Author Topic: Board Game Banter  (Read 1448 times)

DarkeningHumour

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #40 on: July 09, 2018, 09:03:08 AM »
Isn't D&D a cooperative game? Your party vs the world.
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Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #41 on: July 09, 2018, 10:09:50 AM »
More like your party vs. the DM.

DarkeningHumour

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #42 on: July 09, 2018, 10:41:08 AM »
They are one and the same.
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Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #43 on: July 29, 2018, 08:46:41 PM »
Been living more of that boardgame life:

Arcadia Quest felt way too light and loose for a grid based combat game for me. Almost felt like this would be something you'd play with six-year-old kids because of how simplistic it all felt. Also, the chibi art doesn't help the fact this feels like a kid's game. It's supposed to have this sprawling campaign but it would take a lot to get me to play this game again. If the draw of your game is a lengthy campaign, I'm going to want some meaty mechanics for the core experience.

Lanterns is a lovely little filler game that moves quickly with a simplistic blend of tile laying and set collection. The fact you're getting a card each time someone plays based on what color tile is facing you keeps you constantly invested in other player's turns and the whole thing is so lovely and elegant that I could see it becoming one of my favorite filler games.

Finally busted out Rising Sun for a play and it did not disappoint. I like the area control and bidding combat for sure, but it's the different interplay of the factions, the fragile alliances and the political mandates that made the buildup to combat a good bulk of the game. The combat felt like an exclamation point on a game of political intrigue which makes it a dream game for me. I'm going to try to get this one to the table often.

I gave Fallout another shot and it didn't make the cut. The scoring system is so broken and everyone agreed the fact we can finish each other's quests felt both unfair and unthematic. Maybe it would work as a solo game, but honestly at that point I'd go play Fallout on my computer. It's a shame because the story deck is cool and a lot of the systems are there, but the actual drive to keep playing just dwindles away the longer the game continues.

Got another play of Star Trek: Ascendancy and this was with four players. That was a mistake. All of a sudden, the core flaw of the game stuck out like a wart: the length of player turns. Each player has a number of command tokens to do actions and they get to use them all in one go. This means if you are the fourth player in a round, you can spend a good hour watching everyone else slowly expand out and mull over decisions only to get a turn where your plans fall apart after your second command and you're set back so far on resources you just have to wait until next phase to further your plans. That happened to me twice! Two turns I had command tokens unspent at the end because there were no valuable actions I could take and ended up having a 5 minute turn while I watched everyone else spend 15+ minutes having their turn. It's one of the most miserable experiences I've had with a game.

Sheriff of Nottingham is becoming a family favorite. It's a great game of bluffing where you go around taking turns as the sheriff while other players bring goods to market. You have to declare goods but you can always lie and try to smuggle in contraband, which is worth a lot. Do you take the risk and you might make it big or be honest and slowly build wealth by collecting the most of certain resources? It usually depends on which person you think you can bluff or bribe your way past. I'm generally terrible at this game but I don't care because it's so much fun watching family lie through their teeth and get away with a big haul of contraband or see someone pressure a sibling to up his/her bribe. It's as much about playing people as it is about playing the game and that's always a plus for me.

Finally got a play of Inis with four people and this has probably solidified itself as my favorite area control game. The wonky combat and card drafting system takes a while to fully comprehend, but once you do it's this great game of constantly shifting plans as each player does something that will throw off your tempo until victory seems at hand right before it's snatched away for a moment where once again someone else could run away with it all.

Azul seemed to be the game of 2017, running away with all the awards and accolades. It's easy to see why. It's a gorgeous package with nail-biting decisions as you try to balance what you need to score points against how to deny other players from running away with the game. It's a magnificent puzzle of a game and one I'd be eager to return to again.

La Granja is a medium weigh euro that I enjoyed well enough but there wasn't particularly anything that hooked me in the game. It's got a lot of mechanics at play which create for these tight turns where you're always an action or two short of doing everything you want to do. Maybe it's the fact I played it with two players which meant a lot less competition for resources that would probably be scarcer at a higher player count.

Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island is one of those cooperative games that has a reputation for being brutal. It certainly lived up to its reputation as the game constantly kept us running behind on resources. To me, this felt a lot closer to what I wanted from The 7th Continent. More nuanced survival mechanics at interplay with each other, a gradual sense of exploration with a bit of flavor to it all. I'm eager to return to this one again as I could see it becoming a favorite.

Cthulhu Wars gets a fair amount of rotation in our group as the big minis on a map beating up each other game. I love the asymmetrical factions and the general spectical of the game. At some point someone is going to stand up and chuck a big handful of dice across the board and a big blob of minis is going to slowly decrease until everyone licks their wounds, builds forces back up, and does the whole thing all over again. It's big, it's dumb, it's not that Lovecraftian, but I don't care, I love every damn minute of it.


On the other end of the spectrum, Near and Far is about as cute and light of a game that my group would go for. A grab bag of systems, it's a jack of all trades master of none type of game. There was never a moment where it all clicked for me. It's another game touted for its campaign features, but much like Arcadia Quest, the fundamentals are not here. Pandemic Legacy works because the fundamentals of Pandemic are already great, but so many of these campaign games I encounter feel like they'd be completely forgettable if not for the campaign feature.



Looking to the future, I've decided to jump on board the sinking ship of Android: Netrunner now that the game will end printing in October. For whatever dumb reason, knowing there are only a finite number of cards out there makes me more willing to try it even if the lack of future support means its far less likely I'll find new people to play with. I ordered a revised core set as they are selling out like hotcakes and I'm going to try some games with it first to see if I want to dip any further into buying cards before scarcity drives up prices.

My new most anticipated game on the horizon is Goodcritters. It's a retheme of a German game in which you're splitting money between all the players and everyone votes on whether or not they're for or against the deal. There's a bit more to it than that, but it looks like yet another game with lots of deal-making, bribes and negotiation.

Beyond that, I'm still haven't seen Gloomhaven get reprinted and one person in my group is not thrilled about the idea of playing it. Also, I'd love to get my hands on Altiplano at some point but I think it's going to be a hard sell for the people I game with so I'm holding off on getting it for now.

smirnoff

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #44 on: July 29, 2018, 09:08:28 PM »
Got another play of Star Trek: Ascendancy and this was with four players. That was a mistake. All of a sudden, the core flaw of the game stuck out like a wart: the length of player turns.

Word. Games live and die on how fun they are, or how occupied you are, when it ISN'T your turn. Games with too much going on are often that way. :-\

I played Founders of Gloomhaven earlier this week with 4 players. Took about 3.5 hours, and it was everyone's first time through. Not a bad game, but it takes a while to wrap your head around some of the rules of the map (sometimes it's really not intuitive). It seemed to have good balance and was competetive right to the end. We all led at some point. It has a good variety of game mechanics to be mindful of, but of course that means a lot of blown turns due to a rule mix up or forgotton draw, etc. Even on a 3'x6' table it was tough to fit everything comfortably. On the upside, it never felt like you were idle for too long, because in between your turn your also getting miniturns after everyone elsess turn. Very little in the way of interactivity though, aside from occasionally building where someone else had planned to build. I wouldn't mind playing it again though.

Also played one quick round of Beasty Bar. An excellent and super simple to learn card game. Quick turns, lotta screwing each other over, and overall just a lot of fun. Would def play again.

DarkeningHumour

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #45 on: July 30, 2018, 03:31:59 AM »
Got another play of Star Trek: Ascendancy and this was with four players. That was a mistake. All of a sudden, the core flaw of the game stuck out like a wart: the length of player turns.

Word. Games live and die on how fun they are, or how occupied you are, when it ISN'T your turn. Games with too much going on are often that way. :-\

Complex games can go fast when people know what they're doing. It's when people wait for their turn to start thinking about their next moves, or insist on rereading all of their cards and the instructions manual that things go awry. I've played games where we had to repeat every instruction three times to some first timer before they got it.
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Bondo

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #46 on: July 30, 2018, 04:58:07 AM »
I recently played the HP cooperative game on a date. The date didn't work out as hoped so I bought my own version of the game. Admittedly I've played it solitaire a bit, even though it says "2-4 players". Probably an advantage that it can be played that way because I own Dominion but have almost never played it because fulfilling the conditions of having friends together AND them picking to play that game is limited. Plus, I feel like the cooperative aspect is very on message for the Harry Potter world.

smirnoff

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #47 on: July 30, 2018, 03:03:44 PM »
Complex games can go fast when people know what they're doing. It's when people wait for their turn to start thinking about their next moves, or insist on rereading all of their cards and the instructions manual that things go awry.

That does drive me a bit crazy.

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #48 on: September 11, 2018, 03:56:03 PM »
Another six weeks pass, another batch of games played.

Path of Light and Shadow is a pretty good deckbuilder that takes place over a map where you're fighting for territories that score you points. There are a number of factions who all have a different split of card types and you can upgrade your cards to better versions of those cards which means you're balancing getting new good cards with upgrading cards so you don't end up flooding your hand with cards that are too weak by the late game. Also, as a fun side-note, we played for over an hour with the towers upside down and it was a pretty funny moment when we realized it.

Android: Netrunner ended up being about as magical as I could expect it to be. The asymmetrical factions makes for a game with so much depth and the amount of hidden information at play makes for lots of great mind games. It's a shame this game is going out of print. I kinda hope it comes back under a new IP, ideally Cyberpunk. I'd kinda dislike it being a CCG, but given that the markup price for Android is now absurd and you can only really get sets instead of single cards means my chance of getting much new stuff with it is slim.

Root is another asymmetrical game that is a blast to play. It's area control with each faction feeling completely different. One plays with a lot of base-building, another is this rebel group that can crop up anywhere on the map, the third is a faction that has to program the possible actions it can do and the final is a single powerful character that can run around the map doing their own missions and making alliances or battling different players.

I dunno if it was dipping my toes into Android: Netrunner, but deckbuilding started calling to me and one of the guys in his group bought his decade old Magic: The Gathering cards. I'm in so much trouble. I played this game several times in the past and always enjoyed it, but never had reliable partners to play it. My brother and I played some but neither of us got deeply invested in it. Well, my brother got the few Magic cards I ever bought and I collected those mixed with a handful of cards I bought from the local comic shop and now I'm deep into building a deck and quickly realizing how expensive this hobby could be if I don't set some hard limits.

Fortunately, unlike Netrunner, I can buy a lot of single cards super cheap and my ideal deck right now is filled with cards I can get for a quarter a piece. The more expensive cards I might get one or two of a month. I'm also planning on trying the prerelease at the end of the month with the guy who reeled me in which is slightly slanted towards the deck I want to build so it might give me with some inspiration. Also, I should mention Android: Netrunner and Magic: The Gathering are both designed by Richard Garfield so the guy has quite the record when it comes to designing card games.

Evo is a cute looking game that looks like something for kids but is probably one of the most tight and vicious games I've played. You're a pack of dinosaurs trying to survive drastic climate changes which means waring over certain biomes as the temperatures rises and falls. You can also evolve your dinos to be more effective at different things like movement, attacking and climate survival.

City of Remnants is another asymmetrical area control game. This is probably the worst first experience I've had with a game. My dice rolls were horrible. I would bear down on my enemies and then just get the most flat rolls. The result is my combat heavy faction absolutely did not perform to its strengths and I got trounced. I'd be willing to try it again but I need a few months to pass to let the sting of such a bad experience fade.

Space Hulk was also a dice-heavy game and also asymmetrical, but this one worked so well for me as it's essentially a miniatures game with modular board elements. The ruleset is elegant, the timed turns for humans keep the pressure up and the alien hoards flowing in frantically. It's the closest I've felt to playing Aliens in a boardgame form. We played two scenarios and I'm hungry for more.

Caverna is one of those lauded euro games where you chow down on a point salad with an absurd number of paths to victory. Essentially a worker placement game, the mechanisms are simple but there are so many choices. If you play with anyone who takes too long to take a turn, you best not play this game with this person. It took about four hours, probably, and that was with four of the faster players I've played games with.

Treasure Hunter is yet another Richard Garfield game, this one a card drafting game where you compete over three colors for either high or low scores based on what treasures come into play. This game is so smart and tight as you are constantly strung between wanting to compete for three different colors as well as snagging special powerup cards and dog cards that ward off goblins who will steal gold from you. It's also a cute theme, so I think this would be a great family weight game and might even make it into my collection.



Beyond that, I had a lot of replays of games I've talked about before: Coup, Biblios, Cosmic Encounter, Spartacus: A Game of Blood & Treachery, Century: Golem Edition and good old War of the Ring.

As for potential future plays, I'm seeing lots of Magic in my future. Might start going to some of the Friday night events if I can get my deck to fit Modern format. Also looking to get another game of Rising Sun in if possible. Goodcritters looks like it might not release until next month, which is good for my wallet.

MartinTeller

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Re: Board Game Banter
« Reply #49 on: September 11, 2018, 04:19:20 PM »
Played a couple of card-based games with friends this past weekend:

Joking Hazard is a great take on the CAH formula, where you create 3-panel comic strips. The judge pulls the first panel from the deck, then plays the second panel from their hand. All other players submit a punchline panel and the judge picks the best/funniest. We had a lot of fun with this one... occasionally the first card just doesn't work as a starting point (unless you get weird with it) but it's easy enough to just pull a new one. There are tons of cards, and tons of laughs.

F*** That, on the other hand, was a boring mess. Basically you're given a scenario with 5 things you can do. You pick between 1 and 4 (you could pick 5 but it'd defeat the purpose) that you'd be comfortable with, and the other players have to guess which ones you picked. There's a lot of reading which is always a speedbump, and the cards aren't very funny or thought-provoking. The game doesn't really do much to test how well you know each other. Snoozefest, we abandoned this one early on to go back to more Joking Hazard.
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