Nate Owens (He/Him)
Staff Writer

After a childhood spent pestering his parents and sister to play Monopoly, Scrabble, and Mille Bornes, Nate discovered The Settlers of Catan in college. From there it was only a matter of time before he fell down the rabbit hole of board gaming. Nate has been blogging since college, and writing about board games since 2007. His reviews have appeared on his blog, sanildefanso.wordpress.com, and on Miniature Market. Nate enjoys games with a lot of interaction, as well as games with an unconventional approach to theme.

Nate Owens
Staff Writer
 

Articles by Nate Owens

167 results - showing 21 - 30
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Ordering
Planet Chudyk - Impulse Review
 
3.0
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 3424   0

Game Information

Game Name
The last two designs from Carl Chudyk were both, in their own way, brilliant. Glory to Rome built on the groundwork laid by San Juan to create a nuanced production game, probably one of the best card games of the last ten years. Innovation was even more extraordinary, a game that spoke to how ideas and inventions unbalance and dictate the flow of history. Now Chudyk turns his eye toward a broader genre of hobby games: space empires. The most visible entry into this genre is the enormous Twilight Imperium, but recent years have brought other entries like...
Kryptonite
Rants & Raves SI san il defanso Updated May 01, 2017 6548   0
It’s a common misconception that playing a lot of games means you are good at them. There are obviously some games that only pay off with experience, where knowing the rules will surely give you an advantage. There are some that you know well enough to have a fighting chance, even if you don’t win all that often. But we also all have “kryptonite” games. Those are the games that we always lose. They might be a constant source of heartbreak, where we always find a wait to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. They might be...
The Vanguard Of Honour - Space Hulk Review
 
5.0
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 4240   0

Game Information

Game Name
Since I’ve been in the hobby, I don’t think there’s been an event quite like the 2009 release of the 3rd edition of Space Hulk. There was a lot about it that we may never see again. It was before every classic from the 1980s was getting a major reprint, before Kickstarter created dozens of miniatures games that cost over $100. It was wholly unexpected and at that point arguably the biggest hobby board game release ever. And for the hobbyist sector, it had a bizarre and far-reaching response within the online community. A concerted effort by the game’s...
Moving On
Gaming Scene SI san il defanso Updated January 28, 2015 5959   0
Even at my best I don’t like change very much. Be that as it may, I’ve got a big one around the corner. I’m preparing to move from Kansas City to Dallas, my first out-of-state move in eight years. A lot can happen in eight years. In that time I’ve met my wife and had two kids. I’ve transitioned from a graduate student to an office worker and dad, and now back to a grad student again. And not least of all, I discovered board gaming and got lucky to make an extensive group of friends who enjoy it...
All My Lovin' - Love Letter Review
 
3.0
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 4338   0

Game Information

Game Name
I’m not sure I actually like Love Letter, but I also don’t know if I’d ever turn down a game of it. What would be the point of refusing to play? It’s such a trifle that I find it hard to believe that anyone would hate it enough to want nothing to do with it. In fact the most impressive thing about Love Letter is probably that it makes a case for itself at all, over easier activities like having a sip of coffee or sitting quietly. It’s just good enough to justify its existence and it...
Heroes and Wonders - Mare Nostrum Review
 
4.0
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated April 12, 2019 4046   0

Game Information

Game Name
I received my copy of Mare Nostrum in a trade almost five years ago, and I have played many times. Just this weekend I played it after an extended hiatus. We were playing with the Mythology expansion, where the players have the option to call upon the favor of a god to give them a one-shot boost for the round. I made the foolish decision to spend the resources to use a god that actually was a lot less useful than I had expected. Mare Nostrum is not a very forgiving game when it comes to wasting resources, and...
Board Gaming's Vanishing History
Analysis SI san il defanso Updated September 21, 2016 9368   0
A couple of years ago I wrote an article talking about the lack of historical context within the board gaming hobby, especially when compared to other mediums. There is a pervasive ambivalence about old games in the hobby today, which is increasingly focused on the newest Kickstarter campaign and the churn of the right-now. At the time I thought that there was hope for those of us who really enjoy older games, because I believed we were living in the age of reprints. Back then old classics like Wiz-War, Merchant of Venus, and Survive! were getting top shelf...
Good News For Lonely Mages - Mage Knight: The Lost Legions Review
 
4.0
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 4691   0
It says something about Mage Knight’s quality that even as my life has become less permitting of long dense games, I still find time to play Vlaada Chvatil’s classic several times a year. I enjoyed it when I first got it two years ago, but it has only improved since then. The more time I spend with it, the more I am convinced it is not only Chvatil’s best game, but perhaps one of the best fantasy board games ever designed. But one thing I didn’t think the game needed was an expansion. It’s such a vast ocean...
Cat Sack Fever - Felix: The Cat In The Sack Review
 
4.0
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 3102   0

Game Information

When I write about older games I try to find one that a lot of people have played, or maybe one that could be considered a classic. By that standard, Felix: The Cat In The Sack seems awfully slight. It’s a little 30-minute trifle by Friedemann Friese, who is much better known for his bigger designs like Power Grid. It was well-regarded when it came out several years ago, but like a lot of minor hits from that time period it’s been passed by in an age of deckbuilders and crowdfunding. Still it’s proven to be something of...
You Dirty, Rotten... - Intrigue Review
 
3.0
Board Game Reviews SI san il defanso Updated May 02, 2019 3028   0

Game Information

Game Name
If we were to classify games like boxers, based on weight, I think that Intrigue might win the award for the most conniving game in its class. It forces the player to make endless promises to get ahead, and then it makes you break at least some of those promises, trampling on the needs and desires of your fellow players. My friends and I have joked that you lose a little bit of your soul every time you play, and there are moments when I’ve felt genuinely guilty for what the game is requiring of me. I would...
167 results - showing 21 - 30
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