Christmas 2007: 10 short first impressions!
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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Ten short first impression reviews on new games my family received or purchased for christmas 2007. this is my first attempt at a Geeklist.
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1. Board Game: Bohnanza [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:368]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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Spent a few minutes looking and laughing at the artwork. 4 players - age range 11 to 58. The rules were very easy to follow and the pace of the game picked up after just a few turns each. During the first play, we missed the fact that you can trade away any of the cards in you hand when it's your turn. I've played a few more times since and this could turn out to be one of my top 3 favorite card games.
 
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2. Board Game: The Pillars of the Earth [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:231]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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looking to write a full first impression review on this later. 3 players - age range 31 - 46. I first made the two people playing this with me watch the Board Games With Scott video podcast of this game. (about 22 min) It was worth it. It took a long time for us to make it through the first two rounds. (there's a lot to take in) But by the time we hit the 5th and 6th rounds we were in full stride. The learning curve is much smaller than I expected. The game was extremely fun. Being new to this side of the board game world, this was my first experience with a huge game. Be aware that on your first play of this game, you'll be unaware of events and cards that will turn up later in the game and I'm sure won't have stratagized accordingly. I can't wait to play this some more! (to bad the two people I played with are now back home in Virginia)
 
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3. Board Game: Risk: Transformers – Cybertron Battle Edition [Average Rating:5.33 Overall Rank:14631]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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My Son got this one from his Grandmom. Just him and I played. This version has a lot of similarities to original Risk in army placement, movement, battle, and rewards. You don't get to collect cards though which I miss. There are cards but they're single use cards that usually add to your army or subtract from your opponents. A few zones on the board can be rotated, allowing for different conecting zones which is cool. The leaders (1 for each team with an 8 sided die) get killed way to easy. I'll take the original of this one any day.
 
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4. Board Game: Battleground: Crossbows & Catapults War Chest Starter Set [Average Rating:6.58 Overall Rank:3066]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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Another game Santa brought my son. First the rules are sketchy so throw them away and just play! I think I may make a post with GOOD rules for this game soon. Setting up the armys fast since there's very little assembly. All in all, the weapons worked pretty well even with the cheesy bands the game comes with. I made a battlefield based on the recomendations in the rule booklet but the next time we play we're going to find a better battleground somewhere in the house. My son has since picked up a few weapons expansions that we've yet to try. I think this game is going to bring some nice battles out in the near future. I can't wait to try it outside in the yard come spring! (The game was hard on my knees too.)
 
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5. Board Game: 10 Days in Asia [Average Rating:6.69 Overall Rank:1798]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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ok. I've heard great things about this game and when I picked it up I couldn't wait to play. One problem is that the board is very boring looking so that alone was turning people off from playing with me. Finally, 4 players - age range 11 - 58. I read the rules aloud and thought they were pretty easy to understand but, apparently no one else did. I had to keep explaining things over and over. It was very difficult to figure out how to arrange your tiles. (keep in mind this was the first play for ALL player) The fact that we were all unfamiliar with Asia, locating and remembering where your countries were became a huge challange. My son could never find his. My mother, the oldest player, was having just as tough of a time as my son and wife were. Once the game got rolling, everyone just started becoming more and more aggravated until I finally decided we should just stop playing. The game didn't seem THAT difficult for me and I thought I would be enjoyable, but now I don't know if i'll ever get a chance to play it again. my wife and Son have said they never want to play it again. Anyone want to trade?
 
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6. Board Game: Super Munchkin [Average Rating:5.90 Overall Rank:4011] [Average Rating:5.90 Unranked]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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Yes. My family likes munchkin. We played the original munchkin all summer long and also picked up a few expansions, so I thought we'd try out S.M. since my son and I love super heroes. 3 players - age 11 - 32.
The color of the cards is the first thing to stand out; yellow? what were they thinking? The artwork is great and some of the cards and monsters/villians were hilarious. In playing, it seemed like there were many cards (powers/items/weapons) that could be played in front of you. Sometimes in the original, you're lucky to get 4 or 5 bonus items, but in S.M. I had like 20 cards layed out in front of me giving me a bonus of about 25! There also didn't seem like there were enough encounter cards. Over all it was still fun, but I think the deck needs some tweaking by expansions or perhaps by adding cards from other Munchkins.
 
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7. Board Game: Ticket to Ride: USA 1910 [Average Rating:8.01 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.01 Unranked]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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Ticket To Ride is easily becoming one of my favorite games of all times. Picking up this expansion (if you call it an expansion) was a no brainer. Here are my two main first impressions about 1910. 1. I love the smaller train cards in T2R! I think it's one of the things that makes the game appealing. So I'll probably never use the bigger replacement train cards that come with 1910. 2. The NEW route cards are much better. The detail that was missing from the original route cards are here in the new ones. I also like the new globetrotter card and think the new and reprinted route cards are a great bonus. I will always use the 1910 route cards.
 
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8. Board Game: Hollywood Shuffle [Average Rating:5.83 Unranked]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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Check out my full review (and the only review) on this game! 4 players ages 29 - 32 (my son played later also) Super easy to set up and get into. NO movie trivia is needed but being a huge movie fan such as I am had to make the game seem more fun for me. Only Apples To Apples has made me laugh so much playing a game. It almost doesn't feel like a game as much as it just feels like your having a good time.
 
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9. Board Game: Slide 5 [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:2069]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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A pleasant stocking stuffer. Seems this game has been remade a few times huh? Anyway, 6 players age 11 - 58. After reading the rules it took a few practice hands before things got serious, but when they did, Slide 5 emerged as a pleasant surprise. Everyone playing enjoyed the game and wanted to play it again the next day. Scoring was easy and I won with a huge come from behind victory in the third round! My only complaints are that the cards are a bit bland and unless you have 10 players you never get to use them all either.
 
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10. Board Game: Monkey Madness [Average Rating:5.37 Overall Rank:13325]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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oh boy. 4 colors of monkeys. 4 colored cards. Pull a monkey out of a bag and put it on its matching colored card. I could have made this game with some rocks, a paper bag, and some spray paint. But, as boring as it sounds...my 3 year old daughter loves it! This came is what you make of it. If you sit there with a smug look and draw the monkeys and that's it, the game will be boring with a capitol B! But if you spice it up, making monkey sounds or having the monkeys talk, grabbing your childs hand while it's in the bag, or just being plain silly, your young one will have a great time! My daughter hasn't stopped saying, "hey daddy, wanna play monkeys?" for 3 days!
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11. Board Game: Quelf [Average Rating:5.31 Overall Rank:15192]
Jim Reed
United States
Mount Holly
New Jersey
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Quelf, along with For Sale! and Marvel Heroscape have yet to be played. We're saving Quelf for tom...oh, tonight, New Years Eve! Hope my first Geeklist is somewhat enjoyable. I look forward to writting full reviews and sessions reports on all the games listed above some where down the road. Bring on 2008!!!
 
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