Solitaire Games On Your Table - May 2019
Kyle
United States
Up Nort' Der
Wisconsin
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VAST:                The Crystal Caverns The Fearsome Foes The Mysterious Manor
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DV: Anakin Skywalker was weak. I destroyed him.                 AT: Then I will avenge his death.             DV: Revenge is not the Jedi way.         AT: I am no Jedi.
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Welcome to the May 2019 edition of
Solitaire Games On Your Table

Going strong for six years and counting!


Microbadges you might like:
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The Rules of SGOYT:

If you're new to the SGOYT lists it's pretty simple:

1. Play a game solo (absolutely anything you like, any way you like).

2. Come here and post something about it (as much or as little as you like).

Get the most out of the SGOYT Aggregator by using at least one of the following tags:

1 Add the <summary></summary> tag to include a short overview. All summaries are recorded, as on Albia's overview page.
2 Add the <rating></rating> tag to rate a game on a scale of 0.5 to 5.0. Only the most recent rating for a game is recorded, as on Albia's ratings page.

3. Have fun (playing games and talking about them here).


If you're an old hand with these lists then just get playing and posting.

Leave your wallets, purses, money belts, etc at the door. They do not like it here.

Try and help us spend less money:

If you can, please post 1 thumbsup and 2 thumbsdown about the games you play (more of either are welcome too). It's really helpful to those interested in the games and helps to provide a bit of balance to the usual SGOYT positivity (as this can be expensive ).



May is Mental Health Awareness Month

Mental Health Awareness Month was started in the United States in 1949 by the Mental Health America organization to raise awareness and educate the public about mental illnesses, such as the 18.1% of Americans who suffer from depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder; the realities of living with these conditions; and strategies for attaining mental health and wellness. It also aims to draw attention to suicide, which can be precipitated by some mental illnesses. Additionally, Mental Health Awareness Month strives to reduce the stigma (negative attitudes and misconceptions) that surrounds mental illnesses.

Take care of yourself, and the people you care about!

A few related microbadges: mbmbmbmbmb

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(Thanks to ogoctopus for the suggestion and microbadge links!)




Challenges


There will be a few small challenges posted throughout the month, so keep an eye on (subscribe to) the first few items of this list so you don’t miss them.





Here are some useful links and resources for the solo player:

1 Player guild "Together, We Game Alone"
If you haven't joined the guild, please do. It is a great resource for everything around solitaire gaming!

Solitaire Games on Your Table Monthly Geeklist SUBSCRIPTION THREAD - Subscribe here to not miss out on future SGOYT lists.

SGOYT QuickLinks - A collection of links to every SGOYT GeekList.
SGOYT made me buy this! - If this list costs you money, go here to tell us all about it.
2019 Solo Challenges SUBSCRIPTION - A subscription list of every past and current 2019 solo challenge.
The 2019 Solo and Coop Unpossible Challenge - A place to set and achieve a difficult personal solo goal or challenge for 2019.
1 Player Guild / SGOYT - 2019 Solitaire Goals - A place to set and track personal solo game goals for 2019.
2018 People's Choice Top 100 Solo Games - An extensive list of the top 100 solo games as voted by solo gamers in 2018.
Solo Gaming Awards - A list of links to various 1 Player Guild and solo game awards.
SGOYT Aggregator - Aggregation of each list's games by Ones Upon a Game.
Solitaire Games on Your Table Spreadsheet - An excellent resource for SGOYT data from 2013-2016.
Solitaire Recommendations For Your Table - Want to know, what to get to the table next?
SoloPlay Variants Posted on the Geek - who needs an official variant?
Solitaire Resources - A list of additional resources for solo gamers.

1 Player Guild Trading Post - Want to get rid of some solo games or trade for new ones?
The Solo Games Chain of Generosity - An ongoing list where you can give and get games.
Solitaire Games - Fair Trade it Forward Part 2 - A place to pay it forward with solo games.
1 Player Guild Hot Deals Thread - A listing of current deals and discounts on solo games.
Auction Watch - A thread with links to BGG auctions for rare and hard-to-find games.

Sock Puppet of the Week subscription thread - A subscription thread updated with the latest 1 Player Guild Sock Puppet of the Week.
The 1 Player Guild's Collective Acquisition Disorder -- Subscription Thread - A subscription thread updated with the latest 1PGCAD lists
SoloRPGOYT: Monthly Geeklist Subscription Thread - For those of you that like role playing

Future SGOYT hosts are:

June 2019 magic_erwt
July 2019 labrhat22
August 2019 Venom Snake
September 2019 jgatkinsn
October 2019 and beyond: T.B.A.
If you want to host a future list them send a GM to Ryanmobile letting him know what month you want to do.

Disclaimer: The host and the 1 Player guild take no responsibility for any purchases you make due to reading this geeklist.

(Thanks to garyrbrooks for the Geeklist header text!)
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1. Board Game: Spoilers [Average Rating:5.67 Overall Rank:12342] [Average Rating:5.67 Unranked]
Kyle
United States
Up Nort' Der
Wisconsin
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VAST:                The Crystal Caverns The Fearsome Foes The Mysterious Manor
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DV: Anakin Skywalker was weak. I destroyed him.                 AT: Then I will avenge his death.             DV: Revenge is not the Jedi way.         AT: I am no Jedi.
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Do NOT post spoilers for Avengers: Endgame!



As a courtesy to everyone who has not yet seen the movie, please take any and all Endgame spoilers elsewhere.

There’s a thread in the 1P Guild for discussion if you've seen it. (At least I assume that’s what’s happening in the thread - I haven’t looked yet!)
Go here: ***ALERT*** AVENGERS: ENDGAME SPOILERS AHEAD!!! ------------> That said, let's talk about ENDGAME!!!

A time will come when it’s okay to openly discuss the events of the movie, but that time is not now, and it certainly won’t be before this month is over.

-----------

Please extend a similar courtesy to the current season of Game of Thrones, plus anything else recent that people may want to watch/read/play/etc. unspoiled but haven't been able to yet.
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2. Board Game: Scavenger Hunt [Average Rating:5.08 Overall Rank:15490]
Kyle
United States
Up Nort' Der
Wisconsin
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VAST:                The Crystal Caverns The Fearsome Foes The Mysterious Manor
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DV: Anakin Skywalker was weak. I destroyed him.                 AT: Then I will avenge his death.             DV: Revenge is not the Jedi way.         AT: I am no Jedi.
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Challenge #1: May the 4th Be With You.


May the 4th is always a big day for Star Wars fans.

Whether you’re a fan of the new movies, the prequels, any of the animated series (The Clone Wars/Rebels/Resistance), the comics, the novels, the old EU, just the original trilogy, or not a fan at all, you can still take part in this challenge.

Find: Pictures with references to Star Wars characters/ships/etc. in non-Star Wars games.


Scavenger Hunt General Rules:
1) ALL pictures must come from within the BGG/RPGG/VGG database.
Game pages, designer pages, and even personal galleries are fair game unless noted otherwise. Pictures posted from external sources will not count.
2) All pictures must have been uploaded prior to the entry requesting the item.
In other words, you can't see what the item is and then cheat by taking a new picture of it.
SEE UPDATE BELOW
3) All pictures and items must be unique.
No credit is given for repeating what someone else has already posted, even if it's a different photo. In other words, once someone has posted a picture of a specific piece from a game, that game piece cannot be posted by anyone else even if the pictures are completely different.
4) One successful picture per user per requested item, please.
Let's allow as many people as possible to participate, so if you happen upon a jackpot of images for something, just pick one and let others find the rest. You'll have plenty of other chances to take my GG throughout the month. If you post a picture that gets rejected for any reason, you can keep trying until you get one that works.
5) Post all pictures for this challenge as a reply to this item.
Pictures posted elsewhere in the geeklist will not count.

Note that pictures/photos of actors from Star Wars appearing in other games will not count, unless it includes some sort of reference to Star Wars beyond just their presence.

UPDATE: I was expecting a bit more response to this, so to make this a little easier, Rule #2 can be ignored. If you know of a reference that counts, but can't find an existing picture, you're allowed to take a new picture of it. However, for this purpose, it has to be a reference that was part of the actual game. Using Star Wars-related miniatures/etc. as replacement pieces for other games won't count.

This and the other Scavenger Hunts will remain open for the entire month.




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3. Board Game: Scavenger Hunt [Average Rating:5.08 Overall Rank:15490]
Kyle
United States
Up Nort' Der
Wisconsin
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VAST:                The Crystal Caverns The Fearsome Foes The Mysterious Manor
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DV: Anakin Skywalker was weak. I destroyed him.                 AT: Then I will avenge his death.             DV: Revenge is not the Jedi way.         AT: I am no Jedi.
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Challenge #2: Revenge of the Sixth.


Find: Pictures with references to (non-Star Wars) sci-fi characters/ships/etc. outside of games based on their specific franchises.

Similar to the challenge above (but hopefully a little easier), this one opens things up to the much wider field of sci-fi in general - everything except Star Wars.
Star Trek, Stargate, Firefly, Doctor Who, Aliens, The Expanse, Red Dwarf, and countless others are all fair game, as long as they are appearing somewhere outside of their individual franchises.

Important! Please indicate in your post what the reference is and what it's being made to, unless it's really obvious.


Scavenger Hunt General Rules:
1) ALL pictures must come from within the BGG/RPGG/VGG database.
Game pages, designer pages, and even personal galleries are fair game unless noted otherwise. Pictures posted from external sources will not count.
2) All pictures must have been uploaded prior to the entry requesting the item.
In other words, you can't see what the item is and then cheat by taking a new picture of it.
SEE UPDATE BELOW
3) All pictures and items must be unique.
No credit is given for repeating what someone else has already posted, even if it's a different photo. In other words, once someone has posted a picture of a specific piece from a game, that game piece cannot be posted by anyone else even if the pictures are completely different.
4) One successful picture per user per requested item, please.
Let's allow as many people as possible to participate, so if you happen upon a jackpot of images for something, just pick one and let others find the rest. You'll have plenty of other chances to take my GG throughout the month. If you post a picture that gets rejected for any reason, you can keep trying until you get one that works.
5) Post all pictures for this challenge as a reply to this item.
Pictures posted elsewhere in the geeklist will not count.


Note that pictures/photos of sci-fi actors appearing in non-sci-fi games will not count unless it includes some sort of reference to their sci-fi franchise.



UPDATE: I was expecting a bit more response to this, so to make this a little easier, Rule #2 can be ignored. If you know of a reference that counts, but can't find an existing picture, you're allowed to take a new picture of it. However, for this purpose, it has to be a reference that was part of the actual game. Using sci-fi miniatures as replacement figures in other games won't count.

This and the other Scavenger Hunts will remain open for the entire month.
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4. Board Game: Scavenger Hunt [Average Rating:5.08 Overall Rank:15490]
Kyle
United States
Up Nort' Der
Wisconsin
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VAST:                The Crystal Caverns The Fearsome Foes The Mysterious Manor
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DV: Anakin Skywalker was weak. I destroyed him.                 AT: Then I will avenge his death.             DV: Revenge is not the Jedi way.         AT: I am no Jedi.
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Challenge #3: May 12th is Mothers’ Day.


Find: Pictures of mothers with their children.
They can be genetically related, related through adoption, or bonded through any other sort of legally or non-legally-binding way. If the mother-child relationship isn’t obvious in the context of the picture you post, please include a brief explanation.

Personal pictures will be allowed for this one. Also feel free to share memories of motherhood in your own lives.


Scavenger Hunt General Rules:
1) ALL pictures must come from within the BGG/RPGG/VGG database.
Game pages, designer pages, and even personal galleries are fair game unless noted otherwise. Pictures posted from external sources will not count.
2) All pictures of game pieces must have been uploaded prior to the entry requesting the item.
In other words, you can't see what the item is and then cheat by taking a new picture of it.
Non-game photos can ignore this rule.
3) All pictures and items must be unique.
No credit is given for repeating what someone else has already posted, even if it's a different photo. In other words, once someone has posted a picture of a specific piece from a game, that game piece cannot be posted by anyone else even if the pictures are completely different.
4) One successful picture per user per requested item, please.
Let's allow as many people as possible to participate, so if you happen upon a jackpot of images for something, just pick one and let others find the rest. You'll have plenty of other chances to take my GG throughout the month. If you post a picture that gets rejected for any reason, you can keep trying until you get one that works.
5) Post all pictures for this challenge as a reply to this item.
Pictures posted elsewhere in the geeklist will not count.
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5. Board Game: Spoilers [Average Rating:5.67 Overall Rank:12342] [Average Rating:5.67 Unranked]
Kyle
United States
Up Nort' Der
Wisconsin
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VAST:                The Crystal Caverns The Fearsome Foes The Mysterious Manor
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DV: Anakin Skywalker was weak. I destroyed him.                 AT: Then I will avenge his death.             DV: Revenge is not the Jedi way.         AT: I am no Jedi.
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Challenge #4: AVENGERS: Alternate-ENDGAME!

My original idea for this one gathered no interest at all, so let's go for something completely different to close out the month...


In Avengers: Infinity War, Dr. Strange saw 14,000,604 possible futures where The Avengers didn't win.

Your challenge:
Choose one of the 14 million failed scenarios.
What was the plan of the Avengers in that scenario, and how did it go wrong?



Rules:
1) Multiple entries are allowed!
2) Please use Spoiler tags for all entries that are vaguely close to the actual movie. The official ban was lifted a earlier in the month and spoilers can be found all over the internet now, but do this just in case there's still someone out there who hasn't seen Endgame and has somehow managed to avoid spoilers up to this point.
3) Excelsior!




This and the other challenges will remain open to everyone until the end of the month.
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6. Board Game: My Little Scythe [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:714]
Doc H
United States
Nashville
Tennessee
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May is a big month in our household, because of Labor Day, Cinqo de Mayo, Star Wars Day, Mother's Day, and our only child's birthday. Like any gamer parent, I was excited when she was born because I saw an opportunity for more gaming!

She'll be nine in a few weeks, and sadly, this has not exactly panned out. Even worse, this window is closing because it's probably less than four years until she is too cool to hang out with me.

But it has not stopped me from purchasing games for her, in the hopes that I will find the right gateway drug. Go Away Monster was a big hit, and Animal Upon Animal still is. But I struck out with King of Tokyo, Forbidden Island, Pirate's Cove, etc, etc, etc.

Santa brought her My Little Scythe back in December. She played one game. Then, she announced this was not how she wanted this game played. On the spot, she created her own rules for moving gemstones and hearts around the board. It was not exactly what I had envisioned (since the gameplay of her version was less than compeling). But does this mean there is hope I have a little game designer in the house?

I ended up putting this into the my solo 10x10 because I'm so impressed with Scythe's automa (although I don't own that one). In homage, I wanted to try this game's version, the automontie, out. Although this is similar to Scythe, I find this game a little too light for my tastes. Although there are moments in which I must decide between equally desirable moves, usually there is one obvious best move. And the opponent also is following along a script that does not involve aggressive interactions--especially if I can stay away from their two figures (or more, depending on number of AI opponents).

Thus, I spend most of the game vacuuming up resources and staying away from the enemy. Then it's simply a race to score in various ways.

You can scale up the difficulty by giving the AI a headstart, or by playing against 2 or more AIs. The first isn't that exciting, and the second increases your workload a little.

thumbsup Easy set up
thumbsup Attractive Components
thumbsup Maybe a good gateway game for non-gamers (especially if they like cartoon ponies?)
thumbsdown Choices don't present tense dilemma or require much deliberation

I don't know how long this game will stay at the house; probably till my daughter leaves for college.

But, here's looking forward to what Santa brings this December! whistle



My 2019 10x10 Challenge:
Overall Solo Plays: 37/100
March: Too Many Bones: Undertow: 9/10
April: Apex Theropod 10/10
May: My Little Scythe 6/10

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7. Board Game: The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43 [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:1078] [Average Rating:7.71 Unranked]
Jason Carr
United States
Colorado Springs
Colorado
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First time playing The Hunters. Plays very smoothly, but not a lot of choices. I was hoping it would be like Enemy Coast Ahead: The Dambuster Raid where your limited choices had ripple effects, but alas, not so.

I started in 1939 with a VIIA class (U-28) and had two absolutely boring patrols. But that's expected; my third patrol of the British Isles was a mining patrol, but after laying my mines the patrol was fruitful - first, I spotted a 10000t ship with escort, and closed to close range before firing 2 torpedoes and sinking the ship. I was depth charged but only experienced some flooding. After pumping the water out, I continued on with my patrol.

Another ship spotted - 9000t - with no escort. I approached on the surface and shelled the ship with my deck gun, before putting a single torpedo into the ship. Down it went, and I finished up the patrol having sunk 19000t. Not a bad month's work.
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8. Board Game: Wingspan [Average Rating:8.10 Overall Rank:45]
Nico
Netherlands
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Wingspan had the honor of being the first solo game on my table this month! At first, I wanted to play a heavier, longer or more immersive game tonight such as Robinson Crusoe or Comancheria because I simply adore both.

But, I didn't have a lot of time available and Wingspan is such a quick and elegant solo experience! It's the best Automa variant I have probably because of the tension it creates and it's negligible upkeep. It such a lovely race for points! And I quite like that the card deck gets refreshed very often. The only one that comes close for me is the fan-made Automa of Rajas of the Ganges probably because of the race elements in that game. Wingspan beats them all if you take the setup time into account!

I forgot to take pictures (will do next time!) but I got a pretty easy win against the medium level Automa (75-66). The Automa had some bad luck with scoring round bonus points but got a lot of eggs. I was a bit more successful in gaining round bonus points and somehow I managed to get the maximum points of two bonus cards!

This time I decided not to go heavy on laying eggs (one of the obvious but boring strategies of the game?) but keep it more interesting by placing more birds. Well, I have to say it paid off and it was definitely more rewarding!
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9. Board Game: Wingspan [Average Rating:8.10 Overall Rank:45]
Sky Zero
United States
Illinois
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Played this last evening and drew the bonus that scores you points for every bird you play that can live in the prairies only. Bad news for me as I only saw 2 the whole game. That coupled with an unfocused strategy and I lost 58 to 83 on medium difficulty. My worst score ever in Wingspan! shake
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10. Board Game: Santa Maria [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:336]
Amy Smith
United States
Mount Juliet
Tennessee
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I played Santa Maria solo for the first time and lost. I was convinced I was going to have more than 100 points, only to discover a measly 73. The whole game felt like a smooth running engine. Apparently I picked the wrong engine. I immediately played two more games until I reached the goal of 100 points. I really enjoyed the game. I look forward to several more plays.
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11. Board Game: Orchard: A 9 card solitaire game [Average Rating:7.53 Overall Rank:3851]
Broken Axe
United States
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First time playing Orchard in some time. It got buried in my box of PNP and miscellaneous game accessories and when doing some organizing I saw it. I said, "This is the game I want to play right now!"

...and I did and scored 35. Not great but not bad for my first run through the flowers in a while.

Now to play again!



...and after 5 or 6 more plays, I got a 41. A much better spread of the Orchard.

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12. Board Game: Air Assault On Crete/Invasion of Malta: 1942 [Average Rating:6.35 Overall Rank:4350]
Judd Vance
United States
Wichita
Kansas
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I have been on a big Mercury kick (as in Operation Mercury -- the Germans plan to take Crete). Last month, I watched some videos on it to get caught up on the background and then played Mercury/Market Garden and then the Crete game in the Paratroop tri-pack. Now I am on to the Avalon Hill classic. Depending on how long it takes, I would like to try out the Malta bonus game.
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13. Board Game: Middara [Average Rating:8.96 Overall Rank:1905]
Luke
United States
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I expect to play my first game of this tonight.

I sprayed a bunch of the monsters in different base colors in an effort to unpainted plastic.

I was pretty unhappy with the process because I hate the fumes, despite doing the spraying on my ventilated sunporch.

And the craft store was literally out of all the matte finish primers. It was insane.

So I got Satin. Sadly I now have some of the minis who are still pretty tacky 24 hours later.

All the heroes I did with brush on primer from vallejo. It's the grey primer for airbrushes, but it works really well with a large brush and big swipes.

Some of the monsters will go into simple green tomorrow, then I'll reprime them with the brush on stuff.

In the meantime though, they look great.

Luckily the Cave Sickles and Water Loa should be ok, so I should be able to get started. In the worst case scenario, I'll proxy with an appropriate mini from my evergrowing collection.

I am very excited to get started. It looks fabulously deep. I know some people are complaining that it's too easy, but I don't need my dungeon crawls to be hard. I want to make a bunch of fun choices, and I don't care if I never lose, so long as sometimes I feel like I might have if things had gone slightly differently.

I also know that some people have found it challenging, so I'll just need to see for myself.

That may take a bit because the first few missions are tutorials, and I may not get to a real mission until later in the week.

We'll see.
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14. Board Game: Legends of Andor [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:333] [Average Rating:7.24 Unranked]
Real Anthill Kit
United States
Ames
Iowa
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I’m nearing completion on my Legends of Andor redesign with a Mouse Guard retheme. And I’ve received some incredibly thoughtful and encouraging feedback from people here on BGG, so I want to say thank you all for taking the time to look, comment, and send me messages.
I’ve even received a very positive response from Michael Menzel, so I’m gonna keep exploring possibilities of a published version of, or similar to, this.

Note: Most of the mechanics remain true to LoA. Further playtesting will show how well certain design changes (such as the creature display, character boards, narrative elements, etc) work. But so far so good.

I’ll keep posting updated pics on my geeklist collection of BG redesigns here:
https://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/254413/collection-bg-rede...

Here are photos of my Legends of Lockhaven prototype as it nears completion. Thanks for taking a look!

The box cover art:



A peek at the box drawer and interior organization (it all fits!). The box was repurposed from my wife's skin care products (now she just deposits empty product boxes onto the growing pile near my drawing table), and I added a wooden die drawer pull to make the transformation complete. I still need to add a couple interior compartments, but it’s nearly finished:



The board is still taking shape and color, but it's getting there. I placed some various tokens just for reference:



The character mats, adorned with various article tokens:



Tokens and tiles. The Mouse Guard and predator figures still need to be affixed to their bases in order to stand upright:



Event, Fate, and Legend cards. I had a lot of fun creating MG-ish narratives and characters for these:



Have I mentioned how well the world of Mouse Guard translates to LoA?
The map (which, when reverse-oriented, aligns convincingly with the Mouse Territories), the characters, the story, the articles--it all provided a fantastic framework for a retheme.

This project began as a selfish wish to have a soloable Mouse Guard BG adventure, but now I know I'm not the only one who'd like such a game. Perhaps I can get the license holders to consider the same?
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15. Board Game: Hellboy: The Board Game [Average Rating:8.39 Overall Rank:1977]
Tim Korchnoi
United States
Richmond
Virginia
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I am continuing to play this very fun game

I played the opening case three times to learn the ropes (twice pairing Hellboy and Abe and the last time teaming HB with Liz). The games were fun but varied a lot depending on the encounter cards which are used to tell you what is located in a room when you explore it.

I just started the Perils of the Job case tonight with HB an Liz.

So far, I am glad I did the KS on the game and pleased that the money I spent (I went all out including the Box Full of Evil which ships later this year) has been worth it. The game thus far has not disappointed and I am looking forward to trying the build your own case system with the BPRD expansion sooner rather than later.

thumbsup Replay value is high. Even playing the "training" case I had very different games each time thanks to the encounter cards and the Doom cards.

thumbsup Tons of theme. I have always like Hellboy as he is, to me, the epitome of choice: despite what he is and what some want him to be, he forges his own path.

thumbsdown The game can swing wildly. For me, that is not a problem. As a wargamer, I fully embrace the concept of friction but I mention this element as it can matter a great deal to some folks.
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16. Board Game: Space Race: The Card Game [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:2749]
Dave Matthew
Philippines
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It is Labor Day here, which means a time for board gaming. As usual I played 3 games in a row and here are the results:

Game 1
Score:
Me: 39
AI: 38

A close one, thankfully that Permanent Moon Base saved the agency.

Game 2
Score:
Me: 14
AI: 45

My agency has no direction whatsoever, card draws are bad, not even the Escaping Earth card did anything to close the gap.

Game 3
Score:
Me: 37
AI: 35

Played a nice combo here: Propaganda cards in play are 6 and 3, played 1 in the 5th round to get Espionage card, with 1's ability to swap control card. I swapped 3 Prop with 6 Breakthrough to grab Cyberespionage, which is currently in the universe. Then, Espionage goes to the lab. 6th round, played 3 Prop, used Sputnik's ability to grab Espionage from the lab, now I have 2 espionage cards, activated both in the bureaucracy stage, grabbed 2 tech cards, got 2 achievements. One for having 3 tech cards, second one is for activating 2 bureaucracy abilities in one round.

Happy Labor Day!!!
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17. Board Game: Cerebria: The Inside World [Average Rating:7.98 Overall Rank:1065]
JDM
United States
Idaho
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Oh dear.

My first full play of this. I thought I was ready for the "full game..."

I kept forgetting intentions.
I didn't upgrade any emotions.
I didn't use my special powers for my spirits.
I'm sure I goofed on all sorts of things.

I felt VERY overwhelmed on my turns as the game went on. The final "score" was a loss for me, 25-23 against the Ego. I'm absolutely sure the actual score was nothing like that because of CONSTANT mistakes I was probably making.

I'll go back and re-read the solo rules after I ruminate over this one for a while.

Very intrigued by this. There are SO many options that you have to consider on your turn. There is a lot that goes into maintaining/understanding the basic game state when you're playing solo. I felt several things "clicking" even through my first play, and I wonder how this will hold up once I'm less excited by the prospect of a shiny new system and more comfortable with playing the game itself.

But WOW. I'm pretty impressed by just how much breadth this game offers. Happy to have bumbled through a first play and showing myself that I can, at least, do that. :-)
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18. Board Game: Chronicles of Frost [Average Rating:7.50 Overall Rank:4839]
Harry
Greece
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It was high time to delve into the Chronicles of Frost, after I got it a month or so ago!

Overview

This is a well documented game by now, but for those who haven’t had the chance to read about it here is a quick overview.

Chronicles of Frost is an adventure deckbuilding game that you can play solo, co-op or competitively. You start with a deck of 10 cards with which you can fight, move, scout locations or draw cards and purchase more cards, allies, hirelings, items and quests.

Your objectives are a search quest and an exploration one, and while playing solo you need to acquire more fame (points) than a Brash hero who is also questing in the lands of Mistfall.

As one can expect, the Brash hero does not play by the rules you do, so you have to calculate your actions very carefully in order to beat him to the finish line in addition to having more fame than he has! Needless to say, that is easier said than done, and from what I read this is no easy task in general.

The game

My first few tries were a disaster, trying to learn the game and to figure out the Brash hero’s routine. The last time was a success, and I think I managed it because my qesting did not coincide with his, so he had to engage enemies, got wounds and lose 1 turn healing.



I am not so sure about my strategy, but the Sword item and the Ally that I got to use for scouting again and again were probably two more things in my favor, not to mention that I got to finish both my quests while he had just finished his first one.



Final score was 55 for me to his 50, so in just 2 more turns he might have gotten the upper hand!



I played a Shieldbearer this time. He was questing from the beginning with his Balanced sword and in the middle of his adventures he was honored to be joined by Beleghor Sharptooth. Just before the end he mastered another discipline, alas, too late to be of any help in his travels.

Conclusion

I loved this game the moment I found out about it in this Ant Lab Games preview, and it is great to play both against others and on your own. My next step after playing against the Brash hero a few more times will be to try the campaign that is available with the Chronicles of Frost: All That Burns expansion.

<summary>Great deckbuilding, adventure game that may not be Mage Knight, but it’s fast, thematic and rather hard to beat on a regular basis</summary>

<rating>4</rating>

thumbsup Easy setup and take down
thumbsup Plays rather fast in an hour or so.
thumbsup Offers a lot of choices.
thumbsdown Hard to beat
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19. Board Game: Spirit Island [Average Rating:8.36 Overall Rank:15]
Jesse
Canada
Clearview
Ontario
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I can't think of a better way to kick off the month!

My wife is out of town for the week and has brought the dog along, so I am effectively without an alarm clock (20 alarms on my phone spaced out over two hours a foot from my head, and I don't hear a thing. One of them eventually does though! whistle) which means sleep in the day and play games all night! Back to the island!

I've devised a new plan to maximize the amount of content I get to see from the game in as little time as possible. With the help of the game's forum I put together four sets of three spirits that will hopefully be well-balanced enough to handle all four adversaries from levels 4-6. That will require 64 wins and I can get in a couple games a week on average, so I'm hoping I'll do well enough to succeed in my challenge before Jagged Earth is released in a year or so

edit: I had to do the math, three-handed seems to take at least 4 hours, so at 4.5 for good measure I'm looking at almost 290 hours of winning games, plus however many more hours of losing on top of it! I'm already about 80 hours deep too, talk about value for money

I had originally thought to just use two of the three spirits for most games and play three-handed when possible, but after tonight's game I think I just want to wait for the opportunities to play with three all of the time. It's a lot but it's super satisfying when it comes together! To start I'll run all four sets against Sweden 4 to see how they feel, and if all goes well we're off to the races.

First up: Rivers Surging in Sunlight, Sharp Fangs Behind the Leaves and my secret crush (don't tell Shadows), Ocean's Hungry Grasp!



I think they're rated at the same difficulty, but this game didn't even feel close to either of my England 3 games. Maybe River and Ocean are just that strong, but in comparison to my last game where I barely hung on with a single blight, in this game I lost more blight to one event card than I did to ravages through the entire game and finished with the card unflipped. The three spirits fed each other lots of energy in the first turn and things just snowballed until eventually River was able to give Ocean +2 range every turn and it was all downhill for Sweden pretty quickly

I took a picture heading into the third invader phase but the game was done a turn later so here's the ending:



One down, my first level 4 win! Next up will likely be Vital Strength of the Earth, Lightning's Swift Strike and Serpent Slumbering Beneath the Island

edited to add that it cracks me up a little that I can win at Spirit Island three-handed in the top half of the difficulty levels, but Pandemic 3-handed on normal is completely out of reach
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20. Board Game: Terraforming Mars [Average Rating:8.40 Overall Rank:4]
Jesse
Canada
Clearview
Ontario
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I blazed through my Spirit Island game in a little over 4 hours so I thought I'd squeeze one more in before work. Play #15!



76 points, Teractor, Hellas

I can't decide how I feel about this game at all. I think I like it more than I think I do (haha) because every time I play it I enjoy myself, but some things about it kind of irritate me and I think it's mostly just down to the way the solo mode works. For starters, there are 7000 cards on my table, and I played 11 of them, in an hour It feels less like an engine builder and more like some kind of weird reverse deck builder where you're trying to play as few cards as possible. In particular I found the base game very dry and was getting tired of it after six plays, but I already had Prelude and the map pack so I added them in and it's helped my enjoyment considerably, especially with Prelude making different builds more interesting.

That being said, victory still seems to come down to "how many cards will Jesse get suckered into buying this game" more than anything else and there isn't a lot of challenge to it I feel. I'm really tempted to add Venus Next or Colonies because I think the solo game really needs something else "to do", but I've already invested almost $100 into the game and I'm not really in love with it so I'll probably watch for a sale or used copy. The price is another slight annoyance to me; for being my most expensive game, you certainly would never guess to compare components

I'm hoping my wife will give it a try and multiplayer will brighten my opinion. I do enjoy it but for now it's mostly something I play as a break from my other games. Maybe a variant would be worth a try?
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21. Board Game: Black Orchestra [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:515]
Shane Poole
United States
Spokane
Washington
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After being away from home for the last 2 months, I decided to play Black Orchestra.

I haven't played very much to know the ins and outs of each conspirator/character. I chose Claus von Stauffenberg and Admiral Wilhelm Canaris for this solo session.



Through some extreme lucky card draws, I was able to keep Hitler's military support to a minimum.



I executed an early plot attempt to assassinate Hitler. My dice pool was only 4 dice with a goal of 2 or more targets. I had some cards in my dossier to mitigate any Reichsadler symbols rolled.



Claus von Stauffenberg was able to assassinate der Führer in Sportpalast to end the game very early into Stage 2 with a roll of 3 target symbols!



thumbsup Simple mechanics
thumbsup Thematic and historically accurate
thumbsup Large selection of characters with backstories and special abilities
thumbsup Cooperative and exciting press your luck action

thumbsdown Dice rolls can make or break you (but timing is key when attempting a plot)

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22. Board Game: Aerion [Average Rating:7.79 Overall Rank:3423]
Kevin Eastwood
United States
Windham
New Hampshire
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Normally I'm a fan of Oniverse games, but the first play of this one just fell flat for me. It didn't seem to have as meaningful choices as other games in the series.

So, I played again and added the first 2 expansions and what a difference that made. The first expansion gives you more control over the dice but requires you to complete another ship. The second adds sand timers that you have to take opportunistically or you can lose even when completing all the ships.

So, now I'm interested to try the other expansions in the box.
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23. Board Game: Raiders of the North Sea [Average Rating:7.82 Overall Rank:84] [Average Rating:7.82 Unranked]
Monica Elida Forssell
Norway
Sandnes
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LET THE CELEBRATIONS COMMENCE!!!!

Oh, and

I WINN!!!!!!

Happy dance, happy dance

So, for anyone who haven`t heard it yet; I turned 1 year old as a solo gamer in the 1PG family yesterday. But since I didn`t have time to play games to celebrate yesterday, today will be my celebration day.

I started off with this little beauty. From the beginning I tried hard at being one up on Gorm, since he has proven to be a very fierce advesary. I went straight for white workers whenever I had the chance, made offerings left and right, even damaged his armory whenever I saw it fit. I went raiding, and made sure my Vikings were good and strong. That made me keep up with him on the score track throughout the game, untill I started passing him as well. But we fought back and forth to dominate the tracks. Also, Gorm didn`t suffer much by the Valkyries. That ended him on a low score on the Valkyrie track in the end, while I pushed up both my Valkyrie track and armor to the max (or close to it.)



I think also Gorm was a bit unlucky in how he drew his deck this time around. He was always short of provisions, or the areas he was supposed to raid was somehow emptied....whistle (wonder who did that...)

That ended his score on 83VP, while I got 98VP



I spent a lot of time thinking through the best strategies before making my choices during this game. Some choices were simple, others were in order to do some small sacrifices. Berserker is a great crew to have in ones hand. He does well in battle field, and keeps coming back.

Well, off to a new game, and new celebratory experiences. I just want to end this item post telling you all that you are

AWESOME!!!!!!

kiss And I am glad I am part of this wonderful guild. kiss
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24. Board Game: Star Wars: Rebellion [Average Rating:8.44 Overall Rank:6]
Gordon J
United States
Eagan
Minnesota
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An epic end to an epic game.

The bot Empire figured out the Rebel base was on Tatooine and the showdown was on. If I could last until the end of the turn I would win, but that meant I had to take out the Empire's fleet. If I waited for the Empire they would just move into Tatooine and they had the advantage on the ground--my only hope was to take the initiative, attack their fleet first, thus stranding their army.

Admiral Ackbar led the charge armed with the Death Star Plans card. It was close, but our fighters couldn't land a hit on the Death Star. We wiped out the rest of the fleet, but not the Death Star.



Then it was up to Lando and one Y-wing versus the lone Death Star.

Long story short, Lando got the job done and blew up the Death Star. But in this story there is no happy ending, there is no award ceremony, where medals are given, there is no cheering and back slapping. Because in Rebellion you conduct the space battle and the land battle at the same time. So while the Death Star was exploding in space, the AT-AT and Stormtroopers crushed the rebels on the ground--the rebel base destroyed.



At the end of this movie, Lando flies away in his Y-wing, the last remanent of the lost cause.

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25. Board Game: World's Fair 1893 [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:701]
Monica Elida Forssell
Norway
Sandnes
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My second game in my celebration run.

I like playing this game as a three player. It gives it more edge, it gets tighter, and I need to think before I act.

Playing purple, I don`t think this went quite my way.



I am still not too convinced the VP coins are the best choices the creator did for this game. Between the coins for tickets and medals for exhibits, a lot of small values make up a big score. And I feel it`s missing a score pad or, or ticket coins could have been switched for a score track. I have wondered how I can pimp this game a bit, but all I have come up with is an upgrade pack of meeples. But I love the cubes!

And it sounds that I am ranting negatively about the game. But I actually love it. The cards set the tone of the era this game is concentrating on. And how it is somewhat educational and centered on historical facts is just my thing (and writing this, I think I wrote something similar last time I played this game... :what



Score:
Turqois: 60
Purple (me): 59
Yellow: 71

The game demands a bit of space on the table, and room to sort the components. But lovely colors.

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