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What's your favorite Board Game? - Page 12

post #551 of 615
Originally Posted by Richard Dickson View Post

After telling myself I was going to swear off of Kickstarter for a while ... yeah, I'm backing three games now.  The aforementioned Rising Sun, which is now knocking on the door of $3 million with ten days to go, and just a ridiculous amount of stuff coming with it.  But the game itself actually looks really interesting, with a lot more player interaction than Blood Rage, and I think I like the theme a little better.


Then there's Dinosaur Island, which I was backing before Rising Sun came along.  It's basically Jurassic Park as a worker placement game, with more emphasis on the building and breeding than the dinosaurs running amok part.  They've unlocked all kinds of cool dinosaur meeples as stretch goals, and I've sprung for the deluxe version since there's no retail release planned for that one.



And yesterday I finally pulled the trigger on Empires of the Void II after watching a playthrough video.  It's more a whole new game than a sequel to the original Empires of the Void, and it looks to nicely scratch that space empire itch in less time and space than behemoths like Twilight Imperium and Eclipse.


So lots of new games!  The only downside is the earliest I'll see any of them is August when Dinosaur Island is due to ship.  Empires is planned for November and Rising Sun over a year from now.  And this being Kickstarter, those are all extremely subject to change.  So let's here it for money for nothing!

Dude, I feel your pain. I have resisted Rising Sun and Heavy Hitters Mech game but Dinosaur Island did me in, I love the theme.  I also went all in on the Champions of Midgard Expansions and upgrades.  I loved the theme and game play of Champions of Midgard.   I think I have a problem.   I missed out on Too Many Bones which is a huge Fantasy Dice Game but company is still accepting 2nd wave orders.  It's really expensive but high quality.  I went so far as to the Credit Card payment info and then realized my wife would literally kill me if I pulled that trigger.

post #552 of 615

I thought about the Champions of Midgard set, but I find the dice mechanic in that game a little too swingy for my tastes.  You can have multiple turns' worth of work undone from one bad dice roll.  For that particular theme, I prefer the "of the North Sea" series.

post #553 of 615
Originally Posted by Richard Dickson View Post

I thought about the Champions of Midgard set, but I find the dice mechanic in that game a little too swingy for my tastes.  You can have multiple turns' worth of work undone from one bad dice roll.  For that particular theme, I prefer the "of the North Sea" series.

The Favor Tokens in some way offset that Dice Mechanic, Especially if you get the character that gets VP from even Favor Tokens that are used, but I absolutely understand the dislike for that mechanic.


Good luck with your Kickstarters.

post #554 of 615

At the most recent games day with the friends-of-my-friend gaming group I've managed to semi-regularly glom onto, I managed victories in both Splendor and Glass Road, which was by far my most successful day with these people, ever. I was on clouds the rest of the day. It helped that I'd played each a couple times before in the past, whereas usually with this group I'm playing something brand new each time. (Also got a tight 2nd place showing in Scythe. By hell some day I'll win that game!)


Also finally played Terraforming Mars after having kibitzed a couple times before. I stunk it up, went back in the basement, but that one's definitely a game that requires some familiarity with the massive deck and its possibilities. Took me about halfway through before I had a handle on a couple basic rules (despite a good teacher; me = dumb), but would definitely play again. This one seems to be a current fave with these folks, so I'm sure I'll get my shot.


Also played Nippon, which was interesting, a sort of worker-placement/draft economy game. Way out of my wheelhouse, but I made a respectable showing. Not sure I'd jump on it again, but wouldn't say no if there's a seat open. Some interesting dynamics, and with a very high Screw Your Neighbor factor baked in, which provided some good table interaction that I find a lot of these stare-at-your-tableau worker games often lack. But I'm hardly a connoisseur of the genre.


Even more brain-burning, for me, was Panamax, set in the cutthroat high-tension world of... international freight shipping through the Panama Canal. Apparently it's infamous for having the world's least helpful, most obtuse rulebook, so the owner actually created his own manual to teach from. Which worked! It's certainly complex, with lots of moving parts and competing economies, and man did we do a lot of staring and mumbling trying to figure out our turns, but once everything started clicking, it was a pretty cool experience. Would happily bang my head up against it again.


Meanwhile, War of the Ring (2nd ed.) continues to rule. OMG guys, it's SO GOOD. I try to get someone over for WOTR every other weekend, and we've got our games down to a brisk 3-3.5 hours on average. Some of the alt-LOTR stories that happen are amazing. Often hilarious. Once, The Shadow almost lost via military victory after a contingent of Dwarves, spurred to war incredibly early, on a whim marched from Erebor all the way to Barad-Dur and locked themselves inside.


And after a year since the last one, and more than a couple attempts falling apart in between, looks like we're finally getting another game of Twilight Imperium together next month. Fingers crossed.

post #555 of 615

A friend of mine got his board game video blog picked up by the Dice Tower Network, and got to go to Origins a few weeks ago along with Tom Vasel and the gang.  He brought back a preview copy of Lisboa to review, and we got to play it a couple of weeks ago.


Guys.  Seriously.  THIS GAME.



The theme here is that it's 1755, shortly after the Portuguese city of Lisbon had a REALLY bad day:  earthquake, fire, and tidal wave.  Each player is a noble who is trying to use their wealth and influence to help rebuild the city.  You do this by playing cards that can each be used in three different ways:  they can be added to your player board to give you an instant reward and an ongoing effect, and also enable you to take a variety of actions; discarded to gain money; or played onto the main board (where the three pictures are on the left side of the board), which can trigger events or allow you to directly visit one of the city's three highest ranking nobles.  The chief way to score is to construct new buildings (that's the area on the right side of the board); you can build private buildings that you own (which also generate goods used to drive other parts of the game) or public buildings based on plans you collect.  These score you victory points upon completion, and also set the value of the public buildings when they are built and scored.  There are also decrees you can pick up, which are basically end game scoring goals.


I first saw this game on Kickstarter and at first glance thought it looked like an over-produced mess.  That board was SO BUSY.  But actually playing it, the game flows amazingly well.  The basic mechanics themselves are pretty simple; the complexity comes from deciding what to do with your cards each turn, since they open up so many possibilities.  We played this game for a good three hours -- that included learning time and pauses for questions and rule clarifications -- and I can tell you I was ready to play it again immediately afterward.  It ships to Kickstarter backers in August, and then should be available for sale shortly after that.


Speaking of Dice Tower, Wednesday kicks off the sixth annual Dice Tower Con, a five day orgy of board gaming goodness held here in Orlando.  This will be my fourth consecutive year attending, and is the biggest one yet:  something like 3,500 attendees, and the con has taken over all the convention space at the host hotel.  I'll try to post some highlights as the con goes on.

post #556 of 615

25 games played in five days later...


Had a blast at Dice Tower Con as usual.  Got in what's become our regular run of mega-games (Dune, seven-player Scythe and Antiquity, each running about three to four hours) and scored some good deals at Cool Stuff's ding and dent booth (including my missing Twilight Imperium expansion for less than $50).  But I mostly tried to play new games, either in general or new to me.  Here are some highlights.


The Godfather: Corleone's Empire -- Cool Mini or Not with a rare non-Kickstarter game (it's going straight to retail later this year), here a worker placement game where your workers are the thugs and family members of five different crime families.  Thugs do single jobs at specific locations (called Shaking Down), while family members skim backroom benefits from all locations in a turf (basically the burroughs of New York).  You can earn money (which is how you win the game) as well as guns, alcohol, blood money and drugs, which you turn in to complete Jobs cards.  These also earn you money, but they also do fun things like stealing money from other players, moving other players around the board, and gunning down and blowing up your enemies.  You can also bribe allies (earning you that ally's card that you can use once a turn), but that costs you money that could possibly win you the game.  At the end of each of the four acts, you check to see who has the most influence in each piece of turf, with the winner claiming control of that turf for the next act.  That nets you a kickback whenever a Thug does a Shake Down on your turf, and at the end of the game, whoever's done this most for a given piece of turf earns a money bonus.  It's a fun, cutthroat game that had us shouting and laughing ... and yet it's not really a Godfather game.  Sure, it's got locations like Genco Imports, and there's a Don Corleone figure that's used as a round marker, but it doesn't really follow the plot of the film; the five families are just doing their own thing.  And while this game seems to be designed for non-gamers with the lure of a familiar property, the $80 retail price tag isn't going to be very enticing for them.  Still, it does have the greatest first player token in board game history:




Yes, it's the horse head.


Photosynthesis -- At first glance, this looked like some happy little game where you're planting trees and it's all sunny and peaceful.  And then some bastard grows a bigger tree that puts yours in the shade and you don't get any sun and they're a goddamn jerk.  You take turns either planting seeds, turning those seeds into small trees, or growing those small trees into progressively larger ones.  Once they reach maximum size, you can take an action to harvest the tree for a number of points depending on how fertile the soil in which it was planted was.  The catch is that the resource you use to power all these actions is sunlight.  See, there's a big sun marker that rotates around the board (three times in a basic game, four times in an advanced one), and any of your trees that aren't in another tree's shadow earn you sunlight points.  These are spent to put pieces on the board, or purchase pieces from your supply.  But since the sun is always moving, trees that gave you plenty of sunlight one turns might be in total shadow the next.  So what you thought was some calm exercise in botany turns into a thinky puzzle game.  And in the advanced game, you can't plant seeds or grow trees in your opponent's shadows, adding ANOTHER layer of thought.  I was really surprised by this one.  It's so simple on its face and yet so deep in its actual play.  Not sure when this one will be out here in the US; it's debuting at the Essen game fair in Germany later this year.



Dice Forge -- This one just recently came out, and Cool Stuff couldn't keep copies in stock at its booth.  It's a dice game where you purchase upgraded sides for your dice as the game goes on.  You literally get little tiles and pop the old face off your die and click the new one on.  You might get a face that gives you one of each resource instead of a single one, or one that multiplies the other die you roll by three, or all kinds of other effects.  There are also cards you can purchase that either give you an immediate effect or an ongoing one you get each turns.  The cool thing is that everyone rolls their dice on each players turn and gathers what they rolled, so you're never sitting there with nothing to do on your turn thanks to a bad roll.  Granted, your rolls may not always been in your favor, but you get enough of them that it balances out over the course of the game.  I picked this one up shortly after playing the demo.



A Feast for Odin -- This one's been out for a while, but this was my first time playing.  It's a sort of refinement of what Uwe Rosenberg did with Agricola and then Caverna.  You're placing your Viking pieces to take different actions to collect various goods tiles that you then fit onto a square grid on your player board.  How you cover up the spaces not only determines your income each turn, but also your final score, since your grid is littered with -1 point spaces.  Every uncovered one at the end of the game is subtracted from your score.  So it's Agricola meets Tetris, without the crippling "Oh my god I didn't feed my family!" aspect that turns so many people off of Agricola.  I did absolutely terrible -- I scored about 14 points because of all the negative spaces I still had showing -- and wanted to play it again almost immediately.



The Palace of Mad King Ludwig -- This was maybe the upcoming game I was most excited about, and the demo I played delivered.  If you've played The Castles of Mad King Ludwig, the iconography and basic themes will be familiar, but it's different enough not to feel like a retread.  For starters, instead of four people building four different castles, here you're all working on the same one.  But it's not cooperative; you're all in it for yourselves.  Except as time passes, you start having to place moat tiles around the palace.  And once these completely surround the building tiles, the game ends and you tally the final scores.  There are some neat mechanics where you can use spaces on your player board to either get ongoing in-game effects or lock in end game scoring bonuses (choosing one locks out the other), and many times what looks like your best move helps your opponent just as much.  This should be dropping at Gencon.



I played a lot more than that, but those were the ones that made the biggest impression.  It sure felt weird going back to work today and not setting up little wooden pieces on a table.  But hey, tomorrow night is our weekly game night!

post #557 of 615

Nice, I was waiting to see how things went there. Any more goodies to share?

post #558 of 615

Nice. I was looking forward to your report. I am going to Gencon this year for the first time in nearly 15 years, so I am excited to hear what to be scooping up. I will definitely pick up Palaces. My game group likes Castles of Mad King Ludwig. I am with Singer... more reports! Work can wait one more day :D

post #559 of 615
I'll do some more when I get home. Including the worst game we played. One we agreed to quit on after about ninety minutes of frustration.
post #560 of 615

How'd your Seafall campaign go? Someone in the group is starting to sniff around it pretty heavily. I think it's planned as methadone til Pandemic Legacy Season 2 gets shot right in our veins -- and that one is looking so very weird right now -- but not everyone's getting hyped thanks to the lukewarm response out there.

post #561 of 615
Originally Posted by Trav McGee View Post

How'd your Seafall campaign go? Someone in the group is starting to sniff around it pretty heavily. I think it's planned as methadone til Pandemic Legacy Season 2 gets shot right in our veins -- and that one is looking so very weird right now -- but not everyone's getting hyped thanks to the lukewarm response out there.


We progressed to the point where the rest of the board finally opens up and we can start doing a little more, particularly with regards to messing with each other.  But we haven't felt compelled to play again right away.  Copies of the game were going for $20 new at the con, so I gather it's not selling well.

post #562 of 615

All right, as promised, more stuff!


Sentient -- This is a neat dice/bidding game where you place your pawns to claim cards representing bots you slot into your factory.  You have to place them between sets of dice you roll at the beginning of the turn, and each card scores points based on certain interactions with these dice.  Some score based on the sum of the two dice, some score if both are even, some score based on the lowest die plus or minus a certain number.  The trick is that each card has a +, -, or = sign at each top corner that affects the die it touches.  So while one card may set you up perfectly, the next one might ruin that combo by changing your die faces.  You have certain pawns that can be used to cover up the symbols and preserve your die rolls, but you sacrifice using them in another aspect of the game -- each pawn you place to claim a card is also used to claim influence over the investors behind each bot you claim.  Each investor is worth points equal to the number of bots of its particular field (such as Industry, Information, Military, etc).  So there's all kinds of manipulation going on, and it really makes you think.  The only drawback?  It's retailing for nearly $50, which seems kind of steep for what's in the box (although custom dice always nudge to cost of a game upward).  But likely it'll be in the $30 range at most of the online game retailers.



Arena: For the Gods -- This is a riff on King of Tokyo/New York, where you roll dice looking to match symbols, both to trigger standard abilities and abilities on gear cards your heroes possess.  The neat thing is that you bid on this gear before the battle using your life points.  Bid too much and you going into the arena with very little wiggle room when the fighting starts.  Bid too little and you risk losing out on the best gear.  You can vary the game board for game length and difficulty, and there are several variants such as 1-vs-many and team play.  We screwed the rules up the first time we played this and were sort of meh on it, but a second play with a better grasp of the rules vastly improved things.



Sagrada -- Another dice game, this time selecting dice from a common pool to match a pattern on your player board.  The trick is that you can't have the same colors or numbers touching, and since everyone is picking from the same group of dice, you're likely going to get screwed at some point.  There are some special abilities you can use to help rearrange or alter your dice, but doing so costs you points from the end of the game.  This was one of the more popular games at the con, and despite some initial reluctance due to the heavy reliance on color -- a lot of games hate colorblind people -- I enjoyed it.



Yamatai -- Speaking of colorblindness, mine really dampened this one for me.  This game operates on a similar mechanic to Ticket to Ride, having you chain together chains of various colored boats to match cards that allow you to build houses on the islands you're sailing around.  You can also obtain powerful allies that give you special abilities.  But I was so frustrated trying to differentiate between the green, red and brown boat images on the cards, constantly having to ask people to tell me what the colors were, that I'm afraid I just wasn't able to give the game a fair shake.  It LOOKS good, and people seem to really like it, but the color issue was too big a hurdle for me.




The Networks -- Here you're all network executives trying to build a successful prime time lineup.  You can purchase shows and stars, and select ads to make money.  Shows dwindle in their popularity over time and eventually move into reruns, so knowing when to ditch a once popular show is key to doing well.  Plus all shows, stars and ads have certain criteria to meet in order to earn their maximum points; a show may need to be in a certain time slot, for instance, or a star may need to be in a certain genre.  What really sells this game is its sense of humor, as it has a lot of fun with parody versions of TV shows such as Tiny Pop Hypothesis, The Limping Treated and Released, Person of Disinterest, etc.  This was our first game of the con, and so sort of faded into the background over the weekend, but it's a damn solid game.



Now we start getting into the disappointments...


Magic Maze -- This is a great game ... if you enjoy being yelled at for not being psychic.  You work together to move four pawns (representing fantasy types) thought a mall (yeah, the theme isn't exactly what you'd call tight) to stores matching their icons so they can rob them.  Then you have to guide them out of the mall to escape.  Each player has a card that details a direction they can move a pawn and, in some cases, an action they can take.  Oh, and you do all this WITHOUT SPEAKING.  You can plan before the game starts, but there's a timer, and if that runs out, you all lose.  There are spots on the board that can stop the timer so you can regroup, but for the most part, the only way to communicate to someone they should do ... well, something, is to hammer the table with an oversized pawn and glare at them for not reading your mind.  I honestly do not need this kind of aggravation.



Immortals -- We so wanted to like this.  The design is similar to that of Shogun, a game we all greatly enjoy.  The problem is that it's so similar to Shogun, we all wondered why we weren't just playing that.  And what it adds -- a two-sided board representing the light and dark planes of a generic fantasy world where what happens to the light side can affect the dark side and vice versa -- didn't seem all that innovative to us.  Plus this game uses Queen Games' traditional dice tower, which, in a non-combat heavy game like Shogun, is a perfectly fine randomizer.  But here, where there's a lot of combat, it can be frustrating to drop an overwhelming number of your cubes into the tower only to lose a battle because half of them got stuck.  And the really crazy part?  Queen Games was there selling this for $80, while the big box edition of Shogun containing all the expansions was going for $60.  Save the $20 and go for the original.



The Daedalus Sentence -- But this was hands down the worst game we played.  The idea was intriguing -- you're all prisoners on a space station trying to escape through its concentric rings, breaking codes to open gates and dodging enemies along the way.  But the game is hampered by a truly atrocious rulebook that often contradicts itself, when it's not being maddeningly vague about important rules.  And even if the rules had been clear, you're just going through motions here, taking obvious routes and actions.  There was no tension, no sense of danger.  Just moving pieces, playing cards, and wondering how this ended up in the Hot Game section.  And then we found out this retails for $110!  I'd feel robbed if I'd paid $50 or $60 for it.  We gave it about ninety minutes and just walked away, and sadly shook our heads whenever we saw anybody else playing it over the weekend.


post #563 of 615




ohmygod ohmygoodness


And we just had a great Third Edition game a couple weeks ago! Only 4 players, which usually stifles action a bit with more room to move and every Strat in play every round, but it got pretty damn tense. In the opening round I took Trade, and told the guys across the table they were welcome to exchange Trade Contracts as long as one of them, only one of them, gave me a single trade good. Get my beak wet, as it were. I thought it was fairly innocuous, good fun. They spent 5 minutes arguing with each other as to who should pay, and that kicked off a pointless border war for the next 4 hours. While they squabbled, my other neighbor, and ally, the wealthy Hacan, and I quietly racked up points. Despite some mutual political assassinations, but that's politics! Nothing personal. In the late rounds I pulled off the backstab fleet assault that nudged me into the lead and stymied Hacan's forward momentum, rendering the final round academic thanks to the objectives out in play. L1Z1X Mindnet for the win!


If a Fourth Edition can manage to maintain Third's epic scope while maybe streamlining some of the crunchier mechanics and shaving just an hour or so off the game time? Oh HEEEEEYYYAAALLL yes


ETA: Actually getting to the page contents now: 3-6 players, 4-8 hours. Hehehehehe OK whew, biggest fear -- reduced to a ghost of itself -- abated!

post #564 of 615

Always wanted to play TWILIGHT IMPERIUM.  Maybe I'll grab that when it comes out and just put together a game with coworkers.

post #565 of 615

Good lord, I just noticed the price point. Yeah, I don't see this being stripped down too much. Looks like a consolidation of expansions and (hopefully) clarification for a game with a 15-page FAQ.

post #566 of 615

I'm playing Twilight Imperium 3rd ed. this Sunday, as fate would have it. I feel unprepared, frankly.

post #567 of 615
All accounts are this rolls in all the good stuff from the Third Edition expansions (particularly getting rid of the "get two victory points just for picking me" role) plus greatly simplifying the tech trees (you no longer need a specific tech to advance to the next one, just any tech of a certain type). That's part of the reason for the cost: you're essentially getting the base game with expansion content.

A lot of Third Edition owners are hoping there'll be some kind of conversion kit for sale, because honestly, the changes don't look worth dropping $150 for this one if you own everything from the old one.
post #568 of 615
Originally Posted by Richard Dickson View Post

A lot of Third Edition owners are hoping there'll be some kind of conversion kit for sale, because honestly, the changes don't look worth dropping $150 for this one if you own everything from the old one.


Not sure that's the majority, but it's a reasonable enough position until more comes out as to how different this edition is. And after 12 years with 3rd ed., almost 10 with the "necessary" expansion and 6 or so since the most recent one, people who've played TI3 with any regularity have grown into their accustomed play styles with all the available modular options and house rules. After 4 years or so (meaning maybe 8, 9 games :P), my group has settled on our own "perfect mix" of variants, which includes a couple minor house rules for balancing. There's a whole community built around "Shattered Ascension," which is a suite of fan-made house rules so extensive it's essentially an entirely different game that uses TI3's components. Familiarity is strong, and devoted TI3 fans -- a relatively small number in gaming circles -- can be fiercely loyal to how THEY play TI3. And when fandom gets entrenched in something, it's hard to dislodge. There was a very vocal subgroup of TI2 fans who felt TI3's incorporation of Euro methods ruined their favorite war game.


From the little glimpses we've been afforded so far, though, TI4 is looking like as much a refinement as a consolidation, that keeps the inherent command-counter and strategy-card structure that defines TI3 while adjusting how all the pieces operate with each other. The revamped technology system is far more elegant, for example, and the new strategy cards look to have big changes in a subtle way. I definitely want to see everything that's included [and excluded -- such as a 7 or 8 players option (not that we ever managed 7 or 8 players *sigh* but that's 2 more colors to choose from!)], but I suspect that there's enough of a different game here -- and possibly an improved one -- to warrant the new edition moniker, as opposed to a repackaging of old materials plus some "third expansion" variants. Seeing as how the TI3's MSRP was $90 and the expansions $60 each -- at decade-ago market prices -- if TI4 has 3/4 that amount of content, the crazy price point is justified. That doesn't mean TI3 goes in the bin. I suspect most TI3 fans are like me, 90% ready to hand over my wallet, with just a little more info.


Which should be coming, amazingly enough, in mini-documentary form. The Shut Up & Sit Down guys were permitted to document the Making Of TI4 (talk about sitting on a secret for years) -- they even made a trailer! Which is all both so cool and silly, I love it. But why shouldn't board game development get making-of EPKs?


I am hype.

post #569 of 615

Well, FFG sure isn't coasting heading into GenCon:


Announcing Sid Meier's Civilization: A New Dawn

post #570 of 615
post #571 of 615
I just played 3rd Ed Twilight Imperium over the weekend, and it pleases me to report my second win. I owe it to an early End of Game card, a relatively doable Secret Objective, and a shameless manipulation of the Yssaril Tribes racial ability to skip turns and look at opponent's Action Cards. I camped out early on Mecatol Rex while my opponents built up their tech and fleets, claiming planets from a fairly secure system, not getting into a fight until the very end, eight hours in. And then only for a border skirmish to steal a planet from an ally with his back turned (and thus depriving him of his tech-based Secret Objective, unknowingly). I got lucky, but then, so does everyone who wins this game. I played extremely smart, and I'm actually quite proud of myself.
post #572 of 615


Oh yes indeed. We spent the evening together. Then I pushed the pre-order button.


Nice, Arjen! The Space Gollums are just nasty. As a recent victor myself after a long drought, there's just nothing quite as satisfying as a close TI3 win.

post #573 of 615
This one wasn't even that close. I was two Victory Points up, and was using the Buearocracy card to claim another one when the End of Game showed up.
post #574 of 615

TI4 on sale at GenCon.


post #575 of 615

The box looks slightly smaller than TI3's! That's bullshit! PRE-ORDER CANCELLED

post #576 of 615



The Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game 30th Anniversary Edition faithfully recreates Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game and The Star Wars Sourcebook as high-quality, hardbound tomes that feature all the original game rules, information, and graphic design. These are printed on higher quality paper than the original versions and shrinkwrapped together in a stylized slipcase that features the original cover art on a clean black background.



Like the article says, this was a huge part of keeping Star Wars alive during the fallow post-Jedi/pre-Zahn period.  And still casts a huge shadow over the canon, as it gave names and backgrounds to a bunch of characters and places that had none previously.  And D6 is a damn solid system.  With what's in these two books, you could pretty easily run an OT-themed campaign, which I think is going to be a huge draw for people.

post #577 of 615

Good grief, with that, TI4, Civilization, and the also recently announced Fallout (not for me, likely, but I've seen a LOT of excitement for it), they're just trying to suck up ALL the GenCon oxygen, aren't they.

post #578 of 615
Originally Posted by Trav McGee View Post

Good grief, with that, TI4, Civilization, and the also recently announced Fallout (not for me, likely, but I've seen a LOT of excitement for it), they're just trying to suck up ALL the GenCon oxygen, aren't they.


You think that's something?  A game store owner apparently got this in an email from Alliance, who is FFG/Asmodee's North American distributor:


 Star Wars: Legion

Epic warfare is an inescapable part of the Star Wars™ universe, and you can lead your troops to victory with Star Wars: Legion™, a two-player miniatures game of thrilling infantry battles in the Star Wars universe! As a miniatures game, Star Wars: Legion invites you to enter the ground battles of the Galactic Civil War as the commander of a unique army filled with troopers, powerful vehicles, and iconic characters. While innovative mechanics for command and control simulate the fog of war and the chaos of battle, the game’s unpainted, easily assembled figures give you a canvas to create any Star Wars army you can imagine.


There have been rumors of/cries for a ground combat Star Wars game for years now.  The only thing that gives me pause about this is that FFG just got their Runewars miniatures game off the ground, and a Star Wars game even remotely close to that in style would seem to yank the rug right out from under it.  We'll know for sure when they give their Flight Report on Friday (where they've already revealed they'll be announcing new X-Wing ships).

post #579 of 615

And, there it is, officially.

post #580 of 615

I went to GenCon. A buddy got his copy of Twilight Imperium 4th Ed. We had scheduled to play TI3 this weekend after GenCon, we are playing 4. He tells me the changes are all great, but I have never played, so I can only take his word for it. I demo'd as much as I could.  Here is my GenCon Story.


So, we arrived about 930 Wednesday night and decided to stop in and grab our badges before the madness on Thursday. I immediately found the yellow and black sheep. Someone said there were 4 sheep, but I could only find 3. Cataan was all over the convention. 



There were giant floor Catans and Star Trek Catans for open play. 



I played in the Xwing North American Event on Thursday, but I will discuss that in the Xwing Thread.  On Friday, I had an early Artemis Bridge Simulator in Lucas Oil, so I went to the hallowed ground where the Peyton once walked. (click to embiggen)



I saw a few odd games, and the 50th Anniversary pavilion.  


After I toured and got my Bridge Simulator on, I went to the vendor hall for the first time.


A fun game, but not fun enough for me to buy.  



A social deduction game.  I enjoyed it, but didn't buy.


I really enjoyed the demo, but the price point was a bit high I thought. 


A fun little card game for quick and casual fun. I bought it up. Basically, you are Soviet troops trying to avoid being shot by the Germans or your Kommisar, so you use cards to rearrange the order to live longest. Funny and cute art makes the game much more fun than it should be. 


This demo for a Planet of the Apes game looked good, despite still being in prototype. It is going to launch on Kickstarter at Christmas. The model renders looked fantastic. Basically, you and your friends play the Apes attempting to defend your trees from the AI humans. 


Another game that is launching from Kickstarter this fall. You are a mountain climber attempting to make it to the top. You get bonuses for crossing certain types of terrain. It was a very interesting game that I liked. 


Dickson mentioned this game earlier in the thread. I really enjoyed it. It was light, but with enough elements to make it a quick enjoyable ride. 



Another Dickson recommend. I got to play Photosynthesis, but it was sold out long before I got to the booth. I am probably picking this up as a Christmas present for my biology teacher friends. 


Another game I wanted, but was long sold out. The Splendor expansion looked like 3 different expansions, but i think you can play all of them at once. 



A fun, quick 3D game. You are attempting to climb to the highest point by rearranging blocks, but the price point, 50 Dollars, was WAYYY to high. The components are basically painted wood blocks. The figures wood playskools, so I couldn't believe it was that expensive. 



I didn't play Rising Sun, but I watched it. I am not sure what it is exactly, but nice minis. 


A game that I played that I really enjoyed, so much so that after the demo, I ran to the booth to buy. Dickson raved about the Godfather game, but man was I not prepared. After getting one of my guys dumped in the Hudson and coming in 3rd, the Cool Mini guys pinned these roses on us, told us we were made men, and should head to the celebration in the back of the convention hall. 



I also played Star Trek Ascendency, which I bought, along with the Cardassian and Ferengi expansions. I demo'd the Borg expansion, but by this point my phone is dead and no photos. I am really glad that the Bord are not a player controlled race. For being a lighter TI, the Trek theme felt very much apart of the game, so I bought in. 


I played a Sealed Deck Star Trek 1st Edition CCG tourney, for the first time since I was last at GenCon in 2005. It was fun. I managed to pull a Horg'han, Ben Sisko, Montgomery Scott, and Taris. My first opponent didn't know what was in my deck, so when he played the mission that could be solved with only Ben Sisko and Dyson Sphere, which is a Scotty mission...well, it was fantastic. I got the Horg'han quickly and won. Great game. There were only 4 people there, but it was a nostalgia fest for me.  Plus, I managed to trade for the Bajoran OTSD box which I could never get my hands on. 


I also played Sailpower, a large tabletop (like 6 feet by 20feet) age of piracy game. It was very much a historical gamer thing, and unfortunately my table host was not prepared or really feeling it. It was an interesting game, but a very mediocre experience. 


Gen Con was fantatic, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. But this is only one half of my adventure. Xwing... well, that was a story. 

Edited by MrTyres - 8/23/17 at 7:09pm
post #581 of 615

What, no Cones of Dunshire?

post #582 of 615
Originally Posted by Jacob Singer View Post

What, no Cones of Dunshire?


Well, I probably would have, but the X-wing North American Championship took a bit more of my time than I expected. 

post #583 of 615

Finally got my latest Kickstarter to the table the other night, Fate of the Elder Gods.  Each player is a cult competing to be the first to summon their respective Elder God into the world.  You take an action by moving the Fate Token to a location on the map and performing the action there (which can be augmented with a bonus action if you control that location, usually by having the most cultists there).  But every time you activate a location, an Investigator shows up, looking to discover what you're up.  Move to a location with three or more, and they move to your lodge.  End your turn with five or more in your lodge and they raid you, causing Elder Signs to form on your summoning track.  Fill your track with Elder Signs and you lose and end the game immediately.  Otherwise, the first player to advance the track all the way to 9 wins.


But there's also a heavy screw your neighbor aspect.  There are spells that can let you move other cultists and Investigators around the board (which are readied and cast via a neat collection/matching mechanic based on cards previously played).  The actions you take can also move figures, which can help set you up for a nasty raid.  Each Elder God has its own unique ability (triggered by a specific space on the board) that do all kinds of fun, evil things.  You can also become cursed, but all you know is that you've been cursed; the player to your left actually gets the curse card, and keeps track of the condition that triggers it.  So you could unknowingly bring about your own doom without even knowing it.


Our first game was going pretty tightly, with everyone about the same distance along their summoning track, when a horrific raid netted me SEVEN Elder Signs in one go.  That filled up my track and ended the game.  In that event, the player with the fewest Elder Signs on their lodge wins, and it was a difference of one Sign that decided it.


I also backed the Beasts from Beyond expansion, which adds monsters like meegos and such, but we haven't tried that yet.  It's a really solid, fun Mythos game, something that's getting more and more rare as everyone and their mother seems to be jumping on the Cthulhu bandwagon.


post #584 of 615

It's strange, the stranglehold the Cthulhu mythos has on board games, and no other entertainment medium.

post #585 of 615
The mythos has always been a geek thing, going back to the early days of D&D. And I think the central theme of it -- that we are insignificant specks drawing breath at the whim of impossibly powerful cosmic evil -- plays better in a game environment than it does on-screen.
post #586 of 615

So, we have played two games of Twilight Imperium 4, and a game of Ascendancy. Both games of TI were set up by 11am on a Saturday, rules explained until about 1130, then played one round and took a lunch. We have finished by 815pm both times.  We randomly assigned seats, and randomly divvied out race choices. We took out the races we played in the first game,  limiting our choices, so, we only have 5 unplayed races at this moment.  Link of the images of the race player boards


Played races:

First game:

Clans of Saar

Universities of Jol Nar


The Federation of Sol

Sardakk N'orr



Second Game

The Barony of Letnex

The Yin

The Emirates of Hacan

The Naalu Collective

XXCHA Kingdom



Not played:

Yssaril Tribes

Nekro Virus

Embers of Muaat

Ghosts of Creuss

The Lizix Midnet


in our first game, we used the preconstructed map. I played the Saar. I ran neck and neck with the others. The Librarians were about to win. I stopped him, but then got cannablized by the Winnu. The Mentak player nearly won, having taken Imperium (initiative 8) and control of Mecatol Rex. He needed one more point he was going to get in the scoring round. In the scoring round though, the Federation player who took Technology (7) managed to score a public and secret objective, getting to 10 points sooner. I came in 4th. 


In the second game, I played the Naalu collective we tried the player created map. It gave me a very good start at the Six position and my neighbors a difficult start. The three experienced players were at the 10, Noon, and 2 position. They battled it out, and I slowly rolled. I created a defense PDS deep space net that made the approach to my home systems a nightmare. I had some lucky dice rolls. I made an approach to Mecatol, but got repulsed by the Arborec 10 o clock player. At this point I have control of 9 planets and I just start playing the public agendas and trying to get as many points there as possible. One of the public agendas is to get 11 planets not in your home system. The Arborec comes at me with a War sun and 2 cruisers. But my PDS net is throwing 4 dice. I hit on all of them and his invasion is aborted before it can fire. I hop up to 9 points, but the 10 and Noon players are at 8. The final turn comes around and the final public agenda is something I can do. I grab imperium and my Naalu ability allows me to go first, getting the win before it got started. The guy who loves TI has never won in 10 years of playing, so he is quite salty.   

post #587 of 615

So, Star Trek Ascendancy.  My TI buddy, a self-professed game snob, rated this a solid 7 out of 10. He holds TI and Eclipse higher. I can see him ranking TI higher, but not Eclipse. As a Trekkie, I can forgive Ascendancy its warts, and a couple of rule adjustments I think will fix any real flaws. It is a 4X game though, through and through.


I bought the expansions to get us to 5 players. But only 4 played on this Saturday. The Klingons, Federation, Romulan, and Cardassians competed for Ascendancy. The exploration aspects are good, but sometimes the random nature of the exploration card pulls forced the Klingons into hiding (He pulled nothing but Crisis cards and Hostile systems (basically everytime you encounter, you have to roll a die. If you roll the check, your ship is destroyed. Space was very angry near the Klingon border. I, as the Federation player, managed to only find one warp capable civilization. I encountered nothing but Virgin worlds or Crisis cards, meaning I never triggered my faction ability. The Cardassian player managed to encounter plenty of civilizations to conquer, but its first three were much too high for it tackle. So... the randomness of the pulls kind of hurt our early game. Meanwhile in the Romulan Star Empire, the production and research continued near unabated.


The Cardassian player managed better culture production, and so moved quickly to Ascendancy 3. I colonized every planet I could, and spent a lot of production and culture to create culture nodes to generate more culture. At some point, the perfidious Romulans crossed the Neutral Zone into Federation territory. I held on to Earth, but lost Bajor and Cestus 3, my culture producers. By this point, the Klingons, the Romulans, and I are all at 4 Ascendancy. Then the Cardassians announce to the galaxy that they will achieve 5 Ascendancy in the next turn. In a revision of the Dominion war, the Klingons invaded Cardassian, but failed to take the homeworld (players need to hold their own planet and have 5 Ascendancy). Then, the Romulans and the Federation banded together to invade Cardassia. The Romulans take Cardassia. The next turn, the Klingons, Romulans, and Cardassians all achieve 5 Ascendancy (the Federation falls one culture token short). The Cardassians take back their homeworld, but now the tie breaker is number of systems controlled. The Klingons and Romulans take what systems they can from each other and the Cardassian Union and Federation. They end up tied, and shake hands, victors over the others. 


We all kind of felt bad for the Cardassian Union. If I hadn't built the space corridor to Cardassia, the Romulans don't make it, but I thought I had the ability to get the one culture I needed to get my own victory.  The Romulan First Strike is super powerful. We didn't realize until the end that I had a tech to cancel it outright, and we all had researched the Espionage card we needed to turn off the ability for at least once attack per turn. It was fun, and we wrapped up in about 5 hours and spent the rest of the evening playing short, small games. The theme is there. I was very worried about it, but man, it was there in spades. Each faction has a bonus and a drawback, making the challenges very interesting. The random played against 3 out of the 4 of us, so we could definitely see some improvement there. The turn order and play means that someone could have a long stretch of time before they do anything. I wonder if each player gets a command, in play order, then the next one wouldn't keep everyone more involved at the table. 

post #588 of 615

I had my first game of Star Trek: Ascendancy yesterday, and SPACE HATES KLINGONS.  At one point in the game, I had drawn 10 system tiles.  7 of them had hazards on them.  Four of those were phenomena, which not only killed my ships, but offered nothing to colonize.  The systems that did come up had no Culture nodes, so I ended up in a cycle of lose ships to hazards, build ships, lose them to new hazards, repeat.  Meanwhile, the Federation player kept turning over world after world with all three production nodes on it, so we reached a point where he was generating five Culture a turn.  The Ferengi player tried making some trade inroads, and I launched a couple of feeble assaults into Federation space, but we reached a point where the Federation was simply going to keep churning Culture until he won, so we called it.


Thing is, I didn't hate the game, just this particular experience with it.  We may try the starting option where players have more resources to begin with, or maybe even weed out hazardous systems as well as phenomena from the starting tiles, so there's no threat of a crippling run of tiles early one.

post #589 of 615

I love Star Trek Ascendency.  The randomness can get you a bit, but I think on the whole it balances out.  FYI, you're supposed to start with a number of planets on the top of the deck equal to the number of players x2.  That helps keep people from getting screwed over too much.

post #590 of 615
Originally Posted by wydren View Post

I love Star Trek Ascendency.  The randomness can get you a bit, but I think on the whole it balances out.  FYI, you're supposed to start with a number of planets on the top of the deck equal to the number of players x2.  That helps keep people from getting screwed over too much.


Yes, we did that, but they went pretty quickly and got into the phenomena right out of the gate.

post #591 of 615
Yeah, we did too. The problem in our game isn't phenomena, but the Hazardous systems. They are not separated, so you have to roll any time you stop in the system. Our Klingon invested heavily in shield tech just to have a ship survive his home systems. We had talked about pulling those and making those start farther down the stack. 
post #592 of 615

We talked about weeding them out the same way you do the phenomena and seeding the top of the stack with more system tiles (like maybe number of players x3) so you at least get to establish an economy early on.

post #593 of 615
I have a new fave, without a doubt.

Chardee Macdennis: the Game of Games.
post #594 of 615

I'm all for home rules, so I'd say go ahead and start without hazardous systems at the top.  It really does suck when you can't get an economy properly established. 


The thing I dig most about Star Trek (besides being set in the licensed Star Trek Universe) is that it's a 4X game without the huge time requirement.  I'd love to play Twilight Imperium, but from everything I've heard it takes 8-10 hours.  I don't know if I'll ever have that much time to devote to playing a game, so I like that I can bang out Ascendency in 3-4 hours.

post #595 of 615

I need The Thing board game so hard.


ETA: Well shit, I can't get the video to work.

post #596 of 615

That should be a blast on cold winter nights.

post #597 of 615

For some reason I was under the impression that that Thing game wasn't released yet. Just ordered a copy online, hoping to get it in time for Thanksgiving weekend. Definitely gonna paint up those minis.

post #598 of 615

I love the simplicity of the back of the box for The Thing:



Hopefully will get the gang together to play it soon.

post #599 of 615

The Thing game is fine.  It's a pretty fun social deduction game.  I bought it for $35 at my local FLGS  and that's about right.  I really wouldn't pay more for it than that.  It's such a simple game.   I mean the production values are high and the minis are nice, but there's really not a lot of flavor.  The game doesn't really capture the paranoia and distrust and horror of the movie.  It's like a much lighter Dark Moon with miniatures.  The game more similar to Coup, Secret Hitler, One Night Revolution.  


Ultimately My group had a lot of fun with it, but we all felt like something was missing from "The Thing" experience.


I can't wait to get my copy o Who Goes There.  This is a game that I think really gets "The Thing" right.  You can pre-order it now.  Check it out here:



My groups been really enjoying the living hell out of Wasteland Express Delivery Service.  So much fun.   Lots of flavor, lots of story, and lots of things to do.



We were also surprised by Deadline.  A pulp mystery storytelling card game.  It's such simple mechanic, but still engaging.  And the art and writing is pretty great.  I'd recommend sticking with 3 players.  Playing with the full 4 made the game really difficult for some reason.

post #600 of 615

I was gifted The Thing board game for Christmas. Played it four times the day after. It was a lot of fun for us. We spent all four games side-eyeing each other. I am curious if the game will be more balanced once the new-car-smell wears off, because the humans did not win any of the four games we played. Also, the game really feels like it could be improved upon with expansions, but that would require expanding on the universe in non-canonical ways.


I also received Mysterium. I am anxious to play it, but I am a bit nervous of the negative reviews on Amazon. They really seem to blast the game for being too vague with a lot of its components.

Edited by wd40 - 1/2/18 at 9:29am
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