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BradHB
September 18, 2021
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September 16, 2021
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Quick, Simple Fun: High Society

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Andi Lennon
September 15, 2021
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oliverkinne
September 14, 2021
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Play and Pass

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September 13, 2021
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September 13, 2021
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September 10, 2021
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Karuba Board Game Review

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September 10, 2021
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September 09, 2021
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September 09, 2021
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September 08, 2021
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Mariposas - a Punchboard Review

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September 07, 2021
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Paring down

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September 03, 2021
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September 03, 2021
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Earthenwar Review

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Bugs: Recent Topics Paging, Uploading Images & Preview (11 Dec 2020)

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Arkham Horror The Card Game: the greatest deck construction introduction of all time… if you can get there.

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23 Jul 2021 04:49 #324930 by Gary Sax
By way of setup, Arkham Horror CG is more of...

Arkham Horror The Card Game by Fantasy Flight Games is the best deck construction/deck building game I have played; no small feat because I find most of the biggest card games in the genre to be completely impenetrable and intimidating. It is also probably the most difficult game to get into that I have, nevertheless, grown to like, presenting a wholly deceptive façade as a light “experience” adventure game when it is actually an exceptionally hardcore product. Arkham Horror CG a bit like a jewel locked behind multiple layers of elaborate security: security guards, electronic locks, heat sensors, the whole bit. If you can get through the tall walls standing in your way, it has an enormous amount to offer. But getting there is not easy and is, in practice, also staggeringly expensive.

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26 Jul 2021 10:31 #324931 by charlest
Good stuff, Steve.

While I've played the game several times (a friend's copy), we keep talking about committing to a campaign and it's yet to happen. I need to get over the hump.

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26 Jul 2021 12:09 - 26 Jul 2021 12:32 #324934 by sornars
A good review although your non-standard acronym of Arkham Horror CG weirded me out every time I saw it :P.

To your point on how it got to be this successful: I think this (and all LCGs) seem much more impenetrable as time goes on but if you got in close to the ground floor, picking up a core set is enough to show you the possibilities even if the prebuilt decks suck and the deckbuilding options are limited. As time went on a single deluxe box would add so many options to your card pool and then the steady drip feed of mythos packs would let you build up and learn the card pool gradually. It also helped that cycles are mechanically themed so by buying things in sequence you'd dive deep into suggested archetypes. It's only now with so many cycles completed that jumping in looks so daunting.

It may be worth mentioning FFG has since recognised how terrible their core sets are for beginners and the revised core should really address a significant complaint in your review. I wonder how your experience would've been different if you had been able to start with the new core from the get go.
Last edit: 26 Jul 2021 12:32 by sornars.

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26 Jul 2021 14:17 - 26 Jul 2021 18:25 #324938 by Gary Sax
Thanks charlest, means a lot to hear that from you. Based on what I know about it, I think your group is one of the few I know of I would recommend the game to. Your group seems like a pretty persistent group of capital G gamers.

I think we disagree on the core, sornars. I think the core is bad enough feeling that I would just never have played again if I only had the base investigators and lists as an option. It's why I had the core for like a year or two and played it once and thought about selling it multiple times. It's only because I'm an insane person and I had such positive feedback from people I trust like you that I dug in deeper instead.

I do think the coming new bigger core set is a good point and important context. It won't dispel all the problems I outline with a bad first impression but if they tuned and updated the base investigator lists with it in mind, ideally to add much needed 2nd copies of stuff that should now be available in the core, I think it will help to at least make the base investigators make better first games. You won't feel as powerless and your losses wouldn't feel like there was nothing you could do unless your deck was better.
Last edit: 26 Jul 2021 18:25 by Gary Sax.
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26 Jul 2021 17:16 #324944 by Jackwraith
Cool stuff. Can guarantee you that I will never get into it, despite my love for the AH CCG/LCG (previous edition), because of many of the things you cite here: Virtual demand to spend X 100s of dollars to get to a game that's fun; cooperative play; deep involvement with community (i.e. lifestyle game, like Magic or GW.) Can't do it anymore. Interesting to read about how it works and how it works for you all the same.
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26 Jul 2021 22:11 - 26 Jul 2021 22:13 #324948 by Gary Sax
The cooperative part is what makes it accessible to me. For me, the rest of what you note is all correct and a good reason to hold back. But the community is really surprisingly good and not a turn off. They like to share ideas using arkhamdb posts so you don't need to get crazy with it.
Last edit: 26 Jul 2021 22:13 by Gary Sax.

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27 Jul 2021 11:23 #324960 by Ah_Pook
I think the biggest success of Marvel Champions is that the base box is actually a fun and fairly replayable game that you could conceivably buy and stop with. AHLCG base box had enough there that you could maybe squint and see a real cool game down the road after you spend a couple hundred more dollars, which is a step up from the X-Wing core set I guess but it's still not great.
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30 Jul 2021 19:17 - 31 Jul 2021 07:56 #325071 by CranBerries
So after reading this review I sold my copy, a copy of Tikal and also Theseus: the Dark Mancala, and used the money to buy an air fryer at Costco. Unlike Arkham, the air fryer does not require any expansions or additional players, and I will use it almost daily. We should probably always ask, "Is this game better than a $50 air fryer?"



My wife pointed out that I'm running a complex money laundering scheme. Buy a handful of board games cheap from the family general fund, as opposed to my "fun money." Tikal cost $12. I sold Arkham for $20. It was a gift. I don't think I paid much for Theseus. So my argument that "I paid for this air fryer by selling board games so it cost us nothing!" is kind of hollow. However, we had roasted vegetables, asparagus with butter and lemon juice, and crispy chicken sausage last night while we watching the Olympics.

It took me far too long to figure out that "Gary Sax" games, because his writing is so compelling, always sound amazing, but are not always Cranberries games. The idea that the game is essentially a game about how to play a game that essentially costs $200 to play properly sealed the deal. Now I'm saving up for Sleeping Gods, based on Dan Thurot's review.
Last edit: 31 Jul 2021 07:56 by CranBerries.
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30 Jul 2021 19:20 #325072 by Gary Sax
I think that is the right call.

I have also played this game about 15 times over the last week and a half so...
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31 Jul 2021 19:07 #325079 by Jexik
This is the second time now that everyone is saying to Steve: “Great review. Not buying it!”
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31 Jul 2021 19:33 #325080 by Gary Sax
I figure it means I did a good job in actually portraying it.

Played again this afternoon. ;)
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