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Weekly board game roundup – 10

I now see how fortunate we were recently. We had the luxury of time to play board games to no end. In these past few weeks with long office hours, family parties and other engagements to go to and the end of a very busy football season our games did not get any love. But I can assure you, the pang, that itch in our hearts, it was there!

This weekend we finally had some much needed time to ourselves and we wasted none of it! One of the games we took to the table was Raiders of the North Sea. It is such a clever worker placement and set collection game. The artwork is beautifully detailed, the characters are down right frightening adorable. We ended up playing it twice in two days and I have to say, the experience was quite different both times! Lovely game!

Having also played some abstracts over the weekend (see the full list at the end of the post) I craved a word game. I already mentioned previously how wonderful Hardback is. And lo and behold, this is the one both of us thought of immediately. With its tongue and cheek humor, with the fact that you can control the luck of the draw with the ink tokens and that there are 5 variants to this deck builder it is guaranteed never to disappoint. And for better or wurst (so sorry, but I just had to. I won 11 point with this word in the last round!) it is a far superior game to Scrabble.

Oh yes, and sometimes a nastier word can earn you a literary award!a

Games pictured (from top to bottom): Raiders of the North Sea, Hardback.

Not pictured: Ganz Schön Clever, Sagrada, Azul.

Weekly board game roundup – 9

We had some friends over this weekend and played a couple of games with them. Started with Tobago, warmed up with The Big Book of Madness and then did some heavy lifting with Rajas of the Ganges. I didn’t want to randomly whip out my camera so there were no photos taken.

On Sunday, however, when alone we took out an oldie (but a goodie?), Scrabble. Now I know, that Scrabble is an old game. From around the II. World War. But, I remember liking it, and being in awe of what a great game it was compared to Monopoly. Well, I might have played with too many newer, more modern games, so in the end it just did not give me the same thrill it did before.

I didn’t like how incredibly high the luck element is in this game. The only chance you got for mitigation if you have a horrible hand is changing some letters and skipping a turn. With that however, you just shot yourself in the foot with a bazooka. Also, no interaction, no interest between your turns. And when it is your turn you sit there thinking, and thinking (hoping for divine intervention) while the others pass out from boredom.

But what really got me is the (lack of) quality of the game. I remember that it was not a cheap game. Well, there are some low quality letter tiles in it, a bag, 4 letter holders and a black and white leaflet called ‘Rulebook’ that looks like it was photocopied. The pictures are small, hard to see. Funny enough, the examples keep referring to the light or dark blue multiplier spots that you just cannot identify because it is (again) in black and white! Did I mention it was not cheap?

But I must digress. The game is somewhat entertaining. I find ourselves recalling incredible combos, impossible words that we managed to spell in previous sessions. But in my opinion there are word games that are far superior to this which I’ll always suggest over this one. Have you tried Hardback or Word Domination? Well, if you like word games, you really should!

Game: Scrabble,

Weekly board game roundup – 8

It must be the hands of fate that will guide us to hidden gems and rare finds. Be it on the shelves of a board-game club or to another gamer who would like to find a loving home for his former game. But the most amazing thing is to discover a great community, friends both old and new, but most importantly, Mr.AP with whom I can share this passion and who will not only play with me once, but wants to play some more.

Games top to bottom: Ulm, Five Tribes, Hand of Fate: Ordeals.

Weekly board game roundup – 7

It’s been some time since I took a couple of days off. It felt refreshing to stay in bed a bit longer, go for a stroll and not rush to work, cook some dishes that take just a bit longer to make and play more games.

During the week we dropped in to Gémklub. We really wanted to try two games, so decided to give them a try. So we built a bit of a bird sanctuary and laid some eggs (aren’t these the cutest?) then traveled to the Far East to … well, play a Mahjong inspired game.

Imagine our surprise, when it turned out that a game we back-ordered turned out to be waiting for us in the store. We brought it home, busted it out and played it. Played it. Then played it some more. I don’t think we’ve ever played something so many times in a row!

I have to say, WOW. I never liked D&D, I am not an RPG girl, but WOW! I fell in love so hard with this game. The story it tells is so tongue and cheek. One minute you are a lunatic-monk-halfling, the next a compassionate-wizard-dwarf. Then the next moment I am the son of a blacksmith. I mean, really? With all the work I did for The Devil’s Blacksmith project? We had such a laugh! If you get a chance, it is a must to try!

Games top to bottom: Wingspan, Dragon Castle, Roll Player and Roll Player: Monsters & Minions

Weekly board game roundup – 6

A long holiday weekend could only mean one thing: games, games and more games! We dusted off an older volume on our shelf, partook in some gentle tile-laying, went mad (twice) and rolled a lot of dice.

However, we made sure to include our 3,5 year old nephew and play some fun games with him as well. I was floored at how well he could explain to us the rules to play Uno! The only real difficulty I faced was to somehow fool my sister-in-law into thinking that we were not letting our nephew win one or two rounds. We were not really successful, but succeeded once or twice.

Games top to bottom: Rajas of the Ganges, AuZtralia, The Big Book of Madness, Suburbia.

Played, but not pictured: Kisvakond Nadrágja, Mi lesz a Jeled?, Uno, Spot it!,

Weekly board game roundup – 5

This weekend – I now realize – we had a bit of a theme to the games we played. I think the best was to sum it up is through this haiku:

We traveled far, we traveled deep;

we came back to Earth for some virus to sweep.

Games top to bottom: Pulsar 2849, Tiny Epic Galaxies, Pandemic.

Played, but not pictured: Ganz Schön Clever.

Weekly board game roundup – 4

This week we traveled to the AuZtralian Outback! AuZtralia, one of the craziest games we’ve played in a long time! A mix of network building, mining, cthulhu, fights and a touch of zombie. Sooo much fun!!! Of course Shoggoth devoured us at the end. C’est la vie..

Games top to bottom: Sagrada, Coimbra, Auztralia.

Not pictured: Ganz Schön Clever.

Weekly board game roundup – 3

Mr.AP and I had such fun at Gémklub the week before last that we decided to go back for more. It was funny to see how the crowd changed over time. When school was out mothers came in with their kids to play. Then the dads would arrive to join the loud groups. As the sun was setting and the office hours drew to a close the 20+ group grew bigger and bigger. It is amazing to see all of these people from all generations joining in the fun!

Games top to bottom and left to right: The Quacks of Quedlinburg,
Solenia, Everdell, Tobago, Deus, Solenia, Azul.

No pictured: Ganz Schön Clever.

The time I was not just uncertain, but ashamed of what I created

As I cautiously approached Mr.AP my heart was full or regret and hesitation.

“Honey, I think I did something awful!”

“What is it?” asked Mr.AP with sudden worry in his eyes. As I slowly opened my palm he exclaimed “Oh my God! IT’S SOOO CUTE! What is this?”

“It’s, it’s … Hitler.” I whispered, almost inaudibly.

“It’s so cute!”

Let me clarify two things before I get into my mea culpa.

First of all, I am the kinda gal who once bought a Sally Hansen nail polish whose catchy name I neglected to check before the purchase. It turned out to be called Aria Red-y? I got so incredibly upset over the name (which in fact is the Hungarian equivalent of Aryan), that I took it right back to the shop. I am still shaken by the experience!

The other thing is that Mr.AP and I love board games. It’s a joint passion of ours. We play games with or without theme, ones where we work together or where we butt heads in an epic battle for those oh so juicy victory points! But hey, if you’ve read this blog for some time, or even if you’ve just stumbled upon it (well hello there, welcome! Nice of you to stop by!) this will not be much of a surprise to you. You’d have seen that I’ve written a couple of posts on the subject.

One of the games that we’ve recently started playing is Black Orchestra. It is a cooperative game historically set in Nazi Germany. The aim of the game is to cooperatively conspire to successfully create and carry out an assassination attempt against Hitler.

Black Orchestra is a phenomenal game. The theme, the mechanism and the esthetics of the game are superb. However, it is not really compatible with my eye sight. Especially, that little cardboard chit that has the name of our arch nemesis on it. The font size, style and the colors chosen for it are really hard for me to see. So I thought I’d create a little figurine, a standee that would replace it, one that I’d be able to spot from a mile away. Which, let’s face it, if you are a sniper lying in wait, would come in really handy.

And here is my regret, my disappointment in myself. The figurine, I have to agree with Mr.AP, looks kinda cute. For Pete’s sake, he looks like a cute grandpa! I created a cute Hitler!??

I think it has to do with the fact that I used wooden beads. It’s roundness gives it this chubby, cherubby appearance. And that isn’t even affected by the tell-tale mustache! I really don’t get it. Mr.AP suggested I’d make him a military hat, but that just made it even worst. It looked like the baby was out on a field trip to Wrigley Stadium! And the thing is, if the figurine is too cute, if it looks like a baby, will I be able to assassinate Baby Hitler?

Well, as it turns out, I am not the only one out there with this dilemma. I was shocked to find a poll conducted by the New York Times Magazine and this satiric blog post, were writers and readers were debating the very same subject.

I think my saving grace will be my life’s mantra: don’t judge the book by its cover! When playing I’ll have to remember, the baby might look kinda cute, and might be cooing its head off, but it’s rotten evil on the inside.

Note to self: When you put the game away remember to put the figurine into its own resealable plastic baggy – away from its deputies – and close it real tight! Just to make sure…

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