Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated January 28, 2015 4172 0
Looking back, 2014 was the year I basically quit playing new games. This was due to a couple of factor, not the least of which was a general sense of chaos in my gaming life between August and November, when most new titles come out. But at least some of it was conscious, because there were a lot of moments when I just decided to play something I already knew instead of whatever the hot game was. That makes me sound a little snooty, as if I'm really proud of the fact that I'm above the lowly activity of...
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated February 06, 2019 5596 0
I’m not a game designer, so I’m not really sure what it takes to create a successful board game adaptation of a video game. Do you just take the license and use it as a setting for a solid design? That’s what was done with Railroad Tycoon and Age of Empires III, both by Glenn Drover. Do you work to create a system that emulates the feel of a video game without recreating specific mechanisms? FFG’s Starcraft board game did this to great effect, creating a game that felt like Starcraft even while it never really replicated the mechanical...
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 6579 0
Fantasy Flight’s third edition of the classic fantasy game Dungeonquest came out in 2010, and four years out it certainly feels like a turning point in the popular narrative of the company. The changes they made to a very simple game were indeed divisive, and almost all of the criticism centered around the revamped combat. Whatever damage you feel FFG did to Dungeonquest, it’s obvious now that the greatest damage was to Fantasy Flight’s brand. As a company they have always been willing to rework classic games to bear FFG’s distinctive mark, but up until Dungeonquest this was largely...
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 5156 0
Although I spend a lot of time writing about old games, I’ve put off writing about Ra for a long time. This is because, unlike most of my favorite games, I struggled for a long time to put my finger exactly on what I love so much about Ra. Reiner Knizia’s classic was one of the first games I bought when I started collecting games, and over all those years I’ve always had a hard time defining why it works so well.
Rants & Raves SI san il defanso Updated June 25, 2018 6137 0
The holiday season is a time for tradition, and as we all know “tradition” is a Christmas-y word for obligation. I’ve been at my tradition for five years now, where I look at my twelve favorite games and see what has shifted over the last year. My approach has evolved some, but I do it again from scratch every year. Our tastes aren’t set in stone after all. You can see by reading my lists from2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013.
So Sick Of Words Hot
Analysis SI san il defanso Updated January 28, 2015 8284 0
When I was just beginning to write about board games on a regular basis, I had a conversation with a friend of mine about a particular piece I had written. I expressed my desire to become at least something of a notable personality in the hobby, and he told me that if that was something I wanted I would do well to create a video series that explained complex games. I have never had a ton of use for video board game content, so I explained that I only really had the time and inclination to stick to the...
Rants & Raves SI san il defanso Updated June 25, 2018 7464 0
I got involved in this hobby seven years ago, and I’ve been writing about it pretty steadily for about three, with occasional pieces before that. At some point every board game writer will have to deal with the expectation to crown their “game of the year.” This is tricky for a lot of reasons.
The Group Of Ten Hot
Gaming Scene SI san il defanso Updated June 21, 2019 7841 0
Once you have been in the hobby five years, you begin to look at your game shelf and say, “I have too many games.” This doesn’t actually mean you’re going to get rid of any of them or that you will stop buying new ones. Mostly it’s just an acknowledgement that, hey, space is getting a little tight, and that you’ve spent a considerable amount of money on all the games you have.
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 3714 0
Playing Acquire is a little like meeting a fifty-year-old man who can outrun a bunch of twenty-somethings. Rather than showing its age, Sid Sackson’s classic feels as relevant today as ever. It’s a true evergreen title, one that has seen numerous publishers but has remained essentially unchanged since 1964. It’s one of only two hobby games, along with Settlers of Catan, that I can set up with just about any gaming group and never have to explain. I only ever have to teach it to people who don’t usually play games, and even then it’s intuitive enough to pick...
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 3360 0
There is no genre of game with which I have quite the same love-hate relationship as traitor games. Part of this is just plain old burnout, since it’s a popular genre over the last several years and one that frequently is trotted out in large groups. The other part is that it’s a difficult genre to do well. It embraces a specific player personality, so they often struggle to be fun for someone besides the most outgoing and verbal person at the table. It’s also tricky to nail the right complexity level. Too much mechanical flourish, and the social...