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Author Topic: A quick look at some new games  (Read 116 times)
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WorkingMike
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« on: August 29, 2014, 04:15:39 AM »

We've been on a bit of a spree lately, and not all of these are new, but new to us.

Dread Curse - This one was a huge hit. Plays 3 - 8 at around 30 minutes. Everyone is a pirate, whose rank ranges from Captain to Cabin Boy. The goal is to amass the most treasure at the end of the game. Being pirates, however, means stealing from each other and using a variety of dirty, underhanded tricks to amass that coin. Beware the "Black Spot", as it will lose you the game if you can't get rid of it.

Survive: Escape from Atlantis - The island is sinking, and everyone must flee for safety. There are not enough boats, whales in the distance, sharks are circling and holy crap! Is that a freaking sea monster? We all loved this one, a great reprint of a classic game 2-4, up to 6 with the expansion.

Keyflower - my new favorite euro game. Every season the boats bring new workers. You send them out to build on tracts of land, work to generate resources or even be the first to greet the boats. Between the seasons you assemble your village. Plays quick and has a surprising amount of player interaction. 2 - 6 players, and works at every player count.

Splendor - a great little game. You grab gems to purchase cards, in order to build an economic engine. With the right cards you can get a visit from a noble. First to 15 points wins. Plays best with 3 or 4, at 2 players we would rather play Jaipur (we enjoy the theme).

Robinson Crusoe - you must survive on an island and complete your objective, which ranges from resource gathering to exorcising the native temples. There is never enough of anything, bad stuff happens constantly and you will fail as often as you succeed, maybe more. Great fun with the right group. It is a board game that feels like an rpg. Plays 1 - 4.

Cheaty Mages - The tournament is starting, a fight among these creatures for the amusement and profit of us wizards who gathered here. Being wizards, we will cheat of course, as much as the judge allows anyway. The wizard with the most coin after 3 rounds is the winner! Plays 3 - 6.



« Last Edit: August 29, 2014, 12:59:38 PM by WorkingMike » Logged
Bullwinkle
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« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2014, 04:38:54 AM »

I have four of these games, and I've played half of them.

Interestingly, I was just going to pull out the Robinson Crusoe manual tonight to see if I can get some solo play in this weekend.

Splendor is good (and the chips just feel magnificent in the hand), and I've only played it with two people.  I never feel like I have a clear idea what I should be doing, though.  The paths to victory get kind of swimmy in my head.

Survive was fun, but I was expecting more panic.  It's more puzzly, which is fine, it's just not what I was expecting.

And Cheaty Mages.  I've read the rules.  It looks good.  But I keep buying these three+ player games thinking I'll get to this one.  I never have three willing players.
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WorkingMike
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« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2014, 12:59:16 PM »

The dynamic of Splendor completely changes at the higher player count. My strategy usually revolves around the nobles and denying critical cards to others. It's not a deep game, but we've enjoyed it as a starter.

You might want to get the Giant Squid expansion for Survive, it really changes the feeling a bit. Squids can pull meeples from land as well, so no one is safe. It quickly turns into a race to get ANYONE to safety. My wife refuses to play with it actually.

Have fun with Robinson, it's a blast. I just ordered the King Kong scenario, so I'll report back once it arrives and I get a couple of plays.

I'm hoping to get Quantum to the table this weekend, and maybe a couple more games of Core Worlds. We've been playing a ton of Star Realms as well.

Have you played anything outstanding lately?
« Last Edit: August 29, 2014, 01:02:58 PM by WorkingMike » Logged
Bullwinkle
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« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2014, 02:14:00 PM »

Quote from: WorkingMike on August 29, 2014, 12:59:16 PM

The dynamic of Splendor completely changes at the higher player count. My strategy usually revolves around the nobles and denying critical cards to others. It's not a deep game, but we've enjoyed it as a starter.

You might want to get the Giant Squid expansion for Survive, it really changes the feeling a bit. Squids can pull meeples from land as well, so no one is safe. It quickly turns into a race to get ANYONE to safety. My wife refuses to play with it actually.

Have fun with Robinson, it's a blast. I just ordered the King Kong scenario, so I'll report back once it arrives and I get a couple of plays.

I'm hoping to get Quantum to the table this weekend, and maybe a couple more games of Core Worlds. We've been playing a ton of Star Realms as well.

Have you played anything outstanding lately?

The King Kong scenario is actually the reason I pulled out the rulebook to finally give RC a play!

Quantum is pretty cool, though check your dice.  A lot of them were warped and oily.  The company replaced them very kindly (and sent a promo to boot).

And, of course, I can't stop pimping Star Realms.

I recently played Run, Fight or Die which I think is a pretty good dice based zombie game.  It really sells the impression that you're just trying to keep ahead of an ever growing and massing horde.  Good sense of humor, too.

I also played Darkest Night (solo), which I think is pretty neat.  Not as fiddly as I was imagining, and a nice theme added to a Pandemic style keep-shit-from-getting-out-of-control co-op.

Hull Breach is like a space skirmish with cards.  You build up your base and forces (putting marines, fighter ships and upgrades on some bigger ships) then send them at your opponent.  The build up seems to take much longer than the actual battle (the game can be over in one or two rounds, actually), but I think most of that can be attributed to learning the game.  I'm looking forward to giving it more tries.

Hoplomachus is a gladiator game which has the unique mechanic of stacking health chips under the characters.  This not only gives you very useful information at a glance, it's also pleasingly tactile.  The game has some cool mechanics, too and is fun to play.

Finally, though I'm sure it won't be everyone's cup of tea, I have really been enjoying the Dark Gothic deck building game from Flying Frog.  It's Ascension style, but with some twists.  For example, there are three different resources (and a generic that can be swapped for one of them), and each character has a starting deck with different combinations of those in basic cards.  For example (and I'm making this up), the Priest might have 8 Spirit, 3 Cunning but only 2 Combat, while the Pirate Lady has 6 combat and a more even mix of the other two (I think the Priest has an Honor card, too, which gives a generic and a card draw).  They also have special abilities.  The Priest can swap his spirit for combat when battling minions or villains, for example.  There are three main, randomly drawn villains to work through, and they all have global effects as well as effects that trigger when you fight them.  And the center line is filled with gear, events, locations, minions and allies.  All of which do different things and cost different amounts.  It's all decently thematic and a lot of fun.
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WorkingMike
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« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2014, 05:05:53 AM »

Hahaha, we've been playing Star Realms A LOT. I'm on IOS as Jarvin if you want to play a game or two. I've been giving a few decks away to friends as well, everyone is really enjoying it.

Run, Fight or Die is topping my list. It will have to wait until next year, the gaming budget has run dry for us. Seemed to be the talk of GenCon though.

Darkest Night is great! I feel it is the spiritual successor to an old game called Dark Emperor. I'm really impressed with the quality that VPG has been putting out lately. I need to grab some expansions for it one of these days.

The others were completely off my radar, I'll need to add them to my BGG list. Hoplomachus in particular sounds intriguing. Is it mano y mano, or more akin to the formations of say, Battle Line?
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« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2014, 02:55:36 PM »

Quote from: WorkingMike on August 30, 2014, 05:05:53 AM

Hahaha, we've been playing Star Realms A LOT. I'm on IOS as Jarvin if you want to play a game or two. I've been giving a few decks away to friends as well, everyone is really enjoying it.

Run, Fight or Die is topping my list. It will have to wait until next year, the gaming budget has run dry for us. Seemed to be the talk of GenCon though.

Darkest Night is great! I feel it is the spiritual successor to an old game called Dark Emperor. I'm really impressed with the quality that VPG has been putting out lately. I need to grab some expansions for it one of these days.

The others were completely off my radar, I'll need to add them to my BGG list. Hoplomachus in particular sounds intriguing. Is it mano y mano, or more akin to the formations of say, Battle Line?

Neither, really.  Small groups go at each other, and each unit has different tactical abilities, but I wouldn't call it formation based.  You need to get your fighters into position to help each other deal the best damage to the other guys.

It feels like a classic arena skirmish, though the cities who are presenting their fighters include Xanadu, Atlantis and El Dorado.  It doesn't go crazy with the fantasy at all.

There's a progression system as well, through crowd favor, which will have you unlocking certain abilities (with the caveat that you also help your opponent a little), including releasing your champion, who is essentially chained in place on the battleground (and can be attacked) until you earn enough favor to release him.  You can almost hear the crowd roaring when that happens.

The gameplay is quite good, and the real draw of it is the mousepad style gameboard and the chip based health system. It's not gorgeous or anything, but it's clever.
Here's a look:
Spoiler for Hiden:

That said, if you've play Splendor too soon before playing this, the chips will feel a little disappointing.  But the system is still cool.

There are also some cool solo scenarios.  Especially in the sequel, Rise of Rome, where you have to send your cities gladiators in against a Titan.  

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WorkingMike
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« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2014, 03:34:24 AM »

Wow, what a neat looking board! Yeah, Splendor set the bar pretty high with the clay chips smile

That is definitely going on the list, hopefully the wife will be interested. I'm really surprised I haven't heard of it before this.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2014, 03:37:14 AM by WorkingMike » Logged
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