Ladies and Gentlemen, the best horror game ever published.
It’s not like Psycho Raiders needs any more attention here at F:AT, since it has become the de facto Official Game of This Web Site, but allow me to throw my formal review onto the pile. A year later than it should have been published, to be honest. Especially since this is one of the best games of 2014. If only we got ONE game like this- so daring and so idiosyncratic- every year. Games like Psycho Raiders really put the current pig-out smorgasbord of utter slop that trickles out of Kickstarter into perspective. Do we want 200 Sedition Wars a year, or do we want one Psycho Raiders a year?
The gluttons have spoken. More mediocrity, more redundancy, more safe-bet crowd pleasers. Thank Crom for mavericks like Nate Hayden and his gang of troublemakers.
In other news…my Samurai review is up at Miniature Market, and needless to say it’s a five star rating. The new FFG edition is excellent. Can’t wait to see what the next Euro Classic is.
For some reason, I got an inexplicable hankering to play Defenders of the Realm. It just so happened I was looking to trade Secrets of the Lost Tomb and I found a deal that included the Dragons expansion. As soon as I opened it up, I about vomited. I forgot how HORRENDOUS this game looks. I would easily rank it as one of the most pitiful graphic design jobs in the history of board gaming. It would be one thing if it were 1985 or 1995. But even five years ago in 2010 this game looked like amateur garbage. The fonts are abhorrent (of course, this is where the Comic Sans outrage started), the Larry Elmore “art” is…competent, I guess, but almost hilariously kitsch in its genericism. The rulebook…OMG…the “bad guy asides” make the whole thing feel lame and silly. The colors, the maps, the miniatures…everything looks HORRIBLE.
But playing it again, it was still actually really fun. It’s Pandemic, but it plays out more like a DoaM game, really. Tons of dice-rolling, some occasional card-flipping, etc. I really enjoyed it and think I might hang on to it for the kids. I didn’t use the Dragons stuff yet, but they seem pretty good. But the miniatures are a JOKE. Like, literally bubble gum machine figures. Big, epic dragons…that look like they cost 25 cents RETAIL. The entire production is just an abomination, a complete embarrassment.
Lots of SCAM being played. I did the sleeper ship mission and just got completely overwhelmed in the first pod. So far, it’s been the only time I’ve just been completely annihilated. I’m kind of torn on the “highest initiative is the target” piece…it makes sense, but it also results in a character sometimes getting completely dogpiled.
Survive! Space Attack! Is really good. Geoff and the gang did good with it. Review should be at Review Corner next week. Scarlett wasn't very much into it, but River has asked to play it every day.
Champions of Midgard is very good, but I’m also kind of having a hard time really embracing it. There’s no doubt it’s well-made, it looks great and it has some fun gameplay. But it’s just not particularly exciting. It may be because the worker placement thing is, at this point, about as interesting as auctions were in 2004. Or as role selection was in 2008. Or deckbuilding in 2015. Adding dice rolls is fun, and there is a quality about the game that is VERY reminiscent of Fire and Axe. The mechanic where if you beat the troll, you get to put a blame token on another player is great. It’s also great that if the person who goes to fight it loses, EVERYBODY gets blamed. Fun! But for some reason it still feels like something around a high mehven, maybe like a mehven.5 or something. But it does feel like the kind of game that could have a kick-ass expansion that pushes it up in the rankings. Ironically, it’s kind of like Ole Steiness’ previous major release, Police Precinct, in that regard.
Should be seeing a review copy of Cthulhu Wars this week. Sent by the Great Old One himself. I hope it’s terrible, I can’t afford to be into it!