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Showing posts from 2020

Games That Didn't Make The List (Acquire-To-Zendo)

And we're done! It's been fun ride, and hopefully somebody reading this has discovered a game they hadn't heard of or reconsidered one that they had discounted before. Anyway, it was a lot of fun to write. Of course, I have discovered games since starting this list that I would not have been able to incorporate. So here are some of the games that I really enjoy that didn't make cut, mostly because they were too new to me. Arcana Rising (2021) Tableau- and engine-builder with drafting where different parts of your engine are triggered based on what round of the draft you're in. Lots of fun and scales very cleanly. It was on Kickstarter earlier this year and should ship in the spring or summer, but there's an official scripted version on TableTop Simulator if you just want to check it out. Horrified (2019) Cooperative survival game set in the world of the classic Universal Pictures monster movies. Smash Dracula's coffins, cure the Wolfman, break the Mummy'

Zendo (Acquire-To-Zendo)

🧩 Riddle Me This... 2001, 3-5 players Complexity: light/moderate From the weirdos who brought you Fluxx  and Pyramid Arcade , it's a game that's not so much a game as it is a competitive logic puzzle. Players will take turns building structures from blue, yellow, and red blocks, wedges, and pyramids to try to discern the secret rule that only the Master knows! Let's See It In Action In Zendo , you or one of your friends will take on the role of Master and present a puzzle for the other players to solve. The Master takes a card that has some options for a rule and chooses two options by putting clips on them (not all cards have two options, but each card has a place for two clips). The Master then builds two structures. One of them satisfies the rule and one does not. They are labeled with black or white discs to indicate their correctness. The other players will then, in turn, build a structure of their own to try to suss out what the rule is. Once they have build a struct

Wingspan (Acquire-To-Zendo)

🐦 A Wing And A Prayer... 2019, 1-5 players Complexity: moderate Every now and then a game comes along and just takes the gaming world by storm. In 2019, that game was Wingspan . Stonemeier's perennially out-of-print lovingly-crafted engine builder was the must-have-can't-find item for board game enthusiasts and it is, in fact, still difficult to come across in the 2020 holiday season. Let's See It In Action In Wingspan , you and up to five friends will take turns attracting birds to your wildlife reserve. On your turn, you take one of four actions. Your first available action--and it is likely the first thing you will do each game--is to play a bird card from your hand by paying its cost in food tokens and eggs and adding it to your player board. Your board is divided into three zones--the forest, the grasslands, or the wetlands. Birds are limited as to which zones they can be played in, although several of the birds are capable of inhabiting more than one zone. These zone

Why First? (Acquire-To-Zendo)

πŸ₯ˆ We're Number 2! We're Number 2! We're Number... 2015, 2-6 players Complexity: light What is victory? Why do we place so much emphasis on winning? This is the deeply philosophical question at the root of Why First? , which is a deeply silly small-box party game. Let's See It In Action In Why First? , you and two to five friends (there are separate rules for two-players, but it's intended to be played with at least three) are racing pawns up and down a track. Although "track" is misleading, as it's less a distance to be covered than it is a place where pawns are ranked. Each player has a hand of five cards. Play is simultaneous. All at once, each player selects one card from their hand and places it in front of any player they want to. Multiple people can play a card in front of the same player. Players can play a card in front of themselves. Each player then advances (or backtracks) their pawn based on the value of the cards played in front of them.

We're Doomed! (Acquire-To-Zendo)

πŸ’£ Hope And Optimism Are Soooooo 2008... 2019, 4-10 players Complexity: light/moderate In fifteen minutes the world is going to blow up and we're all going to die. The various major governments of the world have gotten together to build a rocket as quickly as they can and put as many of themselves on it as possible. How big will the rocket be? How many people can get on it? Who gets priority in the seating? Well, that remains to be decided. Let's See It In Action In We're Doomed! , you and three-to-nine of your drunkest friends will work together to build a rocket, represented by a giant sand-timer that you flip to start the game. In fifteen minutes, the rocket is going to leave with as many players as it can accommodate. The more Resources (white tokens) that get contributed to the project, the more seats the rocket has. However, the order in which players board the rocket is determined by how much Influence (black tokens) each player has, and whoever can't get a seat

War Chest (Acquire-To-Zendo)

⚔️ What Is It Good For, Absolutely Nothing... 2018, 2 or 4 players Complexity: moderate The old general arrived on the heir to the throne's birthday and presented him with a gift: a chest that he claimed contained all the knowledge he would need in order to rule. Inside was a set of coins and some instructions... Let's See It In Action In War Chest , you and your opponent will square off to take control of the field of battle. It can be played one-on-one or two-on-two (for the duration, I will be assuming that it is one-on-one, but the rules don't change all that much if you're playing in teams). Each player has four units under their control, each of which is made up of four or five coins. There are sixteen total in the base game, and the composition of your army can be predetermined--the rulebook contains a recommended first game setup, as well as setups designed to evoke specific historical battles--or decided via snake draft. Each unit is unique, having either a spe

Tsuro (Acquire-To-Zendo)

🚢🏻‍♀️ The Long And Winding Road... 2004, 2-8 players Complexity: light Tsuro  is another instance of what's referred to as a "filler" game--something to kill time between bigger games while other tables finish up. It plays in about fifteen minutes and doesn't require a whole lot of brain space, but it's still fun and challenging in its own way. Let's See It In Action In Tsuro , you and one to seven friends will take turns laying out the path ahead of you, trying to make it last as long as possible, and managing how it effects the other people you run across. So... a metaphor for life. The game is played on a 6x6 grid. Each player starts at the edge of the board in the position of their choosing. On your turn, you place a tile from your hand in front of you and then follow the path until it runs out. If your tile advances you onto another tile that's already in play, you keep following the path. If you run off the edge of the board, you're out. Tiles