The Captain Is Dead
The captain is the head of the ship and its crew. What they say goes. They are a fearless leader who will see the ship through any sort of danger. But... what if the captain's... y'know... dead? Then, things get a little tougher. That's where you find yourself in The Captain is Dead. AEG is having a special sale on all the The Captain is Dead sets over in their webshop now.
From the announcement:
Two amazing The Captain is Dead adventures on sale for 25% off! With FREE shipping in the US!
Join up with the crew and try to survive these two exciting adventures without a captain to lead you. Use your unique skills to escape an alien prison camp in Lockdown, or explore a strange world and evade lethal bugs in Dangerous Planet!
This sale ends soon so don't miss it!
This week we have: Villages of Velaria, Pandemic Legacy: Season 2, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle - Box of Monsters Expansion, Axis & Allies: Anniversary Edition, Wizards Wanted, Braintopia, NMBR9, Ticket to Ride: Germany, Planetarium, Barbarians: The Invasion, Space Race, The Captain is Dead, and Heaven & Ale.
Learn to Play:
Villages of Velaria Review
In this video I will teach you how to play including: Setup, Player turn, player actions, end game conditions, and scoring. I will also give you my thoughts and opinions on the game, and would love to hear yours.
Board Game Quest:
Pandemic Legacy: Season 2 Review
Note: This review will be a spoiler free look at Pandemic Legacy: Season 2. Everything discussed in detail can be found in the rulebook and the prologue.
Unlike the first season, Pandemic Legacy: Season 2, starts off quite a bit different from a vanilla game of Pandemic. Instead of trying to prevent disease cubes from being added to cities, you are trying to add and keep supply cubes in each city. Season 2 offers a prologue that you can play through any number of times to get used to the slightly different setup.
Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle Review Box of Monsters Expansion
In order to keep things as spoiler free as possible, I’ll just give a general overview of what’s new the expansion, and limit photos to what’s in the first sealed box.
Much like the base game, the expansion comes with four boxes to open over the course of four games. To go along with the 4 characters from the core box, players can now use Luna Lovegood as their hero. She has a base power that heals someone the first time she draws extra cards. The expansion also includes a new power for each of the other heroes.
Axis & Allies: Anniversary Edition
Chances are you already know how to play Axis and Allies so I’m not going to bore you with a lengthy gameplay overview. For those of you that aren’t, I’ll give you the quick basics. You can also download a PDF of the rules here.
Axis & Allies is a war game set during World War II between the Axis powers of Germany, Russia and Japan against the Allies of Great Britain, Russia and the USA. The Axis and Allies Anniversary Edition comes with two ways to play. Either 1941 or 1942, depending on what period of the war you want to use. They each feature different setups and turn order, but other than that have the same core gameplay.
Wizards Wanted Review
Each player takes a wizard player board which grants the player one of four charms (in four separate colors). These charms give bonus money and fame to players as they complete spell jobs at village locations on the board. The player board also has a space for a player’s pixie dust which powers spells and extra movement.
Each turn, players choose how far they will move and whether or not they will take an action. Moving a higher number of spaces costs more pixie dust. In addition, a player can use multiple teleportation type spaces to zip around the map. This is important because budgeting pixie dust for movement vs completing spell jobs is an important calculation in the game.
Braintopia puts your mental synapses to the test. The goal is to recognize patterns, memorize images, solve puzzles or otherwise use your brain faster than the other players. One card at a time. It’s basically cerebral Slapjack.
The rules are simple. Flip over one card from the deck. Players try to deduce the card’s answer based on its category. If you think you’ve solved it, slap it with your hand and leave it covered. The one with the quickest reflexes gets to announce the solution. Correct answers win the card. Guess poorly, and you sit out the next round. Collect two cards to earn a brain token. Gather four brains to win the game.
NMBR 9 Review
NMBR 9 is all about stacking tiles as high as possible to maximize your points, and it’s not as easy as you might think. Here’s how it works.
From a single deck of cards holding 2 copies of each of the numbers 0 – 9, a card is flipped over. Everyone takes the tile represented on the card and adds it to their own personal stack of tiles, with just a few restrictions.
Ticket to Ride: Germany Review
The first thing to note is that Germany isn’t a map pack expansion. (Although perhaps it should have been. More on that down below.) It’s a full fledged game in its own right, meaning you don’t have to own any of the other versions of Ticket to Ride to play.
The basic rules are almost exactly the same as basic Ticket to Ride, though. You’re collecting sets of cards, trading them in for trains to claim routes, and scoring points based on how long those completed routes are. The only two notable exceptions are the passengers and the inclusion of two decks of destination tickets, divided into long and short routes.
Board to Death TV:
Matter swirls around a new born star, coalescing on the planetoids that orbit it. Planets evolve, grow and migrate in their orbits, forming a unique solar system by the end of every game. Planetarium is a game of creation, chaos and terraforming on the grandest scale.
Players are competing to crash combinations of elements onto planets that then allow them to play cards to evolve the planets in a variety of ways, with each player looking to evolve planets in the system to suit their own secret endgame goals.
Barbarians: The Invasion Review
In Barbarians: The Invasion, you control a barbarian clan and lead it on its path to glory. Place your champions on the 3D Volcano to gather resources, construct buildings, pray to gods, and lead your troops in fierce battles to conquer the most regions and become the greatest clan of all time.
Space Race Review
The world struggles in the Cold War, and many see the sky as the next battlefield. The era of Space Race has just begun. Do you have what it takes to lead a daring space agency into a new age of human achievement?
Space Race takes place during the first seven decades of the space conquest, and players become directors of newly established Space Agencies. Their goal is to expand them and to achieve astonishing breakthroughs. During the game, players will develop their Space Agencies by acquiring various cards (engineers, technologies, space programs) from a shared pool of cards called Universe.
The Captain is Dead Review
The Captain Is Dead is a co-op game for 2 to 7 players. All you have to do is get the ship’s engines (aka “Jump Core”) back online and you win, but because there is a hostile alien ship trying to destroy you, that is easier said than done.
You have an impressive star ship full of useful systems that will help you fend off the aliens, and get the Jump Core back online. Each system gives you an advantage while it remains online. The assault from the hostile alien ship tends to keep knocking those systems offline however. So you need to balance your time between keeping the ships system’s online, fending off the alien threat, and completing your objective.
Drive Thru Review:
Heaven & Ale Review
Intro (00:00); game overview (01:10); final thoughts and review (16:32)
From the website:
It’s the last 10 minutes of your favorite sci-fi TV show…
Except that this time things have gone seriously wrong and The Captain Is Dead!
The Captain is Dead is a frantic and fun cooperative board game that puts you and your friends in the role of crew members on a besieged starship. You must work together to repair critical systems and fend off hostile aliens, or you will share the captain’s fate. From the chief engineer, weapons officer, and visiting admiral, all the way down to the ensign and the ship’s janitor, you must combine your unique talents to avoid utter annihilation in the cold depths of space!
I hope you're celebrating in style. I know some of you are out at KingdomCon. Others of you are at PeteCon. Still others are just hanging out at your LGS getting your gaming on. Well, however you're celebrating, I hope the dice/cards/whatever are in your favor. Remember, it's all about having fun and making friends.
Anyway, if you're wondering what game you should play today, maybe some of these reviews can help out.
This week we've got: Firefly: Crime and Punishment expansion, Strife: Legacy of the Eternals, Clans of Caledonia, Quartz, World's Fair 1893, Game of Trains, The Captain is Dead, The Walking Dead: All Out War, Farsight, Martians: A Story of Civilization, Zephyr: Winds of Change, Exit The Game, Morels, and Perry Miniatures' Confederate Infantry.
Board Game Quest:
Firefly: Crime and Punishment Review
Unlike the big box Blue Sun and Kalidasa Expansions, Firefly Crime and Punishment is on the smaller side, about on par with the Pirates & Bounty Hunters expansion (yet deeper than Jetwash or Esmeralda).
The biggest change that the Crime and Punishment expansion adds to Firefly are the Alliance Alert cards. These are thematic event cards that slightly change the nature of the rules. One is put into play at setup, with some misbehaving cards or nav cards changing the Alert card out for a different one.
Strife: Legacy of the Eternals Review
In Strife, players take on the role of one of the members of a group of immortals known as the Endless. Each player starts a round with the same hand of ten champions and will play them simultaneously as they fight at different locations around the world. The player whose champion has the highest power value after the fight wins the victory points.
However, these champions have more than just their power value to consider when selecting them for battle. Each card has a battle ability that will affect the current battle, as well as a legacy power that will affect the next champion the player plays from their hand. The player with the most points at the end of three rounds is the winner.
Clans of Caledonia Preview
Players take the role of Scottish clans in the 19th century adjusting to the onset of industrialization. A major component of the game is expanding to acquire huge tracts of land and producing resources in the form of wool, milk, and wheat. These are used to produce finished goods such as bread, whiskey, and cheese. From these activities, they can fulfill export contracts that bring in imports such as cotton, tobacco, hops, and sugar cane. Through a variety of different scoring opportunities, players can acquire points with the aim to have the most at the end.
Players take on the role of dwarves venturing into a dangerous mine with the aim of collecting the most valuable gems. This is accomplished by selecting plastic gems from a bag, hoping to retrieve the rarest gems while trying to avoid obsidian (black) gems. Each round, a player’s selections add points and the most points at the end of five rounds wins the game.
World's Fair 1893 Review
World’s Fair 1893 is a lightweight game with elements of area control and set collection driving the game. The goal of the game is to be the fair organizer with the best reputation at the end of the game. In game terms you’re collecting victory points, but building a cool reputation sounds better.
Game of Trains Review
Game of Trains is a light card game for two to four players. Players have seven railcars that begin in descending order. The first player to get their railcars in ascending order wins.
Drive Thru Review:
The Captain is Dead Review
Intro (00:00); game overview (01:21); final thoughts and review (12:59)
The Walking Dead: All Out War Review
Intro (00:00); game overview (02:10); final thoughts and review (19:35)
Farsight Kickstarter Review
Big bastard robots!
That's what my podcast co-host and Polyhedron Collider writer said to me when I showed him some details about Farsight, the new game from Braincrack games that the entire Polyhedron Collider crew got to play on Tabletopia this week along with Lewis from Braincrack. And the game certainly is about big bastard robots, with a mix of game-play from Space Marine, Stratego and Heroes of Normandie.
It's the near future blah blah blah, corporations blah blah blah, war! You don't need to know the back story, the important thing to remember is that like chucking out time in Wrexham town centre, it's all about to kick off but instead of fighting over your position in the kebab shop queue, you'll be fighting over key strategic bases spread over the board.
Martians: A Story of Civilization Review
Mars seems to be the hot ticket right now. Whether people are terraforming it, journeying to it, colonising it or battering it and deep frying it, the Red Planet has got more attention than Sean Spicer talking about what he believes to be an accurate account of German history. There are currently rovers on Mars roaming around giving us more information than ever before and they’re all more reliable than the cars of the same name. Rover Metros were less reliable than a London Midland commuter train on a bad day and the Mars Rover took less time to get to its destination.
So being the space-nut that I am, sometime in 2016 I jumped on the backing bandwagon, boarded the mission to Mars and backed Martians: A Story of Civilization. And I note the awful Americanisation of our beloved mother tongue with that filthy “z” instead of the Queen’s “s”, but, like an excited hound with the keys to a JCB, I dive down yet another rabbit hole.
Toucan Play That Game:
Zephyr: Winds of Change Review
In this video you can find out my thoughts on Zephyr Winds of Change by Portal Dragon.
Exit The Game Review
theMCGuiRE review takes a look at Exit The Game - a new series from KOSMOS. This is a really fun "escape room" experience designed to be played with 1-6 players in under 2 hours. The series offers 3 different experiences to be played at this point and I hope to see more in the future.
So if you are into the escape room feel or just like solving puzzles, you should love these new titles.
theMCGuiRE review takes a look at Morels a strategic mushroom collection game. This game is really cool and I love the theme - this one is a two player game only but they are doing a kickstarter to expand the game and make it a 3-4 player game as well.
You will go through this one collecting sets of mushrooms and cooking them up with cider and butter for extra points. Dont be left with a sets in your hand at the end of the game or loose the points! So collect baskets, buy walking sticks and travel deep into the forest to be the king mushroom collector!
Battle Brush Studios:
Perry Miniatures' Confederate Infantry
In this comprehensive review Battle Brush Studios' Sigur takes a close look at one of Perry Miniatures' most popular plastic boxed set - Confederate Infantry.
What? You don't think that's beautiful weather?
You know what they call a place that has nothing but "beautiful, sunny days"? The desert. Relatively few things live there.
You know what they call a place that has rain all the time? The rain forest, some of the most bio-diverse and bio-dense areas of the planet! So there!
Ok... that got weirdly antagonistic for no reason. Maybe I should just go check out some game reviews. Yeah. That's a good idea.
Today we have: Everzone, Portal, The Captain Is Dead, Triumvirate of the Imperium - Inquisitor Greyfax, Triumvirate of the Imperium - Belisarius Cawl, Raise Your Goblets, The Three Little Pigs, Concordia, Adrenaline, Hands in the Sea, Neuroshima Hex iPad Edition, 7 Wonders: Duel, Klask, Rise of Mafia, and Cavern Tavern.
Everzone Card Game Review
theMCGuiRE review takes a look at EVERZONE the card game from WinterLair and designed by Marco Mingozzi. I really do like this game in comparison to other combat games in the genre. It makes use of some standard mechanics very well and adds a layer of "this feels different" very well. It offer many different game play setups as 1v1 2v2 3v3 and 1v1v1 which makes it very robust and adaptable. So choose your force Numan, Slurrs, or Uthrons and go to battle in this very strategic battle card game!
Portal Board Game Review
Cryptozoic and Valve team up to make a sweet game of cake! No really this game is about cake and portal guns...how much better could you get really! Basically you are running through this track like board game incinerating others cake while protecting yours for the win.
The components are fantastic, simple but just right for the theme. Again, you have to remember this was based off a computer game developed by Valve Software, an extremely well done video game at that. I think it translates nicely into this simple yet super fun game I cant get enough of.
The Board Game Show:
The Captain Is Dead Review
Designed by J.T. at The Game Crafter, The Captain Is Dead is a sci-fi themed, cooperative, frantic, and satisfying kick in the ass. In fact, it’s thematic nirvana. You not only get to be the crew member of a starship, your actions during your turn are intuitive and often best suited to your expertise.
Triumvirate of the Imperium - Inquisitor Greyfax Review
Since saturday 14th, the Triumvirate of the Imperium is available, a combined heroes set with 5 miniatures in total, the Archmagos Dominus Belisarius Cawl, the Inquisitor Greyfax as well as St. Celestine, with her entourage of Eleanor and Genevieve.
Triumvirate of the Imperium - Belisarius Cawl Review
To continue with the Triumvirate of the Imperium, the next miniature that I'll be taking care of is the Archmagos Dominus Belisarius Cawl.
Drive Thru Review:
Raise Your Goblets Review
Intro (00:00); game overview (01:02); final thoughts and review (11:16)
The Three Little Pigs Review
In The Three Little Pigs you and your porcine competitors must build houses of straw, sticks, brick or a combination of them all while hoping to withstand the big bad wolf’s mighty lungs. Before you can build your abodes of varying structural integrity, you must gather the material. And you’ll do that by rolling dice.
Concordia is a hand and resource management game for two to five players. Players are merchant family leaders in ancient Rome trying to establish trade connections throughout the Roman world and find favor with the gods. The player with the most points is the winner.
Board Game Quest:
Your goal in Adrenaline is simple. Shoot your opponents and try to score as many points as possible. Each round players will be moving around the board, picking up weapons and ammo, and trying to shoot as many other players as possible.
And as with any good FPS game, the action doesn’t stop when someone dies. They dust themselves off and respawn right away, ready to dish out (and take) more punishment. Players earn points for shooting their opponents, and can earn bonus points for getting first blood or the kill shot. At the end of the game, the shooter with the most points wins.
Hands in the Sea Review
Punic Wars. What are they good for? Board games. I’ll say it again.
The players represent the conflicting forces of Carthage and Rome fighting throughout the Tyrrhenian Sea for control of Sicily, Corsica, and Sardinia. Players can win outright by a variety of means, but if a game end condition is met, victory is adjudicated by victory points.
Neuroshima Hex iPad Edition Review
Each turn, a player draws three tiles from their stack, discards one and may then play the other two onto the game board. Tiles come in the form of units (both ranged and melee), Modules (boosts other units), or Instants (one time use tiles). Once someone plays a battle tile (or the board fills up), units will attack in descending initiative order. The games combat system is delightfully simple and easy to understand. Be the last player with an HQ still on the board (or have the most points left when players run out of tiles) and you win!
7 Wonders: Duel Review
A civilization game need not be a long, drawn-out affair. 7 Wonders: Duel, like its older brother, is a civilization building game where players draft cards that represent economic, cultural, scientific, and military achievements. As players collect cards, they increase in power through three Ages. The game can end in a scientific or military victory, but if this doesn’t happen, each player’s civilization is compared through victory points.
Board to Death TV:
The KLASK game board is shaped like a ball field with two deep holes functioning as goals in each end of the field. In the middle of the field, three white magnetic pieces serve as “obstacles” – do NOT attract them to your own gaming piece! Your gaming piece is a black magnet. You control it by holding a large magnet under the board. This magnet is connected to a small magnet placed on the field. The purpose of the game is to push the small, red ball around on the field with your magnet/gaming piece, shoot the ball past the obstacles and your opponent and into the goal hole (Klask). It’s so much fun when your opponent suddenly is covered in white obstacles or you drop your gaming piece into the goal – something which might happen if you get a little too eager!
Rise of Mafia Review
The Rise of Mafia is the first of its' kind tabletop game based on real life mafia from 1930s' with only one goal...to become a Don!
Cavern Tavern Review
Cavern Tavern is a worker (dice) placement and resource management game that is set in a fantasy world. Each player assumes the role of a worker in the tavern. Your job is to serve drinks, work in the kitchen, do chores, and on top of that try to keep every guest happy, including the nasty and greedy barkeep.