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  #4621  
Old 08-03-2015, 02:04 AM
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Saw a bit today about Arena of the Planeswalkers, a new Magic-themed miniatures game. Pleased to notice that it's basically just repackaged Heroscape with less paint and a LOT less plastic terrain (same kind of pieces, but only like four of them. That was a neat line that collapsed under the weight of rising plastic prices a few years ago — aside from the army cards it was 100% plastic in the box, every mini hand-painted and kind of an incredible deal at the time. It's hard to come by now and usually pretty pricey when you do. Glad to see it being trotted out again, even if it's a bit less elaborate than it used to be — it's a really solid rule set, and from what I've seen of the army cards and components it's going to play really similarly.
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  #4622  
Old 08-07-2015, 07:54 AM
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Vlaada Chvatil's new game, Codenames, got an early release at GenCon and everybody's been talking about it and I want to play it so badly. But it's not out officially until October. Waiting sucks!
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  #4623  
Old 08-07-2015, 07:59 AM
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I'm keeping myself unspoiled. At this point, I trust Vlaada completely, so I'm looking forward to just buying it and jumping in.
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  #4624  
Old 08-07-2015, 08:06 AM
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I'm kind of torn on Vlaada, in that I really respect his inventiveness, but I'm never completely sold on his games. Codenames, however, seems like it was designed specifically for me. I'm actually somewhat disappointed that I didn't come up with the idea myself.
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  #4625  
Old 08-07-2015, 11:18 AM
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Vlaada Chvatil has designed some of my favorite games, notably Galaxy Trucker, Dungeon Lords, Dungeon Petz, and Mage Knight (which I personally rate a 10). For me, the only designers that come close are Richard Garfield and Tom Lehmann. Codenames, however, is just outside of my normal game playing habits, so I find myself waffling on whether to buy it or not...

Lehmann's Favor of the Pharaoh is the only currently-unpublished game I'm going to buy based only on the description and the name on the box; the last one was Voyages of Marco Polo, and it was a good decision. Codenames is an appealing convention game, though. I'm hoping one of my convention friends will pick it up.
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  #4626  
Old 08-07-2015, 12:28 PM
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I was thinking of ordering Legendary this weekend, but now I see there's a Villains edition in addition to the Alien and regular Marvel versions I already knew about. I'm going to have think about this very carefully. VILLAINS!
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  #4627  
Old 08-07-2015, 12:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas View Post
I was thinking of ordering Legendary this weekend, but now I see there's a Villains edition in addition to the Alien and regular Marvel versions I already knew about. I'm going to have think about this very carefully. VILLAINS!
My vote is for Alien.
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  #4628  
Old 08-07-2015, 01:02 PM
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Alien is the superior version of the game. The new mechanics add so much more to the game. I have vanilla Legendary and I love it too.

They're semi-interchangeable too.
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  #4629  
Old 08-08-2015, 12:18 AM
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But for some weird reason the Alien version is always $5 more!
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  #4630  
Old 08-08-2015, 12:20 AM
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Got a package in the mail today. Had no idea what it was until I opened it and remembered I had backed the KS for Tesla vs. Edison

I'm looking forward to finally sitting down and playing it with friends.
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  #4631  
Old 08-08-2015, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sraymonds View Post
Alien is the superior version of the game. The new mechanics add so much more to the game. I have vanilla Legendary and I love it too.

They're semi-interchangeable too.
Whoops, didn't even see this comment before I left my previous post. If you don't mind explaining, what are some of the mechanical differences between the versions? If you don't have the Villains version, the need for science will encourage me to get that one.
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  #4632  
Old 08-08-2015, 02:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucas View Post
Whoops, didn't even see this comment before I left my previous post. If you don't mind explaining, what are some of the mechanical differences between the versions? If you don't have the Villains version, the need for science will encourage me to get that one.
New mechanics found in Alien and not Marvel:

Each player chooses an avatar that has a different HP total and unique ability (which comes in the form of a card in your starting deck.

Objectives have mini decks that are combined to form the adventure that the players will go through.

Wounds are not just cards that clutter your deck; they take down your HP and if you die in the game you die in real life.

If you get hit by a face hugger, a chestburster card is put into your deck. If you draw the chestburster, you automatically die. Then you play as the alien with your own alien deck (if you want to).

There are some other mechanics but the ones I listed are the better ones.
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  #4633  
Old 08-08-2015, 03:19 PM
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Does the chestburster switcheroo work if you're playing solitaire, or is that only to switch teams from player to bad guys? I'm really interested in Legendary because of the opportunity for solo play, so the idea of having to add an instant loss card to my deck isn't really endearing to me. If it's just switching from one deck to another, on the other hand....
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  #4634  
Old 08-08-2015, 05:17 PM
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It's only to switch from good to bad. Facehuggers are fairly easy to kill. I've played the game solo and it's good.
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  #4635  
Old 08-08-2015, 10:16 PM
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Had a long day at Cafe Mox. They have a clearance sale, so 40% off select titles, others for $1/5/10, and 20% off everything else in store. (Until tomorrow, Seattleites!)

I bought Argent: The Consortium (40% off!), Sushi Go!, Star Realms, and Forbidden Desert.

Then we played an assload of games.

Age of War is a fun, light, simple dice game, and seriously who doesn't like dice, but I can see it not having a very long halflife.

Cheaty Mages was really cool. More involved than other Seiji Kanai joints (to be fair Love Letter is only slightly more involved than checkers) but we had a lot of fun with it and my friend turned around and bought it right off. Looking forward to more, wondering how much variety there is in successful strategy though.

Quantum was really fun. It's a dice-based variable-tile-map space control game. Definitely a LIKE

Tsuro of the Seas was not really doing it for us, but would probably be way better with more people?

Sylvion seemed way too hard. Just not enough cards to do anything with the 2-player draw values. We got absolutely steamrolled. Seemed hardly better when we gave ourselves more cards. DO NOT LIKE

D&D Castle Ravenloft was still good. That's a co-op game that's hard - brutal, really - but still feels winnable and fun.

Finally we broke open Star Realms to give it a shot. Even from our first game it was a lot of fun. I'm really looking forward to exploring it in more depth, even trying some of the multiplayer aspects. Although I might need another deck or an expansion for more than 2 players...?


Haven't played Argent before but heard good things about it and hello 40% off, haven't played Forbidden Desert before but I really like island and people say desert is even better. Bought Star Realms sight unseen due to recommendation in this thread and that was a winner, so hooray!
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  #4636  
Old 08-09-2015, 12:00 AM
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You need more decks for >2p Star Realms, but only for the starting decks and Explorers. They're releasing an "alternate core" expansion later this year to help smooth that over.

If playing with >2p, I strongly recommend using the "Hunter" rules or one of the other structured variations. They're a lot more fun than free-for-alls.
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  #4637  
Old 08-09-2015, 07:20 PM
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Forbidden Desert is a good choice, it's my favourite Matt Leacock game.
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  #4638  
Old 08-11-2015, 06:05 PM
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Played Dominant Species for the second time (first time was almost two years ago now), and enjoyed it a lot more this time around. I wish I played regularly enough that I wasn't always playing stuff for the first time, and could actually stand a chance of winning!

Also picked up a copy of Eldritch Horror after meaning to for yonks. The groups that exist in this city are pretty down on Arkham or else sticking to simpler fare like Catan, so I don't know that I'll get much use from it. But goshdurnit, I like the game anyway. Interested in trying out EH.
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  #4639  
Old 08-11-2015, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pombar View Post
Also picked up a copy of Eldritch Horror after meaning to for yonks. The groups that exist in this city are pretty down on Arkham or else sticking to simpler fare like Catan, so I don't know that I'll get much use from it. But goshdurnit, I like the game anyway. Interested in trying out EH.
I think you can sell it. EH is basically AH in less than half the time. It plays in like 90-120 minutes and is dead simple, but still flavorful. Highly recommended.
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  #4640  
Old 08-11-2015, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pombar View Post
Also picked up a copy of Eldritch Horror after meaning to for yonks. The groups that exist in this city are pretty down on Arkham or else sticking to simpler fare like Catan, so I don't know that I'll get much use from it. But goshdurnit, I like the game anyway. Interested in trying out EH.
Be sure to grab the Forsaken Lore expansion. The base set feels a bit lacking in encounters, but the expansion rectifies that.
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  #4641  
Old 08-19-2015, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Mega Man & Rush Limbaugh View Post
Another historical wargamer! Now I have license to post about consims. I should be getting this here in a day or two:

Quote:
Originally Posted by JBear View Post
Hook it to my veins.
My brother-in-law is picking this up and sent me the rules PDF today. I see it clocks in at a slim 48 pages.
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  #4642  
Old 08-20-2015, 02:48 PM
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Picked up D&D Castle Ravenloft AND Wrath of Ashardalon for $50 from a guy clearing out his collection. I've played Ravenloft before but they're basically the same thing, right?

In fact - they're the same system and technically interchangeable and can interact, but... how would that work? Homebrew up some rules for a mega campaign? Mix up or switch monsters and treasures? Pool characters?
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  #4643  
Old 08-20-2015, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul le Fou View Post
Picked up D&D Castle Ravenloft AND Wrath of Ashardalon for $50 from a guy clearing out his collection. I've played Ravenloft before but they're basically the same thing, right?

In fact - they're the same system and technically interchangeable and can interact, but... how would that work? Homebrew up some rules for a mega campaign? Mix up or switch monsters and treasures? Pool characters?
Basically any of those options work, the easiest is just to allow characters from any of the board games, with probably the most complicated being homebrewing a campaign (I think, but am not 100% sure that the games themselves mostly encourage mixing in different cards). I think Ashardalon has stronger treasures, which can be a boon in Ravenloft, while mixing in the Ravenloft treasures sort of dilutes the treasure pool in Ashardalon.
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  #4644  
Old 08-20-2015, 06:49 PM
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My contributor copy of Twin Shadows for Imperial Assault came. Apart from being another editing credit on my resume, this is a nice little expansion; if you like SWIA, it's more of that.
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  #4645  
Old 08-21-2015, 07:09 AM
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My brother-in-law is picking this up and sent me the rules PDF today. I see it clocks in at a slim 48 pages.
Yeah, but that's because the rulebook has big, fat margins that are full of illustrations and examples of play. Without those and normal margins, the page count would probably be half that or less.

I have a copy and have pushed around a few counters in VASSAL, but that's all so far. One of my regular PBEM opponents and I have been getting deep into Bomber Command, by the same designer as Wing Leader.
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  #4646  
Old 08-24-2015, 12:48 AM
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I actually got in three(-ish) board games this weekend. For me, that's a pretty crazy amount!

First Ruadvin came over yesterday and we started off with a game of Legendary Encounters. We played the Alien objectives and characters, but we chose our own avatars. Having two players let us specialize our decks - he did tech and intel cards while I did survival and command characters, letting us both build for combos in a way I couldn't while playing on my own. Using the Coordinate keyword was more fun than I expected. The extra drone cards in the hive deck also slowed things down a bit. Not sticking to the recommended roles for the movie set also made things a bit easier; I used the Gunner in my first solo game last week and even playing the Priest (I was afraid of having the same thing happen as my first game, where I stalled out and eventually died because I couldn't get rid of the self-destruct sequence in time) felt more powerful. I've also played few board games that make you feel the pressure of time so effectively (granted, I have never played one with an actual timer).

After that we played a little Warmachine High Command. I love this game. (Ruadvin is a bit less happy about it, since he didn't do too well this time and he disavows all knowledge of the time we played the Hordes variant, when he soundly spanked me two games in a row.) High Command is a semi-deckbuilding game that severely limits your resources: each card you have can be discarded for one of two currencies, in addition to any abilities it might have as unit, so for each card you have to decide if you want to discard it for its CMD value, its WAR value, or play it as a unit. Add the fact that you have to discard specifically for each action you're doing and you are constantly making decisions on how to spend your resources. It also makes you much more aware of the value of cards as a resource, as compared to so many deckbuilders that feel like they boil down to "make the deck that can draw the most cards in a turn and you'll win!"

On the other hand, High Command can be pretty hostile if you don't know what you're doing. The rules read-as-written make it so that playing as aggressively as you can will almost always be a winning strategy. See, each unit has both a purchase cost and a higher rush cost; purchase a card and it goes into your discard to eventually cycle into your deck in the standard deckbuilder way, but rush the card and it goes straight into combat. The problem is that to deploy a troop from your hand also requires you to pay the purchase cost on it, making it much more expensive to purchase and deploy the troop both in currency and in the number of cards you have to use. Next time I play, I'm probably going to just house rule that deployment is free and see how much that frees things up. I actually like the feeling of being constantly short on resources and making tough decisions, but I'll also acknowledge that in this last game I was playing a deck that from what I can tell has some of the lowest rush costs in the game so I wasn't actually as short on resources as Ruadvin was. Basically, you'll only want to play High Command RAW if you see opportunity cost optimization as an enjoyable puzzle and not a frustration. Add in the deck construction aspect of the setup step punishing people who just want to jump in and play without studying the cards first (yes, it has a metagame, where lack thereof is normally one of my favorite aspects of deckbuilders) and, like I said, it can be kind of hostile.

Finally, today I played a game of Legendary Encounters solo via Tabletop Simulator. Not a whole lot to add (I just played the Alien set again; I'm going to see if Ruadvin wants to play a different movie set every couple of weeks so I didn't want to read ahead, as it were), but playing on TS made setting/cleaning up the game so much faster that even though it took longer to play the game itself (scroll here! zoom in! scroll there! zoom out!) I still finished it faster than I think I would have with the physical game, and I was able to chat online and watch youtube as I played! The Scout's free scan on his role card just feels so much more powerful than the Gunner's +objective attack power that I'm probably never playing the Gunner/Technician again. Free scans made watching the xenomorphs so easy I only took four strikes in the entire game, three of them from the self-destruct alone! Zero wounds to one point away from death in one shot, but I still pulled it off and destroyed the Perfect Organism!

Last edited by Lucas; 08-24-2015 at 11:23 AM. Reason: oh right, bolding
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  #4647  
Old 08-24-2015, 02:28 AM
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Had a boargame night tonight! We started out with Cheaty Mages - getting lucky on spell draws and a high-tolerance judge, one guy got a single-bid win on a Goblin and took 20 coins in the second round so it was pretty much impossible to beat him through the third.

Then we played Exploding Kittens, which seems to be all the rage these days but was just kinda... simple? I mean I guess if you're really into The Oatmeal or something. It doesn't have much depth or strategy, but I guess it's okay as a fun timewaster.

Then I got in my first game of Argent. I had a lot of fun, although I got fucking walloped. Especially in the last round, where everyone basically ganged up on me and snatched away THREE votes I had locked down at the last second. I was also really really low on IP so I lagged behind in pretty much everything else, too. Basically I sucked real bad, but it was neat and I want to try some more.
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  #4648  
Old 08-24-2015, 09:48 AM
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I was introduced to Super Dungeon Explore over the weekend, and now I am itching to get my hands on it. It is cute and entertaining and quick to learn, and I want to paint the figures so, so much.
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  #4649  
Old 08-27-2015, 06:28 PM
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Played my first game of Carcassonne, with my can't-believe-he's-still-only-4 year old. With minimal guidance (usually just prompting if he wanted to put a meeple down, to which the answer was almost always yes), he was able to figure out the tile laying portion very quickly. If not for the 3 unfinished monasteries I had camped out together, he probably would have won. Final score: 92-78.

Fun game, quick setup, and relatively quick to play. Definitely adding it to the list I'm starting of games to bring on the Labor Day trip. Not sure my parents are ready for Betrayal at House on the Hill.
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  #4650  
Old 08-28-2015, 12:26 AM
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That's great! We're getting our stuff out of storage this weekend, and there are a lot of games I think Nora can play now (including Carcassonne). Can't wait.

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I was introduced to Super Dungeon Explore over the weekend, and now I am itching to get my hands on it. It is cute and entertaining and quick to learn, and I want to paint the figures so, so much.
There's a lot of assembly, so you know.
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