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oliverkinne
November 26, 2021
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Lunar Base Board Game Review

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November 26, 2021
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November 25, 2021
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November 24, 2021
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November 24, 2021
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November 23, 2021
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November 23, 2021
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November 22, 2021
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Tharos Board Game Review

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November 19, 2021
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November 18, 2021
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November 17, 2021
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November 16, 2021
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November 15, 2021
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20 Oct 2021 04:51 #327327 by mezike
Cantaloop is brilliant and genuinely unique; as an analogue implementation of a point & click adventure it sits somewhere in a Venn between escape room games and graphic novel adventures. The humour is a spot-on match for the corny jokes representative of the medium and the puzzles have a similar twisted logic. The game comes in a ringbinder format with each scene having spots where you can attempt to combine items you collect from a deck of numbered cards, and along the way you will also pull overlays from the same deck that change a scene based on something that you have done and unlocking options to further progress the story.

Because this is very much a point & click in spirit as well as design there isn't anything in the way of strategy, just puzzle solving along a mostly linear story path where the only divergence is that you can complete any one of several tasks in any order and the game has a nifty way of 'remembering' what progress you have made and adjusts the text and dialogue accordingly. Just like those old school adventure games it can also be maddeningly frustrating at times, however there is a handy help section in the appendix for those occasions where you need to dig yourself out of a rut (I admit that I had to visit this twice during my journey. Of course, each time the solution was obvious yet wildly oblique).

Highly recommended for anyone with a craving for the unique and different, has a nostalgic fondness for point & click, or is looking for a different take on escape-room style games. Only watch-out is that it gets a little puerile in places, the prominence of toilet humour and the appearance of prophylactics as one of the items that are used (albeit in a non-sexual way) will likely put this out of family-friendly territory.
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23 Oct 2021 10:40 #327365 by DarthJoJo
Tried out the Runa Bolt solo missions in Vengeance. Felt kind of like a missed opportunity. Her scenarios are built on rescuing girls by discarding dice to move them to the starting zone. Her innate of taking less damage when moving kind of supports this as she doesn’t need her run dice as much as other characters and can chuck them to the girls pretty freely. Unfortunately, you can still just save all the girls by clearing all enemies. There is a loss condition if you leave too many girls behind but points are still only scored by knocking out bosses and their dens. Thus, the choice of how to spend your dice is pretty obvious. Her new Director’s Cut scenario has a nice gimmick where you get only one montage phase but score new items every time you take out the boss but still needs you to rescue girls without changing the scoring. If a little more thought had gone into earning points Runa’s story could have been a standout. Instead it feels like a narrative that isn’t explored by the mechanics.

Also did two runs of the Race to the Top map of K2’s Broad Peak expansion. It works as a sprint variant on the base. It’s three turns shorter, and you have fewer acclimatization cards and no tents. If you’re not moving, you’re dying. I still enjoyed the tension as a solo experience, but the simple scoring probably keeps this from being a highly competitive multiplayer game. Really appreciated the diary entries of the Polish climber that inspired the map.
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23 Oct 2021 19:14 #327366 by DukeofChutney
Played quite a lot of games this weekend. Friday eve met a friend from Leeds and two friends of his and played;

Sakura; a play cards kind of race game by knizia. I lost bad. The emperor wanders down a garden path and you have to stay closest to him without crashing into him. Each turn all players pick and reveal a card, the numbers on the card determine order of play and where the emperor / players move yada yadah yada. Its quite chaotic, i usually mess up and stack it into the emperor. At its most fun when everyone is just trying to kick everyone else into the emperor.

Sagrada. I dont think this is a very good game. The translucent dice seem to be the main appeal, and i need a bit more than that. You roll dice to fill out a stain glass window with restrictions on what you can place there, and then score at game end for certain sets or colours. Its a similar experience to sudoku, but sudoku is probably better. There is near zero meaningful player interaction and the art style makes the game hard to read. I won, surprisingly and did enjoy filling out my 'window' but i'd have been just as happy if we each taken a sudoku and chatted whilst filling them out.

Pandemic Fall of Rome; Played this twice. I think it is probably the best pandemic spinoff, mostly due to the theme. The plague is foreigners, and you roll dice to massacre them, or get massacred. Rome got sacked in the first game, second we won. Pandemic games don't seem to scale that smoothly and are way easier with two players. I think because you have more control with only two hands cycling the card deck.

Then this eve another friend and I played Starwars Imperial Assault. I played this once years ago when it came out and was not super impressed, but i quite enjoyed a skirmish. Im not sure it really fires on a thematic level when Luke and layer get bludgeoned by a storm trooper riot squad but as a tactical minis game it works pretty well.
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24 Oct 2021 08:20 - 24 Oct 2021 10:30 #327373 by Ah_Pook
Through some circumstances I ended up with a free copy of Cascadia and have been playing it a bunch these past couple days. It's the kind of follow up to Calico, so it's a puzzly tile laying/pattern making game with lovely art by Beth Sobel. Each turn you take a pair of a tile and an animal token from a market of 4 pairs of tile/token. The tiles have various habitat types on them, and 1-3 animal icons on them showing what animals can live there. You place the tile adjacent to your other tiles (edges dont have to match), and you place the animal on a tile with an icon indicating they can live there. Each tile can hold 1 animal. Each of the animal types scores in it's own way relative to other animal tokens (adjacent to other animal types, specific formations, etc), and you also score a point for each tile in each of your largest connected groups of the 5 habitat types at the end (with bonus points for whoever has the largest of each). So... Lots of axes to play with while you're placing stuff. It's got the "too many things to focus on oh no" thing that Calico had, but two things make it feel much less punishing. 1) your board isn't a constrained space, and 2) your plans are much more fluid, and there is almost always going to be SOMETHING you can take that doesn't feel terrible on your turn. Calico is largely a game of making a plan, keeping your options open as long as you can, and eventually watching your plans crumble around you as the exact tiles you need fail to materialize. I like that feeling of getting wrecked, but it's certainly not a game for everyone in that regard. In Cascadia you can generally grab something that advances a scoring metric on your turn, even if it's not ideal. Or at least something that sets you up for a later turn or something. It's just a delightful game, and if you like that kind of spatial puzzle tile laying stuff I strongly recommend it
Last edit: 24 Oct 2021 10:30 by Ah_Pook.
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24 Oct 2021 11:12 - 27 Oct 2021 08:03 #327376 by sornars
Yesterday I watched Dune at the IMAX. It was good. Go to the movies thread and listen to other people talk about it in more depth; the only thing I'd add is make the effort to go see it at the cinema if you can.

Afterwards the six of us got together and played Dune. It ran about 7 hours (with a few breaks here and there) but we all loved it and are keen to play it again. I had read Erik Twice's article on suggested rules and we ended up mostly following it, using the faction specific powers, increased economy from strongholds but not advanced combat/double spice nor the one time use Karama powers. We misplayed so many rules but I'm only going to take partial responsibility as so many of the rules are located on various components that overlooking things is way too easy to do and even if you find the relevant section, I often found things to be ambiguously worded such that we ended up making a lot of house rulings to keep the game moving. I had a look at some of the unofficial rulebooks and those layout the rules and exceptions much better than the official rulebook from GF9.

Despite that it was a good time and we all could see how amazing this will be if we can get past the rules hurdles and surprises. Even with the web app to help them out (thanks again Erik!) our Atreides player found the tracking of information to be so tedious that they quickly abandoned that and just relied on their prediction powers. The Harkonnen, Emperor and Space Guild factions seemed to have the most straightforward play style.

The brutal consequences of combat were everpresent and as a result, it seems like comebacks were a regular occurrence where you'd get wiped off the map but come back with a vengeance a few turns later. After the first Nexus we quickly fell into alliances that held for the rest of the game despite future opportunities to realign. My Bene Gesserit ended up allied with the Emperor, the Fremen with the Space Guild and the Harkonnens with Atreides. I thought those match ups were interesting as they seemed like they complimented each other's weaknesses very well, particularly the Fremen and Space Guild, who ended up winning the game. It was only about halfway through the game where the Space Guild player realised they could bribe us for information and started spending the spice they'd been hoarding all game, while managing to subsidise their Fremen ally.

In terms of strategy, I think all of us tended to overcommit forces in battle. Our Battle Wheels may as well have only had two options; all troops or all troops minus one. After realising the importance of the tanks and revival rate, it became obvious that this is as much a game about pacing your attrition as it is about winning fights. Because fighting is so brutal and everyone is so mobile, unlike a lot of other DOAM games, owning territory doesn't really add to your advantage so committing a bunch of troops to win one stronghold doesn't get you materially closer to a win as it's likely it'll just be taken back by someone else.

We've already started discussing playing again but before we do I need to find which rulebook and set of player aids to print off as whatever has been included in the box is nowhere near sufficient for smooth play. I also need to make sure a set of one time use Karama powers are included on those player aids.

One thing I found interesting about Dune is that despite taking a whole day to play, I'm not sure it felt like an "event" game. I'm guessing 7 hours is way longer than the game should be (we went all the way to turn 10). Every individual action seemed to move fairly smoothly but all of the little pieces add up to a long experience.
Last edit: 27 Oct 2021 08:03 by sornars.

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24 Oct 2021 14:58 #327382 by mads b.
Lots of games these past couple of weeks. The whole family was in Berlin this week, and we bough the big box version of Love Letter. Partly because we wanted to try the new characters which are made for 5-8 players (and we are five in the family), but mostly because our original is pretty roughed up. The new characters make for a somewhat different game, and so far we enjoy it.

We also bought Monster Baby Rescue! which is a cute game about helping small monsters that have stumbled into our dimension. You buy ties using a sort of rondel system, and then score points in the end. So far we've only played the simplified version, but the 5-year-old especially loves it. I think playing the fulll game will make it much more interesting, but the simple version is okay.

Found Krosmaster Arena at a fleamarket and mostly bought it for the minis which the 5- and 9-year-olds like to play with. But the rule book has a clever tutorial system where you can play small skirmishes that gradually introduces new rules, so the youngest and I tried some of them out. It's not revolutionary or anything, but if we ever get to play the full game (4 vs. 4 characters), I think it will be more interesting than the Funkoverse skirmish game which we didn't dig.

Got Radlands in the mail (kickstarter) and tried one game. It's a 1vs1 card game where you have to smash the other players bases while protecting yours. I mainly backed it because the artwork is rad (pun intended), but the game seems pretty solid. Fast and fast paced, but with lots of agonizing moments.

Finally I've played some solo games of Discover: Land Unknown which I've been wanting to try for a long time. The storytelling in the scenarios I got (every copy of the game is a unique mix of elements) was not impressive, but the core of the game where you have to explore and survive is rock solid. However, it's not just that the story in the scenarios is not impressive, it's more that I feel like - at least for the solo game - that they need an extra stage. The ones I've played have you do one thing and then another and then you have to finish some task at the final spot. But I really want to survive a bit more and explore some more of the sites, because that is where the story telling is. Maybe I'll try and swap my copy with someone to get new scenarios and new terrain, but I'm not sure.
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24 Oct 2021 18:56 #327394 by hotseatgames
I introduced my girlfriend to Relic today. She is a fan of adventure games, so I figured she'd appreciate it, and she did. I use some accelerated rules from BGG, and even then the game just goes and goes. We eventually had to quit, which I pretty much knew from the start. No big deal, these games are more about the journey than the destination.
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24 Oct 2021 19:27 #327398 by dysjunct
Clash of Cultures: Monumental Edition with my 6yo. Two games, neither with the expansion stuff yet. She beat me the first time, I beat her the second.

I bounced off the original edition for some reason — I think I was moving into a rules-light board game phase and didn’t have the patience for learning and teaching another nerd game. But this has been a little easier. It’s still plenty crunchy and there’s a lot going on, but it plays smooth and fast, but with enough decision space to hold interest. It does seem like it will run really long with each additional player, since there’s not much to do when it’s not your turn.

The game is plenty long, but short enough that it ends before you can do everything you want to. This is good, as it leaves other strategies to explore in later games. Production is great and the civilizations look super fun. Might actually get to play it with grownups next weekend.
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31 Oct 2021 01:09 #327586 by hotseatgames
Tonight I actually managed to gather 5 of us together for some Halloween gaming. I haven't had this many people over since the olden times.

We started with Psycho Raiders/ I was controlling two raiders, and the beginning of the game was foggy, and the fog persisted for a while. This caused a lot of issues for the campers, although it made it easier for them to hide.

The raiders managed to catch Randy, and promptly gutted him like a giant fish. Unfortunately, Ginger and Dawn managed to gain a lot of distance and we only ever caught up with one of them, almost killing her but not quite. Campers win. This game was odd because townsfolk didn't figure into it AT ALL. We had no sinister townsfolk, which sucked. The campers never screamed, either. A bit boring.

Next up was Betrayal at House on the Hill, which had not seen the table in years. We ended up with a haunt from Widow's Walk, and spoiler text..... The non-traitors won. It was not scary, but was at least amusing. A good showing for this wildly random game.
Warning: Spoiler!
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31 Oct 2021 07:43 #327587 by mezike
With Essen going on there is the inevitable slew of mayflies going around, much of which I have swerved. A couple of interesting new things starting with Ohanami which is a drafting game boiled all the way down to simple essentials. Draft three times, choose two cards and pass the rest on, play each card to the top or bottom of one of three personal stacks as either the highest or lowered numbered card of that stack. If you can't or won't play then you discard. The scoring is dynamic; blue cards score points in every round, starting out as the most valuable and then becoming progressively less so, green are worth more but only score in the final two rounds, grey only once at the end for a big pay-off, and pink get increasingly valuable the more you collect. Dirt simple yet full of aggravating choices as you have to consider not only the immediate inherent value of any given card but also preserving the integrity of each of your stacks as well as thinking how you can pass a little hate draft onto your neighbour or avoid giving them easy points. It's a simple little thing yet feels like game design done right, thirty seconds to teach, ten minutes to play, and full of tricky emergent decisions.


Fast & Furious: Highway Heist is a blast, rev up the engine on your super-car, throw physics out the window and pan the camera away from the hideous mutilations inflicted by the mangled wreckage that you are leaving behind. The thing that really makes this game are the stunt cards where you can enact those wildly entertaining and completely unrealistic movie special effects in their full bombastic glory, especially the final stunt that can be used to win the scenario which often brings the game to a nail-biting closer on the back of a single dice roll. Halfway through playing I had already ordered a copy for myself and have been having an equally great time playing this at home with the kids. I don't think there is a great deal of longevity in this one, once you've gone through each of the three scenarios a handful of times and tried out all of the characters there isn't a lot of variety left to call you back again, but it's solid Prospero Hall gold in hitting the sweet spot of the licence just perfectly and delivering a worthy slice of entertainment for the entry price. I've seen this floating around Stateside for as little as ten bucks and there's no reason not to jump on it at that kind of price.


War of Whispers, or "Game of Thrones in an hour" as it was pitched. Our first play was with three and a bunch of promo cards and extra rules added in that kind of mangled the experience, with the end result that we all agreed that it would be better off with more players and to ditch the extra crap in order to play the original design instead. Second play with four was better but still felt not quite right. It definitely has that 'behind the throne' sense of manipulating grand houses into doing your bidding and has some quite notable design highlights, yet there is something just a little off about it all that leaves it feeling just a bit shy of really living up to it's full potential.

The activation ring around the outside of the board is inspired - each house has a handful of action spaces that are controlled by players placing their agents on those spaces, with the wrinkle that a player performs all of the actions preceding their agents as well as the spots they are placed on. This creates some really thoughtful decision points where you balance the opportunity to take several actions against taking one very specific action that you want to guarantee will be yours, even if it means giving up some action spaces to an opponent. Sometimes it's okay to trust an opponent to lead a house if you are convinced that their intentions are aligned with yours which adds further layers to the choices you make. These actions add troops or cause them to invade territory belonging to another house, and at game end each house will have a number of cities under their control. Players score between four and negative two points for each city under a given house based on randomly distributed hidden scoring tokens, creating an imperative need to manipulate the houses in order to gain or lose territory and cities according to how successful you wish them to be. There are a couple of occasions where you can reveal and swap the places of two of your scoring tokens, which also becomes an end-game tie-breaker where keeping secrets is the dividing factor. This for us is where the design flags, because if multiple opponents are forcing a faction in a particular direction, whether it be success or failure, it is nigh on impossible to push against the stream. The easy fix is to swap your scoring tokens, but this then means that you and your opponent are now scoring the same way and yet they have the advantage of having kept more secrets than you. It feels like there should be a bigger space for negotiation and forming alliances but the scoring mechanism of the game dissuades you from going that route and there is a lack of tools with which to leverage any such negotiations. The closest we've got is identifying that some players are clearly pro or anti certain factions which provides some information on what kind of shape is likely to form at the endgame, but this leads back to swapping scoring tokens in order to jump on a bandwagon rather than any real tactical effort. On both occasions, no matter how enjoyable it has been to play, the endgame has largely been decided by the distribution of scoring tokens and left us with a rather flat feeling at the final result; the tension between houses and the importance of controlling their direction lives or dies based on the intent of the players and this feels too fundamental in importance to leave to pure chance. I wonder what would happen in situations where everybody has exactly the same scoring preference? I also wonder if it would work better as a two player affair, which would make it a straight confrontation and therefore the distribution of scoring tokens less relevant. Beautiful yet flawed, fun but frustrating, should really have gone through a bit more development time to fix that disappointing ending.


Was able to try Nemesis which totally delivered to expectations of building an Alien style narrative. Three of us awoke from stasis, the Soldier walked straight into a slime room and then launched into an hilarious screaming lap of the ship, wildly shooting at Xenomorphs lurching from the shadows yet failing to kill any of them. Eventually his wounds were putting him on the edge of death and there was a mad panic to fix the medbay that had a habit of breaking every time he tried to use it. The Scout kept getting locked into rooms with slavering monsters in the worst kind of haunted-house way, and bumbled around in the engine room although neither myself or the Soldier trusted his reports that all was well. For my part as the Pilot I was angling for MVP status, heading to the nav-comp to correct our flight path, finding an alien egg, fixing the engine controls and scanning all three engines. I even fixed the lab which then resulted in a scare when the egg appeared to hatch into a larvae and took a bite at me. Having done my part of the job I headed back to the stasis chamber but ended up getting attacked twice while trying to climb into the pods. I eventually managed to fight off the creatures and was able to get into hyper-sleep but was carrying two infections, either of which could kill me with a chest-burster, as I didn't have the time or resource to get to medbay and back again. While I was sleeping disaster struck and one of the engines failed so the Soldier had to wrap up his wounds, take a diversion to the broken engine to fix it, and then fight his way into the stasis room. The Scout had botched his secret objective (to selfishly strip the ship of anything useful and leave in an escape pod) so was disinclined to help, leaving the sour grunt all on his own muttering about the cowardly Pilot and back-stabbing Scout. In a nerve-wracking moment the Alien Queen made an appearance but the Soldier held his ground and stared it down, finally making it to safety but also carrying an infection. We picked up the magic lens and checked our cards, resulting in three negative results and victory for the both of us.

I was impressed at how richly the emergent narrative came out of gameplay, and how the fear and terror is ratcheted up through the noise tokens and the blind-bag pulls on Alien encounters, and that you never quite know what it will take to kill an alien or force it to retreat. I love that the player goals are nebulous so that instead of knowing that there is definitely a hidden traitor you have a variety of secret missions that are very grey in how they are interpreted during play, and everybody could equally be moving toward the same goal with different degrees of selfishness or altruism, or all entirely at odds with one another. This is the best use of hidden roles/goals/traitors that I think I have seen. It was a good time, however there is a big fat caveat attached that the game itself is needlessly busy. There were so many stacks and piles all over the place yet a lot of it doesn't seem to be doing much. I didn't see the need to have five different types of monster or three types of equipment as the engaging moments all came from the events and not from the stuff; I can't help but think that the experience would have been just as good, if not better, with a far simpler and less convoluted approach. Glad to have played this but right now I honestly think that I would much rather try out Fate of the Nostromo than take a second dip into Nemesis.


All on 1 Card (Alles auf 1 Karte) does something new with roll and write and ends up as a kind of Yahtzee-Bingo. Toss a handful of dice and go through a couple of re-rolls if desired. The dice have geometric symbols which you then mark off on one of two dry-erase scoring cards, with the wrinkle being that you can only mark off the full amount of any given symbol and you can only place all of your marks on one card (hence the title). You also mark off symbols on opponent's turns which generates a good amount of trash-talk as you wheedle and pressure them into taking a risky re-roll that will benefit you by removing one awkward symbol from the pool that is otherwise preventing you from completing a line. Once you complete three lines you bingo the card, draw another, and play until someone has filled three cards. Every line has a different point value and there are bonuses to acquire so it is slightly more than a straight race. It's okay, the kind of game you could slip into your pocket and play pretty much anywhere, and I'd rather play this over pretty much any other roll & write, but it's also easily forgettable.


Whale Riders - the card game, which I found terribly dull and rote. Play a card from a random selection, eventually enough of one type of card has collectively been played to complete a set at which point everyone scores the cards they contributed to the set and everything else gets discarded. Sometimes you randomly pull a card that you can use to kill a set that you aren't playing a major part in collecting. Theoretically you could team up with another player to double down on one particular set but as the draw is random and there is almost zero interaction there is no viable way to realise any such intent. Just felt like a completely pointless experience to me.


Art Robbery is Knizia's take on Cash & Guns, three rounds of playing a card to take a scoring token either from the central pool or to swipe one from an opponent until the central pool is emptied. Each round has a subtly different mix of tokens, some of which only score under certain conditions. Many of them also provide alibis and the person with the fewest alibis loses regardless of how much loot they have claimed. Of course there is much enmity and aggravation as tokens are stolen from in front of you and the balance of power shifts very quickly, sometimes far too swiftly to prevent the round ending with recently emptied pockets. Overall this does a cracking job of putting all of the gameplay into the social interaction between the players; effectively there is no real game of any worth in a mechanical sense, it all resides completely above the table. Cracking filler material.

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31 Oct 2021 14:09 #327591 by dysjunct
Had a bit of a Halloween get-together yesterday, with spooky themed games:

Camp Grizzly. This game is peak Ameritrash -- it has about a 15% chance of just falling with a thud, but the other 85% of the time it produces a movie script in game form. This was one of the latter times -- three of us, we managed to find the objectives for the barn finale pretty quickly but were getting hammered by Otis. We drew the "B'thulhu" finale -- each of the players must ro-sham-bo and throw out either a fist (indicating that you are a normal human) or a claw shape (indicating that you were a cultist all along). Each cultist grants the Elder God +1 health, while the humans try to beat it back through the portal before they all die. If they succeed, then all living humans win, otherwise cultists win.
Like all (?) the combat-centric finales, if you don't have a weapon, you die when it comes to your turn. I didn't have a weapon, so I threw cultist as it was the only way I could win. Another player didn't have a weapon but didn't realize this and threw human and died on his turn. The final player threw human, and ended up beating the god to a pulp with a baseball bat, and saved the world.

The unfortunate thing is that CG (with the expansions) is going for stupid prices on eBay right now, so I'll likely be tempted to try and move it. Some of the versions with the pewter minis have sold for $1500! The game is great but it's not $1500 worth of great.

Skulls of Sedlec. A light filler, this is a fun little drafting game of stacking skulls in an ossuary.

The Bloody Inn. Every time I play this, I think I should play it more often. This is one of those times. It's really just a tableau/engine builder; as a pure design it's not as deep as RFTG nor as streamlined as San Juan, but the theme (deviant innkeepers murdering guests and robbing them) is delightful. Plus it's based on an allegedly-true story:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auberge_rouge
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01 Nov 2021 15:14 #327626 by Shellhead
For the second year in a row, I did not host a day of horror-themed board games in October. But if I had, Psychoraiders and Camp Grizzly would have definitely hit the table, and maybe also Betrayal at House on the Hill. Betrayal and Psychoraiders are both unstable games that can sometimes fall flat, but Camp Grizzly is always fun. If I didn't own Camp Grizzly, I would balk at buying it on eBay for $1,500. But I bought it for the normal price 6 years ago directly from AmeriTrash Games while they still had leftover copies from their Kickstarter. And even at $1,500, my copy is not for sale. Camp Grizzly isn't a $1,500 game, but I can't come up with $1,500 of games that I would rather have instead of Camp Grizzly.
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01 Nov 2021 16:56 #327633 by mc

mezike wrote:

Whale Riders - the card game, which I found terribly dull and rote. Play a card from a random selection, eventually enough of one type of card has collectively been played to complete a set at which point everyone scores the cards they contributed to the set and everything else gets discarded. Sometimes you randomly pull a card that you can use to kill a set that you aren't playing a major part in collecting. Theoretically you could team up with another player to double down on one particular set but as the draw is random and there is almost zero interaction there is no viable way to realise any such intent. Just felt like a completely pointless experience to me.


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I believe this is just "Trendy" rebadged, although this has the extra thing of the ports that change up the scoring each round. I just played it last night with the kids and, yeah, there is certainly not much to it at all, BUT it was perfect for a super light no-thinking filler that will probably sit in a "10 minutes to dinner" or "want to play a game Grandma?" kind of game. A kind of Love Letter niche. They very quickly tapped into the "okay, Dad's played a 7, let's bluff a little but then play a 3 to fuck him up" type dynamic. I picked it up for a few bucks. I think it will see a lot of play.


Also played Midnight Party/Escape the Hidden Castle/Hugo with some meeples, the Nazgul mini from that LotR expansion, and a board my daughter made for the occasion as our nod to Halloween. We had a bunch of kids round across an age range and it worked really well with lots of screaming when the Headless Horseman started roaming the hallway.
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03 Nov 2021 13:07 #327665 by Jexik
Played a couple rounds of Oath this last weekend.

Got my first win in the last game, after taking a few turns to build up and make some moves in an Oath of Supremacy game. The Chancellor was picking up so many relics using a secret based engine and the Ancient Forge that his citizen bailed and gave him 4 favor to leave the empire.

The empire held a Forest Council, which made like half the board uninteractable for us Exiles, so I focused on attacking that location first. I was also holding a beast advisor (some beast friends card that made it so you don't spend supply when mustering on beast cards) and the Acting troupe which can act as beast or order for trades. After taking the forest council, I traded the following turn flipping them both to get 3 favor... because most couldn't interact with it it had a good bank. Order was bankrupt almost the entire time, and it covered the other half of the board from previous games. After I made this push, another Exile jumped on the attacking bandwagon and was going after their Sprawling Ramparts, successfully and in a back and forth fashion. This gave me Oathkeeper on someone else's turn! It came back around to me and I became Usurper, while buying the People's Favor to mess up another player's chance at their vision. When it came to the last turn before mine, I offered citizenship in my empire for next game in return for not trying to break my hold on any territories. We also really wanted to break up that massive empire of Order once and for all. Long live the Beasts!

This was the first time in 5 games that we've seen someone win as a Usurper. Previously it had been 1 citizen win, 1 vision win, and 2 chancellor wins. I think.
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03 Nov 2021 13:13 - 03 Nov 2021 13:14 #327667 by Gary Sax
God I want to play some Oath. How are you liking the game, Jexik? I don't remember if I ever heard your Take on it.

I think for Usurper to win, weirdly, the players need to be pretty good and very familiar with the game. Usurper seems like a many alarm emergency, but outside of darkest secret, it is very easy to knock them off because you have two full turns to do so. But with newer player it's an immediate emergency so everyone overreacts.
Last edit: 03 Nov 2021 13:14 by Gary Sax.
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