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Subject: Geek of the Week #602 - Ben Taylor (Dicey Exploits) rss

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Michael Heron
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As my tenure as Geek of the Week comes to a close, I introduce you all to Ben Taylor. Thanks to everyone that had questions and kind words about the work of Meeple Like Us.

Ben here runs the Dicey Exploits channel over on Youtube, and he is one of my absolute favourite reviewers. I hope he'll become one of your favourites too.

Have a great week, Ben!

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Hello! I'm Ben, otherwise known as Dicey Exploits in the less visited corners of the interwebs, and if I'm not producing videogames for a living, I'm reviewing board games for... kicks, I guess?

I was lucky enough to have tabletop designer James Wallis as a lecturer throughout university, and he was the one who turned my attention away from the negative, rage inducing titles that have lodged one too many embittered memories in many childhoods and towards the modern day diamonds that are truly representative of the joys the hobby can bring.

That's kind of why I started the Dicey Exploits channel, I guess. Partly to provide an extra bit of peer pressure to those pondering about buying a game, but also to introduce others to this marvellously fun, smart and, at times, wonderfully silly industry. Tabletop games have helped me make friends, socialise and even help me daily when it comes to digital design. I feel like I should give something back... even if that's just in the form of stupid videos designed to have people laughing at me and not with me... which you can find right here!

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCx5bnIbrSmGsFFhJ9C6SeCg


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Michael Heron
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I'm going to prime the pump here with some questions to start us off.

1) What's the best idea that you've seen poorly implemented in a game you've reviewed?

2) What's your process for creating videos? How long does it take?

3) If you could make people, by force of law, play a single game - what would it be?

4) Which video reviewers do you think are underappreciated and could do with a signal boost?

5) You mentioned in your Christmas video about doing some experiments in 'blended' coverage for your site - any news on that?

Have a great week!

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Congratulations on making Geek of the Week!

I have a few questions for you......
1 What is your opinion of war gaming?
2 Do you have a favorite war game; if so, what is it?
3 What are your opinions or memories of playing Risk?
4 What are your opinions or memories of playing Axis & Allies?
5 What game would you tell all gamers about that just has no publicity and that nobody knows about?
6 What game reminds you most of Youtube?

I thank you for your time. thumbsup cool

-M_R
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Congratulations Benjamin. Have a great week!

What is your favorite spaceship? And why?
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Congratulations Ben!
Have a great week!

My usual question: Have you a favorite wizard? If so, who? If not, why? And which game (if any) is he/she from?
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Enjoy your week, Ben!
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drakkos wrote:
I'm going to prime the pump here with some questions to start us off.

1) What's the best idea that you've seen poorly implemented in a game you've reviewed?

2) What's your process for creating videos? How long does it take?

3) If you could make people, by force of law, play a single game - what would it be?

4) Which video reviewers do you think are underappreciated and could do with a signal boost?

5) You mentioned in your Christmas video about doing some experiments in 'blended' coverage for your site - any news on that?

Have a great week!



Thank you muchly! I'm happy to answer any questions that come my way, so everyone, feel free to get quizzical!

So, to tackle this first bunch...

1) Might be jumping the gun on this one as we haven't actually finished the entire campaign, but it would likely be the 'Captain's Booke' from Seafall. Again, this may not be fair. There may be a point 10 games in where the entire narrative sticks together smoothly like some king of soggy buttered jigsaw, but right now, it just is not gelling well with me.

2)Despite the videos rather amateurish appearance, it can take around 20-26 hours to bother YouTube with my content. I've had to adjust it recently with me actually entering full time employment and having to adult. The writing process often occurs on commutes, which is quite handy (and I feel really embelishes my scathing tone). Otherwise a majority is splicing together stuff and hoping it works smoothly.

The skits are often just kind of thought up whenever I'm strolling around. Apparently my brain just doesn't function if I stand/sit still. If anything, they're the things that spur on a desire to move forward with the review. I like them to have some sort of major point to spur the review on, otherwise I don't really feel like the review will stand strong. As such, release schedules can be a tad sporadic...

3) Should the law pass, it would probably have to be D&D. I've only really been DMing for the past year, but I honestly believe I've learnt more about game design in that time than I had taking an actual course on game theory for 3 years.

The best games I play are ones you can come out of with stories. I think it's wonderful when people come out of their shells to tell a tale built from a framework of a really cleverly designed title. In this new world, however, I feel literally any RPG would fit the bill. I just have an affinity with D&D as it was my first.

In terms of administering this law, GCSEs are abolished, replaced by personality quizzes assigned to citizens aged 18 to determine who will be the best GMs/players. Supplies will be given on a [REDACTED]

4) I'm not just saying this because they invited me onto their podcast, but I really appreciate the work of the Best Play guys and gals to the point of slight envy. If you attempt to introduce a game to people and their response is 'Oh gosh, they're too complicated, please stop', point them in Best Play's way. They boil down pretty much anything into a 60 second brief that covers pretty much everything you need.

5) Yes, this is still happening! I'm just a daft perfectionist and it keeps getting delayed. I want these things to be real behemoths with some real meat to them. As such, they're a slightly different beast to the standard reviews I do, and it seems as soon as I complete a section, some other idea pops into my head that I just have to dig into.

Another issue comes in the form of time management. I'm lucky enough to be working with both video games AND tabletop games, and still find it tricky to juggle playing everything I feel is necessary to complete an 'essay' whilst staving off complete burnout. Needless to say, they're still occurring.

I also foolishly decided to tackle a subject personal to me first, looking at Firewatch and how other games can handle anxiety. Bit of a silly first jab, but I'M IN IT nOW OH dEAR.
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Congrats Ben and enjoy your week!
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hi good community , my first here ...
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Excellent choice for GotW! Congrats!
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Congrats Ben

d10-1 What is your favourite colour when playing a boardgame?
d10-2 Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter?
d10-3 Do you play an instrument? If yes, which one and for how long already?
d10-4 Having fun?
d10-5 What would have been your name if it wasn't the name you have?
d10-6 What is your favourite snack?
d10-7 What is your favourite day of the week?
d10-8 What is your favourite time of day?
d10-9 What character would you be in a Star Trek setting?
d10-1d10-0 What makes you "tick" (inspires you, why do you get up in the morning)?
d10-1d10-1 What is your life-long dream?
d10-1d10-2 What is your favourite RPG race/class?
d10-1d10-3 If you could go back in time - where and when would you go?
d10-1d10-4 Could you enlighten us about your avatar?
d10-1d10-5 Where does your username come from?
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midnight_reaper wrote:
Congratulations on making Geek of the Week!

I have a few questions for you......
1 What is your opinion of war gaming?
2 Do you have a favorite war game; if so, what is it?
3 What are your opinions or memories of playing Risk?
4 What are your opinions or memories of playing Axis & Allies?
5 What game would you tell all gamers about that just has no publicity and that nobody knows about?
6 What game reminds you most of Youtube?

I thank you for your time. thumbsup cool

-M_R


Thank you very much!

1) Honestly I'm something of an amateur in the field. My wallet can't give it the attention it deserve and my pals don't have enough of an interest in war gaming for me to poke my nose in. Should my local bricks and mortar store hold an event centred around it, I'll be sure to dive in.

2) As such, I do not!

3) My best memories of Risk come from Risk Legacy, which unfortunately is coated in spoilers! Nevertheless, I always found it (and the original's )mechanics pretty enjoyable if nothing to write home to my childhood sweetheart about. Some worse memories came from The walking Dead Risk, that adds a rather meh worthy Pandemic-like mechanic of launching factionless zombies on the board. Unfortunately, it just sort of means there's no point moving out of territories in the late game so it just becomes very dull.

4) From what I know of Axis & Allies, it seems like a good bridge between gateway wargames and more complex titles. My Brother in Law actually has a few copies, so that might be my in!

5) Gooood question...hum...

I think a game not many have heard about (hopefully, or I'll look quite the fool... and inevitably thing of a more anonymous one as soon as I hit 'Submit') is Long Live the Queen that recently ended its Kickstarter campaign. It plays like a strategic combo of Machi Koro and Love Letter, only lasts 20 minutes and yet it feels deeper than many filler games out there.

6) Even better question! Hard to answer, as it kind of depends on how much of a mood I'm in with its terrible algorithms.

If I consider the processes involved with creating and uploading, it might have to be London Dread. Putting in a huge bunch of work (planning and coordinating your moves, polishing and editing (committing to your moves), tackling unforeseen circumstances when trying to achieve your goals (a 5 year old computer and Windows Movie Maker burning up constantly) and releasing your efforts into the public hoping it'll go down well (relying on one single die roll to win the entire game). The aesthetics/themes may not be on point, but the ongoing fear induced process embroiled with your hardest efforts to succeed is certainly echoed...

...I've made myself a bit sad now. It's ultimately satisfying, I swear.
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Jocab wrote:
Congratulations Benjamin. Have a great week!

What is your favorite spaceship? And why?


Probably the Milano from Guardians of the Galaxy, mainly because it just looks like a glorified hi-tech treehouse. I find a few spaceships a tad too clean, too polished and sterile for my liking. The way that ship is set up almost primarily for entertainment rather than practical use makes me just want to park it up in a quiet quadrant of space and chill.

Having said that, I did spend an awful long time Sheparding it up in the Normandy in Mass Effect. If I could transfer my aquarium from that, it would be ideal.
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Narl wrote:
Congrats Ben

d10-1 What is your favourite colour when playing a boardgame?
d10-2 Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter?
d10-3 Do you play an instrument? If yes, which one and for how long already?
d10-4 Having fun?
d10-5 What would have been your name if it wasn't the name you have?
d10-6 What is your favourite snack?
d10-7 What is your favourite day of the week?
d10-8 What is your favourite time of day?
d10-9 What character would you be in a Star Trek setting?
d10-1d10-0 What makes you "tick" (inspires you, why do you get up in the morning)?
d10-1d10-1 What is your life-long dream?
d10-1d10-2 What is your favourite RPG race/class?
d10-1d10-3 If you could go back in time - where and when would you go?
d10-1d10-4 Could you enlighten us about your avatar?
d10-1d10-5 Where does your username come from?


Thanks!

1) Blue. Although props if turquoise is available.

2) Autumn every time!

3) Bass guitar for about 5 years. Don't seem to be getting much better though...

4) Yes!

5) I've been told Alex was my Plan B name. Instead, it's one of my middle names.

6) Flipping heck there's way too many to name. Um, it will be something sweet. It would have to be biscuits. How boringly British of me.

7) Got to be Friday!

8)Any time when the sun is setting (I'm not a vampire. It's just a pretty time).

9)I'm not going to kid myself here. Any red shirt. I'd think of myself as something extraordinary in the setting, but I would end up dead 10 minutes into my on screen lifetime.

10) Games, games games in any form!

11) Gotta go rogue!

12) Oh blimey. I guess I'd like to figure out exactly why Stonehenge was build so about 3000 BC? Until I have another explanation, I will remain convinced it's the site of the first ever Little Chef.

14) That's the logo for my Youtube channel! I made it with shoddy 3D skills and iffy lighting abilities.

15) Shamelessly, that's the name of my Youtube channel! I can't really remember how I came up with it, especially as my pun game is more wrong than strong. I think I just went 'Oh, you take risks in games and can have adventures. Tabletop games have dice. Dicey Exploits?'. I'm still not 100% sure it's spot on, but it's a unique name in 2017, so that's enough for my liking.
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Dicey Exploits wrote:
midnight_reaper wrote:
...
6 What game reminds you most of Youtube?

I thank you for your time. thumbsup cool

-M_R

6) Even better question! Hard to answer, as it kind of depends on how much of a mood I'm in with its terrible algorithms.

If I consider the processes involved with creating and uploading, it might have to be London Dread. Putting in a huge bunch of work (planning and coordinating your moves, polishing and editing (committing to your moves), tackling unforeseen circumstances when trying to achieve your goals (a 5 year old computer and Windows Movie Maker burning up constantly) and releasing your efforts into the public hoping it'll go down well (relying on one single die roll to win the entire game). The aesthetics/themes may not be on point, but the ongoing fear induced process embroiled with your hardest efforts to succeed is certainly echoed...

...I've made myself a bit sad now. It's ultimately satisfying, I swear.

I'm glad you like it. My life is a little busy for that kind of stuff now, but as I have the end of the tunnel mapped out, we'll see what happens later.

Now, for the super secret final round question:

If you could get *ANY* one game, which would you want? By any, I mean any: Reiner Knizia's personal prototype of Tigris and Euphrates, the authenticated genuine first ever chess set to be recognizable as such, I mean any one of any game ever made, ever. Which would you want to get? No cost to you, the stars align and you get whatever it is at no cost to you. What would you want? Only caveat - you can't sell it or give it away, it must stay in your game collection so long as you live. No getting the most expensive game ever and selling it.

-M_R
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Congrats Ben! Enjoy your week as GotW meeple
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Congratulations, Ben!
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Congratulations Benjamin!
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I'm going to circle around for another strafing run here if you don't mind.

1) If you could put together a dream-team of four board-game artists and designers, who would you choose and what would you want them to make?

2) If people were going to watch only one single video of yours, which would you prefer it to be?

3) If people were *never* going to watch a particular video of yours, which would you prefer it to be?

4) What is your goto game for introducing people to modern gaming?

5) What do you think is currently the largest barrier to new people becoming board-gamers?
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chadnorth wrote:
Congratulations Ben!
Have a great week!

My usual question: Have you a favorite wizard? If so, who? If not, why? And which game (if any) is he/she from?


Thank you! I certainly am!

Heading into mage territory, I'd say Vivi from Final Fantasy 9. It's impossible not to like, possibly love that dope.
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midnight_reaper wrote:
Dicey Exploits wrote:
midnight_reaper wrote:
...
6 What game reminds you most of Youtube?

I thank you for your time. thumbsup cool

-M_R

6) Even better question! Hard to answer, as it kind of depends on how much of a mood I'm in with its terrible algorithms.

If I consider the processes involved with creating and uploading, it might have to be London Dread. Putting in a huge bunch of work (planning and coordinating your moves, polishing and editing (committing to your moves), tackling unforeseen circumstances when trying to achieve your goals (a 5 year old computer and Windows Movie Maker burning up constantly) and releasing your efforts into the public hoping it'll go down well (relying on one single die roll to win the entire game). The aesthetics/themes may not be on point, but the ongoing fear induced process embroiled with your hardest efforts to succeed is certainly echoed...

...I've made myself a bit sad now. It's ultimately satisfying, I swear.

I'm glad you like it. My life is a little busy for that kind of stuff now, but as I have the end of the tunnel mapped out, we'll see what happens later.

Now, for the super secret final round question:

If you could get *ANY* one game, which would you want? By any, I mean any: Reiner Knizia's personal prototype of Tigris and Euphrates, the authenticated genuine first ever chess set to be recognizable as such, I mean any one of any game ever made, ever. Which would you want to get? No cost to you, the stars align and you get whatever it is at no cost to you. What would you want? Only caveat - you can't sell it or give it away, it must stay in your game collection so long as you live. No getting the most expensive game ever and selling it.

-M_R


My goodness, I'm racking my brains, but I feel the gut response I had will only highlight my ignorance. Could try and make something up...nope, I'll be true to myself.

The collector's edition of Takenoko, that rather rare one that is HUGE in comparison to its regular version. That one. It's stupidly cute, I really like Takenoko, and it'll make me feel like a millionaire megalomaniac to have that in my garden.
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drakkos wrote:
I'm going to circle around for another strafing run here if you don't mind.

1) If you could put together a dream-team of four board-game artists and designers, who would you choose and what would you want them to make?

2) If people were going to watch only one single video of yours, which would you prefer it to be?

3) If people were *never* going to watch a particular video of yours, which would you prefer it to be?

4) What is your goto game for introducing people to modern gaming?

5) What do you think is currently the largest barrier to new people becoming board-gamers?


1)Bruno Cathala, Matt Leacock, Rob Daviau and Alice Carroll. It would be a Legacy heist game comprised of several 'jobs'. Players would have to plan out heists and work together to pull it off. If things went wrong, they could get locked in and have to get out Escape Room style, and your results from each job would carry over to the next.

2) Apparently people really like the one I did on Crisis, but I think the one I did on T.I.M.E Stories had some pretty good points and dare I say a few good gags. You can find it here EVERYBODY LOOK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJthEPODWUc

3) The intro to that T.I.M.E. Stories vid leads nicely into this. Any of the first 4. Apparently I didn't think audio was important. If I had to pick one of those though, Rampage. Oh dear Lord the quality of that video is terrible. I'm not posting the link of that.

However, I may grimace a tonne when viewing them, but I keep them up as I always think it's interesting to see how content creators change over time. That doesn't mean to say I want you to watch them though.

4) It's definitely Mysterium. That game utterly shocked my grandmother when I brought it out. Her experience was literally nothing but roll and move games which ended with her family essentially hating one another. She was very sceptical when I jumped into reviewing board game as those memories still echoed in her mind.

Mysterium was utterly perfect for that, and every time I've brought it out, it's started out with murmurs of whimsy. Even if it isn't someone's cup of tea, they come away saying it was interesting, and want to dig deeper to see what this era of tabletop games has to offer. It always makes an impact, and I love it.

5)Rulebooks. Guh.

I have come across a few badly written or badly formatted rulebooks in my time an they can be absolute agony for beginners and veterans alike, and this can be ESPECIALLY horrible for hose who have to learn the game and teach it. It can really tarnish someone's first time with a game, and even reinforce beliefs that the hobby is 'too complicated' for them.

It's a bloody tough job to write a well formatted rulebook, and I'm not entirely sure there's an art to it just yet. However, I do believe digital app integration really helps. The XCOM board game has a fantastic tutorial that simultaneously teaches you the game as you kind of play it. Top marks
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Congrats!

I love the reviews I seen so far. I checking on Mysterium now. Thanks and again congrats.

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G'day Ben,

I try to remember to ask each Geek of the Week these gaming related questions, so to start with here's the ever so slightly modified GeekSpeak Hook questions for you:
Favourite game(s) for d10-1 player (optional, many non-wargamers wouldn't have an answer for this)
Favourite game(s) for d10-2 players
Favourite game(s) for d10-3 players
Favourite game(s) for d10-4 players
Favourite game(s) for d10-5 players
Favourite game(s) for d10-6 players
Favourite game(s) for d10-7 or more players (and you may choose a Party Game here although I wouldn't meeple )

Also Word Association Football , I will list a word and you list a game or games that you associate with it. If you like you can expand and tell us if you like it/them or hate it/them and possibly why.

Space ships
Witches
Trains
Transport (may include trains)
Workers (paid or otherwise)
Trading
Building
Pink
Theme
Ships
Money
Purple
Government
Vampires
Infrastructure
Dice
Dinosaurs
Gemstones
Dragons
Beer
Wands

Is there any particular game that you have played recently, new or old, that you would like to recommend to readers of this thread? And optionally, why?

Last but not least, what are the five games that you have played most recently?
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Congrats! My questions:

1) If you could only own one 7 Wonders expansion, which one would you keep?

2) Have you ever done any "real" escape rooms? What was your impression of them?

3) As a GM, what gaming moment has made you most proud of your players? What moment has made you the most proud of yourself as a GM?

4) What are your opinions about the more recent FF games? Do you like the current direction of the series, or do you prefer things more old school?

5) Finally, if you could steal one game from my collection, which one would you take? If I were coming to steal one game from your collection, which game would you fight hardest to keep me from taking?
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