Board Game News! – 23/09/2018

Arkham Horror box art - adventures chased by tentacles in a 1950's buggy

Arkham Horror box art - adventures chased by tentacles in a 1950's buggyThis week there have been a few big game announcements I’ve been dying to talk about. The first, and most important, is Arkham Horror 3rd Edition from Fantasy Flight Games.  I’ve played a lot of Eldritch Horror, and while it’s a great game, it loses something being a world wide affair. I’m really looking forward to them bringing back the intimacy of Arkham Horror. They’re also reducing it from being a 4-6 hour affair to 2-3, and made a swathe of other changes. If it’s anything else like FFG’s other recently updated games, it’s going to be a slam dunk.

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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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My Love Letter to Love Letter

There are a few games in my collection where the review is a bigger story than just one solitary review. For instance, I wanted to review Lovecraft Letter but to do that I need to establish my thoughts on the original. Otherwise we’d be skipping forward to seeing Neo being The One, without understanding what the Matrix is. Although to be fair, even after three movies, and a mini anthology, I’m still not sure that I know. By the end of this review, you’ll hopefully be in a better place than I, so without further ado introducing Love Letter: Premium Edition a 2-8 player game designed by Seiji Kanai and published by AEG – for now.

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Schotten Totten: A Battle For Stones

Roll-to-Review-Schotten-Totten-Box-ArtI fell in love for the first time in my life when I met my wife, the second time I fell in love was when I found out about IELLO’s mini games collection. Within this treasure trove resides Schotten Totten, a two-player card game designed by the renown Reiner Knizia. However, you might know it by another name, as this game is a very similar to the board game Battle Line.

Before we begin, included in Schotten Totten is deck of 10 tactic cards. These cards provide temporary powers that change the rules of the game. We preferred the game without these additional cards and I have reviewed the game as such.

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Concept: Party on Wayne

Roll-to-review-board-game-concept-box-cover

While other people were out playing worker placement, and abstract games, I was going through a party game phase; deducing who was the murderer in Deception or acting out a scene in Monikers. Whenever I ran into my Mum, she would sigh and say: why can’t you be normal like the other kids. To which I’d reply: damnit Mum, this isn’t a phase, it’s my life! Turns out it was a phase, and one of the games that kicked it off was Concept. This is one of the more recognised party games, and was nominated for both a Spiel Des Jahres, and a Golden Geek. It was designed by Gaëtan Beaujannot, and Alain Rivollet, published by Repos Production, and reviewed by me, Dave Norris.

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Smile Review: Smile like you mean it

Roll-to-review-board-game-cover-artEver notice how the meanest games have the nicest names? Smile, Nothing Personal, Dead Last. OK maybe not Dead Last, but you get my point. Smile, is a new implementation of the hit game No Thanks! Which when played with a group adults quickly turns into a game of F**K You. It’s a 3-5 player, reverse auction game, designed by Michael Schacht and published by Z-Man games.
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Jump Drive Review: Start Your Engines!

Roll-to-review-board-game-jump-drive-box-artGiven the Commonwealth Games are 100km away, you’d forgive me for mistaking Jump Drive for a board game about the determination and drive required to become a professional long jumper. Instead, what I found was a baby board game; essentially My First Race for the Galaxy. A 20 minute engine builder for 2-4 players, designed by Tom Lehmann and published by Rio Grande Games.

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Muse Review: Finding Your Inspiration

Muse-Roll-to-review-board-game-box-art

Muse is a 2-12 player party game designed by Jordan Sorenson and published by Quick Simple Fun Games. Players break up into teams and attempt to find a mugger in a line-up of gorgeous looking picture cards. Their only clue was given to them by a crazed passerby, who, for some reason, does nothing but hum the description of the thief. If the team can decipher the song and identify the correct villain, then that team moves one step closer to winning the game. Welcome to Muse.

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