Well, in the last two weeks actually. I’ve had a busy few weeks of playing games, finally getting back to Oxford On Board and managing to get to Thirsty Meeples once, so I’ve got a lot to talk about.
###Caylus online I’ve been playing Caylus online with Sina in a play-by-email format. We make 1-2 moves a day. It is slow, methodical, and intense. On Tuesdays we catch up and talk about the game. It’s a totally different board gaming experience, and I love it.
###Sentinels of the Multiverse A co-op game with cards, based around comic book stories. I love the theme and the stories it creates, and I love how picking your hero and the supervillain you’re fighting involves choosing different decks of cards that feel completely different. Really good fun. Perhaps it goes on a little long? That could just be that this was our first playthrough.
###String Railway I can’t tell if this game is strategically interesting yet, but it’s good fun and it’s great for showing off how broad board gaming can be. There is no board or no grid, just the table, some station markers, and a load of string. A really unique game.
###Love Letter Simple, quick, easy to learn, and actually a good game: 4 things that don’t usually come in one package. It’s heavily based on the random draw but it’s hard to find a time when you don’t want to play Love Letter.
###Jupiter Rescue A co-op game involving many, many little plastic figurines. You play as a team of robots trying to get stupid humans off a spaceship via escape pod before the evil creep can consume them. You do this by working through a deck of power-up cards, working together to co-ordinate holding back the creep and moving the humans to the escape pod. This game is cute, replayable, and fun, but it does last quite a while. It’s just as prone to quarterbacking (The loudest person on the table tells everyone else what to do) as Pandemic, so you might find that it doesn’t work with every group.
###Hare & Tortoise This game won the first ever Spiel Des Jahres in 1979. It’s a race game - first to the end wins - but you move by discarding carrots from your hand. You collect carrots by landing on certain spaces, and moving greater distances costs exponentially more carrots. You are required to trickle over the line with very few carrots, so it’s a problem of trying to spend what you have perfectly. A difficult problem to optimise, low amounts of randomness and not a whole lot of interaction with other players, but enough to keep it interesting. I love it.
###Castles of Burgundy This is a classic euro game, slightly marred by the inclusion of a dice roll. You have a little plot of land and each turn you buy buildings from the central board and place them on your land, each giving you a variety of bonuses. You interact with other players by taking the things they want off the central board first. Perhaps Castles of Burgundy is a little to complicated to openly recommend to everyone, but if you’ve played a few board games before you’ll have no problem getting into this, and if you like euro-style build-your-own-little-town games, this is definitely one to check out.