Bottom of the 9th
I was nervous to ask Kel to play this with me because I know that simultaneous real-time play is not really her thing. I decided to give it a go anyway and was surprised to find that it wasn’t an issue. She did have some trouble getting behind the theme though, as baseball isn’t her sport of choice, and we both found remembering how the pitch count worked to be harder than expected. I still had a great time and look forward to playing more, but will definitely consider those two potential hiccups when petitioning a different opponent.
One of my most anticipated kickstarters arrived this week and man it is beautiful. So much nostalgia came rushing in as I opened the different baseball card packs. So much detail went into the design of the game and it all came out flawlessly. The game itself is really easy and very fast paced. Teaching it to Alicia had a couple bumps along the way but once we did a few rounds we both hit a stride and were playing at the expected pace. I ended up striking her out with the bases loaded! Such a great game and all the mechanics work perfectly. This is a no-brainer for any baseball fan to have in their collection. (Also, Tiff has her very own baseball card in the game, such fame, so batting, wow)
It’s been a very active Kickstarter season and for the last few months pledge fulfillments have been arriving at my doorstep. While I’ve played and appreciated most of them, Burgle Bros. currently takes the cake when looking at the 5 or 6 games I’ve recently received. It offered a unique co-op experience that fostered great conversation and decision making. We hit a snag at the end of the game, with Kelly B. having to play cat-and-mouse alone for several turns in an attempt to escape to the roof, but we learned a lot about how to play the game better on future plays, which I can’t wait to indulge in.
Back to the local game shop for another tournament, it was announced before the first round that a copy of 7 Wonders: Duels would be added to the prize pack! With double the turnout from the first time it was run, the competition was a bit more fierce this time. Still completely eschewing science for a civic-heavy strategy, I ended up tying for first place after four rounds, and won on the overall tiebreaker. I find that 7 Wonders remains as one of my favorite lighter games out there!
A simple deck of cards in a small box with some slightly interesting/intimidating artwork. What is this game? It is The Game and it is a game. A cooperative game where you work together to put the cards in order in 4 separate piles. That’s it. As I stated in our review, not too sure how I feel about this one. As we played, it ended up being a test on who could screw up the game the least. I’m pretty sure I was apologizing the most as I would make my horrible plays but had no other choice or options to help the team. I wouldn’t mind playing it as a time killer but would not seek it out.
I played this one a handful of times over the weekend. I liked it a lot, honestly. It reminded me of playing Racko with my cousins at my grandmother’s house. The artwork on the cards combined with the name, though, makes me feel like there should be some kind of bizarre Saw-type twist or something, like if you lose, Jigsaw will come out and strap a bear trap to your face. I don’t know. I wanna play this one solo and see if I like it as much as a game of solitaire.
Third in the “Oniverse Series,” Castellion is a tile placement game where you seek to arrange 4 possible colors of blobby dream-soldiers into columns, rows and blocks while following a constrictive set of placement rules. Its theme is comparably strange to its Oniverse predecessors, but offers a really engaging puzzle nonetheless. So far, it has helped bridge the gap between game nights when I’m home alone and looking to get a game to the table.
I’ve been a big fan of The Duke since it first released and was very excited to pick up its cousin, Jarl, when it first released this past Origins. It hasn’t had much play since the convention, but Kel and I recently got it back to the table one lazy evening. I’m happy to say that the game still holds up well and continues to deliver an enjoyably classic experience. Specifically with Jarl, I enjoy the mobility that your Jarl piece has, compared to your Duke in the other title. The units also synergize much more in Jarl, relying on each other to defend and strike in a calculated way. I’m hoping to get in a few more games of viking vs. viking before mixing in the English troops of The Duke.
I don’t know how many of you have played this or how many of you have played The Duke or how any of you feel about comparing the two but Jarl is kind of hard. Not to mention that the defense square rules are confusing to start out with. It took us a bit to get the hang of this one, but it’s still a lovely game with a great twist on its inspiration. I definitely need to practice this one. And watch more Vikings in case it teaches you some special tactics.