Dawn of Peacemakers is the campaign game for board gamers looking for something different

Have you seen the Tuxedo Mask meme? The one where he says to Sailor Moon: “My work here is done.” Sailor Moon replies, “But you didn’t do anything.” And then he waves his cloak, saying, “Didn’t I?”

That’s the perfect embodiment of this game.

You do nothing, and yet at the same time, you do everything.

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And the award for best thematic board game goes to…

In university, I took Marketing 101 as an elective. I enjoyed the subject, but I enjoyed the girls more. Which sounds incredibly chauvinistic. And is. But after four years into my IT degree, it was like an oasis in an otherwise barren landscape.

One of the first things we learnt in the course was cars. And the difference between how they’re valued. You have your mass market cars: cheap to make, cheap to buy, and the idea is that they sell as many as possible with a small margin. Then you have your exclusive cars: they’re more expensive to make, and the margin is a lot higher. Meaning you don’t have to create or sell as many. Because of this you’re no longer buying a car but an experience of exclusivity; a status symbol.

Ridiculous right? What vapid person would buy something based purely on exclusivity?

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Forbidden Sky Laid Bare

What does it mean to be alive?

Specifically, in terms of board games. And I want you to really think about it. Which board games that you’ve played felt alive? Which ones didn’t? What’s the difference?

These are the questions I knew I had to answer with this review.

Name: Forbidden Sky

Players: 2-5

Publisher: Gamewright

Designer: Matt Leacock

Artists: C. B. Canga

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Underleague: The Game PETA Doesn’t Want You To Play

We have a problem. Board games are too family friendly.They’re becoming the MCU. And while the MCU has produced some great action movies like Captain America: Winter Soldier, and Avengers: Infinity War. They’re sanitized. Sometimes that’s fine, but sometimes you want your action movies to be visceral. Sometimes you want The Raid. This was my expectation going into a game where the front cover has a blood drenched metal spider ripping the FREAKING head off a giant rat.

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Fasten your Seatbelts! A Now Boarding Review.

Now Boarding Cover. Air hostess presenting a plane.

We all have our comfort food. That cheeseburger, or tub of ice-cream after a tiring day of work where nothing went right. The same idea applies to board game designers. People who develop games so in tune with your very being that they feel intimate. Like putting on a comfy robe or sliding into a warm bath. For me, my warm bath designer is Tim Fowers.

Now Boarding Cover. Air hostess presenting a plane.

Name: Now Boarding

Players: 2-5

Publisher: Fowers Games

Designer: Tim Fowers

Artists: Ryan Goldsberry

Continue reading “Fasten your Seatbelts! A Now Boarding Review.”

Letters from Whitechapel: Do not open!

Letters from Whitechapel box art. A shadowy figure standing above Whitechapel blueprints.

It’s Halloween. By now everyone has had their fill of pumpkin spice lattes and reviews and playthroughs of Mysterium. For me, I’m opening a blood drenched box holding a half-eaten human kidney and a letter that reads:

From hell.

Mr Lusk,
Sor
I send you half the Kidne I took from one women prasarved it for you tother piece I fried and ate it was very nise. I may send you the bloody knif that took it out if you only wate a whil longer
signed
Catch me when you can Mishter Lusk

Which is weird, because my name’s David.

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Deck-Building is Dead. Long live Deck-Building! A Dale of Merchants Review.

Dale of Merchants box cover - features a hiker overlooking a small town by a waterfall

I grew up in the golden era of massively multiplayer online games. The biggest being World of Warcraft. It was fantastic. I lost years to the game. It also ruined the industry. No other company could come close to recreating something so irreverent and genre defining. In board gaming, Dominion did the same for deck-building. Many have attempted, but none have conquered the king. Dale of Merchants is a new challenger, and the question we must ask is: can it take the throne?

 

Dale of Merchants box cover - features a hiker overlooking a small town by a waterfallName: Dale of Merchants

Players: 2-4

Publisher: Snowdale Design

Designer: Sami Laakso

Artist: Sami Laakso

 

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Raiders of the North Sea – A board game to play before Ragnarok!

Raiders of the North Sea cover, angry vikings ready to raid

Not so long ago there were two schools of design within board games. On one hand, the uninteresting theme, no luck, all strategy games that came primarily from Germany – called Euro games or Euros. On the other hand, we had American style games where it was all randomness all the time, extremely high player interaction and jam packed with style. These games were lovingly referred to as Ameritrash. While these terms aren’t used so much today, as these styles have bled together over the years, this board game I’m reviewing demonstrates the differences each style brings while attempting to find a middle ground.

Raiders of the North Sea cover, angry vikings ready to raid

Name: Raiders of the North Sea

Players: 2-4

Publisher: Renegade Games and Garphill Games

Designer: Shem Phillips

Artists: Mihajlo Dimitrievski

Raiders of the North Sea allows players to live a week in the life of the Vikings of old. On Monday: you’ll work at the Mill getting food or gold. Tuesday: The Silversmith gives a silver for any help he receives. Wednesday: time to meet the townsfolk at The Gate House, make friends and they’ll join or aid your crew later. Thursday: make an offering to the chieftain at the Long House who’ll honour you with glory and victory points. It’s a good time to note this board game is not historically accurate. Friday: it’s one silver beer night at the Barracks making it a great place to pick up new crewmates and a hangover. Saturday: spoil yourself. Take the crew out raiding and pillage a nearby settlement. Sunday: pour some mead out for those who journeyed to Valhalla – the Viking equivalent of the big farm upstate, and then loot a now defenceless village. Monday: it’s time to do it all over again.

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