gets better with this expansion, I also like the new parts!
Board Game: Barony: Sorcery

Board Game: Barony: Sorcery

Board Game: Barony: Sorcery


meeple Barony: Sorcery is one of the best games with Frodo-ish purple tiles in it! zombie
Board Game: Barony: Sorcery




ninja

A couple of days earlier I wanted to play a couple of games of
Call to Glory zombie

Board Game: Call to Glory

mintcamel 'The Way of The Dragon' mintcamel




We played both variants,..of coarse!!!
Board Game: Call to Glory


meeplemeeple Call to Glory is one of the best games with Ninja Minuatures in it for only 9€ meeplemeeple


kiss
zombie
laugh

Board Game: Orléans: Invasion

'Give me a carpenter!' someone shouted,
so the first game that I could think of was Orléans Invasion robot


Board Game: Orléans: Invasion

I love those rewards on the Structure Cards
Board Game: Orléans: Invasion

And these Cover Tiles really pimp the 'Scriptorium'



A few hours of sleep later we played Rattus

Board Game: Rattus

Board Game: Rattus: Spiel 2010 Bonus Cards
ninja We played it with several expansions, otherwise it's too quick & easy ninja


I would like to thank you for your time and patience!



Board Game: Splendor





Sorry, we didn't had the chance to play Schwarzer Kater arrrh
Board Game: Schwarzer Kater

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3. Board Game: Ticket to Ride: Rails & Sails [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:755]
Board Game: Ticket to Ride: Rails & Sails
Stéphane Athimon
France
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Hi everybody,
I hope you are all fine.
Here is what we played since we arrived in Kent where we are having our familly holidays :
Ticket to Ride : rails and sails (2 5-player games).
Bento Blocks : one 2-player games (with the new dice wheel).
Can't Stop Express :one 3-player games.
Res Publica : 3 games (two 5-player games and one 3-player game).
Unlock : Squeek and Sausage : 5-player game, we managed to solve it in less than 50 minutes.

More details when I will have my computer connected to internet...
Thanks for reading
Have anice gaming week.
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4. Board Game: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1 [Average Rating:8.62 Overall Rank:2]
Board Game: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1
Nick Shaw
United Kingdom
Plymouth
Devon
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Two "in person" game session this week, and quite a bit of online gaming...

Game Group
Board Game: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1

Pandemic Legacy - [Spoiler Free] Played May (twice; 1 loss, 1 win) and June (1 loss). The first game in May was a pretty quick loss - things just conspired against us (two almost back-to-back epidemics early on, urgh). The second May game we managed to win without too much worry. June stepped things up a notch though, and although we were only a turn or two from curing the final disease, an epidemic came out that brought out London from the bottom of the infection deck, which was the ONLY city we couldn't afford to have come out as it caused an outbreak which caused a chain-reaction of outbreaks into Milan and Essen which maxed out our outbreak track. DAMN! Still, we're still very much enjoying the legacy campaign. Remembering all the legacy rules changes is becoming somewhat difficult though!.


2 Player Night
Board Game: Dominion

Dominion - My friend mentioned at the last game night that he'd never played Dominion. It was something I clearly had to rectify, and got him round on Wednesday evening to try it out. We played two games, one with the recommended First Game kingdom cards - which I won by about 10 points - and one with the Size Distortion recommended set, which I didn't think I'd win but came out some 40 points ahead thanks to having scooped up 9 Gardens cards and having 64 cards in my deck, making 54 points from JUST those cards (I had 4 provinces and a number of dutchies and estates too, and only 5 curses). The first game took about 30 mins; the second took over an hour as it was really hard to build up enough money in your hand to do anything - fun to explore that setup though, and my friend enjoyed playing too which was the main idea.


Board Game: Kingdom Builder
From gallery of njshaw2

Kingdom Builder - NEW - Not having had enough of Donald X. Vaccarino yet, my friend taught me Kingdom Builder, which I'd only ever played on the app. I loved it. Quick, easy to understand, gentle area control, what's not to like?! I can see why it got the SdJ win in 2012; simple yet elegant mechanics. We played 2 games, winning one each (the latter my friend won by just ONE point - SO very close!). Very much look foward to playing this again, and with more than 2 to see how different player counts compare. Very tempted to pick up a copy myself too, as my kids would really like it I think.

Note: In the pic, I'm orange, Chris was blue. One of the scoring cards was "adjacent to mountains", which Chris clearly got a huge boost on. One other was majorities in each sector, which I won on every sector I think, and that was as big a boost as Chris' massive mountains score. It was this game that ended with 1 point in it (I forget the exact score, but was something like 62 to 61).


Online
Board Game: Takenoko

Takenoko - 2 players; lost 46 to 38. I had an objective card I just couldn't complete and spent too much time trying to make it work instead of picking up more objective cards instead. Enjoyed the game though!


Board Game: Kashgar: Merchants of the Silk Road

Kashgar - 3 players; lost 26 to 23 to 16 - just couldn't cycle the cards I needed fast enough. Good news for this game this week though: Grail Games have picked up the rights to print an English edition of it, due out next year! YEAH!


Board Game: The Castles of Burgundy

Castles of Burgundy - 3 players; and I won quite handily, 232 to 173 to 129! I went heavily into farming early on and got a big boost from that, but didn't think I'd score as highly as I did as I had 13 empty spaces at the end - seems the other players were struggling though and I got a pretty high score!


Board Game: Million Club

Million Club - NEW - Trying this game out, as a drop-in replacement for an already-in-progress 5 player game on boiteajeux; I came last, but I didn't really get what I was doing most of the time; the rulebook isn't the best - it makes sense, but I think you need all the bits in front of you to get a proper idea of strategy. Interesting though. I'd like to try it in physical form some time, but looks like it might be unavailable in English anywhere at the moment.
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5. Board Game: Century: Spice Road [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:237] [Average Rating:7.37 Unranked]
Board Game: Century: Spice Road
Fernando Robert Yu
Philippines
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A week where my wife visits the condo to do some clean up and I get left home, and I make best out of it to play games at different places with a couple of new games to boot!

Tuesday

I had a meeting Monday and Tuesday and managed to visit the other site of the FLGS on the way back.

Board Game: Century: Spice Road
Century: Spice Road = 2 Plays

A couple of games of this as Vhange, Lyng, and Mariel try it for the first time, and they loved it!

Game 1: Vhange (1st) 69 Me 62 Mariel 60 Lyng 58

External image

Game 2: Lyng (1st) 60 Me 59 Vhange 55 Mariel 41

Board Game: Ethnos
Ethnos = 1 Play

The Dwarf, Halfling, Merfolk, Minotaur, Troll, and Wizard races meant opportunities for intense area scoring as well as big sets. Area control served me well for the first 2 ages but a huge 3rd age where I got 36 points made me pull away for the win from Vhange who was right behind me until that point.

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Area control for the win! Me 144 Vhange 104 Lyng 91 Mariel 76

Board Game: Imhotep
Imhotep = 1 Play

The last game of the day was a VERY close game of this which was won by Vhange.

External image

Side A. Vhange 35 Lyng 34 Me 34 Mariel 32

Wendesday

Wednesday night had me and Kent meet up at the nearby Dunking Donuts for some 2P gaming.

Board Game: La Granja: No Siesta
La Granja: No Siesta = 1 Play

I teach this dice based farming and delivery game to Kent and it went along well with me doing a better job at deliveries for the quick win.

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Farming and Siestas for the win! Me 45 Kent 36

 
Hero Realms = 1 Play

This fantasy retheme of Star Realms had Kent use the Ranger to ironically outheal my Cleric as he put the beat down on me. I did make the mistake of repeatedly discarding my heroes and this is where I miss the Landscape orientation of the bases in the original game as it was easier to track which cards were supposed to stay in play.

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Totally crushed as my Cleric gets run over by Kent's Ranger 71-0!

Board Game: Guildhall Fantasy: Coalition
Guildhall Fantasy: Coalition = 1 Play (NEW)

Guildhall is a group favorite and I convinced Kent to get all the sets for this fantasy retheme. He only brought the 8 roles which he felt were different from the original and we randomized 6 of these. We did not use the recommendation though of using a role from each "class" and that meant we had duplicates with the same niche.

External image

The "new" roles used in the game.

External image

Without a VP gaining role we managed to slog our way through with me grabbing the victory 20-14.

While the gameplay is similar I think the gorgeous art turned out to be the most distracting part of the retheme. It was difficult to read the icons as the art was a bit too busy and we had to constantly read the character cards for guidance. I would like to try this out again with the recommended 6 roles in each class which i think would give better balance.

Thursday

Robert invited me for another wargaming day at the FLGS and I obliged.

Board Game: Century: Spice Road
Century: Spice Road = 2 Plays

I got to play a couple of games of this with 1 game before Bob arrived and another after he left.

External image

Game 1: Lyng 83 Me (1st) 79 Rose 74

External image

Game 2: Rose (1st) 73 Vhange 63 Me 55 Lyng 42

Board Game: Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Operation Barbarossa 1941 (Second Edition)
Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Operation Barbarossa 1941 (Second Edition) = 1 Play (NEW)

This WW2 tactical combat system has always fascinated me and I ultimately bit the bullet and ordered several boxes of the system and Bob and I finally tried it out using the intro scenario Partisans. As veteran tactical wargamers we immediately included the use of the cards though and I have to say those cards made a big difference. I did not bring enough dice to try out the variable Action Points variant so we stuck with the 7 AP per activation which made things more predictable, but the game was intense nonetheless as the "you act I act" system made us watch each other's moves closely. In the end the better quality of the German troops served Robert well although I managed to defend the objective quite well IMO, but got wiped out for the automatic loss.

External image

An intense game results in a massacre and my Soviet Partisans gets wiped out by Robert's Germans!

Board Game: Up Front
Up Front = 1 Play

No wargaming session would be complete without a play of this great game. This we design your own forces using the Cityfight scenario as we select troops worth up to 314 points. This is the first time we introduce ther use of Ordnance and my Vichy French used a mortar to great effect which offset Robert's use of a Medium Machine Gun as well as a BAR in his other group. I managed to kill the MMG gunner and later on the assistant crewman who took over the gun. This really cramped up the German firepower and with my mortar harassing them to no end my large group of Riflemen with the LMG managed to get within range to pour even more fire causing the German squad to break and run.

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My Vichy French use their greater numbers to lay down a volley of gunfire to break Bob's American squad.

Board Game: Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King
Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King = 1 Play

This KdJ winner was up next as I teach it to first timers Vhange and Lyng. The VP scoring objectives were ones for most barrels, 4 tiles arranged in a square, points for each lighthouse and ship pair, and 3 points for each completed terrain area. The last one has always been a game breaker and this game was no exception as it provided a lot of points for Rose and Vhange with Rose ending up the winner in the end.

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Complete terrain scoring propels Rose to the win! Rose 127 Vhange 110 Me 106 Lyng 84

Friday

I invite Kent over to the house for another evening of 2P gaming.

Board Game: La Granja
La Granja = 1 Play (NEW)

I liked the dice game version of this so much so that I traded my copy of Imperial Settlers for this. I have been a fan of games which use cards in different ways and this was no different as each card could be used in 4 ways (as a field, as a wheelbarrow for delivery, as a farm extension, or as a farm helper) but with mechanics involving dice drafting as well as area control this game is definitely one for a fan for eurogame mechanics. This can definitely be a candidate for slowdown if you have AP prone players, but the game does restrict some of the choices you have to make (through a restricted hand size initially and limited slots for some of the card uses) and Kent and I play quick so we were done in slightly over an hour which is not bad for the first play. I felt I did better in my deliveries to both the carts and barrows but I didn't focus on the roof tiles while Kent completed his and that helped him setup some big moves towards the end. The hidden points ensured that no one knew who was winning and it turned out to be a very close one as Kent just beat me out by a point.

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A VERY close game with Kent winning 64 to 63!

Board Game: Up Front
Up Front = 1 Play

I teach Kent how to play this game with him using the Germans while I use the Americans. Kent set up in 3 groups which ended up a mistake as he failed to muster enough firepower to use use fire cards especially after I managed to kill his light machinegunner. I managed to close to point blank range and was 1 casualty short of breaking him before Kent conceded and promised to do better the next time we play.

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Kent's inexperience and small groups hampered his ability to shoot with the Germans conceding by deck 2.

Board Game: Century: Spice Road
Century: Spice Road = 2 Plays

The final 2 plays of the evening had us try this out as a 2P game. It turned out to play just as well at 2 players and just as quick.

External image

Game 1: Kent 79 Me 71
Game 2: Me 97 Kent 84
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6. Board Game: Vast: The Crystal Caverns [Average Rating:7.20 Overall Rank:576] [Average Rating:7.20 Unranked]
Board Game: Vast: The Crystal Caverns
Board Game: Vast: The Crystal Caverns


I played Vast twice this week. A two player learning game on Tuesday night and four player game on Thursday night.

both games were fun, but i enjoyed the four player game a lot more. I might try it solo, but I doubt i'll play it two player again. Not just Knight and Cave anyway.

The four player game was goblins, knight, cave, dragon. The dragon won with rounds to spare. I had a bit of a hard time grasping the rules for the goblins. It didn't help that i was trying to learn them on the spot. I always do better learning rules when i'm by myself and can take my time.

This one is going to need several more plays before it gets a rating.


Board Game: Schotten Totten


Schotten Totten is becoming one of my favorite card games. We played three games in a row and I would have kept going, but i wanted to get other stuff played as well.

I've tried several light card games like this. This one has beaten them all so far except for Haggis. We haven't even tried the tactic cards yet.


Board Game: Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small


Its been at least 3 years since i last played this. I don't know what made us choose it now. I just grabbed a bunch of two player games off the shelf and this was one of them. Its a fast and light worker placement game. This is a good gateway game if you thought someone would like the farming theme.

I think my opponent enjoyed the game more than I did. I don't dislike it, but i'm not rushing to play it again.
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7. Board Game: Strozzi [Average Rating:6.74 Overall Rank:2192]
Board Game: Strozzi
David B
United States
Virginia
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Board Game: Strozzi

Strozzi
This is an unfairly maligned Knizia auction game. It has basically the same scoring system as Medici, but the auctions are simplified and have an almost "trick taking" feel to them. It supports player counts from 3 to 6 and is an excellent option to sneak in an auction game when you have players that are not fond of bidding.


Board Game: Medici vs Strozzi

Medici vs Strozzi
This is the 2 player version of Medici and accomplishes this by replacing the auction with price setting. I found it to be more difficult than Medici and to be heavy on calculation. It's a good game, but I understand those who do not like the constant math problems.


Board Game: Imhotep

Imhotep

After an undeservedly long hiatus, I got this back out for a 2 player game with my wife. I thought I was winning huge, but ended up losing by 1. Dang. But this game is such a good mid to light weight family game and I vow not to let it rest this long again. Which reminds me: Mangrovia is another one I need to get back out.


Board Game: Patchwork

Patchwork
Met my son for lunch and we played this one, which he had never played before. He crushed me.
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8. Board Game: Guillotine [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1148]
Board Game: Guillotine
Carthoris Pyramidos
United States
Littleton
Colorado
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I got a lot of gaming in this week, including the completion of two multi-session campaigns.

Monday I played some Monochrome Chess with Prp, and later in the week we played some conventional modern chess as well.

At my game group on Tuesday, I was hoping to play something new to me, but I ended up teaching two games that I'd known for years: one six-player session of Citadels and a three-player game of Castles of Burgundy, and I came in second in both. I thought Citadels went pretty well, although there were evidently some hard feelings. In Castles of Burgundy, I eschewed livestock, and my endgame knowledge scoring nearly won it for me, but I trailed the winner by a single point (233 to 234).

I played a three-game series of Ignis with Prp, and I won the only one of the three that was not a draw.

We also continued the Summoner Wars matchup between Melundak Attack Pack and Moyra Moves Out, now on its fifth play. I had Melundak, and my champ Makienda Ru came out late and mopped up the floor with Moyra.

In lunchtime gaming at the office I won a game of Patchwork and lost one of Lost Cities.

Prp beat me at Drakon. We were playing with the escape variant, and I had more treasure than her; I just couldn't beat her to the exit.

I won a two-handed play of Guillotine with Prp. She did well, but there was no way I could lose with my FIVE Palace Guards.

We played the fourth and final game in our BattleLore campaign. My Daqan hardly took a scratch from the Undead: none of my units were eliminated, but still the Widow Stone and Wraiths haunting my rear building kept Prp sufficiently supplied with VP to pull out a narrow win. Prp won the campaign, 67 to 59.

From gallery of Carthoris


We also played the eighth and final scenario of the Dunwich Legacy cycle of Arkham Horror: The Card Game. After a reasonable level of engagement (we advanced the Act Deck twice), we were utterly destroyed, with a Yithian Stargazer and a Conglomeration of Spheres finally killing us both. My Zoey had spent the whole session fighting monsters; she never left the initial location! We're going to tackle this campaign again soon. I've already built my "Ashcan" Pete deck for the purpose.

Board Game: Arkham Horror: The Card Game – Lost in Time and Space: Mythos Pack
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9. Board Game: Terra Mystica [Average Rating:8.15 Overall Rank:15]
Board Game: Terra Mystica
James Moline
United States
Tampa
FL
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Board Game: Terra Mystica
Terra Mystica - On Monday night, my wife and I played a 2 player game of Terra Mystica. I was the Nomads, and she played the Aurens. I think the Nomads might be a little too easy to play. There stronghold ability of being able to terraform one space per turn meant that I pretty much never had to worry about shovels. I managed to build 2 towns, and used all of my priests on the cult tracks. Even with all of that, I only managed to win by a relatively small margin. I really love this game.
Rating: 8

Board Game: Dice Forge
NEW Dice Forge - After Terra Mystica, we were talking about Dice Forge, which I picked up on a whim at Dice Tower Con. The rules are pretty simple, so we decided to give it a go. This is definitely a lighter game than Seasons (by the same designer), but that was a good thing for 11pm when we started, and we both liked it quite a bit. My wife beat me by a pretty good margin. If it hadn't been so late, we would have played again right away.
Rating: 7.5

Board Game: Skull
NEW Skull - We kicked off this week's meetup with a quick learning game of Skull. I think my group struggled a little bit with finding the game in this one, just because it's so simple mechanically, and if you play the game straight up, it would just feel random. After playing a couple of rounds, I think we started to get it, but I think it needs a lot more play to really bring out the fun. This is a game that needs a meta. We'll see if it gets the chance to form.
Rating: 7

Board Game: Sol: Last Days of a Star
NEW Sol: Last Days of a Star - The bulk of Tuesday's meetup was spent learning and playing Sol: Last Days of a Star. This is a very interesting logistics and resource management game. The art is pretty bland and abstract looking, but the theme actually works very well. I managed to pull out a victory here, because I had an *okay* energy engine going. I don't think I'll get away with that now that the group knows what they're doing.
Rating: 7.5

Board Game: Sheriff of Nottingham
Sheriff of Nottingham - On Thursday evening, my wife and I played some games with a couple of friends who are new to board games. We started off with a lively, 4 player round of Sheriff of Nottingham. It's been a while since we last played this (more then 2 years!), and I'm not sure why. We had a ton of fun lying to each other and giving puppy dog eyes. I actually goofed pretty badly fairly early in the game, trying to smuggle 3 contraband in with a total penalty of 14 bucks, and never really recovered. This is one of those games that's hardly about the winner, though. I'm looking forward to the expansion to see what it brings to the table.
Rating: 7.5

Board Game: Werewords
NEW Werewords - After Nottingham, we played a bunch of rounds of Werewords. I was surprised by how well this game works with 4 players, especially after realizing that, most of the time, 3 of the 4 players would know the word. In total, we played 5 games, and the good guys lost all of them. Three times by failing to guess the word and incorrectly identifying the Werewolf, and twice by guessing the word and having the Werewolf identify the Seer. The last game we got the answer in record time, and I guessed it and asked most of the questions and the Werewolf still identified the Seer (who wasn't me)! Frustrating, but fun. There's a surprising learning curve for honing in on the word with questions, but I think we'll get the hang of it.
Rating: 7.5

Board Game: Citadels
Citadels - Next up, we played a quick 4 player game of Citadels. Ha. I remember Citadels being one of those games that makes you say "I didn't know games could do that" when you're first getting into the hobby. At least it was that way for me and a few of the people I played it with. I also remember that one of the reasons we put it on the shelf for so long (over 3 years now) was that it has a bit too much downtime. Our new-to-hobby-gaming friends definitely felt the downtime, not so much the amazement. We even only played to 6 buildings! My wife managed to win this one, in part because one of the other players played the Warlord in the last round and basically got to pick the winner by destroying one of my buildings or one of my wife's. She had hit my wife with the Warlord earlier in the game, so she got me this time, which was fair. All in all, it wasn't awful, but I think Citadels is probably going back on the shelf for a while.
Rating: 6

Board Game: T.I.M.E Stories: A Prophecy of Dragons
T.I.M.E Stories - On Saturday, we got together with some friends to finish up the Prophecy of Dragons expansion for T.I.M.E Stories. We had a bear of time getting through the first part, but once we got past it, it was pretty smooth sailing. This was a weird expansion for us. I think we all had more fun exploring this one than we did the previous scenarios, but the resolution was ultimately a little less satisfying. Our opinion of the game is as high as it's ever been, though, and we're looking forward to the moving on to Under the Mask.
Rating: 6

Board Game: Rococo
Rococo - On Sunday, I played a 3 player game of Rococo. It was a leaning game for the othern2 players, but it played surprisingly quickly. The last time I played it with more than 2 was a 5 player game that took a very long time. Not surprisingly, since it was a learning game for the other players, I won the game. The other players neglected the statues entirely, and I managed to get the x3 and one of the x2 spots for the fire works. I still really like this game, and I need to try the Jewelry expansion soon.
Rating: 8

Board Game: Notre Dame
Notre Dame - We also played a 3 player game of Notre Dame. In theory, I knew how to play this game, too, but the reality is that I've played it once before and that was close to 3 years ago. I screwed up a couple of things, but after one false start, we got through it okay and, I think, had a pretty good time. I love most of the Feld games I've played, but I can understand why some people prefer his old designs. Notre Dame and In the Year of the Dragon are notable for sure. They're not my favorites by him, at least not yet, but there's something to be said for fast playing Euros with simple rule sets and brutal in-game consequences. Sadly, I don't know how often I'll have people who want to play, but I hope to get it to the table more often.
Rating: 7.5
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10. Board Game: El Grande [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:71]
Board Game: El Grande
Evan Scussel
United States
Longwood
FL
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Board Game: El Grande
Board Game: ICECOOL
Board Game: Lords of Vegas
Board Game: Port Royal


It shouldn’t come as a surprise that this was a lighter gaming week for me. After last week’s Dice Tower Con, it’s only normal to expect a bit of reversion to the mean. I did have a gaming session scheduled for Saturday in which I was going to play Trickerion, Great Western Trail, and Dice Forge, but that fell through. Otherwise, it would have been a bit more robust of a week. However, I did get a couple things played, some of which were new to me.

 7.7   El Grande NEW!

I can see why people love El Grande and call it the Grandaddy of area control games. There was a lot to like here. I really love the Castillo mechanism and the ability to both score the Castillo and reallocate your workers after placing them in the castle. I really liked how turn order was accomplished here and the various power cards. There’s a lot of strategy to this game. However, I don’t like area control games in general and I think my lack of affinity for this genre affects my rating. I have a real difficulty winning these games as I have trouble anticipating what people might do, even when it seems like their moves are obvious. I like to be able to advance plan in my games and area control in general seems like a genre where reactionary behavior is more important than proactive play. As a result, my rating may seem conservative for such a great design, but I don’t see myself owning too many games in this genre. The only one I own is Mission: Red Planet and I consider trading that one away consistently.

 7.1   Ice Cool

I picked this up at Dice Tower Con because I felt like I needed to pick something up for the kids after spending $80+ on myself. It’s become an early hit with my seven and five year olds, but I wonder if this one will stand the test of time. It’s now gotten two quick plays, but unlike Best Treehouse Ever, My First Stone Age or Quadropolis, this one only got a couple of plays in the first week. Those other games were played at least 5x each in their first week, which makes me wonder if the novelty of Ice Cool will wear off quicker than I anticipated. For me, the game is uniquely cool (pun intended) and even though I suck at it, I’m very interested to play it at any opportunity.

 8.1   Lords of Vegas

Another game I picked up at the Con that has been a huge early hit for me and my gaming groups. This game is pure fun, frantic, colorful, awesomeness. In this play, a bunch of players built green casinos because the green stack had barely been drawn to that point. The problem was, most of the lots that were built on were in fairly close proximity. By the mid point of the game, I had been able to build, remodel and reorganize to a point where I controlled a seven-plot green casino! That made the game all over but the shouting as I also had a five-plot gold casino higher up on the strip. This game is really good for my collection because it encourages risk taking and aggressive play, something I typically don’t engage in too often in my other games.

 6.8   Port Royal NEW!

Alex Pfister is probably my favorite designer right now and I wanted to pick this game up in the virtual flea market at DTC because the re-release later this year by Steve Jackson Games has terrible box art (to my tastes). I wanted the old Klemens Franz artwork on my box. However, when I got the game to the table, I was a bit disappointed. Overall, the game is decent. But the press your luck aspect this one seems to play a much more important role in the overall game than it does in Pfister’s other small box game, Oh My Goods! I lost to my two kids 12-12-9 (I had the 9) simply because I zonked out three consecutive times early in the game trying to get a more prominent ship. In two of the three instances, the card that eliminated me was my second pull, so it’s not like I was pushing my luck 4-5 cards into the stack. I need to play this more to see if my rating increases, but it seems like if you get off to a slow start, its really hard to catch up. It also seems like building card synergies isn’t that great of a strategy. Instead, hoping you get a three or four gold ship to come up and simply taking the money to buy a more prestigious victory point card is the way to go. I want to play this more to see if my early impressions were incorrect.
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11. Board Game: World's Fair 1893 [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:797]
Board Game: World's Fair 1893
Rico Cordova
United States
Tampa
Florida
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My wife was out of town visiting her family last week so my play time suffered.

Dominion - I introduced this to a few guys in our office.

7 Wonders - We played this for our "board game lunch" in the office.

World's Fair 1893 - With my wife gone, our game night this week ended up being just my parents and myself. We enjoyed a quick game of World's Fair 1893 and some pleasant conversation.
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12. Board Game: Small World [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:241] [Average Rating:7.27 Unranked]
Board Game: Small World
Kent Pritchett
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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Board Game: Small World: Necromancer Island
Board Game: Small World: Leaders of Small World

This week I played several games of small world. For the first game we used the Necromancer Island. I was the Necromancer and I won. It was a little boring at the start but the necromancer picks up speed as the game progresses. I ended up winning but just barely. This one I can take or leave as an expansion. It does offer away to play with 6 players without the six-player map. The other game was leaders, and this one I like. It offers some more choices, in that you can go after the other players leaders so they have to give you a coin for ransom or let you have two points at the end of the game. Not a big change to the rules so this one I would play with every time.

Board Game: Jaipur

Other game played this week was Jaipur.

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I also finished painting the DotR hero pack 2.
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13. Board Game: 1860: Railways on the Isle of Wight [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:1626]
Board Game: 1860: Railways on the Isle of Wight
Tony Fryer
United States
Denver
Colorado
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1860
Played a really fun 3-player session of 1860. It had been over a year since my last play of this game, and it has a couple "non-standard" rules and an odd tile set, so it took a little for the three of us to get into the swing - in the end it was really cool (as we remembered it was) and got it done in about 4.5 hours (we were not trying to play fast and still that's was a fine length of tome). We were all pleased with the afternoon.


Dominion
Still liking my reintroduction to Dominion. Played a couple more times, lots of cool cards and combinations to explore. I put a randomizer app on my phone and bam! So easy to craft mixtures of Kingdom cards. Yeah, yeah, I know, I am late to the party compared to all you fine people out there. Forgive me. Looking forward to game day next Saturday where it is planned to play several sessions of this great game system.


Terraforming Mars
Yep, still like this game a lot. Yep, still think that I feel no real reason on Earth to draft cards. Just adds time which, for me, gives little return on that investment. I love drafting stuff and I'd probably play a 2 or 3 player game with you if you wanted to draft cards and if you're already a reasonably fast player.


Chinatown
I hate negotiation games, I don't hate Chinatown. I fail to understand this, however, I will qualify it that I like Chinatown with my known-quantity friends. Tough negotiators all, but they will make deals - in fact, I like Chinatown with these people. I have played this with strangers and had - unsatisfying results. Even tho I like the game in certain conditions, I'll only be willing to play Chinatown once in a while. In this session I was $30,000 shy of first place, that's pretty tight considering $10,000 is essentially 1 victory point.

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14. Board Game: T.I.M.E Stories: Lumen Fidei [Average Rating:7.51 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.51 Unranked]
Board Game: T.I.M.E Stories: Lumen Fidei
Keith Rudolph
Canada
Langdon
Alberta
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Board Game: San Juan
San Juan was the game of choice for Monday at lunch. I thought I was doing alright, but it seems like everyone managed to do just a bit better than me. Most of my points came from the chapel where I had a bunch of cards stored since I couldn't get the purple buildings and number of cards to line up in my hand. I lost by about 10 points.

Board Game: Star Realms
Tuesday's lunch game was Star Realms which I still don't understand the appeal of. 3 people in the group seem to thing it's the best thing ever while 2 of us absolutely hate it. I lost as usual. Not playing it at this point seems almost more fun than playing it.

Board Game: Love Letter
We followed that up with a quick game of Love Letter. I don't think I managed to get a single token of affection in this one.

Board Game: Survive: Escape from Atlantis!
Wednesday saw Survive: Escape from Atlantis! hit the table at lunch. Things just happened to line up nicely and we managed to sink a boat that was full of a single player's colour. It turned out that all of his high-value people were in that boat. Lesson learned.devil He ended up getting 2 points which I think is the lowest score I've ever seen in this game. I just barely managed to steal the win in this one with 14 points, just 1 point ahead of second place.

Board Game: For Sale
We managed to squeeze in 3 games of For Sale on Thursday. It had been a long time since I played this one. I lost the first 2 games quite badly. I thought I had managed to steal the win in the final one but ended up being beaten by $2!

Board Game: Welcome to the Dungeon
With only 3 of us around on Friday, we decided to try out Welcome to the Dungeon and managed to get in 3 games of it. I managed to be the first person eliminated every single game. The first one wasn't a surprise as I didn't quite understand what was happening with the bidding system yet. The second one was just bad luck as people dropped out when I didn't expect them to. The third time was just being over-confident. In my runs, I managed to get down to the last card each time and then would get sucker punched by something stupid like a goblin and lose the run. A neat little game but not a whole lot of depth to it.

Board Game: T.I.M.E Stories: Lumen Fidei
My wife finally got back from her trip on Sunday. Knowing that the Lumen Fidei module for T.I.M.E Stories had arrived, she was pretty keen on playing it shortly after getting home. We managed to get through it in 3 attempts. The translation in this one is extremely jarring as a native English speaker. It's like whomever translated it thinks they have a good grasp on the language but clearly speaks it as a second or third language; there are passages of text that just read funny, aren't conjugated correctly, or they use a word that is much larger than it needs to be for the context. While these things have been present in the previous modules, it's here in spades in this module and felt like driving over speed bumps and pot holes at high speed. And once again, the story in this module is flimsy and it doesn't really offer much in the way of puzzles. I'd put this slightly ahead of Under the Mask which was our least favourite. At this point, we're both starting to wonder if we really want to sink any more time into this game; the escape room games have been giving us the puzzles that we've been looking for and don't have the incredibly irritating translation problems that T.I.M.E Stories does. The only thing I think that would keep me going for a few more modules is that the ending of this one makes it seem like the next module will at least have an interesting twist to it. Hopefully they work it into the game play and don't just bury it in some overwrought, badly translated exposition text before or after the mission.

EDIT: There's also a massive, game-breaking misprint on one of the cards that we ran into in this module where the game enters a locked state and you cannot progress. It seems they completely forgot to add a bit of critical text to a card saying "Take Item XX" which can only be found in the FAQ. Way to play test it.
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15. Board Game: Kingdomino [Average Rating:7.36 Overall Rank:213] [Average Rating:7.36 Unranked]
Board Game: Kingdomino
Gaming Group
Board Game: Near and Far

I started off by teaching Sylvain, Tony and Remi Near and Far (now with my newly arrived metal coins). I started out questing early and the reputation I gained from that first encounter hurt my ability to get two of my artifact cards out. Tony had great movement and exploited this to quest far, gaining the resources neeed to get out some nice artifact cards and tie with Sylvain for the lead in trade routes. In addition he maxed out on the reputation track. Remi did quite well with artifact cards, tying Sylvain for the lead in artifact cards as well as earning points from a chief. Sylvain did quite well on Artifact cards, trade routes and threat tokens but was a couple camps shy of placing his last one. I got my camps out fast but struggled to get artifact cards. I had three left in hand when I triggered the endgame. One would have been worth 11 points but it would have taken me 2 more actions to complete and I was sure that Tony would have ended the game by then. As it was I think I should have ended the game even earlier. Tony ended up winning with 62 points. Lots of fun was had by all.


Board Game: Kingdomino

Next, Sylvain taught Tony and Remi Kingdomino and I joined in for the fun. Tony won the first, relatively low scoring game. In the second game Sylvain showed us how the game is really played with a couple of large, high scoring areas in his tableau. This is a very fun filler but I'd like to see a few extra tiles so that in a four player game there is some uncertainty about the distribution of tiles in the game.



Gaming with my Niece
Board Game: Loopin' Chewie

My brother and his wife and my little nieces came into town for an extra long weekend. We had a lot of lost time to make up for and, since I don't have many children's games here we played some Loopin' Chewie. My little niece learned how great Uncle Joe is at this game, at least relative to Daddy. She even had some quiet 2 player games with Daddy and I got to teach my 3 year old niece how to hit the Millenium Falcon. We also got to fiddle around with Go Go Gelato! and Rory's Story Cubes which I bought for the visit.



Gaming with my Brother
Board Game: Mr. Jack

I thought I would get lots of chances to play games with my brother but the girls had trouble getting to sleep and by the time they were settled this old guy needed a nap. But, on Sunday night we played Mr. Jack, my first play in 2 years. He was Jack and had some bad luck. I was able to eliminate Miss Stealthy since he didn't move her out of the district when he had the chance to (though he did put some doubt in my head when he said he didn't realize she could move 4 spaces). In the fourth round I chose Holmes (who confirmed Stealthy was innocent) and then used the Sargent to bring Gull closer so I could accuse him. Win in 4 rounds.


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16. Board Game: Five Tribes [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:62]
Board Game: Five Tribes
Randy O'Connor
Canada
Halifax
Nova Scotia
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Sunday
Board Game: Five Tribes

Five Tribes x 1 - We had a four player game (Julie,Mike,Holly and myself) and due to early meeple placement combined with getting the Djinn that allowed me to take the top resource card from the deck by discarding a Fakir - I focused my strategy on getting a large set of unique merchandise for end game scoring. Mike was able to get the Djinn that allowed him to place a palace on any village tile and he used that strategy quite successfully (getting 45 points from it as a result) but it hurt him as well as he couldn't focus on getting large points anywhere else on the board. End game scoring turned out to be 128 (myself), 124 (Julie), 119 (Mike), 112 (Holly). Julie's big scoring categories were money (38), village ownership (33) and merchandise sets (33). My big scoring categories were Djinns (24), tile ownership (44) and merchandise sets (50). Absolutely love this game and will never turn down a chance to play it.



Board Game: Lotus

Lotus x 1 - Ended up playing this beautiful card game after Five Tribes to give our brains a chance to recover. I was able to focus on completing flowers with my cards and burning through my deck quickly and ended up with 41 points at the end of the game as a result. My strategy differed from the play group as they focused on special powers more and as a result had lower scores as they finished with 18 (Holly), 16 (Mike), 12 (Julie).



Board Game: Costa Rica

Costa Rica x 1 - First time playing this push-your-luck game and my fate was sealed quickly as expeditions I led failed twice due to threats. Julie ran away with this game as she was able to go on two solo expeditions for massive points. In the end, final scoring was 133 (Julie), 74 (Holly), 38 (Mike), 32 (myself)
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17. Board Game: Macao [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:312]
Board Game: Macao
Jon Enns
Canada
Herbert
Saskatchewan
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How nice to have Lindy in the house again for a few weeks!! Regular game playing once more!! Sigh...
Monday
Board Game: Taluva
Board Game: Tenzi

On Monday we played Taluva using Tenzi as a start player game. Lindy always wins at Taluva but I still love it.

Board Game: Kingdomino

Later we played Kingdomino.

Tuesday
Board Game: Macao
Board Game: Tenzi

On Tuesday we played Macao. It has been too long! This is such a great game. We both knew after this play that we would be playing again this week. We used Tenzi as a start player aid.

Wednesday
Board Game: Taluva
Board Game: Tenzi

We played Taluva again and used Tenzi again. This time Lindy beat me even worse than last. We also played Tenzi a second time just because.

Thursday
Board Game: Coloretto
Board Game: Tenzi

Melissa got home from Montreal last night to also spend time at home for a couple of weeks and then for a family camping trip. On her first day home Lindy, her and I played a few games. First it was Coloretto. see used Tenzi as a start player game but as often happens someone wanted a rematch.

Board Game: Kingdomino

After that the 3 of us played Kingdomino.

Friday
Board Game: Macao
Board Game: Tenzi

Lindy and I played Macao again using Tenzi again.

Board Game: Dominion
Board Game: Dominion: Intrigue
Board Game: Dominion: Hinterlands
Board Game: Tenzi

Melissa and Lindy and I played Dominion in the back patio in the evening. WE used cards from Hinterland and Intrigue. WE played Tenzi twice, once to find our start player, and again Melissa just had to do it again!

Sunday
Board Game: Macao
Board Game: Tenzi

Lindy and I played Macao again using Tenzi again.

Board Game: Dominion
Board Game: Dominion: Dark Ages
Board Game: Dominion: Cornucopia
Board Game: Dominion: Guilds
Board Game: Dominion: Governor Promo Card
Board Game: Tenzi

Melissa and Lindy and I played Dominion again, this time using cards from Dark Ages, Cornucopia, Guilds and the Governor promo card. This time we only played Tenzi once.

27 games played this week, 6 of these were expansions, 8 were start player games.
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18. Board Game: Eclipse [Average Rating:7.90 Overall Rank:45]
Board Game: Eclipse
Tiago Perretto
Brazil
Curitiba
Parana
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A slow week in work means more games!

Tuesday
Laser Chess x3 -- new to me
Mamma Mia! x1 -- new to me
Fairy Tale x1
Eclipse x1
Legend of Zagor x1
Space Hulk: Death Angel – The Card Game x1

Khet 2.0 is really nice and with a novelty gameplay. I enjoyed, even if I suck at it, as it deals if spatial elements, which are my weakness.

Mamma Mia is from the time Uwe did things not-Agricola, and he was very good at it, since this one is a winner, being fun, interactive and fast.

Fairy Tale is always efficient. Glad it hit the table.

Eclipse was a tight game. Descendants of Draco started strong, completetely cut off the Mechanema from the center of the board, and were miles ahead, yet, they didn't invested enough in weapons. So when my Orion Hegemony meet them, it was over - I started to crush their puny ships. Even worst was when Mechanema got the tech that allows to jump between half gates, meaning they entered in the very exposed middle of the Draco empire. I thought I would win, easily even, with 17 points in battles alone. Yet, the Mechanema won, after building 3 monoliths in the last round - we tied at 41 points, but I had less resources.

Legend of Zagor surprised me to be called by the others. I was fun once again, but with one or two of its problems, we already thought ways to make it better.

Death Angel kicked us in the butt, giving the biggest swarm I have ever seen!

From gallery of tiagoVIP



Friday
Mombasa x1 -- new to me
The Road to Canterbury x1

Mombasa proved itself to be a heavy but rather smooth game. I found it much easier to understand and play, with a better flow, than Great Western Trail. I went with a focus in diamonds and won by a slim margin, since a friend score a huge 110 points with its shares of the Mombasa company.

Road to Canterbury was fun as always. And I crushed.


Saturday
Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation x1
Red7 x1 -- new to me

In Confrontation I went with the Fellowship. I lost Gandalf in the first attack by the Shadow! Damn Orcs!!! Then, the next one to go was Aragorn. From this point, it was all downhill. I resisted the best I could, managing to bring the Shadow to three pieces, but the Black Riders found and captured Frodo.

I enjoy many of Carl Chudyk's designs (Glory to Rome, Impulse, Mottainai), and dislike Innovation. Red7 is another miss. I found myself being played more than playing, with little room for actual decision-making, as what you need to do, the more cards played, more obvious it was. It was a mostly frustrating experience - I tried to antecipate what the others could play, and prepare my set to be strong for several types of goals, yet one or two cards played and I had little to show. The rounds are quick, at least. I don't mind much the luck in during play, but luck in scoring bothers me more - as one can win a round and score 5, 6, 7 points, or score 15, 20 points. Will likely avoid this one in the future.

And that was it!

Regards,
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19. Board Game: Terraforming Mars [Average Rating:8.43 Overall Rank:4]
Board Game: Terraforming Mars
Scott Daniel
United States
San Diego
California
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Gaming with my Wife

Board Game: Qwirkle


Qwirkle is one of my wife's favorites, but we hadn't played it for quite some time. Qwirkle plays similarly to Scrabble in that you play a line of tiles each turn, but the difference is they are shapes/color combinations so vocabulary is irrelevant. I got off to a big lead, but she chipped away until she went ahead by a small margin late. We ended up tied when I went out first.

Solo Gaming

Board Game: Terraforming Mars
Board Game: Bowling Solitaire
Board Game: Kingdom Builder


Terraforming Mars x2 - Lost two solo games as Inventrix. I was two megacredits short of winning in the second game. These are my first two losses in a while playing solo, I just haven't clicked with a strategy for this company yet.

Bowling Solitaire - Quick Sid Sackson solo game. I scored 127, which is pretty solid for me.

Kingdom Builder - Played 3p with two cards from Kingdom Builder: Nomads which was interesting to work through as in-game scoring was really important. The one end-game condition took on quite a bit of focus as well.

Online Gaming

Board Game: Haggis


Haggis x4 - Split the four games. I've always been a fan of card games, so learning this climbing game has been fun. I picked it up in hopes that my wife will enjoy it.
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20. Board Game: Honshū [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:852]
Board Game: Honshū
Matt P
United States
Kansas City
Missouri
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Board Game: Great Western Trail
Board Game: The Manhattan Project: Energy Empire
Board Game: Murano
Board Game: Honshū
Board Game: Glass Road
Board Game: First Class: All Aboard the Orient Express!
Board Game: Bärenpark


 9.0   Great Western Trail - First time playing at 4 player. Previous plays had been 2 or 3. Pretty significantly different than a 2 or 3 player game I feel. I've still been too chicken to go with a building strategy.
 9.0   The Manhattan Project: Energy Empire - Such a great worker placement/engine building game. We've played it a lot recently. My wife absolutely destroyed me in our last play. Seriously, check this one out if it flew under your radar!
 8.0   Honshu x4 NEW! - This was a very fun little filler that I am just going to bring with me to every board game meetup. The 12 round play super fast and it is very easy to teach. Highly recommend it if you are into tile placing games.
 8.0   Glass Road - Finally added a copy to our collection. Wife picked it up in no time and then proceeded to win by half a point!shake I expect the rating to go up with Glass Road but I need some more plays.
 8.0   First Class- Wife is currently obsessed with this game. Fine by me because its really good. This time we used the B & E modules. The B module really opens up the game with those 2x multipliers.
 8.0   Bärenpark- We continue to play it every week. My wife thoroughly stomped me and set a high score for herself.
 7.0   Murano x2 NEW! - New game that was very easy to pickup and learn. I think were up and playing the first time in 15 minutes or so (had already punched everything). My wife would probably rate this 8/10. Right now its 7/10 for me. I think it has some fantastic elements with the scoring and action selection. Thought it overstayed its welcome a little bit in our 2 player games. Still a good game though. Glad I saw a copy in my FLGS.

It was actually a light week for us compared to the last few weeks. We just both had a lot going on earlier in the week and didn't get to play many games until this weekend. I've mentioned in previous weeks my wife and I have started doing these monthly challenges. This month we each picked 2 games each to play three times.

Here is how that stands:
First Class: All Aboard the Orient Express!: 4/3
Concordia: 1/3
The Manhattan Project: Energy Empire: 2/3
Le Havre: 2/3

From gallery of BackIssueBacklog
From gallery of BackIssueBacklog
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21. Board Game: Twilight Struggle [Average Rating:8.30 Overall Rank:9] [Average Rating:8.30 Unranked]
Board Game: Twilight Struggle
Alex Drazen
United States
Massachusetts
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Thursday


Got overtaken in Thurn and Taxis because I messed up and had 1 house left over (otherwise I would have ended it and won big!).

Defeated Mrs. Drazen at Takenoko, 39-24. She had a 7 VP lead at one point, but somehow I got out three cards in one round and then I was off to the races.


Friday


Defeated Mrs. Drazen at pass and play smartphone Carcassonne, 107-73, by stealing the Big Farm. Less than 10 vp difference otherwise. She had it coming, she forgot to check out to buy our tickets to the new Spider-Man movie, so we had to wait a half-hour for the 3D show. And once again, five minutes into the movie, they seemed to forget it was filmed in 3D. I find that 3D is almost never worth the extra five or six bucks.


Honorable Mention

I don't usually log A.I. plays, but I was playing Twilight Struggle yesterday and had a 17 VP lead as USSR against the AI. I forgot that "Choose and Show Headline" was active, and ended up headlining Missile Envy at DEFCON 3, because I had a hand otherwise chock full of white cards... only to be greeted with "Duck and Cover" and then handed "We Will Bury You." Boom. DEFCON 1. Game over. Whoops!

I haven't played in a while, and the AI took me to Turn 10 in the rematch before I beat it (of course, it was getting a crap-ton of 3's and 4's while I was playing way more 1's and 2's almost all game... I swear I drew almost every 1-Op card). It's been a while since I played and I guess I'm quite rusty...

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22. Board Game: Android: Netrunner – Terminal Directive [Average Rating:7.16 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.16 Unranked]
Board Game: Android: Netrunner – Terminal Directive
Matt Brown
United States
Okemos
Michigan
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Android: Netrunner – Terminal Directive

Did the first three. FFG has an issue with connected content and balancing it out. While I had hoped the decks where equal to start, the guy I game with later admitted he tweaked his. Add in my not playing in some time, and he being the one who obsesses over the game and has done tournaments and well, he was the one winning with in turn meant he got the rewards. Also, I don't play Shaper much even though I should, but the deck is very much built on the idea of building up and then trying to wreak havoc using strong combos. I tend to be too aggressive to wait, and if anything should be off or happen to said combos, the deck really had no fall back. We played his copy, so I will take mine and try to do some play testing of my own and try to get a better feel for things. It is interesting a a nice change of pace from vanilla Netrunner.
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23. Board Game: 18Scan [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:3973]
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Jason B
Canada
Montreal
Quebec
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Kicked-off Saturday morning with my 1st real play of 18Scan (in the prior attempt we missed a few rather consequential rules and aborted the game). Lots of interesting things going on for a short game. The group is undecided about the strength of the SJ - on paper it looks good, but in practice the #2 and #3 minors seem a bit overpriced because it is hard to get a 2nd train into them. I enjoy how tight the train rush is in this game, and am looking forward to more plays.

Next was an old favorite of mine, Hansa Teutonica. We played the base map because two of the players were new-ish (And I still think it is the strongest map, although Britannica is quite good. The East expansion is a bit bland.) I won pretty convincingly using the "block everyone, get kicked, and then use the move action to claim routes" strategy. I upgraded my bag action all the way very early on, which saved me a ton of actions in the long run.

After that was Akrotiri, a surprisingly thinky spatial puzzle + pick up and deliver game that I am pretty fond of. This was my 4th or 5th play and I enjoy it quite a bit.

And I closed the afternoon with La Guerre des Moutons with the expansion. My buddy calls this game "full contact Carcassonne" and I think it is an apt description. I really enjoy this game, even if I spend 90% of it inventing new curse words. I came in second because everyone else pulled out, leaving me to create a nice big pen all by myself.
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24. Board Game: Letters from Whitechapel [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:247]
Board Game: Letters from Whitechapel
JLP 303
United Kingdom
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Friday - Clare and I played three games of the excellent Letters from Whitechapel, with Clare as Jack and me as the detectives.. The first two games ended quite quickly, mid way through Jack's escape, but the third game went all the way to the fourth night. I knew where Jack's hideout was (I was almost certain by that point) and having tracked Jack across the board, I just had to trap him, which I did just two moves from his hideout.

Saturday - Just a single game of Suburbia on Saturday night, which I won by a long way... I wasn't as blown away as I was the first few times I played it, can't decide whether that's because I was tired or whether it's just not the game I thought it was

Sunday - Our first two plays of The Great Heartland Hauling Co., which were really fun. It's not an intense game, it's portable so great for holidays and takes a few minutes to set up, so despite losing to Clare twice I really enjoyed it.
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25. Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game – X-Men [Average Rating:8.56 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.56 Unranked]
Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game – X-Men
Ken Chadwick
United States
Yonkers
New York
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We only had time for one game this weekend, so we played the new Legendary expansion that just came in the mail.

We had Colossus/Wolverine, Jubilee, Dazzler, Kitty Pryde and Beast facing Dark Phoenix (with the Hellfire Club & Sisterhood of Mutants) and her plot of Nuclear Armageddon.

I don't think we stood a chance.

Two more Villains ascended to become Masterminds during the game and we did beat Dark Phoenix twice...

But it was almost a quick and utter defeat. Dark Phoenix's Master Strike ability wipes out every card (of a randomly drawn color) from the Hero Deck. We managed to keep the game going by using Kitty Pryde's "Intangible Qualities" ability to put one yellow-colored hero card back into the Hero Deck after Dark Phoenix had already wiped out yellow. Once all of the Master Strike cards were played, that one yellow-colored card was the only one still in the Hero Deck. In order to keep it there, we avoided recruiting any more cards.

That meant we were stuck with whatever was in our deck at that time... and my deck was slightly better than my girlfriend's. But it wasn't nearly enough to win.
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