What did you play this week? (9/12/2022)

(9/12/2022) This is an automated weekly post to talk about the games you played last week.

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Moderator Level 122 days ago

My good weeks for games just haven't slowed down!

Online

#Azul - Played another game of this on BGA with my coworker. She keeps losing games but seems to be having a great time playing them lol.

#Cacao - Another game of this wrapped up last week with some people here on BGA. I eeked out the win this time by a small margin. I'm starting to think this game is always going to be pretty close.

#Hawaii - Played a couple more times with and last week. Docker was over it, so we've moved onto #Caylus which I think so far I'm the only one of the 3 of us that understands what's going on lol. As for Hawaii, I like it so far but worry that over multiple plays it could end up getting old. Of course I still don't quite know what I'm doing.

#Battle Sheep - I succumbed to the crazy map madness. I got trapped in a corner but had a great time lol.

#Gaia Project - Another game of this leaving out this time. I didn't think I'd win but to my surprise I did! I seriously love this game.

#Route 66: The Mother Road - Basically just #Can't Stop but not as simple lol. I saw it on BGA and wanted to play it because I backed it on KS. I actually got the shipping notification today so that's exciting. Like said, I think it will be more fun in real life.

#Mancala - I played 3 games of this against Sarah using that iMessage game thing on our iPhones. If that makes sense to anyone, I'd be shocked cause I don't really know what I just said. Anyways, I used to love playing this game before I got into "hobby" games and it still is pretty fun.

In Person

#The Architects of the Colosseum - Had my friend and my brother over on Labor Day. My original plan was to play #Three Kingdoms Redux, but instead we tried playing a bunch of new to me games to help reduce my shelf of shame/opportunity. Architects of the Colosseum my friend and I actually played with Sarah before my brother showed up. It was..fine I guess. Sarah and my friend both found it to be simple enough where we could get non gamers and family to play it. I just worry it's not exactly interesting enough thematically to hook anyone or have them actually have fun while doing so. The Colosseum looks cool when it's built though.

#Cinderella's Dance - Played this quick while waiting for my brother to arrive. It was the less desirable of the two games on the same KS with American Bookshop being the game I actually wanted. It was interesting, but I just don't play a lot of 2 player only games as it is. For this to have staying power, I think it would have to be amazing and it definitely wasn't that.

#Tikal - I really wanted this game for the longest time and it felt like as soon as I actually bought it, I forgot about it. I'm glad I rememered it existed for this play as I had a ton of fun with it. Would absolutely play it again.

#Orongo - Speaking of games I really wanted to try, I got to play Orongo finally. I fully understand why the components are a huge problem with this game as we bumped the table and screwed up everything more times than we could count. I don't forsee this sticking around in my collection forever, but I'd like to play it more.

#Blood Rage - We absolutely rushed through both learning and playing this game and shockingly didn't get any rules wrong. It's kind of interesting to me in that it seemed that with certain card combinations, it actually made a whole lot more sense to lose battles and die rather than try to win any.

#Good Puppers - My meetup group had a weekend event on Saturday and I went for a few hours and played a bunch of games. This game I picked up with the help of my gift card winnings here simply because it was a dog themed game. I found it to be a bit lacking in any real strategy. It's already been sold to Noble Knight lol.

#Gunkimono - Speaking of games sold to Noble Knight, I finally got to play this with my friend as I've been wanting to for months. It was one of the better games we played during the day, but it's nothing special compared to similar games in my collection.

#The Guild of Merchant Explorers - A couple of people at the meetup invited me to play this and without knowing any better I accepted lol. I don't like roll and writes and despite not rolling nor writing anything, this is a roll and write. I didn't find it particularly interesting.

#Flip City - We took a break after the previous game to eat some lunch. When we came back we just picked up a random game someone else had brought and tried it out. I wish I hadn't haha. This game is terrible.

#Babylonia - 3 for 3 so far on games I played Saturday that got sold to Noble Knight haha. My friend and I played twice - the first time he didn't really understand the game and was just placing tiles out randomly. He absolutely crushed me. It was pretty much a wrap for the game at that point. The second play was just to make sure it wasn't a fluke lol. Could be just a bad experience, but it felt like a video game where button mashing is a better way to win vs actually trying to plan out your moves.

#Milestones - Hey look, a game that I owned and played and didn't hate! For some reason this game made me laugh a whole lot. Maybe I was tired or maybe Stefan Dorra unintentionally makes some hilarious games. #Medina (second edition) has the same effect on me.

#Brass: Birmingham - Sarah agreed to play a new to her/us game last night and this is what I settled on. The rules were a little much and I think I confused us both during the teach. At some point, we were getting it and playing correctly..then the end of the canal era happened. From that point on, I had a good time trying to figure out how to make the best out of my terrible planning, but Sarah was just getting more and more frustrated. She was happy it was over so it seems like I'll have to find someone else to play with me the next time I try this.

Moderator Level 121 days ago

Haha, your Babylonia experience sounds pretty funny. Coincidentally, that game is near the top of my wishlist, lol. So far I've really enjoyed all of the Knizia games I've played, and aside from yours, I've really only seen positive reviews for that one.

Moderator Level 120 days ago

I don't think the game is bad....lol

It's just that like for instance in Blue Lagoon you are forced to place tiles next to where you've already placed them which lends itself to some strategy. You have to think about where other people can play and what spaces they can reach before you if you delay placing in a particular spot.

In Babylonia it was like person A was just surrounding this city tile and if person B only has farmers which don't score when cities get surrounded - sure they can try to block person A from getting the city tile, but they're still going to score points and you've just placed things out on the board that don't help you. It made more sense to me to just spam the city tiles with stuff they needed which didn't seem fun vs what I expected from watching playthroughs.

Maybe with more players it would have been a better experience, but because I have what I would consider to be a similar and better game in Blue Lagoon, there was no reason to keep it.

Moderator Level 119 days ago

Fair enough! And obviously I haven't played it so I can't offer an alternate perspective on the strategies. Based on the praise I've seen, I suspect there's something more to it, but I guess I won't know until I play it myself!

Premium User22 days ago

Wow, tons of games!  

Comments:

Gaia Project, invite me anytime!

Battle Sheep.  Mwah hah ha!

Hawaii: Most of the way through the game and I agree with  it's pretty meh.

Brass is awesome but definitely has some gotchas the first time or two.  It's worth it to push through though.

 

Moderator Level 120 days ago

I'll open a game up and post it on the BGA on BGA group to see if anyone else wants to join GP.

I definitely want to try Brass again, just will have to find someone else to play with lol.

Premium User22 days ago

Decent week here:

  • #Blood Rage
  • #Battle Sheep with the BGA gang.  We setup a crazy map and I managed to carve out a section all to myself where I built my mighty sheep army for the win!
  • #Obsession: First time playing this game.  I see why people like it and I'd definitely like to play it again!
  • #Mystic Vale: Played on Yucata.  For two of us it was our first game.  For one of us it wasn't and he wiped the floor with us.  My initial impression is the game is fine to good and I'd play it again now that I have seen it end to end.  
  • #Gaia Project: Got second place by 1 point!  the BGA crew caught up to me already.
  • #7 Wonders
  • #Route 66: The Mother Road: First game and I admit I didn't fully read the rules.  It intrigued me enough to read them and the second game is going better.  This style of game is fine to me but it would likely be better in person to get the ooh's and aah's going.
  • #Space Station Phoenix: First game of this also.  It was...fine.  Didn't blow me away at all. 
  • #Scythe: Played game 6 of the Rise of Fenris campaign. I finished in a distant second...again.  At least this time the game went on long enough for me to get a few stars. Two more games to go!  
  • #CuBirds
  • #For Sale

22 days ago

Mystic Vale was actually my first play also. I think I just understood the game play better, and that's why I was able to almost break 100 with next player getting 11.

I won my first Space Station Phoenix game due to tiebreaker. I'm still not entirely certain how I did it.

22 days ago

For Route 66 - I prefer Can't Stop.  The game was fine but really I spent half the game wishing we were just playing Can't Stop. 

I like Mystic Vale on Yucata though I haven't been on there in a while. 

I had more fun with the 2nd play through of GP and while I think I prefer Terra Mystica I can see why people really enjoy it.

Premium User22 days ago

I'm not really in to those push your luck style games online.  It just misses a lot of life that makes it enjoyable.  As a pure board game experience it is pretty meh for me.  

Mystic Vale was good on Yucata for sure.

I learned Terra Mystica on the app which was a horrible way to learn it so I greatly prefer Gaia Project.  It's the one I have anyway so I figure I'll stick with it. :)

22 days ago

agree about push your luck games online.  during the early covid years my game group would get on the phone and play games on BGA and Can't Stop was great then as we'd tease/taunt each other.  Playing async just isn't the same.

22 days ago

An okay week.

#Mechs vs. Minions @ 3 players and we did Scenario 3 for the first time.  We crushed it and it was way easier than I expected.

#The Quest for El Dorado @ 3 Players and we did the difficult race setup and I managed to crush to win this by at least 2 rounds

First 2 scenarios in #Memoir '44 - I played the allies both times and crushed it.  I think playing online helped with strategy a little bit.  W didn't swap sides after each play (which I suggested but my buddy didn't want to)

Premium User22 days ago

Mechs can definitely be like that.  Usually the scenarios are pretty even but sometimes the right/wrong combo of characters, mission, and play styles can make it really easy/impossible.

It also often seems impossible when you start but as you build up your mechs moves things really take off.

Moderator Level 122 days ago

Still haven't done any of the difficult layouts for Quest, but I want to try them!

22 days ago

Monday's game night was cancelled due to Labor Day so I only had my usual Friday game night to play:

#Great Western Trail @4p - First time playing. Rules were relatively simple although, like a typical euro, it felt like there were one too many balls to juggle. Three of the station tiles increased and/or scored ribbons so my plan was to consistently have the most ribbons by advancing my train further than everyone else. I also decided not to clog up my hand with any goals as I figured I would be able to get more points just naturally without hyper focusing on obtaining certain tiles just to fulfill a goal. I advanced my train every opportunity that I got and was able to nab two of the three ribbon tiles, including the one that scored ribbons, giving me 3 permanent ribbons. Then I made sure I completely opened up my ribbon track for a potential 24 points at the end of the game. I didn't worry about helpers or bandits too much other than hiring an engineer or cowboy once in a while to have tiles to trade out. My strategy seemed to work as I won by about 15 points.

Overall, I can see why people really like this game. I think it's fine, mechanically, but the theme is still very off-putting to me. And I also came away with the feeling that the bandit mechanism was the one ball too many to juggle. I didn't deal with any of them because they were contained to a single road that I had no reason to ever take and they were only needed for goals that I would avoid taking. Maybe if they were placed along the main routes there would have been more incentive to deal with them but I could essentially ignore them the entire game and still come out on top. I would definitely play this again though.

Premium User22 days ago

The bandits are there to a) give you a money infusion if you can time it well, and b) fulfill goals.  If you aren't doing goals then it's not worth getting them.  I don't know if I have ever gone down the bandit path unless it was empty as it's just costing you money for no real gain.  (Unless you want to empty your wallet before giving it to a player I suppose.)

22 days ago

I feel like there could be another way of infusing players with money with other things they already possess. For example, maybe a space that collects rent for every building built similar to the forest one but without the forest restriction. Or maybe a space that collects money per helper. Or keep the bandits but actually put them in the way.

Premium User22 days ago

I think you could integrate them better but in some ways the charm of the game is that you forge your own path.  Your objectives have nothing to do with bandits?  Great ignore them.  The money part is usually secondary for me unless they build up a lot then it's a game of who is going to take that juicy bandit first.

But it could be done differently for sure.

22 days ago

That makes sense.  I'm currently designing a few games so my brain is constantly in design mode and I have exercises where I think about how I would make changes to existing games to make them "better". I can't objectively say the changes are better without actually play testing them though but it's a good exercise to get the ideas flowing.

Premium User22 days ago

Nothing wrong with that!  Who knows, maybe the game would be better for some people with fewer elements!

Moderator Level 122 days ago

In Person: pretty good week! I picked up a bunch of board games in a trade for some of my video games, which was unexpected but welcome! Got to play one of those this week with my wife, plus I had a couple of game nights with my game group, when we made it through another full round of our 4x5 (played one of each game).

  • #The Quacks of Quedlinburg @ 2p - this was one of the games I picked up in the trade, and it was actually new in shrink wrap, which was cool. We really liked it, and I can see this being a favorite for us. I also see us buying the Geek Up Bits, haha
  • #Kemet: Blood and Sand @ 4p - one of our 4x5 games. This game is so good. You have to know going in that you will be attacking and will be attacked often, which is great. I generally don't love when an area control game encourages turtling, and Kemet definitely doesn't.
  • #Oath: Chronicles of Empire and Exile @ 4p - another 4x5 game. I've now won two out of the three rounds we've played this game and I still don't know what's going on. I don't like this game too much, and it doesn't seem like anybody else does either. We've played it 3/5 times now, so we'll finish it out, but the owner said he'll sell it after we finish the 4x5.
  • #Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy @ 4p - another 4x5 game. I got absolutely steamrolled in this one, haha. I like a lot of this game, but I think I'm not crazy about the amount of randomness that it has, between the exploration tile draw, discovery tile draw, dice rolls, and VP tile draw. Still, a lot to like in this game. The combat is exciting (the upside of dice combat), the faux tech tree is interesting. I'm happy to play through this 4x5, but it's not one that I'll be purchasing for myself.
  • #Hansa Teutonica: Big Box @ 4p - the final 4x5 game. I love this game! This time we played on one of the alternative maps (I think Eastern Hanseatic League), and it was surprising how much different it felt! Obviously the rules of the game are mostly the same, but there are a few additions that change it, and the different layout of the map makes a big difference too!

Premium User22 days ago

Agreed on Kemet.  My group is a bit reticient to attack sometimes but in that game attacking is the norm so it really opens things up.

Eclipse is awesome and I managed to snag the expansions (except for the ship stands) finally.  Looking forward to another game with everything in there!  However, when you are new bad explorations can definitely be a hassle.  I have been told that with experience you can adjust plans and make it work out.

Moderator Level 122 days ago

Awesome! Yeah my friend has the expansions too, so we'll probably use those in next game or maybe the one after.