Carson City –
Talk about a beautiful game! Dan’s Carson City Deluxe is truly a thing of wooden beauty. With custom wood components to replace most of the standard punchboard, and more variants than you can shake a stick at, this is a worker placement game for the ages. I had a great time playing this one, even if I did throw a fit somewhere in the middle of it. Easy to understand, highly thematic, and stimulating to navigate – I can’t wait to wrastle up some more cattle and fire off a few six-shooters.
I’ve been hearing about Carson City all over the internet, but as usual for me, didn’t know much about it. The theme is really cool and the mechanics are pretty straightforward. After my first play I thought it was OK, nothing too exciting happened. You claim some building and the strategic placement earns specific income. Of course, I was trying to do things that were not allowed and everyone had a good laugh. OK, so I was trying to steal one of Dan’s houses by force; that’s a pretty solid way to score points, right? (But that’s not allowed they said!) Well I showed them, the last round I was first player and claimed the sheriff early and plopped that bad boy right on the
$4 space1 point for $5 space. This blocked everyone from that space except for me, since you cannot duel the sheriff. Muhahahaha. I still lost. I wouldn’t mind playing again with some of the added expansion pieces for some more spice.
Pandemic: Legacy (No spoilers) –
Some tips to those players out there who are going to be, or are currently, playing Pandemic Legacy.
- September sucks
- October sucks
- Don’t take a month off in between sessions (real life does happen so this one can slide, just be sure to fully re-brief the situation where you left off)
- Be sure to know your mandatory objective(s)
- When you think you pulled off some achievement, you prob get to open things, double and triple check to be sure.
Follow these simple things and you won’t f%#&* up as bad as we did in October. GAHHH. Its ok though, we will fix things in November. We can see the light! There was some discussion on doing a special podcast when we are finished or campaign. Looking forward to that.
Ugh. No more month-long breaks between sessions! We royally boned ourselves. So badly… Headed into November, the end is coming up quick. We’ll know the fate of the world soon.
F$&*! October and our dumb asses.
We are definitely not finishing #pandemiclegacy tonight. We are a bunch of DUMMIES!
— steebin (@steebin) February 13, 2016
Ticket to Ride: UK/Pennsylvania –
As you may or may not know, I own all of the Ticket to Ride expansions due to the fact that my family loves this game. Of course the new expansion was a no-brainer to add to my collection. We started off with the Pennsylvania side and I was pretty satisfied with the added element of stocks. When placing your trains on a specific route, you can take a share of stock in a company named on the route from that pile. At the end of the game, majorities in each stock score TONS of bonus points. This is in addition to the points of your completed routes. I found myself making more interesting decisions as the game progressed in terms of which route to take so I can claim a specific stock. Instead of just getting the reds I needed to get another leg of my route complete, I found myself diverting to a different color since a different route would offer a choice of stock. The game ended with most scores well into the high 100’s.
We then flipped the board over and I was instantly blown away by the new colorful look the UK board offered. This version also comes with a new deck of train cards that are specific for this map since it contains more locomotive (wild) cards. I was a little nervous on how these new rules would pan out on the family since this a for-sure step up in TTR land. All players are on a level playing field and the only option when starting out is to build routes of size one or two, and only in one corner of the board. Players must then spend locomotive cards to “upgrade” their abilities. If you want to branch out and build in Scotland or over routes that are 3 tracks long, you must spend the required amount of locomotives to purchase the ability. Some upgrades offer the chance to score extra points on routes or when placing trains. The game suggests to score routes as they are completed, and while we usually like to wait until the end to score our completed and failed routes, upgrades can affect your scores mid game, so there is a valid excuse to score them right away. In the end it felt a little anticlimactic since all of the scoring was basically complete once the last turn was taken.
Specter Ops –
I’ve only played this one a couple of times, and I feel like it’s always been as the Beast against the Cobra and it’s never been good. I don’t particularly find the fact that the Agent character is chosen after having seen the choices for the Hunters to be balanced. With that being said, I would definitely need to play more with different characters before officially making that argument.
It’s been awhile since playing this after it first came out, and now I’m not sure why I haven’t played it more since. I seem to have fun every time I play, win or lose, and the tension that builds from the start makes it exciting.
Grand Austria Hotel –
Erg. I have such mixed emotions about this game. Each time my turn came around, Grand Austria Hotel was a wonderful action selection game about managing a fancy hotel. I served strudel and coffee with the best of them, kept my guests comfy and well taken care of, I even appeased the Emperor! But then, when it wasn’t my turn, I napped…for 15 straight minutes. With way too much downtime between turns and too much variation in the board state to plan, I am completely torn on whether Grand Austria is a game I’m willing to play again.
As I mentioned in previous posts and blogs, this has become my favorite game of the year so far. I purchased this not long after Dan had introduced it to me. I taught it to Alicia and played a 2 player game and it worked out well and was still lots of fun. I played another three player game with Matt and Dan. This being Matt’s first experience, well, let’s just say that he had a really bad first impression. The downtime in this game is as bad as everyone says. When you are lucky enough, like I was, to have the back-to-back turn and ALSO score the customer that offers an extra turn, your opponents will be very less than happy. I ended up outscoring Matt by over 150 points. We did play again the next day but at four players. Not sure how the downtime can be fixed, but I would say three players is still the sweet spot.
Physics has never been my strong suit. Neither has dexterity. This is the craziest game ever and whoever invented it was nuts. The pieces you’ve gotta stack are ridiculous and the players on the box (from the 1990s) just mock you the whole time for not being able to balance that cone on a sphere because they totally could’ve done it, loser.
Bid your beans and stack your blocks – makes sense, right? While basically glorified Jenga, Bandu is classic block-stacking dexterity on steroids, or maybe LSD, given the strange and imperfect shapes you’ll have to compile to win. Word to the wise, skip the “Keep” auctions and go straight to sticking it to your friends – “Bid a bean to avoid stacking the egg!”
Far Space Foundry –
I finally dragged Dan into playing this one. I knew when I backed it after the print-and-play that Matt would like it and Dan would cringe at it. I was right. The game is pretty good but you do get stuck in some cases. We got in a four player game with Dan and Smee and the frustrations really set in on how to maximize your cargo space and available actions. You can get really screwed if you are going for one product, then find that by the time you get the cards you need to execute your move, those products may be gone. There does seem to be something missing to help negate some of the non-actions or ways to catch up and help you back on the path. Would be interesting to see if there are others adding in some house rules. This is still a pretty neat little puzzle that can really contort your brain or test you patience. Look for our full review coming soon.
Listen to Matt, Tiff and Dan’s thoughts of Far Space Foundry on the podcast!
Giving Far Space Foundry another try. This time at 4p with Mr. Freeze. #boardgames pic.twitter.com/DqHkw3W7Gu
— Nonsensical Gamers (@LeagueNonsense) February 6, 2016