New to you July 2017 => Best new boardgame
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What games did you play for the first time in July 2017?

Please share your experiences of the games you played for the first time this month.

In order to assist with collecting Statistics from these lists, please post an entry with your chosen game of the month, and if possible please use the "insert board game" feature to add other games you mention in your entry.

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76. Board Game: The Fox in the Forest [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:416]
Board Game: The Fox in the Forest
Paul Faultner
United States
Bellevue
Washington
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Great two-player game. The box is compact, but you could put the game in a regular tuck box, and be even more portable if needed. Great date night game for a couple, or a lunch gaming group if you're short on people.

The art is beautiful and the quality of cards and point tokens are good.

The mechanics and scoring strategy are really neat. How you have to shift from winning to sluffing or sluffing to winning tricks. I've played with my 11 and 13 yo gamer kids who've never played trick taking games, and it it made perfect sense to them. RECOMMENDATION: for the first games we didn't play with the power cards, but now we're in full swing. Speaking of powers, they really add some spice to the game. I pretty much have this in my laptop/go bag all the time.

Rating: 8.5
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77. Board Game: Word Slam [Average Rating:7.02 Overall Rank:2142] [Average Rating:7.02 Unranked]
Board Game: Word Slam
Nathan Clegg
United States
Escondido
California
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Big month because of two conventions. Learning new games wasn't the goal, but... these things happen!

d10-8 Word Slam (2016) - Like Concept but with words instead of symbols. More importantly, by pitting two teams against each other with private clues but overhearing each others' guesses, this game ramps up the energy significantly. This is the natural evolution of games like Concept and Codenames where people can still feel clever without being so cerebral as to kill the party atmosphere.

d10-7 Werewords (2017) - Not as clean and simple as Insider, but with other advantages. Most importantly this brings teams to the game which kills the fragile nature of semi-cooperation. The app does a good job of running the play, with the usual disadvantage of both requiring quiet and being loud. A fun version.

d10-7 Ethnos (2017) - I've played this four times and still feel my rating is fuzzy. The race variety, with its hundreds of combinations, is great, making each play feel quite distinct, and I love that. The area majority feels unique with its random-but-only-at-the-beginning increasing scoring. The only knock is when the game falls into that too-frequent cycle of deck draws when the draft pool runs out and everyone is just drawing to see who can top deck the finisher in the best combo. When the pool stays healthy, the game hums.

d10-7 Birdie Fight! (2016) - Adorable artwork on this filler. I like the tension between playing a card to improve its suit's value and holding that card to benefit from its suit's value. It's like Arboretum in a third of the time and without all the frustration.

d10-7 LYNGK (2017) - Only one play but I was compelled enough to pick up a copy. I'd especially like to try it with my dad. The game has a fascinating arc beginning with little direction and ending with masterful moves of ricocheting control. Neat.

d10-7 Sentient (2017) - I like rolling dice to randomize setup. You draft cards, not dice, in this game, but the dice give you a starting point, making different opportunities attractive each round. Add in some Bruxelles 1893-esque area majority scoring with the bid markers and you have a meaty short game.

d10-7 Bärenpark (2017) - Great little filler. This sends Cottage Garden and Patchwork out to pasture. Easy to teach and grasp, just enough variety with the achievements, and a real lesson in being efficient (and early). I'll have to get a copy for the family.

d10-7 Age of Steam Expansion #4: France and Italy (2004) - We played France 6p and it was a tight bloody mess. Great! Paris is an abundant donor and near universal recipient, while the south is ensconced in mountains only an Engineer can pass. The auction is critical in this one and I got smacked around but I loved it.

d10-7 Hab & Gut (2008) - It is in my nature to play games with instant loss conditions very conservatively (because I know I'll have a bad time if I trigger it), so I'm unlikely to ever win this. Throw in the unpredictability of even the charity portion and I might just frustrate myself into a loss. Still, for its length this is a great implementation of stock trading in a partial (and shared) information world.

d10-6 Dice Forge (2017) - Like many games of this type, the fun depends a lot on what setup you choose. (Certain Dominion setups are pure drudgery, for example.) I found the base set quite dull, and the take-that cards obnoxious. But a good set results in a good time. Moves quickly (sometimes so quickly it's your turn again before you've attached your new die faces) and plays smooth.

d10-6 Emperor's Choice (2017) - I'd have to play this one again to get a better feel for it, and it definitely deserves it, because I liked what I saw. Clever interactions.

d10-6 Alicematic Heroes (2017) - Promising Deus-inspired game that tweaks enough to stand on its own. My first play was marred with constant conflagration of the impacts of colors and cards, so could move up on further plays.

d10-6 Kerala (2016) - I am enjoying abstracts more and more these days, and of course I love any kind of draft. This tile drafter puts you in tense places as you try to place five colors in contiguous areas while two mobile elephants constrain your positioning. Just enough special ability tiles appear to save you from jams, at the cost of providing no points of their own. Neat.

d10-6 FrogRiders (2017) - Cute, clean, quick. Jump for points, objectives, or abilities. Probably not worth the box size or price, but I like what it does.

d10-6 Dilluvia Project (2015) - Tragically marred by a crucial rule mistake, I'd have to play this again to get a feel for it. I did like the mechanisms going on, but can't judge how tight it should be, either the board or the resources. Also a bit long for what it is, but perhaps that will tighten up as well with experience and correct rules.

d10-6 In the Shadow of the Emperor (2004) - Nice twist on the usual area majority game. It feels old school for sure but pulls together nicely.

d10-6 Die Macher (1986) - A bit long for my tastes, but I can see why people love it. I liked a lot of what was going on, but really fell off a cliff in the second half. I'd need to understand the game better to enjoy its play I think.

d10-6 Century: Spice Road (2017) - Needs more plays to be sure, but interesting intersection of order fulfillment with Concordia-style cardplay and Firenze-style market. I didn't know you could make multiple exchanges with one card and I can't remember if that would have made a difference in my plays, so willing to go again.

d10-6 Clank!: A Deck-Building Adventure (2016) - I'm not one to be left underground holding the bag, so I play this conservatively: get in, get out. As such, there's no time to invest in all those pretty cards I could be buying and engines I could be building, and the game falls a little flat, but I can certainly see why some groups turn this into a real fun crawler.

d10-5 NMBR 9 (2017) - Perfectly fine spatial puzzle.

d10-5 Immortals (2017) - I had high hopes for this, as I do enjoy Shogun, and I was looking forward to the more deterministic action ordering. Unfortunately the chaos runs a little deep for me--losing a card because of a conflict you aren't even a party to is annoying. I'd give it another shot but not one I'm rushing out to buy/store.

d10-5 Stockpile (2015) - I liked this one until it bit me. The chaos is a bit high for me, but I can see the fun here.

d10-5 Kribbeln (2016) - This didn't stand out from others in the roll & write genre.

d10-5 Joking Hazard (2016) - Apples to Apples with cartoon panels. It's not going to win any awards but it can produce some laughs.

d10-5 What's Up (2016) - Concentration with Hanabi-style set building and a bit of hope. Probably better with kids.

d10-5 Flatline: A FUSE Aftershock Game (2017) - "FUSE with a game"? FUSE is a game! I like FUSE and I like Pandemic all right but I don't need them merged into one.

d10-5 Valletta (2017) - Felt all right, but it's a little short and samey for all the setup and jazz. I just don't think it turns the corner.

d10-4 The Manhattan Project: Energy Empire (2016) - Generic euro with too-impactful dice rolling.

d10-4 Bolide (2005) - Mostly deterministic car racing simulator with an emphasis on momentum. It's a very cool experience and I'm glad I had it. But now I've had it and I don't think I need to spend two hours having it again.

d10-4 4 Gods (2016) - I'm always reluctant to play realtime games, but this one fell flat for a surprising reason: it's boring! It bogged down most of the way through as we reached across the table flipping each others' tiles looking for just the right configuration. It was enough to find pieces that fit, let alone make decent scoring opportunities. And then we all nearly tied anyway. Not interesting.

d10-4 Bears vs Babies (2017) - I do love The Oatmeal. Not a lot of game here though (but more than Exploding Kittens, for whatever it's worth).

d10-4 Roll Player (2016) - Had a dreadful teach of this, so figured I owed it to the game to read the rules and try again proper. All the complexity they put into it doesn't elevate it much. I appreciate the way each mechanism has a thematic tie to character creation, but I'd rather play Sagrada on the light end or Signorie on the heavy. There's just no room for this one.

d10-4 Pandemic: The Cure (2014) - Making Pandemic worse.

d10-3 Unfair (2017) - Just another tableau builder, until your shit gets blowed up for no reason.

d10-3 Trickster: Champions of Time (2017) - The trickster portion of this, letting the first follower set the tone of the trick and thereby take on the liability of it, is brilliant. Performing a special action after playing every .. single .. card is not. And cards that play or otherwise interact with a pool of cards or the discard pile slows this thing down even more. We had no fun with this at all.
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78. Board Game: Star Trek Panic [Average Rating:7.05 Overall Rank:1474]
Board Game: Star Trek Panic
Judy Krauss
United States
Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania
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I enjoy playing Castle Panic solo, and I am a Star Trek original series fan, so I thought I would really enjoy Star Trek Panic. But I found the game to be a bit fiddly for a "castle defense" type of game, and also that it seemed to drag on for too long when playing the full version of the rules (I had played the "Cadet" version for my first game).

It's probably not going to end up as one of my favorite games because it can be pretty grueling at times when you just don’t have the right cards and no strategic decisions to make, and of the 8 different missions I have played so far, most of them don’t seem to add a lot of flavor to the game for the fiddliness involved (having to gather stuff, certain rules being restricted, a countdown timer, etc.).

But the thing that bugs me the most is way "boarding the ship" is handled. When a shield is down, an enemy ship can "board" the Enterprise by causing damage equal to its remaining defense value, and then it disappears, and no more damage is done by it. It seems to me that, other than the shields having to be down, it just doesn’t make sense for a ship in the vacuum of space to have to be "crashing" into the Enterprise when there are transporters... whistle

And completely destroying the ship in the process of boarding, just for a small, quick amount of damage seems silly.

Board Game: Star Trek Panic

(Not my pic)

DeeinMI suggested a slight variant where the game is only played to three missions, and don't reshuffle the deck. If the deck runs out, it's a loss. I may try that next time.

I like it well enough to play it again, especially with Dee's "shorter game" variant.

Current rating: d10-7

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Limes is a tile-laying area control game (although the tiles are actually square cards). I played a couple of solo games, and liked it well enough, and I plan to play it again.

Board Game: Limes

Board Game: Limes

(Not my pics)

Current rating: d10-7

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79. Board Game: Chicago Express [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:438]
Board Game: Chicago Express
Jerry Schippa
United States
Sun Prairie
Wisconsin
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Chicago Express 1 play - 8.0

I'm using this as a determining factor in whether or not I want to buy an 18xx game. This was a really quick but very focused game. 1 play isn't enough to really be able to tell anything, but after getting crushed I want to play this again badly. Timing the auctions seems to be the key here.

Terra Mystica 1 play - 8.0

I've been wanting to try this for some time, especially to compare it to Scythe. This is definitely the bigger brother to Scythe with many more levers to pull and a more important spacial element. I had some minor complaints that might just be specific to my first game experience and not the game overall: the random scoring tiles came out in a way that made no sense...houses score in the final round and strongholds (whatever?) In the first round. Not a huge deal, but odd; the adjacent power bonus was something I missed out on. I started near other people but no one ever built or upgraded me and this felt like a big disadvantage...again, something I'm sure I'd improve on in future games; and finally the one thing I actually didn't like was upgrading your buildings felt equally improving as devolving, I wish upgrading built your engine instead of just change your economy. But I want to play it again!

High Treason: The Trial of Louis Riel 1 play - 7.75

Card driven lawsuit game about a topic I knew nothing about. We played a major rule wrong so I can't quite say anything for certain, except I really like the flow and feel of the game. Can't wait to play it again.

Fury of Dracula (Third/Fourth Edition) 1 play - 7.5

I don't typically like hidden movement games, but this was pretty fun...at times. It took us three hours and we only really had one shot at Dracula, which seemed very anticlimactic. Again, this is a problem with my experience not the game...but I was the only one who didn't fight a single vampire...just stoking up and getting trapped, heal, stock up , move, stock up...and repeat.

However, chasing Dracula around was probably the most fun in a co-op I've ever had. I want to play this again. I think Dracula has the more fun role.

Ethnos 1 play - 6.75

Have you heard Ethnos is the greatest game out there??? Hype aside, it was fun and nice. The game looks like garbage, the theme is boring and off putting, but for the most part the gameplay is fine and offers moments of excitement.

My major complaint is most of the game your just drawing a random card off the deck hoping it works. That luck makes it accessible and exciting, but it also makes it frustrating especially late in the game when you need large groupings but cannot get anything to work. Interesting stuff here that I think could be done in a better game.

Race to the Treasure! 1 play - 6.5

It's definitely a kids game, like 2nd grade and younger. Players r
Place randomly drawn path tile down on a grid to collect keys before they draw a certain amount of ogre tiles. Not much for decisions, but kids have to plan their preferred route before setting off teaching them how plan for future turns. My wife used this in her board game class over the summer and her kids loved this game and having never played a cooperative game before struggled with "who's the ogre? Who plays the ogre?" laugh

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80. Board Game: Kingdomino [Average Rating:7.36 Overall Rank:215] [Average Rating:7.36 Unranked]
Board Game: Kingdomino
Graham
United Kingdom
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A poor month for plays for me, and a break from the norm as Dev was too distracted to play Arkham Horror remotely and to keen on playing LoTR again to play it physically.

Meaning only 1 new game or expansion to me this month - here it is in chronological order:

Kingdomino
If you sit down to play this I urge you to play three rounds to come to a score (as suggested in the rulebook) as it give you a chance to adapt and change and get royally screwed in the third round (I went from first to last). The turn order system is wonderfully simplistic and works well, the area scoring I latched onto immediately (others - less so) and once someone builds an all consuming point scoring forest (me - round 1) they aren't allowed to do it again. The bonus points for a perfect kingdom and keeping your castle in the middle are nice as well.

All in all a nice fun light game that works well with 4.

Hopefully this month will see more new to me games - but I'm not sure when I will get a chance to play them.
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81. Board Game: Small City [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:2163]
Board Game: Small City
Stephen Mould
United Kingdom
Sheffield
South Yorkshire
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Small City was my favourite new game of the month. I'm a sucker for a city builder and this one had a lot of very neat mechanics and components. I really enjoyed the spatial aspect of trying to fit all the stuff you needed into the limited space available, whilst trying to leave space for expansion. I did not do so well at that part of the game but would like to give it another go.


Can't Stop - I've played can't stop online previously (used to play it a lot on the bus) and enjoyed it, but this was the first time playing it physically with other people. It's so much more fun with people around the table, as you groan and cheer along with one another. I can see this being a fairly popular filler game in our group. The only real negative is that I wish the box and board were more reasonably sized.


Mythotopia Played one game of this and we got a few things wrong but even so, I'm not sure I liked it. I really loved A Few Acres of Snow so was excited to play this multi-player version with the much discussed problem from the previous version fixed. In practice I think it probably over-complicates things compared with AFAoS and the end game condition, which sounded intriguing in the rulebook, was actually just a bit annoying in play. Still, want to give it another go now the rules are right in my head to give it a fair go.
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82. Board Game: Haggis [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:880]
Board Game: Haggis
Scott Daniel
United States
San Diego
California
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Eight new to me games this month.


Haggis - Rating  8 . I was raised on traditional card games and this feels like a game my grandpa would have taught me. It's a climbing game where you are attempting to go out first. It plays 2-3 with a suit being removed for 2p. You also get 3 face cards automatically which serve as wild cards or bombs (bombs allow you to win the trick an d lead the next trick, but your opponent collects the cards for the points). Great card game. If you like traditional card games, I'd give the one a look.

A Feast for Odin - Rating  7 . This is the first game I've played from Uwe Rosenberg. So many options here that I just focused on a few that were promoted by my initial occupation. There's a lot going on here and I suspect it will take several plays to understand the various strategies to pursue. I enjoyed it and would happily play it again, but won't be buying it at this time as I don't think I'd get it to the table enough.

Stockpile - Rating  7 . Clever stock market game with an interesting bidding round. Each payer is dealt some inside information of a stock and how much it will go up/down at the end of the round. Then stocks are played into collections for bidding with one up and one down. In turn order, players bid for the various stockpiles with a rule that you can't overbid immediately if your bid if exceeded (similar to Amun-Re). Then you have the option to sell, then secret information is revealed and performed. Winner is player with most money at game end. It's quick and fun and worked well with 5 players.

Kingdomino - Rating  6 . SdJ 2017 winner. I'll assume everyone if familiar. I like the turn order mechanism and the quick scoring. Really good quick family game. I don't need another one of those, but I see the appeal.

Yspahan - Rating  6 . Older dice drafting area majority game. I thought the dice drafting was very clever. Each round, the start player rolled 9 dice and the top and bottom dice where allocated to the end columns with the rest of the dice group in sets in ascending order from the bottom. Action strength is determined by the number of dice in the pool. Otherwise pretty standard euro mechanisms.

Bärenpark - Rating  6 . Simple family weight game of drafting tiles and placing them onto your park boards and getting new tiles based on the symbols you covered on your board. The tiles have different shapes with the more valuable tiles having more complex shapes. It is another quick family weight game that I'll play as a filler.

The Builders: Middle Ages - Rating  5 . Limited action euro of drafting workers, building or assigning workers to building. Felt like a more complex version of Splendor. I prefer the simplicity of splendor, this just felt like it added unnecessary complexity.

NOIR: Deductive Mystery Game - Rating  5 . Mystery game with asymmetrical objections for killer and detective. It didn't resonate the with me. 
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83. Board Game: Capitol [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:1826]
Board Game: Capitol
Robert
Canada
Ottawa
ON
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Fuji Flush - 8 plays
First Published 2016
Board Game: Fuji Flush
Quote:
Fuji Flush was a birthday gift from [my partner's sister]. Friedemann Friese is two for two with our family; Fabled Fruit, and now this, have been big hits. At first blush, Fuji Flush sounds a lot like Abluxxen, but Fuji Flush was just faster and easier for the kids to grasp than the Kiesling/Kramer game. Our youngest even pulled off a clever move in our second game by pairing her last card with mine and sharing the win with me.



Board Game: DIG
Board Game: SPY
Board Game: BUS
Board Game: Vom Kap bis Kairo


DIG - 1 play
First Published 2016


SPY - 1 play
First Published 2016


BUS - 1 play
First Published 2015


Vom Kap bis Kairo - 1 play
First Published 2001


My grand plans to compare a few games from the old guard of big-ish games in small boxes, Adlung-Spiele, with handful of the games from the Series: Pack O Game (Perplext) family pretty much fell apart, but we were able to play a few. The Pack-o-Game games certainly are appealing to look at, easy to learn, and their conceits are a little more attractive for the kids. Of the three that we have tried, DIG was by far our favourite. Vom Kap, on the other hand, isn't very attractive and definitely not easy to learn from the rule book. (It's also not something the kids are interested in playing.) Despite those drawbacks, it was definitely much more interesting and memorable, and I'm looking forward to playing it some more soon.

DIG
BUS
SPY
Vom Kap bis Kairo


Wizard - 1 play
First Published 1984
Board Game: Wizard
Quote:
Playing Wizard left me with mixed feelings. First, I'm intrigued with the order of the bidding as going first provides less information than bidding last. The Wizard and Joker cards are interesting, but playing a Wizard whenever, even if players have the lead suit in their hands, felt against the spirit of trick-takers. Maybe I'm just being parochial. Finally, going all the way up to fifteen cards in a hand was problematic. On a positive side, the changing number of cards each round meant that I was always re-evaluating what I felt I could accomplish. However, the constant shuffling and dealing was a bore, and whoever determined that the game is 45 minutes long is a flaming liar. Maybe it will be faster with five, but yeesh, Wizard will be competing against faster, more compelling card games in my collection.



Capitol - 1 play
First Published 2001
Board Game: Capitol
Quote:
Top spot goes to Capitol. Same year of publication (2001) same design team (Alan Moon, Aaron Weissblum) as San Marco. Capitol also has the same level of evil interaction as San Marco. I loved trying to guess which cards to play, which to hold back and timing when to pass. It’s all about having the last word. Yes, the means by which players record their scores is not very practical, but it’s thematic and workable. More please!

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84. Board Game: 7 Wonders Duel [Average Rating:8.10 Overall Rank:16]
Board Game: 7 Wonders Duel
Derek Jorgensen
United States
Greencastle
Indiana
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Finally got to play this game. I thought it was great fun, even though my wife beat me handily.
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85. Board Game: Red7 [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:640]
Board Game: Red7
Stefaan Henderickx
Belgium
Kallo
Antwerp
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Looks like I only have small games this month.

== NEW GAMES ==

Red7 - 1 play -  8 
First Published 2014
[imageID=es/pic3164826 square inline]

Great abstract game, some luck involved, but that's ok.


NMBR 9 - 1 play -  7 
First Published 2017
[imageID=es/pic3328269 square inline]

Interesting idea, plays quick.

Century: Spice Road - 1 play -  7 
First Published 2017
[imageID=es/pic3339551 square inline]

The game they call the splendorkiller. It surely is an amusing game.

30 Seconds - 1 play -  6.5 
First Published 2002
[imageID=es/pic306797 square inline]

A variation on the first round of Time's up. That's the round before the fun begins.

What's Up - 1 play -  5.5 
First Published 2016
[imageID=es/pic3042240 square inline]

Very compact memory game. The idea about using both sides is interesting.

T.I.M.E Stories: Under the Mask - 1 play -  5 
First Published 2016
[imageID=es/pic3013618 square inline]

I guess I am done with Timestories. I like the stories and art, but the "game" is just not interesting enough and I do not like to look things up in a game like this.
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86. Board Game: Warehouse 51 [Average Rating:6.23 Overall Rank:4651]
Board Game: Warehouse 51
Simona Rex
Czech Republic
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The Winner

Board Game: Warehouse 51
I played 3 new to me games this month and the winner is (thankfully) the only one in my possession - Warehouse 51.

Back in the day, I fell in love with the Warehouse 13 series, watched all of it and I do recommend it all over. I did not know there was a game with a similar theme until someone here on BGG mentioned it. It was cheap and available so I got it.

The theme: You could say that the theme is non-existent and the only thing it has in connection with the series are the crazy artifacts from all over human history. But that is fine with me as I wouldn't expect a game that takes 30-45 min to be overly thematic. Still, the artifacts are there and if you like various mythologies as I do, it gives bonus points If you've never seen the series, it doesn't really matter because the artifacts are known to everyone anyway which is a plus

The visuals: Simply amazing. The cards are made using a nice thick cardstock. The gold tokens are also thick. The artwork is over the top.

The fun: Well, this deffinitely delivered on the fun factor. Or at least it enticed a lot of emotions in the players There were multiple occasions when we laughed out loud. Also, one poor guy got really really angry (and he is usually very calm) when his plan didn't work out but at least in means he was really involved with the game, right?

The gameplay: It is a nice little game connecting set-collection with bidding (both blind and open). It is very fast and everyone is involved at all times because there is always something you can do. The scoring mechanism is easy to grasp and the rules can be explained in like 2 mins. The various effects of the artifacts really spice up the game and can wildly change the outcome of it It is deffinitely more tactical than strategical. I was pleasantly surprised by lower luck factor than I expected. The only thing that kind of bothered me was the mechanism where you give bid money to the player to your left. Which in our case ended in a weird situation when I bought a lot of stuff but my neighbor didn't buy anything and was just hoarding the money, stalling the economics. But it somehow smoothed after a while so all was good again



The Good

Board Game: Brew Crafters
Although I have know about Brew Crafters for quite some time, I have only got to play it now. And I did enjoy it although I have no great desire to buy it, I would play it again.

The theme: The brew crafting theme felt really fresh to me as I have never played a similar game (and don't know how many are out there ). I would say that for a euro game, the theme was mostly consistent and could be easily felt in the gameplay.

The visuals: Polarizing. The illustration on the box is great. All of the cards good as well. But the boards...omg, those are just a great example of a terribly looking thing that when I see while looking up a game, I usually decide not to look further into it because I just hate this type of german euro-y look. Bleh.

The fun: It is one of those thinky euro games where you usually want people to be silent so you can focus on developing your strategy. Nothing wrong with that, of course, as it is deffinitely not a beers and pretzels game

The gameplay: I hate Agricola with all my heart so when my friend introduced it as something similar, I was a little bit scared. But I actually did enjoy this Yes, after every year, you have to pay for everything you own or suffer serious repercusions but you do that with money that you are producing anyway so you don't need to change your strategy because of that. I loved how each of us chose totally different strategy and they all seem viable. I think that the mechanisms did a very good job capturing the theme. All in all, it was a very pleasant experience with tons of long term strategy and one of the games that would deffinitely go even better with repeated plays.


The Meh

Board Game: Kreus
The 3rd new game (Kreus) didn't do anything for me. Not that it was bad, there was just nothing interesting in it that I haven't seen elsewhere.

The theme: You are one of the Titans that are cooperatively trying to build a planet. Which is a nice and kind of original theme. But...some of the things just seem weird. Like - you first build heavens, fish and stuff and THEN the planet on which those reside? Huh? What is up with that? Weird things like these just kept our minds away from the theme and the only thing we cared about was to play the correct color of cards (not even sure which elements they were cause that was not interesting enough).

The visuals: It is a CMON game through and through so the production value is over the top. The illustrations are beautiful, the cardstock good, the little gems nicely done.

The fun: It provided some nice moments when you managed to syncronise with your coplayers as well as some frustration when they did something totally unexpected and (to your own eyes) stupid.

The gameplay: If you love coop games and don't have enough, you can get this one. It plays fast, everyone is always engaged and it looks good. However, if you are like me and you already own bunch of coop games (plus you almost never play them as you prefer the competitive ones), then there is nothing special in this one warranting getting it.
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87. Board Game: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1 [Average Rating:8.62 Overall Rank:2]
Board Game: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1
Håkan König
Sweden
Linköping
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== NEW GAMES ==

Pandemic Legacy: Season 1 - 4 plays -  8.75 
First Published 2015
Board Game: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1




Tanto Cuore: Oktoberfest - 3 plays -  8.25 
First Published 2016
Board Game: Tanto Cuore: Oktoberfest




Istanbul - 1 play -  8.5 
First Published 2014
Board Game: Istanbul




Among the Stars - 1 play -  8.25 
First Published 2012
Board Game: Among the Stars




Bohnanza: The Duel - 1 play - 8
First Published 2016
Board Game: Bohnanza: The Duel




Trambahn - 1 play -  8 
First Published 2015
Board Game: Trambahn




Die Schlösser des König Ludwig - 1 play -  8 
First Published 2014
Board Game: Castles of Mad King Ludwig
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88. Board Game: 1830: Railways & Robber Barons [Average Rating:7.88 Overall Rank:184] [Average Rating:7.88 Unranked]
Board Game: 1830: Railways & Robber Barons
Marcel Sagel
Netherlands
Groningen
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A bunch of new-to-me games last month, including a true classic, a rather obscure game with a weird name, two 2016 releases and something with zombies.
Not surprisingly, the classic was the unanimous choice for new game of the month.

1830: Railways & Robber Barons is big, long and has a lot of rules, mostly exceptions and special cases (because the basic framework of the game is actually quite straightforward). That's quite a few things that I normally complain about. But still... the whole thing is so fascinating. The possibilities seem endless, I feel like we've only scratched the surface of the game yet. So yes, want to play again. (Uh-oh, will I become an 18xx snob now?)
Rating it a 7 for now, but could go up.

Yokohama feels a lot like a more complex Istanbul, and I don't think the extra complexity makes it better. Still, decent game, but not one I will seek out. Rating: a strong 6.

De Vulgari Eloquentia has its charm in the character development bit, but this is one of those cases where I will complain about too many exceptions and special cases in the rules. Another 6.

Guilds of London is supposed to be an area majority game, but in the game I played we mostly left each other alone. As a result, it felt quite dull. Deserves a second chance, but still doesn't appear to be more than a 7 in the best of cases. For now, barely a 6.

I Hate Zombies is a long series of rock-paper-scissors matches with a zombie story, and a few special abilities. I don't like RPS, and the window-dressing avaiable in this game does not save it. Not for me.
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89. Board Game: InStructures [Average Rating:6.74 Unranked]
Board Game: InStructures
Jason Lott
United States
Cheverly
Maryland
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InStructures - 1 play -  6.6 
First Published 0
Board Game: InStructures


I won a copy of this in a raffle from our FLGS. On the surface, this game doesn't look all that great. But I was surprised by how much silly fun it was, and I think it's going to hang out in our collection for now.

Players divide up into teams and then race to use the building blocks to create a structure being described by another player. There's a certain format here for teams, but we found you can easily adapt this to most any arrangement (like one explainer and two builders).

More fun that it has any right to be, and could get progressively more amusing if you added booze to the mix. Otherwise, would be very appropriate for kids as listed on the box. Solid blocks and you even get a map in the box telling you how to put it away.
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90. Board Game: The Fox in the Forest [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:416]
Board Game: The Fox in the Forest
I played four new to me games in July:

Board Game: The Fox in the Forest


The Fox in the Forest is a great two-player only trick-taking game that I can highly recommend. Three suits with 11 cards in each where all the even numbered cards are normal cards and the odd numbered have special abilities. The special abilities are fairly simple and easy to learn so they neither hamper learning the game or make it too wonky. It's small and perfect for travelling.


Board Game: The Gallerist


I only played The Gallerist once and we probably made a lot of rules mistakes but I still liked it a lot more than I expected I would. Usually I'm not a fan of overwrought kitchen sink games and it was my impression that this was one of them. The mechanisms are quite thematic on the large so all of that does not matter much.


Board Game: A Distant Plain


I played the intro game in the playbook and then a partial learning game of A Distant Plain with a friend online. It's much too early to tell how much I'm going to like it but so far I think I'll like it quite a bit. It's my first COIN game so I look forward to learning the system better.


Board Game: Tallinn


The last new to me game was Tallinn. It's also the only game of the four I do not care much for. I've played it five times and added three of the mini-expansions for it. They make it better but they just add more mechanisms that make it more challenging to play. The big problem with the game is the complete lack of connection between them, setting and mechanisms. I hope Visby is better.
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91. Board Game: This War of Mine: The Board Game [Average Rating:7.85 Overall Rank:148]
Board Game: This War of Mine: The Board Game
Willem Verhoef
Netherlands
Weert
Limburg
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== NEW GAMES ==

This War of Mine: The Board Game - 1 play -  8.5 
First Published 2017
Board Game: This War of Mine: The Board Game

I received the kickstarter and played around with it for a bit. It's brutal, it's grim, but that's kind of the purpose. Definately a keeper.



Cosmic Encounter - 1 play -  8.5 
First Published 2008
Board Game: Cosmic Encounter

I had owned this for about a year, finally got to play it on my birthday party. Really liked it, chaos, wheeling and dealing, screwing each other over. Keeper.



Joking Hazard - 1 play -  8.5 
First Published 2016
Board Game: Joking Hazard

Played through about a third of the deck while sober. It was good and fun, probably way better with some alcohol involved. Keeper to see how that works out.



Port Royal - 1 play -  8 
First Published 2014
Board Game: Port Royal

An excellent streamlined push your luck game. Will keep it around for a bit, but I'm not that attached to it so it might find it's way to the tradepile in a year or so.


Escape Room: The Game - 2 plays-  7.5 
First Published 2016
Board Game: Escape Room: The Game

Not my favourite Escape room game, but a good one. Played the 2nd and 3rd scenario. I prefer Unlock, and hope to play the "Exit" games soon to compare.


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92. Board Game: Secret Hitler [Average Rating:7.57 Overall Rank:179]
Board Game: Secret Hitler
Jeremy McCourt
United States
Allendale
Michigan (MI)
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== NEW GAMES ==

Rent a Hero - 3 plays -  5.5 
First Published 2012
Board Game: Rent a Hero


A decent game that is hard to describe. It is fun, but not one that will get to the table that often unless looking for a lighter game for a decent group. Seemed to go over well with my group.



Secret Hitler - 2 plays
First Published 2016
Board Game: Secret Hitler


Going into this I was not very excited, trying actively to steer the group towards another game. Mainly because I have played a lot of social deduction games and am kinda burned out on them and also the theme does not do anything good for me. Played it and was actually really into it. We played a couple of games back to back. Definitely onte of my favorite social deduction games, just works well.



Kobayakawa - 2 plays
First Published 2013
Board Game: Kobayakawa


It is not a great game, but it has its time and place. I can be convinced to play it.



Alhambra - 1 play
First Published
[imageID= inline]

Had to try out this classic, was excited to do so and was not quite excited enough to get it back to the table again while I had it checked out from the library. Would like to try it again for a more solid idea of my thoughts, but not sure it will hit the table again with all the games my group owns and limited gaming time.
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