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Gandhi - a Punchboard Review

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21 Sep 2021 10:17 #326671 by Jackwraith

Sagrilarus wrote: That's because you got a different title at each level. You did indeed become a wizard eventually, but you had to be a Seer, a Conjuror, a Thaumaturgist (my personal favorite), a Warlock, etc., on the way there.

I would have called the class Mages. Magician would work, but it's too top-hatty/shiny shoes.


Yeah, I remember. No one gave a thought to any of those labels as you were leveling up. You were still just an MU because that's what the class was. I would've used the term "Mage" for the class, too, but perhaps we're misremembering when that term entered common usage? Might've been in the 80s.
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21 Sep 2021 11:11 #326677 by RobertB
Holy trinity: tank, healer, DPS. Everything else is fluff.

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21 Sep 2021 11:26 #326681 by Shellhead

Jackwraith wrote:

Sagrilarus wrote: That's because you got a different title at each level. You did indeed become a wizard eventually, but you had to be a Seer, a Conjuror, a Thaumaturgist (my personal favorite), a Warlock, etc., on the way there.

I would have called the class Mages. Magician would work, but it's too top-hatty/shiny shoes.


Yeah, I remember. No one gave a thought to any of those labels as you were leveling up. You were still just an MU because that's what the class was. I would've used the term "Mage" for the class, too, but perhaps we're misremembering when that term entered common usage? Might've been in the 80s.


I first got D&D in 1978, with the Holmes edition of the basic box set, and the class was called Magic-User back then. I don't remember if that set also used different names for the class levels, because I soon got ahold of the Players Handbook, where the class levels did have names. I think the basic rules only covered levels one and two, with the expectation that players would switch over to Advanced D&D at level three.

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21 Sep 2021 11:53 #326682 by Sagrilarus

Jackwraith wrote: just an MU


That's the real tip-off right there. A "MU", pronounced "myou". That's the true old-school.

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22 Sep 2021 09:50 #326699 by Jexik
I’m 36. Remember playing a Dwarf Fighter when Magic Users still existed. (AD&D 2nd). Also played Warriors of the Eternal Sun on Sega Genesis. Who wants d4 for hit points though?
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22 Sep 2021 13:32 #326705 by jason10mm

Jackwraith wrote: I always find it interesting to see just who's old enough to use the term "magic-user" (unless Massive Darkness itself uses that term for some odd reason.) It was the most banal and colorless aspect of Gygax's early work. You weren't a mage or a wizard or a sorceror or anything even mildly descriptive. You were a "magic-user". "Fighter" wasn't that much better, of course. I guess he couldn't call them "sword-users", since there were other weapons in the game.


To be fair, "magic-user" is a hell of a lot better than the "dweomer" term he used in the Greyhawk books. Let him side step some of the occult criticism levelled at DnD in the early days as well. That term has a cool origin though.

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22 Sep 2021 16:43 #326710 by Sagrilarus
I'm playing El Grande on BGA and there's two players self-destructing in two of the provinces. If you ever want a lesson on "sunk cost" this is the game for you. One of the provinces only scores the top guy, but 2/3 of the way through the game there are two players with 6 and 5 cubes there. Another scores 5-3-1 and they have 5, 5, and 4 cubes there. Three players devoting more than half their resources battling each other for 13 total available points. Each will average 4 points in the scoring round.

There's a province with a single cube in it (4 points completely unclaimed), two more where one cube would pull 2 points each.
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24 Sep 2021 23:16 #326749 by Jackwraith
Been a while since the Hex people came out, but I got in two games of Neuroshima Hex tonight. I played Troglodytes for only the second time and it was against a faction that they seem to have real trouble with: Outpost. It felt like I couldn't take advantage of the Trogs' Cannibalism ability as much as I would've liked to and I didn't use my Frosts effectively, as I should've placed them where they could kill units, rather than trying to angle against Outpost's few modules. I'm still not sold on them as a genuinely effective unit, although I can see how they'd be pretty brilliant against things like Mephisto or even Hegemony, with its plethora of modules. I lost, 10-4.

Then my opponent switched to Death's Breath and I decided to try out the brand new Beasts(!) The latter faction just showed up in the mail yesterday, so I was kind of geeked to get them in play. They're, uh, kind of a mixed bag. The requirement to keep Cerberus with the HQ seems kind of superfluous. It's great that he's in place at the start of the game, as he can move around the HQ and clean up anything that less than Initiative 2 without the HQ taking damage, but he's less impressive than you'd think for being Cerberus. Just as an example, I kind of expected he'd be able to attack in three directions. The Vultures are really cool (can't be hit by melee, can move anywhere after a battle) but the rest of the units, in addition to having Friendly Fire (can hit friendly units), are somewhat mundane. They're just a melee faction and Agony (attacking when dying) isn't very impressive when facing the constant returns of Death's Breath. Arachnid seems like it'd be really cool, since it nets in three directions. But its nets are Friendly Fire (i.e. they net friendly units, too.) So, yeah. Safe to say I'm a little underwhelmed. I lost, 10-7.

Word is that Monolith Arena sold so poorly that they're stopped production on it, so I'll probably just toss the MA factions into the NH box the next time we play, to add an even more ridiculous level of variety.
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25 Sep 2021 14:57 #326755 by DukeofChutney
Played Imperium Classics opposed, Carthage vs Macedon. This was more fun than the bot (and the bot is fine) even with more basic nations. If you draft some of the attack cards from the market it forces some adaption by both players.

I won 63 to 48 pts as Carthage in what was a tight game for the most part. The Macedonians ran a small deck and stormed to being an empire for their economy to hit the rocks. Slow and steady won the race in this one. The game does still drag out a bit. I was really enjoying it for the first 90 minutes but i think we finished slightly over 2 hours.
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25 Sep 2021 16:42 - 25 Sep 2021 16:42 #326756 by Gary Sax
Yeah, I haven't played much but I really think that game has meaningful hate draft potential along with the attacks.
Last edit: 25 Sep 2021 16:42 by Gary Sax.
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26 Sep 2021 17:33 #326771 by Jexik
On our 8th turn of our first play of 3-player Oath. This is exactly kingmaking the boardgame, but I think that’s the point.
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26 Sep 2021 17:37 #326772 by Gary Sax
3 player doesn't have to be, 4 players somewhat is, past that it *absolutely* is kingmaking the boardgame.
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26 Sep 2021 18:25 #326776 by charlest
My group struggled with the decision on whether or not to attend Gen Con this year. The convention itself is fine, but mostly there's a couple of friends we see every year that I miss pretty terribly.

We decided against it, and instead rented a house not far from our homes and had a hell of a weekend. I'm sleep deprived, but this is what we played:

Blitzkrieg x3 - I enjoy this quite a bit. It's in that Watergate/13 Days category where it tries to do Twilight Struggle type of decisions (fighting over different theaters) in 20 minutes. It does it pretty well. I dig it.

Forbidden Stars - This is a first game of Gen Con tradition for us. I won in turn five as the Chaos Space Marines, nabbing my last objective from an Eldar planet.

Wings for the Baron - I've played this several times and it's game I always forget about. Glad we played it.

A Distant Plain x2 - Wow. First play ended roughly 2.5 hours in, on the second Propaganda card. Warlords barely snuck out a victory.

The second play was very different. Everyone now was experienced (we had played it two days prior), and it went to the third Propaganda card. The shuffle left the prop card low in the third set of cards, and the game took us somewhere around 4.5 hours. It was epic. The Afghan government won, I had completely pulled out as the Coalition, The Taliban was doing very well, and the Warlords nearly won themselves.

This game hits very hard right now and it's easy to sit back and try to interpret what's happening. I think I will be writing about it.

Ankh - My second play of Ankh. I merged again and we almost won again. Lost by two points.

Very much enjoying it and eager to play more.

Keepers of the Questar - This is kind of a weird one. It's a little bit underdeveloped and overstuffed with components for what it is. It's fine I suppose but not likely to ever play it again.

Regicide x4 - We finally won. Felt so great.

Drakon - Not a bad game but certainly forgettable for a Tom Jolly enterprise.

Fantasy Realms - Always kills it.

Pax Pamir 2e - Great play as always. We spent a large chunk of our fictional gaming time in Afghanistan this weekend. Lovely.

Rising Sun - I'm not sure I ever remember winning at Rising Sun. I won this time. Was the purple clan (lotus?) and leveraged alliances well.

Blood Rage - I feel like I really have a deep understanding of Blood Rage, maybe more than any other game. I had a poor first round, but rebounded hard and ended up squeezing out a win. I had to adjust from my typical heavy quest strategy (this was a three player game and quests didn't seem to make it to me in the draft). I instead went lots of dudes and controlled Yggdrassil for two of the rounds. The third round really went my way.

Pan Am - Been wanting to play this for awhile. Enjoyed it.

Jump Drive x2 - Great as usual.

Aquatica - Would rather be playing Jump Drive.

Conan x2 - Played two scenarios in the Khitai expansion. Great stuff. I won once as the overlord and lost once.

Mandala - A few games with this name, this is the 2019 one that's kind of Battle Line-ish. I've played it before and it's a solid design.

Dune: A Game of Conquest and Diplomacy x3 - This is the new short Dune from GF9 with movie stills instead of artwork. I'll be reviewing this but it wasn't difficult to get people to play it. Two of the plays were four player and one was two player.

Wow. I'm surprised at how good this is. It doesn't replace Dune at all, but it captures specifically the fighting extraordinarily well. It's like 60 minutes and there's no bullshit. The asymmetry is still strong, although I lament losing the Bene Gesserit prediction win condition. Losing the Guild doesn't feel terrible. No alliance mechanic does sting quite a bit and there's much less negotiation. So it's not quite Dune.

However, losing the market bidding is fine, although I do miss the Atreides ability to see the cards and play mindgames. It still feels sort of Dune though due to the asymmetry and the combat system being identical.

This is a really strong distillation that's sub $40 at online retailers. I'm not sure it will be a hit, but I fully didn't expect for it to be staying in my collection. It assuredly is.

The two player mode though however is somewhat forgettable. It wasn't terrible, and it only took 20 minutes, but I would never choose to play it at that count.

I think Michael got a review copy of this as well, curious what his thoughts are.

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26 Sep 2021 19:06 #326777 by Sagrilarus
THE way to do a boardgame escape. 10 people maximum, rent a house. Super cheap, way more fun.
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27 Sep 2021 12:54 #326789 by RobertB
Maybe worth a separate thread - how do you manage a group that big? Not a rhetorical question. Does one player just say, "I'm playing Dune: Imperium. Who's with me?" The rest are then on their own, and can find their own games or get drunk and play Xbox?

I could just be overthinking it, since the intersection set of "Games I like" when my brothers come over is effectively null. And my games, my house, my headache. :)
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