Rants & Raves MT Matt Thrower Updated April 12, 2019 7732 0
Late at night we tumble in from the pub, blood up with beer, hungry for destruction and junk food. Cheeks pink with cold, someone lights a fire and we hurl wood and paper into its bright maw, watching it curl and turn to ash. It's not enough destruction. We want to destroy nations beneath our booted heels.
The Games Room Hot
Rants & Raves MT Matt Thrower Updated June 26, 2018 16423 1
Follow @mattthr It is December, 1984. The sky is a gray slate, the air damp and cold. But I am aglow with excitement. As an 11 year old, newly-minted gamer I am about to visit my first proper game shop. It's a little way out of the Norwich city center streets I know, so my Dad guides me, eyes rolling with loving exasperation.
Board Game Reviews MT Matt Thrower Updated July 17, 2018 4948 0
Boxes come and go from my house with solemn regularity. A few weeks back, though, something entirely new turned up: a crate. Not some half-assed fake piece of printed card but an actual wooden crate, complete with crowbar tied to the top. When I got home that night, my whole family were sweating curiosity from every pore. I could've used the crowbar to lever open the anticipation but, instead, I used it on the crate. And as the tension reached fever pitch the lid popped off and inside there was ..
Board Game Reviews MT Matt Thrower Updated January 30, 2019 4615 0
The best expansions don't just improve or fix their base games, they let you see them in a new light. That's what I was hoping from the racing seasons in this Racing Season expansion for Automobiles. Its parent title has been my sleeper hit for the past two years. While other games have peaked and gone, Automobiles is still lapping round for regular plays. It might not need the fresh coat of an expansion, but some go-faster stripes would be nice.
Zombology Review Hot
Board Game Reviews MT Matt Thrower Updated July 17, 2018 5985 0
When Zombology came out of the packet, I thought it might have taken a knock in the post. There's no shrinkwrap, the box lid is a poor fit and all the cards spill everywhere when you take it off. Then I realised: when the designer told me this was "hand made", he meant it literally. He cut and assembled every component by hand, and that makes it an instant treasure.
Bemused Review Hot
Board Game Reviews MT Matt Thrower Updated January 30, 2019 5642 0
According to some literary theory, an author's interpretation of their own work is no more or less valid than that of any reader. If we apply the same to game design, what do we make of designer Jim Felli's insistence that Bemused is not a social deduction game? It looks like one, smells like one and plays like one so, in the face of so much evidence, we can only put this down to a case of madness, right?
Rants & Raves MT Matt Thrower Updated October 30, 2017 4444 0
Early in this year I set myself a goal of playing through as many innovative games as I could. I gave a shout out for candidates, picked the most popular options and got playing. It's taken a long time but the goal was and worthy one: to try and recapture the excitement of discovery in a new game. It's something I seemed to have lost, and I wanted to find out why: was it me, or was it games? Most of all, I just wanted it back. As the leaves turn golden and the nights draw...
Board Game Reviews MT Matt Thrower Updated May 02, 2019 7057 0
The first question I tend to ask when faced with a new role-playing game is: why? Why does this game exist? What does it do that I can't do with my favourite existing role-playing system? And even the strapline on Night's Black Agents, "a vampire spy thriller" barks that question at the full moon. If you want a vampire spy thriller, surely something like Cthulhu or Dresden Files or even Shadowrun already fits the bill?
Board Game Reviews MT Matt Thrower Updated May 02, 2019 6256 0
Whatever happened to block games? Fifteen years ago, Hammer of the Scots was crushing all other starter wargames with woad-stained wood. Then, after a few more releases, it all went quiet. It's all the more mysterious because they're still around, and they're still awesome. Julius Caesar is a fascinating exercise in ancient armies. And it's not alone: carrying the banner into the future is the Holdfast series from Worthington Games.
Board Game Reviews MT Matt Thrower Updated May 02, 2019 7418 0
Time is something the medieval mages of Ars Magica have in plenty. They have no need of wealth or work. A specialist class of peasantry, called Grogs, cater for their basic needs. Their magic can bend time and potions extend their lifespans to hundreds of years. Ironic, then, that Ars Magica is one of the most time-consuming role-playing games around. It also happens to be one of the best.