Saturday, 12 January 2013

A new year for more boardgaming

It's the first board game day of a new year. It was quite a packed day, we started off playing a game of Duck Duck Go! and then a game of Alhambra which brought it up to lunch time.

The first game after lunch was Foursite, this is quite an intersting game as you draw tiles to place on the board that have to match symbols with existing tiles on the board. You score 1 point for each matching symbol and you also score 1 point for each square that you enclose. This little twist added lots of thought on how to play each tile. Some of it is down to luck as to whether you draw a useful tile or not but the rules add a time limit for how long each turn should take so you need to be able to spot a good move.

 Foursite is a good, quick game and this copy was picked up cheap from the Works discount shop.

The next game was Beowulf. Although it has a movie tie-in it is a great game and you can't go wrong with a game designed by Reiner Knizia. It all about placing +ve and -ve tiles on the board and placing you scoring tokens in line with them. Place you tokens too early and the other players will play -ve points inline with them, leave it too late and you miss the best scoring areas. Some tile have special abilites so all is not lost and the game is played over 3 Acts which are on different boards, the picture shows act 3 the largest of the boards.

With time running out we played an old game called "Advance to Marble Arch". It's a simple game were you are trying to obtain the most value in hotel chains. Each turn you roll 3 dice, two show how much money you have to spend and the 3rd dice says which colour zone you can spend it in. It is possible to take over hotels belonging to another player and a few cards that give extra actions, quick and fun. You can always blame the dice if you loose.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Hordes of the Things

After making the modular game tiles my girlfriend and I chose to play a game of the "Hordes of the Things". This was the first time we had played together (I had played many years ago and found that it was lacking something at the time). The game plays quickly enough to finish a battle in about 1-2 hours and doesn't get bogged down by complex rules. 

We both enjoyed the game. It is based on the DBA and DBM rules but in a fantasy setting. There are quite a lot of different troop types available although there is no difference between races. Here we are playing with figures I have for Elf and Chaos Warmaster armies. In combat each player only throws a single dice and this can add quite a high random element to the game but generally this equals out over the game, and the command system means that you can't control all your units in a single turn so choices have to be made the can effect the outcome of the battle. The only thing that we didn't like was that relatively small range that bow troops have only 2 inches, all units move at least this a turn so to get any shooting in you have to be very tactical or lucky.

Modular game tiles

I spent some time this weekend making modular game tiles for war gaming and after some thought came up with the following

The main tiles (of which the photo is 3 x 3) are 20 cm square and the smaller one just happened to be off cuts during the making. Each tile is made out of a light green carpet tile glued down to 3mm hardboard. For the rivers the carpet tile is left 5 cm short at one edge and the hardboard painted and varnished (with the odd pebble glued on).

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Epic Space Adventure

Today five of us got together and had our first game of Twilight Imperium, the epic space game.

The game some very good mechanics but does suffer from the fact that it just takes way too long, I was the lucky one and got eliminated after about 4 hours but the game went on for just over 7 hours. It's like the designers took all the best mechanics from their favourite games and combined it into one game, the result of which just does not really work. I can't say that it is a bad game as all the individual elements I have seen in other games it just that when you combine them all what you get takes too long. It took 2 hours just to get a few hexes away from our home worlds.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Club Day

This weekend was another club gaming day. This week we managed to play 3 games which were Arkham Horror, Speed Circuit and Kingsburg.

Arkham Horror has been a game that I have been interested in playing for a while now, unfortunately after playing it I'm not so sure that I would want to play it again. It took a fairly long time to complete (3.5 hours) and at the end there was no feeling of achievement. I felt like I had just spend the time turning over cards and performing random events. There is a little strategy in how you adjust your characters stats and where you move on the board but that is dominated by the random events that is the rest of the game.

Speed Circuit is a racing game with very little dice rolling. Each player gets 5 points to spend designing their race car's performance in starting speed, top speed, acceleration, deceleration and wear. Players then race around the track choosing their next turns speed in secret from each other and then revealing them at the same time. This makes the game interesting in trying to guess how the other players are going to take the corners and when is the best time to push the limits of your car to overtake.

Kingsburg is a resource management game of sorts. Each player rolls their dice for the turn and then take turns to use them to influence the kings advisors to gain the resources which are then used to build upgrades to their cities and to purchase soldiers to protect them from and invading army at the end of each year.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

War of the Roses

Last night I had a chance to play another game of Basic Impetvs. This time we played the Yorkists vs the Lancasters. The game played swiftly and the York cavalry (pictured in the centre) made decisive attack into the billmen and archers.

I really do like these rules and am looking forward to giving the full rules a play through as they had additional tactics to be used allowing you to react to your opponents moves with counter chargers and opportunity fire. These rules allow a reasonable sized battle to be played in a relatively short time, this game took only 1.5 hours.

Monday, 8 October 2012

Sporadic Postings

During the coming weeks the postings will be more sporadic than normal. Our usual board game evening is currently on hold as my archery club moves indoors for winter and this just happens to conflict with the only free night night everyone has available.

Sunday, 30 September 2012

A Game of Life

A little light gaming today. We played "The Game of Life" by MB games. This is one of the classic family boardgames which has you using the spinner in the middle of the board and moving around the path doing what is said in each of the spaces. There are no tactics to this game other than can you afford to buy a life insurance certificate this turn or not.

The game does not take long to play and it does teach a few life lessons as you play. A university degree helps you get a better job (but not always) and save whilst you can because there is no income in retirement. Still the game is a classic and can be fun if you are in the right mood to just "roll and move" and have a laugh as the story of the game unfolds (who spends £260,000 entering the Grand National after retirement !).

Thursday, 13 September 2012

2 Vikings

This evening two of us played Vikings. This time we played by the simple version that does not include the auction mechanic or the bonus tiles. This is still enjoyable but does require less thought, you only have to think about what tiles and vikings are coming up on the wheel and not about the order or when to buy an expensive tile to get one of the bonus tiles.

 It played a lot quicker too in about 45-60 mins so was good for a quick game. Both versions of this game are enjoyable and easy to play and the tile price wheel mechanic is a great way to set the values of the tiles making the choice of when to buy up to the player, wait to long for the price to drop and another player may  snap the tile up before you.

Monday, 10 September 2012

Club Gaming

Saturday the 8th was another club day at the Humberside Wargame Club. Todays turn out was low on numbers but this game two of us the chance to play Twilight Struggle.

Twilight Struggle

This game is based on the poilitical struggle during the cold war from 1948 to 1989. Each player takes on the role of one of the super powers and trys to gain more influence over other countires than the opposing player. Care has  to be taken because if the Defcon level reaches 1 then nuclear war has broken out and the player who caused it has lost. The main aim though is to gain 20 victory points to win the game which is a tugg of war between the players as can be seen on the bottom right of the game board.

At the start

The game ended rather swiftly on turn 3 with the Russian player obtaining 20 victory points. This was one of the quickest games of Twilight Struggle that I have played.


Following on from my rapid defeat we then played Aquire. This is an abstract game about buying stock in 7 different hotel chains and expanding the companies in the attempt to have them merge giving a payout depending on the size allowing you to then buy more stock and make more money.


The next game that we played was Totopoly. This did not play well with only two players and I ended up loosing badly. However I still like this game. It is one of those games that although there is not much choice in the game I find it well implamented and still fun to play.