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101 Best Board Games

Review: Imperial 2030

June 9th, 2017

Money! Money makes the world go round. Money also makes factories, fleets and armies that around that world and bash each other to bits, at least that’s according to Imperial 2030! But is it really all about war? Just because it looks like Risk and even smells like Risk, that doesn’t mean you should make risky assumptions. Paul has been learning the ever-twisting dance of the...

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Review: Millennium Blades

June 7th, 2017

Thrower: The table is a wreck of cards, tokens and wads of cash. One player has collapsed on the sofa, eyes closed, exhausted. Another feverishly sorts their deck, cards held close to face, unable to understand what went wrong. Someone else has walked out, professing a desire for space and calm.

I’m wondering where the last two hours went and how I didn’t notice we now have an audience of a new visitor and a cat. I realise, suddenly, that on this cool spring evening I’m bathed in sweat. This is the aftermath of Millennium Blades.

We’ve spent the time pretending to be players of a fictional collectible card game in an anime universe. Millennium Blades is, then, a game about playing games. This sounds like a recipe for a design that disappears up its own backside. Instead, this game is interesting, intense and ingenious. Stuffed with self-referential satire, it sits, winking at its players from the comfort of its oversize box. If you can unpick all the parodies from a card called “I’ll Form the Head” from the “Obari as Hell” card set, you’re a higher voltage gamer than me.

RPG Review: Trail of Cthulhu

May 31st, 2017

Cynthia: It is a little known fact I accompanied Paul Dean during his fearless investigations into the horrific Mythos Tales affair earlier this spring. I witnessed some of those same horrors, unearthed dark revelations couched in official documents, grappled with non-euclidean maps, and ventured alongside him into spaces where our accustomed rules of time and space seemed to break down.

None of that prepared me for the bizarre investigations that I commenced upon my return to Minneapolis –– investigations that continue as I write. Therefore, while I still retain enough of my mind to write, I find it imperative to tell you all this:

There is no Lovecraftian mystery game as engrosssing, as well-crafted, or as much sheer fun as Pelgrane’s roleplaying game, Trail of Cthulhu.

SU&SD Take on The Board Game Geek Top 100: 10-1

May 27th, 2017

Paul: Gawd, I love BGG. It’s one of my favourite gaming places on the internet and this has been a fascinating journey.

Quinns: It’s an astonishingly rigorous database. As if IMDB was combined with a… an educated mosh pit, but with a set of scales in the corner that told you how much every actor weighed.

As we close out this feature, I’m simply left wanting to play more board games. Which is surely the best possible result.

SU&SD Take on The Board Game Geek Top 100: 20-11

May 26th, 2017

Quinns: Matt, we have to abort this feature! Reddit’s disapproval is reaching critical levels.

Matt: That’s not the Reddit alarm, that’s my egg timer. I’m making everybody lunchtime eggs to keep up our strength.

Quinns: Wow! I could kiss you.

Matt: Don’t kiss on me, daddy-oats, kiss on these great games.

SU&SD Take on The Board Game Geek Top 100: 40-21

May 25th, 2017

Paul: Matt it’s nearly Friday, how are we only now poking our way into the top 40? Why did we take on this challenge?

Matt: Trains.

Quinns: He’s a goner, Paul. There’s nothing we can do for him now. PRESS FORWARD.

SU&SD Take on The Board Game Geek Top 100: 60-41

May 24th, 2017

Quinns: As we continue our marathon-like jog through Board Game Geek’s top 100 games ever, today I can reveal that we’re out of the weeds. We’ve played every single board game in the 60-41 slot!

Which isn’t to say that we always enjoyed ourselves…

SU&SD Take on The Board Game Geek Top 100: 80-61

May 23rd, 2017

Paul: Our exhaustive look at the games jostling their way about BoardGameGeek’s Top 100 continues! Today, we have everything from international illness to urban development to mischievous academics. Oh, and opinions. Always with the sassy opinions. ONWARD.

Star Realms

SU&SD Take on The Board Game Geek Top 100: 101-81

May 22nd, 2017

Board Game Geek is a titan of the board game scene, one of the most comprehensive and consulted sites the hobby has, as well as a place to which we owe a huge debt of inspiration. It’s also home to the absolute Board Game Geekiest among us, namely those with a monthly allowance for small zip-lock baggies. While we undoubtedly fall into that category ourselves, we appreciate that not everyone does and it’s inevitable that our opinions will diverge now and then.

Just what do we make of those most esteemed of titles that are forever locked in an eternal battle for a place in BGG’s Top 100 rankings? This week, we’ll be giving an extensive, nay, exhaustive breakdown of that list, telling you what we’ve covered, what we thought and even admitting what we’ve missed out on. So come with us as we count down the games in a whole week’s worth of analysis and adventure!

Board games reviews: Plague Inc; Evolution: The Beginning; Kingdomino

May 15th, 2017

A mobile game makes an infectiously good transition to tabletop, a card game richly rewards smart selection and a domino-strategy mashup is a quickfire winner

There’s a faintly luddite spirit to the board game renaissance of recent years, perhaps a reaction to the heavy demands screens now make on our time. Yet there isn’t such a great divide between games built of cardboard and those spun from code. They explore similar themes and their designers frequently learn from one another.

In 2007, a simple web game, Pandemic, challenged players with spreading an infection across the world. Around the same time, an unrelated board game of the same name tasked its players with preventing the spread of disease and quickly assumed cult status. Soon after, a mobile game called Plague Inc reversed the goal again, making global epidemic a mainstay of many commutes, while happily crediting the original Pandemic web game as an inspiration. Now Plague Inc has been reimagined as a board game that looks much like a homage to the board game, completing a considerable circle over 10 years.

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